If you're not going to advertise a product correctly, there's bound to be some consumer backlash. Or…a lot.

It's part of the reason why Mass Effect 3 fans remain upset about the ending(s) in BioWare's latest role-playing offering. And now, the Better Business Bureau says "technically," the developer and publisher (EA) gave consumers a misleading advertising campaign for ME3.

BBB director of marketplace services Marjorie Stephens explained why BioWare and EA did the fans a disservice . She highlighted two of the game's marketing taglines; the first involved a promise to players that they'd be able to "experience the beginning, middle and end of an emotional story unlike any other, where the decisions you make completely shape your experience and outcome."

And of course, you can't completely craft a unique experience. Secondly, Stephens cited- "Along the way, your choices drive powerful outcomes, including relationships with key characters, the fate of entire civilizations, and even radically different ending scenarios." That isn't entirely true, either. And at the end of the day, companies need to be careful:

"The lesson to be learned here is companies should give careful consideration to how they word their advertisements. Otherwise, there could be detrimental effects, especially in the era of social media and online forums."

Oh, it has been detrimental, all right.

Related Game(s): Mass Effect 3

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TheIllusiveMan
TheIllusiveMan
9 years ago

This is really beginning to frustrate me. The ending wasn't even that bad. People need to go play some original Nintendo games so they can see what a bad ending is.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Naw man, Simon's Quest had a great multiple ending system based on your actions that were all very different from each other.

Temjin001
Temjin001
9 years ago

Yeah, and in Super Mario Bros after I beat Bowser, like 8x, my ending changed from saving Toad to saving the Princess =p

And nothing beat the NG endings back in the day.
Sweet sweet Irene Lew… My first love =p

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

Ahhhh Irene… I knew her well… 🙂

telly
telly
9 years ago

@Illusiveman, I agree the fans who HATE this ending so much are nuts. Like, have they ever beaten a video game before?? Final Fantasy VII had one of the most vague/weird endings we'd ever seen when it happened (my friends and I didn't realize Cloud and the crew survived until years later when they made Advent Children) and we all loved that game AND it's ending something fierce, and rightly so.

That said, I'm making a conscious effort to not let them get me down. They wanna hate on one of the best games ever because the ending wasn't what they wanted(which still has FREE ending DLC coming this summer and surely plenty of other "epilogue" stuff in the pipeline as well) they can go ahead and be bitter. Not me. I loved the game way too much to be upset 🙂

Palpatations911
Palpatations911
9 years ago

TheIllusiveMan,

What does that have to do with the article?

Fans filed legitimate complaints. Bioware stated that the decisions made throughout all 3 titles would have an impact on your personal experience and the ending. The decisions did not have any impact.

They took thousands, or even millions of possible combinations of decisions and actions that could be taken throughout all 3 games and consolidated them all in to 3 endings that varied only slightly.


Last edited by Palpatations911 on 4/13/2012 1:26:57 AM

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

"Secondly, Stephens cited- "Along the way, your choices drive powerful outcomes, including relationships with key characters, the fate of entire civilizations, and even radically different ending scenarios." "That isn't entirely true, either. "

Actually it is true. That stuff happens through out the games and at the end, a lot. So… That's not a very valid point. With out giving away any spoilers I'll leave it at that.

With that said I really haven't experienced much of this type of thing before, and never did I expect the BBB to be involved. This is getting crazy!


Last edited by bigrailer19 on 4/11/2012 10:10:11 PM

oldmike
oldmike
9 years ago

"radically different ending scenarios."

be see that part is not

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

Ending scenarios do change drastically actually. I can't say much because of spoilers so it's hard to validate what I'm saying. Oh screw it, I'll do my best not to say too much about the outcomes.

I'll start by saying different ending scenarios doesn't necessarily in my mind have to be limited to the actual endings of the game. But rather could also be the end of a relationship or the end of a battle or dialogue sequence and depending what you do there are drastic differences, like for example the "fate of civilizations". The endings of the game also could change drastically by your choices. There's a lot of different outcomes in ME2 from Survivors to choices u made. Same goes for ME3, whatever choice you make is "drastically" different from eachother.

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

I know that Bioware views the entire game as an ending. But this I believe constitutes a massive creative miscalculation on their part. Because this "ending" still has an ending. In which case the issue is not with the ending per se but with the ending of the ending.


Last edited by Looking Glass on 4/12/2012 8:36:49 AM

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

Don't make this complicated guys… The ending ragardless how you look at it did in fact have different outcomes, all that varied by your choice.

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

Oh sure. Multi-colored explosions. If that's Bioware's idea of "wildly different" endings then I think it's safe to say that they've probably got issues.

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

I think you missed it, but each choice had wildly different conclusions, even if you didn't see the aftermath. That is what I'm upset about, among it feeling like how I played the game didn't matter considering those 3 last choices. But that doesn't negate the fact that those choices all would have a greatly different impact on the outcome of the galaxies. I don't see how you can argue that, just because you didn't see the aftermath, when really you made one of those choices based on the information that was given.

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

But you see that's exactly the problem, or one of the problems to be more specific. The players are not allowed to actually see the fruits of their labor. And that is the problem. The players are ultimately denied the satisfaction of seeing how their choices mattered. And that in turn ultimately means that their choices ultimately don't matter because there's no pay off. The players don't get rewarded with any ACTUAL CONTENT. All the players actually get for all their hard work is multi-colored explosions.

Or let me put it another way. Aftermath? What aftermath? There is no aftermath because there is no such content in the game. All there is is multi-colored explosions and an unsatisfying scene with two nameless characters nobody has seen or heard from before (a grandfather and a grandchild). And no your choices don't effect the galaxy because there is no such content in the game.


Last edited by Looking Glass on 4/12/2012 10:56:53 AM

xenris
xenris
9 years ago

Look at it this way bigrailer. Other than miniscule changes to the three core explosion endings based on your galactic readiness you have no in game idea what actually happens.

We only know of the aftermath because people are speculating what they think happened, and the strategy guides on IGN and other sites state the tiny differences that your galactic readiness effected. Which is why the ending is so confusing and people were really hoping that it was the indoctrination theory at play, which I think has been confirmed it isn't. Which in turn creates another problem. That readiness is more important for the ending of the ending than any choices that you made in ME1 or ME2 heck even in ME3.

It was an expectation thing too. People were hoping that choices they made in ME1 came back to save or bite them in the butt in the ending of ME3, why? Because thats what they were sort of promised.

SPOILER**************************************

Also as for aftermath. The relays all exploded, which means according to ME2 Arrival DLC that the star system with the relay in it gets utterly obliterated. So you can infer that there is no tangible galaxy left, and shepard essentially destroyed more than the reapers ever were going too. However, you see the crew alive after so, someone at Bioware bent the rules a little bit, and disregarded previously established lore(which isn't a first ME2 did this a bunch) in order for your crew to crash land on a planet.

END SPOILERS********************************

Even if the whole game of ME3 is considered the ending of the trilogy, they could have been more clear. Either way it was sort of misdirection and not clear enough for the fans you know? I'm sure no one who read and heard the promises about the ending assumed that they were talking about the whole game and not the finale of the game.

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

I get where you guys are coming from but in what I'm trying to say originally, there's no point to your arguments. I agree with you guys though in what you're saying, there should have been more content to explain the outcomes or at least been able to see what the galaxies would have been like.

But your choices are clear, very clear in fact. Even though you don't see the outcome, you know what the outcome is, you just don't see how it affects the galaxies and races, organics and synthetics (which yes is very unfortunate). But you are given three choices and you know what the conclusion of them is. That is how you make your final decision, because you know what they are. The unfortunate thing is we don't get to see them played out. But the game doesn't say "pick a path" and sends you in blind. You know up front what your choices are and how it will and could affect the galaxies. That's all I'm saying. My argument isnt about Biowares approach to how they concluded the game, only that there is in fact choice, with distinctly different outcomes.


Last edited by bigrailer19 on 4/12/2012 11:37:35 AM

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

No. Actually there are no outcomes. There are just hints and implications of outcomes. But there are no actual outcomes. There is no actual content to that effect.

And we don't actually know anything either. All we have is evidence, theories, and speculation. But we don't actually know anything because there is no actual content to that effect.

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

You know what choice you're making. Thats it, you just do. How else would you make the choice? If you can't see that then I don't know what else to say to help you realize that. My point is there are 3 choices each is completely different and would in fact (despite the fact that we don't see it) have an outcome that differs from the others. We know this because of the way it's expresse in the choices.

I'm not arguing with you, I just don't think we are talking abiut the same things. I'm talking about the fact that there are distinct choices to be made. You're talking about us not knowing what the outcomes are.


Last edited by bigrailer19 on 4/12/2012 12:15:07 PM

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

Ahh. Perhaps the key words here are "would have". Maybe the choices would have outcomes. They would have but they DON'T.

And the problem isn't that there are no choices or that you don't know what those choices are. You do have choices. But problem is that your choices ultimately don't matter.

You get to choose what color those explosions are. That's it. Your choice doesn't have any other effect.

Why? Because there is NO CONTENT to that effect. Your choice doesn't effect any other content in the game.


Last edited by Looking Glass on 4/12/2012 12:28:23 PM

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

You sir are impossible!

I've agreed with you in regards to there not being any content and for some reason you aren't seeing that either.

Bottom line is, you have 3 choices and it's very safe to assume what will happen when you make one of those choices because they are explained, very clearly! That's all I'm saying! I don't care about arguing if there is content to show the extent of the choice because that's a different argument! Which I've agreed with you on.

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

You have been claiming that there are distinctly different outcomes. But unless you're referring to the different color explosions this just isn't true. It doesn't matter how well defined or explained the choices are because no matter what choice you make the only thing that gets effected is the color of the explosions.

And I'm not talking about us not knowing what the outcomes are because there are no outcomes. There are multi-colored explosions and that unsatisfying grandfather scene. And that is one of numerous reasons why the fans are so unhappy.

Pandacastro
Pandacastro
9 years ago

Haven't pay much attention to the conversation but the outcomes depend on your galactic readiness not the choices bigrailer. The only thing that you see that was your choices was the explosion color and the squadmates that come out at the end. So your both right and wrong . Again haven't pay much attention to your conversation.

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@Pandacastro

Actually I believe what you're referring to is EMS, or Effective Military Strength. You're EMS rating is essentially War assets x Galactic Readiness.

And what your EMS rating basically determines is what choices you have available to you when the time for the final decision comes. But the thing is as far as I know with all the possible choices the endings are still nearly identical and use over 90 percent of the same assets.

So essentially the EMS rating is just a tool for giving yourself choices. But even so no matter what choice you make the difference is minimal and your choices ultimately don't matter.


Last edited by Looking Glass on 4/12/2012 2:56:31 PM

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

Panda-

I know that, I'm not talking about the immediate ending, cutscenes and what happens to the crew and what not. I'm talking about th lasting impact that one of your 3 choices at the end would have on the galaxy!

Glass-

Ok again I agree with you that Bioware did not present any outcomes! I have been saying that!

Let me put it this way, anyone open minded enough to understand the choices they made at the end of the game can comprehend what would have happened, and they are all different.

Does it suck that Bioware didn't expand on the outcomes? Your da** right it does.

But all I've been talking about this whole time was that there is choice and with each different choice a different outcome WOULD represent it.

This is to both of you- throughout my comments I've also been referring to not just the ME3 ending. I'm also referring to general Choices through out all the games, that you would make through dialogue for example, that would have different outcomes. Take that as you will.


Last edited by bigrailer19 on 4/12/2012 3:28:53 PM

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

But you see it doesn't matter what WOULD or WOULD HAVE happened. What matters is what DID happen. And what did happen? Nothing. It's not that Bioware didn't expand on the outcomes. It's that there are no outcomes. You can't expand on something that doesn't exist.

And why don't the "woulds" and "would haves" matter? Because they only exist in people's heads. They don't exist in the actual game (this is what I mean by no content). And if something doesn't exist in the actual game and it's not acknowledged or established by the original creator or creators then by all means it's little more than fan fiction. And this is still true no matter how well it fits with the actual source material. It's still not part of the actual game and the actual story.

Maybe that kind of thing is good enough for you personally but it was apparently not good enough for most of the Mass Effect fans. They didn't want stuff that exists only in their own heads. They wanted their choices to be reflected in the ACTUAL GAME. And this is something that Bioware had been leading them to believe would happen. And ultimately that is just not what happened.


Last edited by Looking Glass on 4/12/2012 3:59:14 PM

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

Oh boy… I don't know how many times I have to say it – but I know there was no light shed on the choices you make. Bioware did a poor job of closing the book, sort of speak.

You're gonna make my head explode. On one level I sense we are on the same page but then you go back to, Bioware didn't conclude the endings witch I'm assuming what you want is a long cut-scene maybe?

All I know is I made a choice at the end of the game, I knew what was going to happen to the reapers, the mass relays, the organics, and the synthetics. I didn't know which would have been nice, yes, is how it shaped the galaxies for the future.

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

Well I think a more accurate or precise way of putting it would be that you knew what the implications of your choice were. It really is too bad that Bioware just gave us implications and little else. I suspect that EA deliberately had Bioware end Mass Effect 3 in this way so as to leave the door open for future content (like another Mass Effect game for example) so that they can milk the franchise as much as they can for as long as they can.

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

No, I'm pretty sure I know what was going to happen, that's how I made my choice.

But let's end that now, and I will agree that looking back they did sort of leave the door open. But I think with what is releasing this summer, the "extended cut" maybe that will close that door.

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

I'll put it a different way. I think you know what's SUPPOSED to happen as a result of your choice. But there's just one problem. Nothing actually happened. Maybe something will happen whenever Bioware gets around to making content to that effect. But for now all we have are implications.

bigrailer19
bigrailer19
9 years ago

I have to do this… Something did happen. There was a flash of different colored lights 😉 Which represent the Choice I made, which reflected an outcome.

I'm obviously thinking about it differently than you.

Looking Glass
Looking Glass
9 years ago

@bigrailer19

The choice and the color are precursors to an outcome at best. There currently is no outcome.

xenris
xenris
9 years ago

Bigrailer, I get where you and Glass are coming from.

Now, bigrailer I will explain what I think about it. The problem is, your told the outcome of each of the three choices. BUT, that means that each outcome is the same, because when all the relays go down, everyone is basically going to die who are in systems that were near earth. Earth is SCREWED no matter what. Problem is maybe this is false, maybe Bioware will retcon what happens when a relay explodes, which they obviously did or else joker would have been annihilated in the blast.

So you see, thats why the ending really irks me. Also before we knew the ending was to be taken at face value and not some indoctrination theory it was even more confusing what actually happened in the end.

So while you can assume the ending and outcome of each explosion choice, its so vague and terrible and contradicting in lore that people who look at it critically can't help but shout a big ol WTF.

Palpatations911
Palpatations911
9 years ago

Finishing ME3 is like finishing a Choose your own Adventure book and ending up on page 78 every time.

Geobaldi
Geobaldi
9 years ago

I had no problems with the ending. Sure it wasn't the greatest but big deal. I didn't like how The Sopranos ended either but I got over it.

inkme101
inkme101
9 years ago

still not over the sopranos ending! lol

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

but the sopranos are gay

anjpikapp3
anjpikapp3
9 years ago

So true man! You know LIFE ends with a big suck face…you wanna change that too?? /sarcastic/

kraygen
kraygen
9 years ago

Can't wait till this game is on sale for $20 so I can see what all the fuss is about. lol

oldmike
oldmike
9 years ago

i am shocked it has already dropped $10
the 2ed one was a good 1/2 year before it started dropping

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

I picked it up for $35

Temjin001
Temjin001
9 years ago

Used from GameStop, World ?

😉

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

lol, never. A fellow gamer on ebay, and it was brand new so I get the DLC.

kraygen
kraygen
9 years ago

While it has price dropped quickly that only enforces my resolve to wait. I haven't paid more than $20 for a game for about 4 years. I just figured there wasn't a point. I don't play online, so waiting for a game to be $20 doesn't change the experience for me.

Unless of course I don't enjoy the game and then I feel better about it because I didn't pay as much. I may play my games a year after a lot of people, but I always get 3 games for the price of one and I only buy them new so my money still goes to the developer.

telly
telly
9 years ago

You're gonna be so let down when you see a perfectly fine ending at the end of a stellar space action RPG 🙂

xenris
xenris
9 years ago

Telly, have you played all the other ME games, particularly ME1? Also, are you aware of the inconsistencies of the ME3 ending in accordance to the lore they established in the first two games?

I'm just curious if you are aware of the actual and factual plot holes with the ending, or if you didn't pick up on them.

telly
telly
9 years ago

Played them all, loved them all, fine with the ending of ME3. Haters gonna hate, I suppose, but I'm not going to get worked up anymore over someone else's problems with the ending.

xenris
xenris
9 years ago

So you are aware of the terrible writing and contradictions? The massive plot holes and leaps of logic in the ending of ME3?

If the answer is yes then, cool your satisfied with whatever is put in front of you good job. But you really have no grounds to call people whiners when you clearly didn't really care about the fine details of the series.

Clamedeus
Clamedeus
9 years ago

I didn't like the ending either but I just don't care honestly anymore.

WorldEndsWithMe
WorldEndsWithMe
9 years ago

I'm replaying ME2 now (with a proper, female Shepard modeled after an old college crush) so I can bring her into ME3. I think now that I know the ending is no good that I'll be okay and I can be free to experience the whole rest of the game.