Certain moments in video game history stand out for a certain reason. For example, when a game has been so hyped up that you have to play it to know if it was worth it, that’s a thing you remember. Or, if a beloved trilogy of games is set to come to a close, and the third game promises to tie up everything and give you a satisfying conclusion, you eagerly await the chance to play it to see how everything will end. Today is the 11th anniversary of Mass Effect 3, and to this day, it remains a divisive title to talk about.
Let’s start with the positive because there is plenty to be positive about. The game was made during the “peak” of Bioware, which feels like a distant memory at this point. As such, the game was high-quality from nearly start to finish. It had the best graphics and the experience of making the gameplay from the first two titles, which allowed for a nearly flawless combat experience. In addition, the game had new powers and abilities, including turning your Omni-Tool into a blade to stab enemies.
The game also had a compelling story of Commander Shepherd trying to rally the entirety of the main races to help fight the Reapers. The stories that were born were really cool and made you wonder how things would end.
Sadly, that’s where Mass Effect 3 went off the rails. As many will tell you, the final scenes in the game were hardly satisfying and nullified everything you had done to that point. The backlash for the game was so huge that fans went online to talk about it and came up with theories about what “really happened” in the ending. That created the fan-favorite “Indoctrination Theory,” which honestly made more sense than the ending we got.
Bioware would later go on to ‘fix’ the ending with a patch, but gamers were still mostly unsatisfied. But that wasn’t the end of the pain. That was merely the beginning. After the game’s successful launch, Bioware lost many key developers, including their founders! Then, despite the story of Shepherd and his crew being over, EA decided to keep going with the franchise, which led to the poorly received Mass Effect Andromeda.
A new game in the franchise is in the works right now, and fans hope it’s a return to form that doesn’t leave them disappointed again.