Metascore
89

Generally favorable reviews - based on 23 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 23
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 23
  3. Negative: 0 out of 23
  1. Mar 13, 2012
    100
    Mass Effect 3 will force you to make tough decisions on a galactic scale. You have to think them through and you feel bad about yourself afterwards. It really kicked me in the emotional equivalent of testicles. What a spectacular finale to the trilogy! [April 2012, p.44]
  2. Mar 6, 2012
    100
    It may not have the sheer landmass of their just-released MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic and it might not stand the test of time quite the way simpler, more focused games like Knights or the original two Baldur's Gate titles did, but it's still a wonderful game with tons of content, great production values, a masterful eye for humor and drama, and a cast of lovable characters that BioWare has been carefully slow-playing for the last four-plus years.
  3. Mar 19, 2012
    99
    Anyone who has invested any amount of time in the previous games will enjoy watching the final chapter of Shepard's tale unfold, and among the feelings of excitement and joy as they meet and fight alongside old friends for the fate of the galaxy, they will also feel just a tinge of disappointment and heartbreak as they bid farewell to the colorful universe and memorable characters BioWare has created.
  4. Mar 12, 2012
    95
    An absolutely amazing game, one that successfully puts a bow on the Mass Effect trilogy while still leaving us hungry for even more. It looks and plays great, but Mass Effect 3's true strength lies in its ability to tell a deeply-woven story.
  5. Mar 12, 2012
    95
    Mass Effect 3 surprised me in a very positive way. BioWare has delivered an excellent product that won't allow us to forget about Normandy's crew for years to come. The trilogy's conclusion should satisfy everyone and the grand finale itself is simply perfect - you will all be awestruck.
  6. Mar 6, 2012
    95
    Mass Effect 3 is the first contender for game of the year 2012. BioWare once again delivers a masterpiece.
  7. Mar 12, 2012
    94
    Mass Effect 3 isn't a perfect game, but what you get is one hell of a science fiction experience that you'll never forget.
  8. Mar 6, 2012
    93
    The end of the series is a mixed bag. Satisfying in some ways, nonsensical in others, and ultimately too simple. But the sheer scale of the adventure it's ending – and the music, which is gorgeous throughout – gives it an emotional impact that goes beyond its plot payload.
  9. Apr 11, 2012
    90
    BioWare captures the scale of the conflict well, but always focuses on the people involved in it. It's pretty amazing just how badly EA disregarded the heart of the game – the characters and the world – when they began their marking blitzkrieg, but don't worry, it's oh so definitely there – Day 1 DLC, controversial endings, and questionable use of resources be damned. This is a fine, lovingly crafted game with a clear vision despite the realities of corporations and damning business practices.
  10. 90
    The grand finale of one of the best sci-fi game sagas brings greater pace, monumental threat to the whole universe, dynamic action and stronger emotions. [March 2012]
  11. Mar 13, 2012
    90
    By the time I reached the end, Mass Effect 3 had secured the trilogy's spot amongst my favorite science-fiction stories in any medium.
  12. Mar 12, 2012
    90
    The efforts to approach a broader target group by ripping to shreds "complex" RPG mechanics, by cutting back on dialogue options and by emphasizing the action element, are painfully obvious. But the epic scale, the magnificent direction, the different story paths influenced by options that skyrocket the game's replayability and, in general, the whole "blockbuster" grandeur feeling outshine the various drawbacks. [April 2012]
  13. Mar 9, 2012
    90
    Big, bold and ceaselessly bleak; a world where you really feel like you need the friends you've built over the last two titles. If you've come this far, it's a sin not to go further.
  14. 90
    A great finale to a remarkable series. While Mass Effect 3 may not be perfect, the stirring story, smart writing and fast combat still make for an exceptional experience.
  15. Mar 6, 2012
    90
    Wow, what a game!
  16. Mar 6, 2012
    90
    Whether you possess a storied history with the series or come with a clean slate, Mass Effect 3 expertly entangles you in its universe and inspires you to care about its future.
  17. Mar 31, 2012
    85
    Finishing a trilogy is always difficult. Tying off dozens of story threads which had been woven by players into many different tapestries is a daunting task. Mass Effect 3 is the first game that succeeded at this colossal undertaking.
  18. Apr 5, 2012
    80
    A game that's more shooter than role-playing, and a conclusion that's more spectacular than dramatic. [Apr 2012, p.47]
  19. Mar 26, 2012
    80
    ME3 is a tough game to love, but a pretty easy one to like.
  20. Mar 21, 2012
    80
    For a series that centers its experience around the survival of characters and the choices you've made in previous games, it does a fine job managing all sorts of variables and presents strong, emotional and – best of all – fitting conclusions to the lives Commander Shepard has influenced. There's a lot of heart and soul crammed into the story, which makes this game such a joy to play through.
  21. Mar 17, 2012
    80
    There's no debate whether Mass Effect 3 is a good game. It has good combat, an effective atmosphere, satisfying resolution, and a few great characters. Co-op is surprisingly entertaining. Bioware has finally settled on a good balance of RPG elements, too. It's easy to dismiss most of the nitpicks. It's the best game in the series for all these reasons...Instead, I argue about whether Mass Effect 3 is a great game. I write about it because I deeply care about Bioware as a developer. I want Bioware to strengthen choice and consequence and master character writing so I can consider their games to be classics again. At the very least, I'm no longer left out of this series now that I appreciate the combat and the universe.
  22. Mar 15, 2012
    77
    While the writing and pacing may detract a bit from what should be the most epic of space conflicts, you'll still have a good time blasting the hell out of aliens, robots, and your former employer. It just doesn't feel like as big of a step forward as the second game was from the first.
  23. 75
    So that's the story of Mass Effect 3, turned from potential masterpiece into a game sabotaged by greed and the „it's good enough" approach. It's unbelievable how easy BioWare passed over the opportunity for greatness and, despite the sales, I have a feeling that their reputation as great RPG makers is going downhill fast. Especially after this "back to back" performance with the fiasco called Dragon Age II.
User Score
5.1

Mixed or average reviews- based on 4967 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Mar 6, 2012
    3
    Rather than trying to expand on the formula which set Mass Effect as one of those rpg-shooter hybrids which grow more frequent as the years pass by, Bioware decided to dismiss it completely in favour of Michael Bay-grade explosions and the like.

    Mass Effect 3 starts off almost a year after ME2 where Shepard has done nothing of note except somehow end up on Earth and is being trailed by the Alliance for the **** you've done". That's nice, guess he stopped working with Cerberus and the Council's spectre status meant nothing.

    Anyway, auto-dialogue sets in with little to no player input for minutes on end, probably one of their new innovations when impatient people found dialogue boring and then explosions occur and the Reapers are there. The entire galaxy acts shocked.

    Now, maybe I expected too much from the writers but the pacing is horrible. This isn't just for the intro--though the intro does a wonderful job of showing it--with the entire game having Shepard talking without the player's input and the game hoping to imagine you know **** when you don't before explosions happen everywhere.

    It almost seems like they were trying to build a blockbuster movie rather than write the end of the trilogy, Mac Walters and Casey Hudson being supervised by Michael Bay who's constantly yelling "MORE EXPLOSIONS" throughout the entire creation process.

    In addition to this, importing serves little to no purpose. Killed a character before? It's somehow back alive! Spare a character? Well, they died off-screen! The consequences which were advertised for years now, since the very inception of the series, becoming meaningless and serving nothing but wasting a writer's five seconds to create a new line for the sake of importing.

    I feel like I've been robbed, not simply because of my purchase of ME3 being a complete waste but the entire trilogy built up absolutely nothing. Unable to play ME1 or ME2 anymore, ME3 spoils the entire experience. If I wanted automatic dialogue, crappy plots and one-liners I would find myself playing Gears of War, least they have a slightly rewarding ending (Yes, ME3 ends on a downer note that tries to be optimistic and leaves you with hundreds of questions, none which they try to answer).

    Bioware has fallen hard as of yet, I don't trust they'll be able to stand anymore.

    Useless information:
    Gameplay is choppy on PC, one button covering a thousand functions reeks of bad porting.

    Graphics are worse on PC, shadows everywhere try to obscure poor textures. High Res Patch may be coming but it won't matter since everything is hidden under layers of shadow.

    Multiplayer gets tiresome quickly, essentially being singleplayer without the dialogue (oh wait, that is the singleplayer. lol.) which you fight waves of enemies with Hackett telling you to do things here or there. Level up system is poorly thought out, certain characters have huge imbalances and you need to sacrifice your MP character to get assets for the Single Player (REPLAY VALUE!!111 *cough* not).

    Multiplayer is also necessary to get the better endings, which is absolutely **** absurd.

    Day 1 DLC up the ass costing upwards to 900$ for everything.

    Mass Effect 3 is absolute garbage, as much as I hate to say it.
    Full Review »
  2. Mar 6, 2012
    0
    The first Mass Effect, though it had its faults, was a very good game. The writing, while sometimes stupid and drab, had its moments such as the conversation with Sovereign. As time goes on, the quality of the series lessened until now we have this terrible hunk of crap. Terrible writing, on a level that is so embarrassing listening to the characters speak sometimes it hurts. "DAMN" - Shepard. Stiff animations and the game has also completely shed almost all elements of an RPG game, now its Gears of Effect 3. Unfortunately, Bioware has become a company that makes piss poor games, I've tried to give them chances, but it's too late now. They **** up what could've been a great experience, and killed a potentially amazing franchise. Oh well. Full Review »
  3. Mar 6, 2012
    5
    As a big fan of multiple RPGs, and fan of the first two Mass Effect games, this game does not live up to current RPG standards. The plot is unusually boring, the gameplay is surprisingly lacking, the graphics and animations have barely been touched since ME2, and worst of all the game's ending is the biggest let down I've witnessed in years. The most outrageous thing about ME3 is that the day one downloadable content contains information that is crucial to the series as a whole. This game was the biggest letdown to me in years, and I almost feel as if I have been ripped off. Full Review »