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Hello, ME Wiki-goers!
I have been a long-time watcher of discussions and user of this Wiki's databases, all I can say is how lost I'd be without it, so I'd like to take a moment and thank its administrators and editors for the detailed plethora of information on this site.
I'm sure there are a lot of people who are tired of the complaints about Mass Effect 3's ending, on both sides of the argument. I am one of those people who was unsatisfied by the game's end, but NOT IN A CONVENTIONAL SENSE.
Life is full of unsatisfying ends, and Mass Effect 3 was able to pull off a solution to the Reaper problem that left the races of the galaxy both technologically crippled, but alive. When I first beat the story and the credits rolled, I was one of the many who sat there with my gob hanging open, wondering what the heck just happened; not because Shepard died to save the galaxy, but because my crew emerged out of the Normandy with glowing green tattoos and (drum roll please) said absolutely nothing.
The ending cut-scene, for me, made absolutely no sense and if I may say so, did not do the game or surviving characters justice. With all the emotion built up in the game, the epilogue was emotionally void. With all the work Bioware put into this trilogy, would it have been too much to have Garrus, Liara, Ashley, Tali, Chakwas and Joker converse one last time and speculate about what happened, rather than an upbeat, sudden “cut-to-black?” These were rich characters that I, through Shepard, had been through Hell with, and I’m probably never going to see these characters ever again. It seemed like they were just thrown into the trash bin. Given the amount of dialogue in the game, I fail to see why none of them were given the opportunity to speak and reflect on what has happened.
I romanced Ashley in ME 1, but didn't pick it up in ME 3 because of the bad blood in ME 2. Instead, Shepard hooked up with long-time friend and ally, Liara. Liara's story and growth as a character (in my opinion) throughout the trilogy really impressed me, and I was incredibly (and strangely) heartbroken when I learned that the London segment was to be the last time I would ever speak to her, and that she didn't say anything when she emerged from the Normandy behind Joker and EDI. What I would give to have Shepard speak to Liara one last time before going up in flames, even if it were in one of the game's haunting dream sequences! I could picture such an opportunity after Shepard's last conversations with Hackett and Anderson, when he passes out on the floor and is brought to the Catalyst.
I'm the kind of guy who thinks that happy endings were cheesy, but for once, I found that I wanted a happy ending with Liara, but it was not to be so. Because of the situation with Ashley, I felt like I had found the right girl, only to lose her. I can live with that, but like I said, it would be easier to stomach if the epilogue cut-scene hadn't have been so rushed and more emotionally fulfilling. Perhaps even Liara could have had a dream sequence about a final conversation with Shepard; there were so many ways the ending cutscene was lacking, it actually made me sick. My fault for becoming so attached to these characters, I suppose, but what else was one to do when watching a trilogy?
I want to say MY goodbyes, to Garrus, Tali and Liara. But the abrupt cutscene leaves you wanting more. It raised more questions rather than answered them.
I'm not going to get into the Haestrom debate, or bicker that saving the Collector Base had no real consequence for better or worse or that the Destiny Ascension appeared in the final battle over Earth, despite it being destroyed in ME 1. I can live with the linear ending, but in truth, I was hoping there'd be a little more variety.
Don't get me wrong, Mass Effect 3 is a 9/10 game in my books, but the rushed epilogue keeps it from getting the full 10. I know what Bioware is capable of in this game, they slacked at the last minute, literally.
To sum up my point, the ending was beautiful and bleak; even with the happy ending I wish I could have had, I couldn't imagine it ending any other way. But the final cutscene was emotionally void compared to the 95% of the game previous.
As a final thought, I say: Remember Deception. We, the fans, do have some impact. Mass Effect 3 is no book, but Bioware intends to release DLC in the future. Would it hurt to add an expanded, fulfilling epilogue that puts to rest the questions that the lacking one presented?
In my mind, this action is slight possibility but I'm not holding my breath.
Thoughts? Flames? Sonnets to Toast?