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An Open Letter Regarding Mass Effect: Deception

Dear Casey Hudson, Mac Walters, William C. Dietz and the teams at BioWare and Electronic Arts,

Over the last 5 years the Mass Effect Wiki community has built the most comprehensive guide to the Mass Effect Universe outside of BioWare, and we have thoroughly enjoyed doing it. While editors and admins come and go, we can be certain of one thing; we all love the Mass Effect Universe and wish to see its success continue. We cannot express how proud we were when Mac Walters revealed that the team had used the wiki in the past. The incredible amount of work that the teams in Edmonton and Montreal have put into the franchise leaves us in awe and we are eagerly awaiting the next installment in March. To us the Mass Effect franchise represents the pinnacle of modern gaming. Few other franchises, if any, tell such engaging stories with such deep and varied characters, fewer still challenge our morality in such compelling ways, and almost no others do it while showing such a respect for the diversity of its audience.

It is for these reasons we are so incredibly disappointed with the latest Mass Effect novel, Mass Effect: Deception. While we are all too aware that it is impossible to always please your multitude of fans, especially while maintaining your artistic integrity, we believe that the issues in Mass Effect: Deception betray far more troubling issues than artistic differences.

Mass Effect: Deception features a considerable number of errors that contradict well-established canon. We are aware of the difficulties in maintaining a consistent universe, especially one so large and subject to player involvement, however the nature of these errors shows substantial disrespect to the universe and the audience. Major plot points of the novel contradict previous stories and established lore, while one plot point in particular completely invalidates the plot of Mass Effect: Invasion, a comic apparently set following the events of Deception.

There are also a host of minor issues that expose the author's complete lack of knowledge about the universe, with descriptions of locations that no longer exist by the time of the novel and wholly inaccurate descriptions of the universe's technology and cultures. Many of these errors could have been corrected by visiting our wiki, and we would have been more than glad to assist the author if help was requested.

These errors are particularly notable to editors of the Mass Effect Wiki as it presents us with huge challenges. We are faced with creating and updating a considerable number of articles with contradictory and incongruous information. Like you, we care about the quality of our content, and we feel that the content of Mass Effect: Deception forces us to compromise on it. We would like to suggest that Mass Effect: Deception not be recognised as a canonical part of the Mass Effect franchise. This would preserve the integrity of the canon, and make our jobs a lot easier.

Mass Effect: Deception seems to be a lazy attempt to cash in on the good will of the Mass Effect fan, and these errors appear to be the symptoms of a growing ambivalence to the quality of Mass Effect content, and the feelings of your biggest fans.

We have no demands; we will not ask you to fire anyone and we will not ask you to apologise. We only wish to express our deep disappointment in the quality of this product in the hopes that in the future more thought will be put into the quality of ancillary products, and more respect given to the Mass Effect Community.

Sincerely,

The Mass Effect Wiki Community

UPDATED: BioWare's Response

On 3 February 2012, BioWare issued this response.

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