For every positive action the gaming community carries out to improve its collective reptuation, there seems to be about four or five or six or twelve negative ones which completely offset the good deeds with a smorgasbord of poorly-channeled anger, ill-thought reasoning and general stupidity. For some reason, Bioware has been taking a lot of flak lately, whether it’s regarding out-of-context remarks made by one of their writers five years ago (who just happens to be of the Fairer Sex) or by bringing out some game called Mass Effect 3 and having it end in a manner not everybody feels is fitting. Everything they seem to do is massively controversial, no matter how much they try to please everyone – it’s a bit of a tricky situation.
There’s only one workable solution for the Canadian gaming superpower to adopt – they have to start sucking. Or just do what they’re already doing, and ignore the very vocal minority too busy rubbing up their Shepard cardboard cutouts to listen to reason and understand that remaking a rather crucial aspect of a multi-million-dollar videogame is kind of unreasonable.
Bioware’s latest controversy involves the ending of Mass Effect 3, which is apparently So Goddamn Terrible that people are complaining to America’s FTC – yes, that FTC – about the game, demanding their money back because publisher Electronic Arts released a game which “did not live up to any of [their] claims”. There’s a huge, extremely well-researched and ultimately rather depressing list (potentially full of spoilers) on Bioware’s forums of the “claims” which EA have not delivered on, each one a little more laughably worrying than the next. All this over a game they’ve spent money on as an entertainment product – not as a controlling share of Bioware, which seems to be what many think they have purchased.
The people that assemble these lists are the kind of wimpy cry-baby self-entitled asshole freaks who spend their time hopelessly masturbating to Miranda cosplay, build their N7 suits out of cardboard and lick their collectors editions in a way Jessica Chobot could only dream of. They’re in the same kind of league as people who buy a ticket to a bad movie and then demand it back from the box office afterwards.
Not that, it should be stressed, I’m implying Mass Effect 3 has a bad ending. Far from it. I have no doubt the conclusion is excellent. If Bioware can create such a huge and loyal fanbase with an award-winning arrangement of gameplay, visuals, sound and story in Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2, that same team should really be able to retain those fans by the time the credits of Game Number Three start to roll. But by the time Game Number Three hits the shelves, the community makes the game their own, ultimately claiming it as their pet without asking Bioware if they can keep it first. So if the dog craps on the carpet and doesn’t do all the tricks it’s being asked to do, it’s hardly Bioware’s fault. They just got you the pup they thought was best.
Ultimately, the development studio isn’t going to calm the mass of teeming freaks down. Fanboys are fanboys, and if Mass Effect 3 doesn’t end exactly as they want it to then haters are gonna hate. The reason this debacle is so ridiculously pathetic is down to those haters being unable to back up any endlessly bitchy and snide complaints with something actually useful to Bioware: constructive criticism. But this criticism, constructive or not, won’t change things because some one-percenters said so.
Mass Effect 3 is not a product made by fans for fans – like its forebears, the game is created by Bioware for the audience exactly as they see fit, and they will not submit to the groundless complaints of tedious, boring weirdos at a cost of tens, if not hundreds of thousands of dollars just to try and make a minority happy – at least not right away. If they don’t get it right second time around, the fans will demand retakes, and retakes, and retakes. It’s an unworkable system.
By all means, complain about weapon balancing or difficulty or anything that can be fixed easily with a patch. Asking Bioware to change something as big as ME3‘s ending and expecting them to just listen because Somebody Said So is the biggest heap of shit I’ve heard in this industry. They’ll get nowhere harassing federal institutions because they didn’t like the ending of a game. Without a doubt, I encourage them to tell people about how important games are, but there’s nothing actually offensive about the ending of the game itself – these rather vocal owners of a game they play religiously are turning the gaming community into a laughing stock in the eyes of people who have more important things to worry about. The folks at the FTC can’t and won’t give a damn about Shepard’s story wrapping up differently from how a minority expected or wanted it to. These jokers, whiners, cry-babies and losers need to grow a backbone, quit whining, and just concentrate on actually having some fun with Mass Effect 3, a title made with care by people who just want you to love it like they did a game or two ago.