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  1. Mar 12, 2012
    I love Mass Effect. I loved Mass Effect 2. Arguably some of the best games I've ever played in my life. I won't go into detail.

    I even loved Mass Effect 3. It was an epic tale that even made me choke up at certain points. I've never had such an emotional response from a game.

    Then there was the ending. It wasn't because Shepard dies (although it would be nice if he lived). It was because
    it made no sense. The game feels dumbed down. Deus Ex Machina stolen crappy ending that leaves a sour taste in my mouth. No thought from the developers and writers. I can't even restart the series again because of this. I'll never play a Bioware game again. Mass Effect died with the release of ME3. Bioware sold out to EA. If you played Mass Effect 1 and 2, stay away from this game. You'll regret playing it. Expand
  2. Mar 13, 2012
    I was and still am a big fan of the first two episodes of the series and I've been waiting for the third one as if it was some sort of messiah - in vain. The graphics and the combat system are ok for me, however many elements of the story line - including the so-called "endings" themselves - are simple rip-offs of other games.

    One of the most annoying aspects of the game is, however, that
    if you haven't had a save from ME2, then you can not really make good choices. I can not explain it further without revealing details from the story, but I can tell you that the game punishes players who did not play the previous episode(s), trying to motivate players to purchase those episodes as well.

    Summa summarum, the bad business model, the really... controversial ending and the constant feeling, that I have seen this before somewhere else makes me to advise everyone to avoid this game. I am, at least, seriously pissed because I spent money on this.
  3. Mar 13, 2012
    I mostly loved the game as I played true it , it has a great atmosphere and you can really feel how the war was creeping in everywhere, as the game progressed, sorrow for the lost, people in misery, and how Shepard becoming more and more stressed, and really taking it hard when old friends die. It touch a lot of emotions in me, and it felt kind of cool.

    The missions was to shooter
    like with no real dialogs and explorations of area, that is OK for the side missions, but I had hoped for the main missions to be more like ME1.

    It was to short as well, took me 36 hours to complete(the first 2 spend around 60 hours pre-DLC), to bad they didn't spend the resources from the multi player part to put the final touch on the single player game.

    I wont comment on the multi player part. I haven't played it and have no intentions to do it

    Then I hit the ending of the game and my mass effect world crumbled to dust. I loved all 3 ME games and that ending destroyed that.

    I give it 2 out of respect for the game up until the ending the last 8 points has the worst game ending in history swallowed.

    I will not recommend to people that loves the Mass Effect series to buy it or it you really have, to quit the game before the ending.
  4. Mar 13, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The final conclusion of what was an epic series is pathetic and disappointing. As a fan of the Mass Effect games, which were truly inventive, creative and ground breaking, I expected so much more out of the finale. But instead, EA Games and Bioware failed to deliver. For three games, players shaped the fate of the galaxy through their actions, decisions and choices. This was what Mass Effect was at heart, choosing your own path, crafting your own story, and facing the consequences of your actions. And for three games, players expected that their self made paths within the game would determine the fate of the Galaxy. But rather it's the opposite. The last 10-15 minutes of the game throw out the qualities that made the Mass Effect games so amazing. What I mean is, despite all the work and effort you put into the three games, everything you did does not matter. Your actions throughout perhaps 100 hours of gameplay boil down to a general, and universal ending. Despite what it may initially appear, there is only one true ending. Granted this ending has tiny tweaks depending on whether or not you played multiplayer or downloaded some iOS app, but these differences are so puny, so miniscule, that it is almost unnoticeable. This game is a slap in the face to the fans. Expand
  5. Mar 13, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I'm only rating this down so much, because Bioware and EA need to pay attention. The rest of Mass Effect 3 up until the end was great, dare I say even fantastic with a few flaws. The biggest flaw during the main game was how they treated the romances from ME2, especially Thane, Miranda, Jacob and Jack. Thane doesn't even get a Codex entry in the game, for God's sake. His romance is treated almost identically to the friendship path in ME3. But by far the worst part of the game is the end. It's extremely poorly written and seems like it was smashed together with little thought for plot continuity or even coherence. It also relies on one of the biggest and most unforgivable deux ex machina's I've seen in a long time in the god/child/AI, which is ironic because deux ex machina of course means god from the machine. If that was supposed to be a little joke on Bioware's part, it's not funny. I was so disappointed by the end of this game that I felt physically sick. We fans were more than just let down; we were slapped in the face by an ending that seems like little or no thought was put into it at all, that doesn't take into account any of our choices and doesn't fit in with the narrative the previous games had been expanding upon. Bioware, your fans deserve better, and that is not entitlement. It is a simple fact. Expand
  6. Mar 13, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. *spoilers*

    Last night I was so excited because I was at the final mission. I was thinking to myself, "This is the best game I have ever played." Tonight I feel saddened because I went from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows. The ending was cheap. I am fine with the 3 choices provided at the end but the execution was miserable. You get 3 almost identical scenes with a lousy text message at the end asking you to buy more DLC. I know the only real way to effect change is to vote with your dollars so I will be boycotting all future bioware games. It's a sad day to be a gamer when it's clear the companies would rather try to exploit you to buy more DLC than provide a good ending to a series they put so much work into.
  7. iN7
    Mar 13, 2012
    Epic..astonishing..breath-taking..classic - these could`ve been words describing Mass Effect 3. Yet different words come to mind after you see the final scene and start to read credits. Below you will learn why.
    1. Plot Weak at some points, strong in others, total failure by the end. It`s worst parts are these: the starting mission on Earth - Shepard`s totally confused by people running
    around and has no clue of what`s going on, yet seconds later is asked by the Commettee about "what`s going on" and "how do we stop them". Shepard`s been locked in his room, had limited contacts, but just one short look on an iPad - and he`s got the answer. Guess it was just written on the Pad`s screen - " The Rippers are here (tragic voice)". Second worst part of the plot - it`s ending. But let`s make it clear: bad ending when Shepard dies is Ok. It fits the situation. But three bad endings is just too much. Shepard deserves good ending too, he deserves to live. His adventures, his decisions, his relations with different persons - it wasn`t always about death and violence. It was also about love, passion, friendship and honor - things that so many people lack these days. And Bioware seems to ignore their value as well, there`s no reward for being good by the end of the game. 2. Graphics
    It`s worse that in ME2. Just install ME2 and you`ll notice the difference at once. ME3 uses the same engine, yet textures are low-res on most objects, except faces. Shadows are totally messed up, they look terrible and tend to disappear from time to time. There`s no "film-grain" effect which was the game`s feature before. Plus the eyes get red in pain every time I see Shepard charging, it`s the worst running animation I`ve seen in years. Face mimic became weaker too. But again, things were Ok in ME2, so God knows why Bioware ruined the animation part. Got bored with perfection ? 3. Sound/Music
    Sounds are there and are well-made, no doubt about it. Ambient sounds fit locations rather well. Music is on an average level, you will hardly remember most tracks, yet the one named "An end once and for all" is touching. This part of the game is mostly fine.

    4. Multiplayer
    One word - boring. It`s hardly a Mass Effect experience, just a tribute to modern tradition adding multiplayer wherever possible.Here it`s just a silly feature, which is supposed to give you certain benefits in the single-player part of the game. And it`s not interesting. Conclusion:
    The worst part of the trilogy both technically and story-wise. And it`s really hard for me as a fan to write such words. Mass Effect is the universe with GREAT potential. It may become "Star Wars" of the 21st century. Yet it may not.. Bioware must re-think its attitude to this franchise. And stop destroying its own great creation by bad scripts, bad visuals and predator marketing. Bioware must remember, that games are made for players and players have their voice. Some game journalists while protecting the quality of ME3 say, that " this is Bioware`s game, don`t tell them what and how to do". It may be their game, yet they want US to play it and pay OUR money. So we,as customers and fans, deserve quality product as a sign of respect and good will. Don`t we, Bioware?
  8. Mar 13, 2012
    All I can honestly say is I am not impressed this feels rushed in story and graphics. This game takes risks where they didnt need to be taken. Af far as I see it a lot of their choices were for a quick money grab nothing more IE day one DLC etc. The seem to have pushed a whole lot of peoples wrong buttons and enraged/upset etc them I see why in many ways. I honestly loved part one and enjoyed part 2...Part 3 is a disgrace and I cant even find enough of interest to finish it.. Expand
  9. Mar 13, 2012
    Seriously horrified by the ending. Horrified. This game went from a serious 9-10 to a 3. No joke - it's that infuriating. You play for 100+ hours being told that your choices matter and the game developer, after taking your cash, essentially says "well, sorry, we don't care about your decisions - here's the worst ending of all time. Enjoy." Buy this game used or rent. And you'll probably want to do the same when they release Dragon Age 3. I know I will. Expand
  10. Mar 13, 2012
    It was the best game I'd ever played, since Pong, but frankly the ending boiled down to Choose Your Own Adventure "Pick a color. All rails lead to Page 37" ruined the game as well as killing the replayability of ME1 and 2 for me. Why bother making a new Shep, with new decisions, if it's all running to one of three railroad tracks? All the Twitter teases about "if you knew what was coming you'd save your copy forever" don't mean much to me. I rate the game by what's on my computer, not what hypothetical DLC that might come later. Many players are also concerned that the 3 endings are a scam to leave players needing to "buy the rest of the ending" in a DLC. If a free DLC comes out that finishes the game logically and in a way that my choices and accomplishments matter again, then I'll change my review. Expand
  11. iao
    Mar 14, 2012
    Mass Effect 3 was such a disappointment. Really just feels like they're just trying to get money without giving the product in exchange. Nothing that you do in the game actually matters, the endings are incredibly similar and unsatisfying. The release-day DLC was just a slap in the face on top of it all.
  12. Mar 14, 2012
    the endings are really a big letdown, and what you did in the previous chapters does not matter at all contrary to what they advertized. Even importing old saves does not work regarding the decision you made. Also bioware is fraoudolent company selling a day 1 dlc with contents very important to understant the story for 10$. The game is subpar and the company behaviour horrible.
  13. Mar 14, 2012
    A forgettable experience! From its copy and paste level & characters its copy and paste waves of enemies, frustrating controls over its run and cover system (binded to space on PC). Its like EA/Bioware forced the Devs to design multiplayer, kinect and dlc instead! Mass Effect 3 leave you with a real hunger for a more then lackluster experience. The trouble with this game steams from its re-write, and I'm guessing corporate or hierarchical interference overwhelming common sense and appealing for a money grab. Was a shameful display I was really looking forward for Mass Effect 3 but I had my hopes dashed when I first read about the script leak last year! Expand
  14. Mar 14, 2012
    This games ending was a major disappointment. Everything was great up until the all choice, freewill, and consequence were taken away from the player in the final moments. If it weren't for the ending I would easily give this game a 9/10. However, the ending was so terrible that I (almost) wish I could unplay all of the other games and never had wasted time on them. I felt similarly when lost ended but at least I could respect it was not my decision. In this case, Bioware led the players to believe the ending was our decision (through the choices we made in the game). Apparently, not... I sincerely hope that Bioware adds additional post-game content in upcoming DLCs to make sense of this pointless ending. Expand
  15. Mar 14, 2012
    ME3 is really worst ME series

    i want to refund Deluxe

    ME3's Ending lacks consistency

    and only color magic ending

    i'm so disappointed

    i never will buy Bioware games
  16. Mar 14, 2012
    Absolutely and completely disappointed. I played the first two games and thoroughly enjoyed them, the feeling of my decisions making a difference to the outcome of the overall story was great. I was also thoroughly enjoying watching the final story unfold - even with, lets not kid, the lack of proper dialogue between missions and lack of dialogue options with characters and random civilians (a real step back from what the ME series is about, UNFORGIVABLE!! Those side quests were horrendous, listening in for them? Absolutely no involvement. Just like a couple of the quests from ME2 on Illium.) and the lack of armor and armor mods/weapons mods etc featured in the first game which were 'to come back'. I would have given the game a 7 at this point. And then I got to the ending. What a pile of horse manuere! It went aggainst everything we were promised. The decisions made in the first and second game meant absolutely nothing to how the finale played out and were quite minimal to how the mid-game played out, instead of an unforgettable climactic satisfying ending we got "DOOR ABC, YOUR CHOICES DON'T MEAN ANYTHING TO ME" rubbish.

    My recommendation to anyone who has played ME1 and ME2 and hasn't picked up ME3. As many below me have stated, stay away, its a huge let down to the franchise.
  17. Mar 14, 2012
    Like everyone else, I loved the game - and hated the ending. I would say that the unfortunate thing is that five minutes of ending have made me question keeping the games. I think fondly back on months of talking with my friends about what the ending would be - only to really have it make no difference. Its stunning really, how quickly the game turns south too... it goes from being a game of loss, and battle, and trudging through the war, praying that the answers get easier at the next turn.... And then, the last five minutes, where nothing makes sense, and all the endings are (for all intents and purposes) exactly the same. Buy it, don't buy it. Be aware that the game itself is magnificent - but there's this underlying feeling that some pencil pusher asked the dev team where they were with the game, and the Dev Team said "We've got everything done but the last hour of the game. We're at this weird place in the Citadel right before the final battle." And the pencil pusher said "You've got two days, wrap it up, and ship it - whatever it is. We'll fix it with DLC." My further impression of this is how very short the game was. As a comparison - I picked up Mass Effect 2 about a week before Mass Effect 3 was released, and I only got about a third of the way through the game in that week (this is with knowing EXACTLY where everything was, and exactly how to complete all the missions - there was no fumbling or wasting time). I'm done with Mass Effect 3, finished it on Monday, having put in a very similar block of time - and that would mark day 6 of my ownership of the game. Ultimately, I'm part of the outraged many. I had problems with EA's Origin system, and getting a preorder from them - but I didn't let that deter me. I just ordered it from Best Buy instead... I was a defender of Bioware when the DLC scandal came up. But the ending? I feel like an abused girlfriend at this point.

    Seriously, play the game - but at the moment where you're about to beam up to the Citadel, turn off your console, put down your controller, and go write fan fiction of what your ending should be. It will be more satisfying.
  18. Mar 14, 2012
    They really have been dumbing this game down since the first ME. I didn't really mind it because I actually really enjoyed the story and getting to know all the characters and spending hours learning back story and molding my story how I wanted. However the "ending" of the series really bothered me. It just plain out sucked. I've read all the theories behind why it was the way it was but it still doesn't explain why I get an ending that I have no say in. I can go through the 3rd game literally just do the story arc and get the same ending as someone who has played through all 3 games making all the big decisions and putting their time in to get to know the whole background of other characters. So many plot holes and unanswered questions. I literally would've given this game a 10 if not for the ending. The ending really ruined this game for me that I don't even want to go back and play the multiplayer. Which is actually decent in my opinion. It just bothers me to think about it. Bioware has really left a bad taste in my mouth. I can kind of forgive them for what they did to Dragon Age, but what they did to ME, no. Been a fan of the company since Neverwinter Nights and thought they could do no wrong, but this was the final straw.

    On a side note to people saying "quit whining it's their game and can do what they want, you just want a stupid happy ending!" No. Just no. I wanted a game like Bioware promised where my choices actually made a difference. Instead of them abandoning all the idea and themes from the first two games and forcing me a **** ending. I wouldn't mind a happy or sad ending. I just want a good ending with some closure and not huge plot holes. It is their game but they owe to the fans to deliver what we want. We are the ones who pay for the experience. $120 for a lot of people just to be slapped in the face and told that your choices didn't matter like we said they would. I specifically made an account just so I could rant about this. It felt good.
  19. Mar 15, 2012
    I actually find myself disagreeing with many of the reviewers here: the bulk of the game was rock solid storytelling, filled with the harsh choices and consequences you have come to expect from Mass Effect. The story ventured into emotionally wrenching territory more times than I can count, even several times with NPC -to-NPC dialogue. If you hear two characters talking, keep leaving and coming back until you hear their whole story and then google it if you still don't get it, you won't be disappointed. The character-driven subplots have fitting, satisfying endings that never fail to bring a tear to one's eye (the emotion represented by the tear changes).

    HOWEVER, bioware tried to be clever with the ending and failed more completely than I ever would have imagined possible. I always feared a trite ending, but what ME3 contains is far worse. Not "worse" as in "dark", "worse" as in "doesn't achieve any goal which an ending might be expected to achieve" and "makes a mockery of the entire series". An ending is supposed to bring a certain amount of closure, it's supposed to be the culmination of decisions made throughout the story (in ME's case, choices you get to make). ME3's ending HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE CONSEQUENCES OF THE CHARACTER'S ACTIONS (well, you can choose between 3 nearly identical endings, but the choices I'm referring to are the ones you made over the entire series). Parts of the ending make little to no sense (in order to make sense of them you have to inject MAJOR plot points that AFFECT the story) or simply yell "hah, nothing you did mattered" in your face. We were promised differently (explicitly, several times). BioWare, what were you thinking?!?!?!
  20. Mar 15, 2012
    I have been a huge fan of the series since it began with Mass Effect 1. I played ME 1 six time and then played ME 2 eight times and was anticipating playing ME 3 a similar number of times. I had 4 different Shepards I was looking forward to importing and playing through. I played it once. One time. That was more than enough. The game is actually fantastic, with a great score, some pretty good interactions and dialog, some of it quite moving. It works well until the last 15 to 20 minutes then it goes to hell in a handcart. A game that was touting as being all about player choice affecting the outcome, a game where the developers promised that your decisions in ME1, 2, and earlier in game 3 would impact the final outcome was a COMPLETE lie. There is ONE ending. One. It is identical in all ways no matter what you do in all the previous games, no matter how you play, what decisions you make, it ends the same but with different colored terminal explosions. Woohoo. ALL the time you spend on side missions, doing good or bad deeds, making peace treaties, ending conflict, uniting alien civilizations, collecting allies and materiel is all for naught. No matter how you do it you get the exact same nonsensical, blatantly illogical (in game and in real life) ending. It only takes ONE playthrough to the end to lose all enthusiasm for the series and lose any interest in ever playing any of the previous excellent titles ever again. If I could I would return my digital copy. So terribly depressing. Expand
  21. Mar 15, 2012
    I am so sorry I have to give this game a 1 but it is the truth. The Mass Effect trilogy is my favorite game series of all time..hands down. The story is incredible. The music, intense. And the characters seemingly alive. The trilogy was a gold mine until ten minutes before the third game's ending. Bioware has utterly RUINED the best game series I have ever known. Your choices mean nothing because it all ends the same. The fact that they would give this ending is appalling and shows that EA has truly corrupted what Bioware used to be. Do not buy this game. Even if they change the ending, they have already ruined it. They screwed up Dragon Age by making it for 12 year old kids who just want to see things explode and don't like to think. Expand
  22. Mar 15, 2012
    NON. Apres une trilogie si rondement menee sur le plan scenaristique, les 5 dernieres minutes sont catastrophiques. Aucun libre arbitre, des cinematiques baclees et quasi-identiques peu importe la direction selectionnee par le joueur. Bref, le nom de Mass Effect se fait salir comme un malpropre sur une conclusion qui bafoue les codes de la serie.
  23. Mar 15, 2012
    Fantastic game in almost all senses of the word. Great story, great characters, great gameplay, but then it all gets ruined by an awful ending. I mean bad. If you do buy it, stop it right after Shepard talks to his crew before the final push and don't go further.
  24. Mar 16, 2012
    When I see all these glowing reviews by game websites giving it nigh perfect scores, its glaringly obvious that their integrity and objectivity is compromised. In fact its almost comical how much the websites try and cover for its flaws. My favorite was one where they condemned bioware changing the endings because "oh its art you'll ruin it by changing the ending." I like to think that if somehow a 6 year old drew a big turd on the Mona Lisa, the museum would do everything it could to restore the painting by TAKING OUT THE BIG TURD ON IT. What they are really praising isn't the game it is the amount of money they received in advertising from the game's publisher. Mass Effect 3's ending (because its really only one) is a slap in the face, a total disgrace to the brand. Whoever the lead writer was for the ending, and whoever gave the okay for that crap needs to be fired. Furthermore I've never encountered an ending that made me hope for a cliched "It was all a dream" sequence as much as this one. This ending is so poorly put together it is on par with the likes of Matrix Reloaded and Revolutions, wer're talking total plot and lore breakdown. The final offense was the after credit sequence which just adds insult to injury. The only person that could of made a poorer ending was George Lucas. Expand
  25. Mar 17, 2012
    the game exciting, interesting and amazing, exactly to the last mission! The ending is just disgusting! No epic battles, the last mission is ugly boring, the ending totally illogical and senseless. What happened to the rest of the team is unknown. I was very disappointed BioWare, which I did not expect from them.
  26. Mar 18, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Experience the beginning, middle, and end of an emotional story unlike any other, where the decisions you make have absolutly no influence in your final experience and outcome.

    Probably the worst ending of a videogame I ever seem, and totally against the spirit of the Mass Effect series. It will stop you from replaying it, because no matter your actions, the end will remain almost the same.
  27. Mar 18, 2012
    I spent more than 160 hours in this trilogy. Bought all available DLCs to date, always bought the most complete version of the game. And as a such hardcore Mass Effect fan I must say that I'm nothing more than sad. I had high expectation towards the trilogy ending. But ME3 did the impossible, they just screwed up the series.
    I can't do anything but laugh from some magazine reviews that
    says that ME3 is a proper ending to the series. Sadly many reviews don't even understand the idea behind the game, or just forgotten how awesome ME and ME2 were. The user's score can't lie, just compare ME and ME3 user's score to this one.. it speaks by itself.
    The combat is too much simplified, the game is about go to the planets, scan, delivery assets and sometimes do some mission. And that's it, no epic bosses, no epic battles, even my last section of game had a taste of "common battle". The games looks rushed, no proper characters involvement...

    Didn't think Bioware would miss twice.. first my deception with Dragon Age 2, now this? Why would you guys screw up Mass Effect? It's supposed to be THE epic trilogy. Be the benchmark, the reference to follow, simply the best. But today, Mass Effect is just one more.

    The 3/10 score is due to the hard work I saw in Bioware trying to do the game, sadly the execution failed. A lot.
  28. Mar 18, 2012
    Just BAD. not just the ending... the whole story, the no interaction, at least not at the level of the previous titles, you don´t get to know more about Tali (Tali didn't deserve a model for her face either.. getty images... lazyyyyy) or Liara or Garrus or anyone else, except for the history behind the geth and quarian war.. i dont recall anything else that reveals any part of the ME universe. And on top of it all, the Ending.. come on... seriously? Huge let down. On the brighter side, the combat was much better than in ME2 i liked the mix between ME! and ME2 features. but its far from enough. Expand
  29. Mar 18, 2012
    I was a huge fan of the Mass Effect franchise (and Bioware games in general). Honestly, I even really like SWtOR. But Mass Effect 3 was a huge disappointment! What I hated most: 3. Meaningful interactions with most of your love interests from ME1 & ME2 reduced to unsatisfying cameos, 2. New movement options for Shepard in combat that can be horribly frustrating because they all share the same key as the one used to enter cover (i.e.: I have several times tried to sprint through a door only to find myself rolling back and forth between one side of the door and another, or attempting to leap over cover to flee attackers only to have the game decide I would rather "go into cover" on the wrong side, etc.) and worst of all 1. Three almost identical but horrible endings that totally ignored all of my choices made in the saga up to that point. In my opinion, they not only removed 100% of ME3's replay value (I played ME1 & ME2 dozens to times) but tainted the rest of the saga for me. As far as I am concerned, Jar Jar Binks did less to ruin Star Wars... After all, I did not sink 100+ hours into playing Star Wars after being told my choices would carry through and they would matter! And putting further salt in our wounds, these endings were abrupt, incongruous with the pace and story of the games up to that point, and glaringly inconsistent with established canon (For instance: If one Mass Relay detonating in The Arrival took out an entire star system what does losing ALL of them mean to the survivors in the galaxy?!!! How about a little QA, guys?) If EA/Bioware have any hope of painting themselves out of this corner, I would suggest they look on the Internet for all of the threads discussing "Indoctrination Theory" and deliver us a DLC to 'fix" the endings along those lines ASAP. I know, it is your "art" and your "artistic vision", blah, blah, blah... But you sold the whole ME franchise with the promise of "Real choices that make a difference. Honestly, guys, for ME3 it is time to live up to that. Expand
  30. Mar 19, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. From a purely game mechanics perspective I felt that this is the best of the Mass Effect games. Sure the journal and quest tracking system for minor quests was unusable, but the increased variety of weapons and modifications available adding something that was lost in the transition from 1 to 2.

    The main plot was extremely strong for the most part. It was a bit more linear then in 2 but it had to be given what we were trying to do this time. However now to address the elephant in the room. The final 10 minutes of game. Now I was fine with the game until right after I went up the beamto the citadel. Sure it was odd that the Citadel had been taken over entirely off screen but I can't get everything. Heck I even was ok with the assumption that my squad mates at the time, EDI and Liara, had died in the Reaper blast. The Anderson/Illusive man stuff was strong if incredibly full of plot holes. The star child crap though was ridiculous. I already suspended my disbelief enough to allow the use of a McGuffin as the driver of the main plot, but now you use a literal deus ex Machina that's spouts offcrap that we directly refute during the course of the game (EDI, and saving the Geth/Quarians). Then what happens is the worst game of "Let's Make A Deal" I've ever seen since the same dam thing is behind every door. Then the weird ending where my whole squad turned tail and ran inexplicably with at least one of the people who were fighting with me on earth.

    Also without mass effect drives I realized A)Quarian fleet likely to starve B)Krogans likely to die out due to loss of Wrex and it is now impossible to import food C)my apparently cowardly crew is likely going to die of starvation and or exposure at some point on some deserted planet in the middle of nowhere.

    Somehow Bioware you snatched defeat from the jaws of victory. You basically ruined all replay value for this game and its predecessors. Awesome job.

    P.S. I have a terrible sinking feeling this was done on purpose so you could at a later date sell us a less bad ending and epilouges. You probably weren't expecting sush a viceral reaction from the vast majority of fans so nice job.
  31. Mar 19, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Contrary to the formula of the first two games, all plots lead to a single set of endings that feel out of place with the rest of the franchise (including much of what happens in ME3 prior to the ending itself). I am hopeful that this was a brilliant marketing move on Bioware's part and that DLC can clarify the outcome. I'll update my rating accordingly should this happen. Expand
  32. Mar 19, 2012
    I'm almost ready to take it back and demand a refund. Most will comment on the endings, but the fact is, nearly the entire game is linear to the point of being comical. Frankly from what I can gather, none of your decisions in ME 1 or 2 have any real meaning past dialog or EMS changes in ME3. There is so much extra opportunity built in that anyone can pick the game up and play through it nearly identically as if someone had imported their save game. You can recruit the same species and complete the same quests. Expand
  33. Mar 19, 2012
    Incredible production values with great combat design and customization, topnotch voice-acting, writing, art and music / sound-design can't hide that the conclusion to the ME trilogy was rushed. Cut-corners are visible everywhere but it isn't until the finale that the game falls apart. The level of failure here is spectacular and historic: game ends in a disappointing, disjointed, contrived mess that betrays the trilogy's themes and your earlier choices. No matter what ending you play towards, the result is portrayed in the same cut scene with minor cuts and a different color scheme. The implications of the choice are so nihilistic, they sap your will to replay through the story again. The fan backlash is not about entitlement but about poor game design. Trust the hype: the end really is as bad as people say. Expand
  34. Mar 19, 2012
    Whereas Mass Effect 1 and 2 were conventional action-adventure stories set against a sci-fi background, the third and final installment in the Mass Effect trilogy attempts to address "darker", "deeper", and more "mature" themes. Unfortunately, the writers lacked the depth and maturity themselves to properly execute this sort of change in tone. The result is a poorly-constructed story poorly told.

    While I would argue that these problems begin almost as soon as the game does (where Shepard watches a child -- the first ever portrayed in the series -- being killed), the game's ending has generated the most controversy and so is where I will focus the rest of this review. It's an attempt at a tragic ending without understanding what makes tragic endings work.

    Tragedies have a long history in Western literature. While there is and has been a great deal of debate as to the structure of a tragedy, the core idea that makes a tragedy work well is that the hero's sad fate is the inevitable result of his or her character. Aristotle referred to this as the tragic hero's hamartia (which means "mistake", though it's often translated as "fatal flaw"). This is a very important idea because as Nietzsche argued, tragedies resonate with us because they contradict, not confirm, a pessimistic view of the universe: the tragic hero doesn't experience pain and misfortune for no reason, but instead experiences this pain as a direct consequence of his or her own nature. In other words, an ending is only truly tragic if it's the result of the tragic hero's shortcomings; an ending where "rocks fall, everyone dies" may be rather sad, but because it happened at random it's not tragic.

    Mass Effect 3's ending fails because Shepard is not a tragic hero. In fact, Shepard does everything absolutely right up until the last 5 to 10 minutes of the game. Only then, by pure writer fiat, does he or she fail. There's no catharsis for the player, no satisfactory explanation, no hope. There is only "deep", "mature" death and despair.

    If games are ever going to be art, they need to pay better attention to the artistic traditions that have shaped our culture.
  35. Mar 19, 2012
    This is the first metacritic review I have ever done as I have never felt inclined to do so before on any previous games. Mass Effect 3 was nothing short of the biggest disappointment in recent gaming history, the day one DLC was insulting to the fan base to say it nicely, the ending was a sheer abomination that has disgraced the franchise terribly with Casey Hudson simply going on to talk about more dlc to be released pre game ending that doesn't address any of the current issues. All in all it's honesty 120+ hours of my game time I'd rather have back Expand
  36. Mar 19, 2012
    Game is an epic 10/10 up until the last 10 minutes. The ending of this game is so bad that it not only ruins the rest of this game, but indeed it brings down this entire trilogy. In one stroke this went from being this generation's "Star Wars" to a joke. Your choices don't matter. At all. It was all so you could be force fed some BS by StarChild and forced to picked between different colored explosions. Honestly, I'm still in shock. I can't fathom how the writing team that gave us this series completely imploded on itself in the home stretch like this. Abhorrent. Expand
  37. Mar 19, 2012
    An absolutely atrocious wash of bugs and graphic issue, combined with Bioware's DLC pandering and an incomprehensible group of endings make this an easy game to not recommend. If you liked your choices mattering in the final moments of ME1 and ME2 be prepared for massive disappointment. If you still think this games for you, good luck; just don't fall down the plot holes.
  38. Mar 19, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This was an epic disappointment. Compared to the other two games in the trilogy, it is bland and lacks clarity. The story also has a lot of inconsistencies and plot holes that fail to match the actual series. There is issues with concluding the game as well. Expand
  39. Mar 19, 2012
    Been a die-hard fan of Mass Effect since it's release. Mass Effect 3 is the best entry in the series...until the end. The end is hollow, half-assed, and does not change REGARDLESS of any of the decisions you have made up to that point. It just feels wrong. There is no closure and it really does ruin the entire series for me.
  40. Mar 19, 2012
    For the past 5 or so years, I have been a huge mass effect fan. I loved the idea that my choices mattered from game to game. In fact, this game would have gotten a 9.5 from me (not a 10 because I got stuck because of a glitch that caused me to have to restart a mission) but the ending of ME3 is the most plot hole ripping, out of context, jacked up thing I have ever seen
    in a story. It is like watching the last of a super awesome trilogy movie, that has been hyped to the moon, then the film stops in the last 10 minutes, the screen goes dark, and the theater catches on fire. BioWare has essentially destroyed their entire universe that they have created because without the mass relays staying intact, the stories of mass effect cant happen. They somehow managed to kill their entire franchise within 10 minutes. Up until the last 10 minutes, the game is great. After that 10 minutes though, ME3 goes from great to crap. Don't buy until BioWare does something to change the ending. Expand
  41. Mar 19, 2012
    Not a very good game, I was expecting more from a highly anticipated rpg. The ending totally destroyed it and made it unworthy for what the game was expected to be. Overall I would say the graphics and game play cannot make up for the story and ending for any rps. Also the fact of day one dlc was a major turn off and didn't seem like it should have been dlc. This is more evident when the game files for the dlc were in the game itself and not even a download. Expand
  42. Mar 20, 2012
    Shepherd lies disgraced

    Bad end ruined good story

    I am heartbroken

    I can't put my disappointment into words greatest game ever razed to the ground by it's own ending. If you enjoyed the other games avoid this one until they fix the end. Check out retake mass effect on facebook and twitter.
  43. Mar 20, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. SPOILER ALERT*** This game played fairly well, was interesting enough, and seemed to be fulfilling the 3 story arch's conclusion nicely. Not cutting edge or even inspired graphics at times, but great voice acting and pretty good cut scenes. Sure, the cut scenes got to be a bit much sometimes, making the game feel way too cinematic and not enough like an RPG, but we all knew the payout would be the resolution of the Reaper threat based on all the things we had done before. Then the developers got lazy, rushed, or both, and put out an ending which has been discussed extensively and yes, sucks every bit as much as the other reviewers said. It is a complete ripoff of the Battlestar Galactica ending as well - only done very poorly on what seemed to suddenly be a shoestring budget. Other things that will annoy you: You HAVE to download Origin, EA's game portal and online management system, in order to play. If this is the wave of the future for PC gaming, count me out. Steam worked just fine for the other 25 games I have, why make me switch to Origin for their 3rd installment? Also, finding resources on planets is so boring that you'll wish it was automated. Each planet has 1 location, which you mouse around to and fire a probe at. That's it. But really, it is the ending that will have you wishing you had never bought into the hype 3 games ago. They are all substantially the same, and all completely dumb. Seriously, the best explanation is that the producers were out of time, had just watched Battlestar Galactica, and said, "Let's force the players into an ending like that! They'll love feeling like they've been shoehorned into the end of such a great series. What? This is supposed to be at least slightly based on their decisions and input over 3 games? Bull! We're the creators and we get to decide what the ending is that we force upon them." Also note, many people think that we as gamers are just whining. (See the comments of some guy from WEDBUSH Securities, Michael Pachter, in this article:
    Wrong. We paid a bunch of money and spent a bunch of time on this game because they made an explicit representation of it as a game where the ending would be based on your decisions. It wasn't. At all. Period. We're not whining. We're pissed and we want our money and our time back. And no, EA, charging me more money for a DLC that abates some of the colossal suckiness of this game is not a fix. Having great plans for the future of the game and stringing me along while you suck up my hard earned cash is also not a solution. How about releasing a game that resolves the plot based on our input, like you said you would when we started this journey, and I started handing over my cash, 5 years ago?
  44. Mar 20, 2012
    I would like to start my review by asking you, as a review reader, what makes a story GOOD. Well first lets look at some "good" stories......pick any 10, any 10 will do. Now look for a common theme, a common element that they all contain that plays an integral part in it's enjoyment and goodness. The ending. For a story to be good, the ending has to be good, and if you are wondering yes cliffhangers can and are good for the most part when necessary. Now with that in mind, let me just sum it up: Mass Effect 3 Does not have a good ending. Notice how i did not type ending as a plural because to be completely honest all the endings are the same. They truly are. Without going into much detail I recommend you keep this in mind because other than the ending this game is 9/10, or 10/10 on a good day no doubt. But the atrocity of the ending just overshadows and takes away the replay-ability of the game and as such I do feel a 1 is truly needed for this review to be effective. Expand
  45. Mar 21, 2012
    what the hell? Does this website not believe in paragraphs? I just seperated everything I wrote and it was still all jammed together. Too long didn't read, is the main reason no one reads user reviews.
  46. Mar 22, 2012
    The game itself is mostly a 9, with great, emotional moments, good fights, some RPG moments from part 1 brought back and overall only a few minor flaws (boring fetch quests, confusing useless journal, and one insufferable enemy with script immunity).
    But the ending is such an monumental, epic fail, that I actually have to rate that a -1. Yes, it DOES have to be negative, because, honestly,
    it not only spoils ME3, it manages to somehow spoil the entire series.
    It is way to short, badly written, shamelessly stolen from Deus Ex, makes NO sense whatsoever, it negates EVERYTHING you have done over 3 games, ignores al your choices and basically offers the same lame end sequence video with 3 different colored explosions. Unbelievably bad, and even worse if this is just a ploy to sell some kind of "epilogue DLC" later.
    So, the average between a 9 and a -1 is what I have to rate this.
  47. Mar 23, 2012
    You heard it was bad but its worse. Much worse, there are bad games and then there is what EA did to bioware just releasing garbage. Dragonage2 was garbage SWTOR was garbage and ME3 is complete garbage.
  48. Mar 23, 2012
    Bioware releases a game that contains 95% goodness and a 5% utter, soul-crushing, promise-cutting, canon-killing conclusion. This game is the least entertaining of the entire series and certainly the saddest.
  49. Mar 24, 2012
    Love all the game but the end is a joke, sorry bioware i love u , but seriously this end kill all ur game ... The 3 choices are just a joke, and if this ' end ' is just a ' dream ' for waiting the real end in DLC , it's a joke too.
  50. Mar 24, 2012
    Bioware managed to ruin my favorite game series ever in less than 10 minutes. Don't play this game if you want some sort of satisfaction with your story.
  51. Mar 26, 2012
    Bioware screwed up so masterfully at the end of this game that it not only ruins the game, it ruins the first two Mass Effect games as well. The only positive side of the ending is that it doesn't also ruin Dragon Age: Origins. I would only suggest buying this game if you are the type of person who skips through all the dialog scenes and cutscenes. If you enjoy dialog, story, and making choices that impact the rest of the game DO NOT BUY this game.

    The one major problem with this game is the ending. It is a fun enjoyable game similar to its predecessors up until the finale. How this ending seemed like a good idea to the studio is mind-boggling. It is bad storytelling in addition to other factors which leaves the player frustrated and unfulfilled. Forget replay value, you will have no motivation or desire to replay this game or Mass Effect 1 and 2.

    Save your money. Don't buy this abomination. If anything, wait and see if Bioware will release a fixed ending. The price of this game should be falling quickly anyway due to poor reception.
  52. Apr 5, 2012
    Loved ME1, enjoyed ME2 though the story elements seemed a bit repetitive, but ME3 was an absolute let down, crikey. Dumbed down conversation and massive plot holes paired with an absolute lack of give-a-**** for how much thought and investment players have put into the purportedly all-important decision-making process to date, since it all ends up about the same in the end anyway. blergh. I wasn't going to spend the money after the day one DLC debacle, but I decided to give Bioware the benefit of the doubt. Never again, thanks. My *** is sore enough. Expand
  53. Apr 6, 2012
    The game was an awesome ride right up until thessia after this point the whole game feels rushed, especially the ending, for this reason I'm giving it a 0, as the ending undermines everything you done across all games.
  54. Apr 7, 2012
    Game was way over hyped prior to release and with to me rings alarm bells. Played the PC version at a friends, appalled, poor graphics, poor story, poor voice acting, poor continuity, poor game play. ME2 was great, ME3 is pap.
  55. Apr 8, 2012
    The Mass Effect trilogy was great, many great moments in Mass Effect 1 and Mass Effect 2. I know a lot of people loved 2 but it was a step away from what made ME1 so great. Mass Effect 1 was an RPG with inventory management, gear options in the field, looting and so on. The story was stellar, all the characters came off well. It was a well rounded and near perfect game. Mass Effect 2 simplified it, no more inventory, no more gear changes in the field, little to no inventory management, but the story was just a titch under how great ME1 was. ME2 was bit harder to get into and took 2 playthrus to start making sense to me. There was no distinguishable bad guy and over 70% of the games storyline was just gaining the loyalty of your squadmates which only 2 came from the previous game. The bad guy you do find out in the end, but I missed it the first time around. The games combat mechanics and exploration were nothing like ME1. ME1 had cover but it was not Gears of War cover which it became in ME2 and ME3, the exploration in 1 was great imo, but the vehicle to explore in did not work well with the terrain they gave you to explore. I wish they would have kept open worlds and open world quests like ME1 so exploration was a part of ME2, but the simplified it for "new customers." ME2 still was good, but with so much removed from gameplay it was hard to swallow. No spoilers but if you play ME1 then 2 you will see they retconned Shepherd into a bad situation for 2. It ended up working out though after a few playthrus.
    Now to ME3. So much was built up for this game. Anyone who played Shepherd was expecting a grand finale with challenges and all the choices you made to matter. The choices you made from ME1 thru ME3 are just a number which grants you only 1 second extra on one of the 3 endings. The 3 endings are near identical in everyway except the 1 second cutscene at the end of the Red Ending. There is also the other 2 endings, Blue and Green. No matter what you do, you get this one ending that comes in 3 colors and in the Red one you can get 1 second extra with a high enough score. Nothing you did showed up in the cutscenes for the end game which should have been bare minimum. The endings in my opinion turn the main Character into the worst villain in history rather than send him off like a hero. It is ok to kill the main character in story like Mass Effect 3 and in fact he could have died in ME2, but to send him off as horrible person even if you played the good guy options through was unforgivable and it kills the entire experience.
    This review is based on Mass Effect 3, not the whole series. The reason I gave it a 4 is that it is the same combat system as 2, add in Weight which reduces your ability times the more you carry, but still no inventory, no in field changes, once you leave your ship you got what you got, also all exploration is gone, everything is level based now. The game is a Gears of War cover shooter clone.
    It is not plausible that you did all that you did in such a short time in the story. Leaving Earth and going out to get resources and items to come back and based on advertisement, "Retake Earth." This is not an option based on the current endings though so the avert is basically just smoke and mirrors. Nothing new is added to gameplay, choices are removed from dialogue, no more neutral options, its jerk or good-two-shoes Roleplay, nothing in between.
    The whole great trilogy was awesome, but the last 10 minutes of Mass Effect 3 makes you feel like crap. The last 10 minutes invalidates everything you accomplished throughout 1, 2 and even 3. Now some would say, "it's the journey," "not the destination." That is not the case in ME3, everything fit together at least on a base level, the story remained the same throughout even with the RPG element removal, then all of a sudden a different story starts, plot holes are thrown at you, new characters are introduced, people are hoping for "the dream ending," and all the choice you had before is now removed. One never seen before character at the end forces you into Red, Blue, Green options even though the protagonist would never listen to this new character ever before.
    The producers told us no A, B, C endings, but that is what they gave us. Mass Effect Series rating prior to ME3 = 9 out 10, after 5 out of 10 considering all 3 games, due to fond memories of 1 and 2, but realizing they meant nothing and are not the same game/story as 3. I did not think you could ruin such a good story even with a bad idea, but Bioware actually found a way to pick exactly the opposite of everything they did before.

    I sure hope Bioware gets back to its roots someday and remakes ME3 into the game they promised. Only if they could get away from EA.
  56. Dec 6, 2012
    Any company that supports false advertising and not completing story critical characters then tries to sell the patched in contact on day 1 DLC gets a ZERO! Gamers have right to expect better.

    EA's continuing saga of buying studios with good names then dragging them through the dirt needs to end. STOP BUYING EA PRODUCTS!
  57. Apr 18, 2012
    I agree with what pretty much everyone else here has said. It's all the more worse because it craps on what I had considered a near masterpiece (ME1). I'm done with Bioware.
  58. Nov 13, 2012
    Allright, I was wrong about my last review, after seeing the dlc. Now the story changed to crap, which really disappoints me. Thank you EAWare for this game.
  59. Jul 7, 2012
    As a stand alone game, it was mediocre at best. As the 3rd installment in a trilogy, if failed in almost every way possible.
    Your character is no longer yours but a forced character by BW.
    Autodialog forces conversations in directions that go against the players choices.
    Boring, uninspired fetch quests inundate the game.
    Exceptionally linear in design, unlike the pseudo-free style of
    the previous games.
    Endings that nothing to smile about and everything to hate. Infused with massive, game breaking, space magic.
    Overall, a childish attempt at ending a trilogy. Not worth the purchase price.
  60. Sep 13, 2012
    ME2 was something of a downgrade to ME1 and ME3 even more so. A sorry attempt to conclude the narrative, gameplay is basically more of the same with a few redundant character developments. Character developments that do occur mean **** all, detracting much from the role play value. the redundant 3 choice system at the end also negates much of the games replayability. Recommend the game only for ME nerds that feel the need to complete the franchise narrative for brovado's sake. Expand
  61. Mar 30, 2012
    Somehow, everything good about Mass Effect left with the writer that was responsible for the opening part of the trilogy. I cant think of any positive thing about ME3, none, only the terrible things remain. Suddenly, I realized how poor of a sci-fi ME is, things that didnt matter suddenly became game-breaking for me. For example, the animations, the "every species speaks english", the sci-fi clichés, the bisexuality, etc. All in all, the story is just plain boring, not to mention it has many plot holes. Dialogues were terrible and the ending was a colosal dissapointment, something for people to gloat about for decades to come. Expand
  62. May 31, 2012
    Disappointing and internal law breaking product, that lowers the plank raised by previous games. Uninteresting and not original waste of time and money.
  63. Mar 18, 2012
    i wrote a review before finalizing the game. unfortunately the game ending as it stands ruins everything. dont play/buy it until it gets fixed. the writes somehow thought it would be cool to change a (Great) mainstream popcorn emotional decision driven action-rpg to a linear pace ending with three "pick your color" option endings (completely meaningless) trying to move to "art" and not closing anything.
    its very unsatisfactory and dumb. AVOID.
  64. Jun 3, 2012
    Sigh, the ending was far to short and being paragon or renegade meant nothing in the end. The endings didn't reflect your play style. I didn't have any probs with the style of ending, the mist is one of the best ever and heaps of people vote it down furious over it but it still maintains a high ranking proof the movie was good.

    It's quite funny, bioware have made the following since EA
    took over. mass effect 2 and 3 dumbed down, dragon age 2 the worst dumbed down rpg, SW the old republic complete junk. Oh well sell outs. Expand
  65. Apr 9, 2012
    What a joke. Mass Effect 2 was easily my favorite game this gen and I couldn't have been more letdown playing through this game the first time. I'm working through my second play through and I just can't make it. I'm selling it back and never buying a Mass Effect game again. Easily the worst and most disappointing ending of a game I've ever seen and I refuse to pay EA for a better ending. They ruined it for themselves and I'm not letting them get any more of my money. Expand
  66. Apr 9, 2012
    This game showed great promise for being GOTY 2012 but based on the fact that the whole ME series so closely copied other sci-fis the whole prothean device idea was figured out by me and my brother before the game was released. Despite this let down the game had some great features throughout which were suddenly pushed to one side by that horrific ending. Considering the how game was based on the choices you make through out these had no effect on the three ghastly choices at the end which all end the game in exactly the same terrible way Expand
  67. Apr 1, 2012
    I shall be succinct: Mass Effect 3 fails to do what was asked of it by the "hardcore" (old school RPG) fans. Bioware did not bring back any type of inventory, the Itemization is still too small and understanding of the mechanics does little to help one play better or lay out skills better. Even more disturbing is the horrendous way Bioware has concluded this game. I will not give any specifics but suffice to say the ending offers no real choice or closure. If given the opportunity, I would return my copy. Expand
  68. Mar 12, 2012
    This one is really annoying! There is too much video and too little game in it. The battles are very irritating, especially the grenades and the cover system sucks.
  69. Mar 13, 2012
    Completely killed the entire series with only three extremely poor and stupid ending choices. It doesn't matter what you do in this game of any previous games because they mean absolutely nothing.
  70. Apr 5, 2012
    Why, oh why did this game get good reviews? It's very poorly done compared to the first two (I was a big fan of the first one, and the second one was okay.) This newest addition to the mass effect series is beyond flaws with not-so-flowing storyline, poor animation, and poorly optimized for the pc. To make matters worse, the storyline is full of holes as well, with parts becoming inconsistent or unnecessary. I am a fan of Bioware, but this is by far the worst game I've ever seen them put out. Nice job, guys, you wasted my money. I truly say do not bother with this one, it will only ruin the series for you. Go play the first one. Expand
  71. Mar 22, 2012
    I would give this game 9.0+ score, if Bioware did a proper ending.

    Yes, the ending, the ultimate insult to Mass Effect series and the fan. To keep it spoiler free: your choice don't matter a single bit.
  72. Mar 15, 2012
    One of the greatest stories of all time, ruined by an ending that invalidates everything the player has accomplished through the span of all 3 games.

    Does not matter one bit any choice or decision you made on your playthroughs leading up to the final chapter, your actions meant nothing because bad logic and space magic.
  73. Mar 9, 2012
    This review is coming from someone who was a true fan of Mass Effect since its first installment. Mass Effect from the beginning was an excellently crafted game, providing intriguing dialogue, decent gameplay, and an excellent universe in which an even better story was set. The ending of the first Mass Effect was one that reflected all of your actions, and defined your character as a person, setting the stage for a sequel and presumably having actions that would echo throughout the upcoming trilogy.

    Mass Effect 2 streamlined most of the RPG fighting mechanics, but was entirely forgivable by the updated graphics and most certainly superior character development and storybuilding. Everything had been done right for me in ME2, but I saw that it was largely a transitional game. Something that acted as both a satisfying piece of work and visibly a transitional story piece. Ultimately, Mass Effect 2 was made as a buffer between 1 and 3 so that 3 could be the greatest installment yet. Bioware had been marketing Mass Effect 3 as the game that would be "The epic conclusion of the Mass Effect saga", which would "tie up all loose ends" and "be influenced considerably by the choices you've made in the previous games". As one can see, Mass Effect 3 strays so far from these expectations that they've marketed their fans to believe. If the user score isn't evidence enough, I don't know what is. After all, the users of this website are the consumers of the game, not the companies paid to write soulless reviews about a topic that they've only half heard about since its release. They aren't the ones that matter. The people matter, and I'll be exact on every problem that ME3 faced so that hopefully Bioware is listening.

    Mass Effect 3 starts out as everything that I could have ever hoped for. The dramatic introductions of the Reapers unto Earth is exactly what I wanted. Earth is in ruins, and Shepard is the only one who has the influence and the ability to step outside the realm of politics to deal with the threat he had warned everyone about. He begins to gather resources from planet to planet, forming alliances with previously warring factions, and solving galaxy wide problems centuries in the making. This is the Mass Effect 3 I had expected, and I thought it was perfect, until I realized later on what had been happening. My major decisions from ME1 and 2 weren't showing up, and some breaches in continuity via retcon were blatantly obvious, like the human council I worked towards getting being replaced by wax museum automatons in the mirror image of the council I had killed. Then, I noticed a couple of references to previous choices in the game, which I accepted as amusing references, but realized that they were nothing beyond references. Decisions like killing the council, putting Udina on top as the chairman, killing the Rachni queen, making Liara the Shadow Broker, Destroying Maelon's data, killing the Geth on the Heretic Station, continuing work on Project Overlord, etc, had all been reduced to nothing but a few additional pieces of dialogue. All the work I put in to the previous games in decision making had turned into nothing but 4 minutes total of additional dialogue. A sucker punch like that can be accepted grudgingly, but it doesn't end there.

    Paragon and Renegade choices don't change the outcome of the game like they did in the previous games. Paragon and Renegade are basically two ways of saying the same thing now, which completely defeats the purpose of moral choices, safe for a few well done instances which I will take into consideration. On a whole, alignment has been dumbed down to mean nothing this time around. All the hard work anyone has done becoming a virtuous paragon or a scheming xenophobic renegade will be put to waste. This comes full circle in the ending, which accounts for more than half of the reviews.

    The ending of a trilogy makes or breaks all 3 episodes. Imagine Darth Vader at the end of RotJ taking off his helmet to reveal that he's no Luke's father, but Jar Jar Binks. Would you be able to accept an ending like that? No, you wouldn't. Mass Effect 3's ending works to the same effect. The reason the Reapers exist is to save organic life from synthetics by killing organics with synthetics. Not only does this take a complete 180 turn from the entire story thusfar, it doesn't make any sense considering the previous information in the story. EDI successfully integrates into a synthetic body and actually falls in love with Joker. Then, the Geth finally become at peace with the Quarians, and show that they can live together harmoniously. This shows that synthetics can live with organics, thus creating a huge plot hole. And here comes the worst part. Your decisions in the past games do not effect the ending. No plot details, and no alignment choices. Everything you have done is void. This is why Mass Effect 3 has failed us.
  74. Mar 9, 2012
    Very poor dialogue, and is a clear move towards FPS arena. Safe to say, I will not be purchasing any of the DLC packs, nor buying any more in this franchise, game was trying to be politically correct with gay lord scenes, on top of the poor RPG elements.
  75. Mar 9, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. To say I am disappointed with the ending to an otherwise excellent series would be the understatement of the year. I honestly feel like I was stabbed in the back.

    We were led along with themes of hope and free will, and in the end neither one exist in the spectrum of endings available.

    If I was into the combat, I might have enjoyed that. I'm more of a story kind of guy -- one reason I've repeatedly returned to Bioware as my favourite gaming studio.

    Now I am considering terminating my SWTOR subscription, in spite of the fact that I'm genuinely enjoying that game. I cannot justify any studio of Bioware getting any more of my money after promising a satsfying conclusion and failing to deliver.

    I realize there are people who appreciated the endings available, and I say more power to you, but I found it soul crushing.

    And it's not even that the ending required the death or stranding of my character. Several of my characters friends and squad-mates died along the way and each one, while heart rending, had an undercurrent of satisfaction and purpose to it.

    The endings as they exist are meaningless.
  76. Mar 11, 2012
    I am so sad they sold out. I know it makes sense for them financially to just bribe review sites and put tons of money in advertising, but you are estranging millions of fans.
  77. Mar 10, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. First of all: the actual game isn't too bad, a bit too not-involving compared to ME1 and ME2, and the story generally is good (the Quarian-Geth story was great). The very limited options in conversations, the endless overhear-a-conversation-and-fetch-whatever quests, the squadmates uselessness in combat... It's somewhat annoying but not gamebreaking. The fact that Cerberus by defualt is the corrupted-bad-guys-beyond-salvation just feels forced... Even if you actually help Cerberus at every point in ME2, you have no influence over them in ME3. That's pretty crap.

    And then cometh the endings. Honestly, what the actual **** I feel violated. Badly. That the game would end like this, some pathetically copied Deus Ex-style endings? It doesn't work. Not to mention that the endings also makes it feel that every decision you made in ME1 and ME2... Didn't matter. At all. Complete waste.

    I don't know what exactly they were thinking with those endings, and I'll probably never know, but up until the endings I would've rated the game 7.5/10 or so... But after the endings? They lose more than 5 points only at that. The **** forced endings completely destroys the game experience.

    We can also add that with the absence of any loyalty missions and the utter lack of conversation with conversation options makes the game feel very short. It could been done better, and especially, it could have been done to be longer. I feel pretty sad to have to write a review like this, but... Bioware screwed completely here.
  78. Mar 11, 2012
    The game itself is pretty damn good. Not the best of the series, but you know, pretty damn sold. The thing that bugged me is as you probably know the ending. It annuls everything you have worked for in the past games and DLCs. I have spent countless hours studying the games online, and have got over 100 hours of gameplay combined for the first two games, to get the perfect ending possible. But, apparently I have to play multiplayer to get the best ending. Bioware will tell you otherwise, but I know what I experienced. And the ending is inevitably grim and hopeless. You just can't get the ending you were working for all this time. I bought every DLC to make sure I had all the assets I needed to fight the Reapers and win. But Bioware would have me denied that. Well, you know what? I will deny Bioware my money. I give it a zero because the ending ruins the experience to such a degree that even though you can replay the game with different choices ... What's the point? You get the same thing over and over. Bittersweet ending with a grimdark future for the galaxy. I honestly regret buying the Collectors Edition. I sold it yesterday to a poor fool who doesn't know what he's in for. If you like Mass Effect series, stay away from this game. It bring your spirits up, only crush you utterly at the end. Expand
  79. Mar 11, 2012
    Well lets start the first and second game were epic, so i decided to buy also the third the game is desingned on DX 9.0c so don't expect muttch better grafics as in ME2. pro: + logical story (after ME2), + good game feeling, expecting mutch when gaming + new Normandy layout + good artwok (coll. ed.) + good soundtrack (coll. ed.) negatives : - dam short (gamed it in 1 day) - the end has 3 options, all do nearly the same this ruins the game (die & contol ,die & destroy, die & have peace) WTF!!!!
    - no view on the future - operation Hammer is always a fail (teammats die) (alos if u have 100% battle strength)
    - ME2 choises do not affet the game -New Citadel is Crap
    - less missions.
    - a galaxy card for Noobs ! what have u done !
    - less actions to show charakters attitude - Miranda def. Dies, also when have good Option choosen - teammates are uncharitable (no missions to get them loyal) Multiplayer :: well thats what **** me up the most :) ITS a CLIENT Based Netcode !! WTF!!!!, so write a few lines in hex editor and u have unlimited ammo, or rapid brust fire. 2 lines and everyone can cheat like hell. (or use a game trainer Cheat happens or mogelpower ) !!

    the multiplyer provides just a few maps & u cant choose a server(only quick game) the result is that u get often servers that lag & stuck like hell.
    after 3 days u know all maps & its begining to get bored.
  80. Mar 11, 2012
    I finished ME3 this morning at 6:30, staying up all night to finish it. I am a huge fan of the series. Played both ME1 and ME2 multiple times. I love the story and relationships and it makes me laugh and sometimes cry (Talitha "I remember me")
    the Ending utterly SUCKED. The end Ending.was so...anti climactic and stupid. It's the only way I can describe it. I'm fighting with giving
    details because I don't want to spoil it for someone. But for me those last few moments of the game didn't answer any questions or make anything clearer. Honestly, it looked like they had no idea and slapped an ending on. All the sappyness and good byes isn't even my problem, I expected that and in a way wanted it. It is the final choice and the lack of explanation by this supposed higher being, whom I wanted to shoot. Stupid ending to a much anticipated game. Expand
  81. Mar 11, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Mass Effect was my favorite series of all time. Because of this game's ending, I now regret ever having played at all. I have looked forward to a climatic conclusion to this series for years and have only received disappointment. Ultimately, the story I built, I choose, and I experienced meant nothing. Three incorrect choices are presented with no satisfaction of a job well done or that I made a difference. Expand
  82. Mar 11, 2012
    I like many have been a fan of the Mass Effect series since the start of it 5 years ago, the 9th of March was a joy full day for me as it marked the release of the Epic final all us fans had been waiting for. My collectors edition turned up early in the morning on the 9th & I was so thrilled & excited I couldn't wait to get the disc into my xbox. After downloading my DLC & soundtrack I imported my Mass Effect 2 character & started my game. I was so happy it was like all my birthdays had come at once, as I made it to the end however it was a different story. I found myself feeling crushed & betrayed by a poorly made ending that had no relation to the storyline of the previous games & made me feel like I'd wasted my time & my money. I can no longer look at Mass Effect or Bioware the same way I did before playing Mass Effect 3 the whole thing has forever left a bitter taste in my mouth & I know I am not alone in this. Expand
  83. Mar 11, 2012
    Overall very disappointing. Fails to combine FPS and RPG as well as previous titles and I feel while playing that there is no true direction or motivation. Most of the chat options provide a false sense of choice as the options have little to do with what Shepard will say. Generally any "oh I can do something here" options tend to have Shepard back off and remain on the linear story line laid forth by the developers. Graphics are subpar and look reminiscent of Mass Effect 2. Bugs out the ass with regards to graphics and in some aspects of gameplay. Lots of upgrades and other things to waste player time and seem to take from the gameplay experience rather than give to it. I got about 30% through the game and lost all interest in it. Expand
  84. Mar 12, 2012
    Most of the main missions are well done, you can generally get the resolutions you want, with some consequences sprinkled in. For this, the game gets about a 9. I truly enjoyed myself.

    Side quests are weak, they mostly consist of mindless grinding, which is never a good thing in a game. I wanted more on-site side quests as in ME1 and ME2, but was sorely disappointed. For this the game
    gets maybe a 3.

    And then there's the ending. In fact, the entire final mission was a huge letdown for me. It's the greatest betrayal of a gaming franchise I've ever experienced, and I've been around since the Commodore-64 days. It makes no sense, it spits in the face of the loyal fan, and it has ruined not only this game, but every preceding game for me. The ending is so bad that it eclipses every positive thing you could ever say about the game. It's a -10 experience. So we end up with a final score of 2. Until Bioware fixes the ending, I'm warning every friend of the franchise and friend in general not to play/buy me3. This was not an experience I'd wish upon my worst enemy.
  85. Mar 12, 2012
    Great Game, all the way up to the last 15 minutes and then it turned into a disaster...Worst ending to any video game i have ever played in 15 years of console and PC gaming going all the way back to the atari.

    I have never seen an ending that gave absolutely no closure to anything, you don't know what happens to the normandy crew, magically somehow crew members crash landed on some
    unknown planet when they were just with you on earth, shepard somehow just accepts death and destroying all artificial life in the galaxy and shepard either dies or you see some body that may not even be his take a gasp of air before the end. no happy ending, not even close to a perfect ending and the worst ending ever. Expand
  86. Mar 12, 2012
    Terrible ending that utterly destroyed the series. I feel cheated, cheated out of the money I have spend on ME1, ME2, and ME3. Bioware will not receive a dime from me until they fix this mess. If they fail to acknowledge the fans then I will never purchase another Bioware product again.

    The only reason why I gave this a 2 is because of the solid gameplay, otherwise it would have gotten a
    0 from me. Expand
  87. Mar 13, 2012
    Day 1 DLC with obviously cut out material is instant 1/10 from me, even the game might be good. What they are doing is milking off money from the uninformed mainstream. Day 1 DLC are a disgrase and you should boycott this company for doing this!
  88. Mar 12, 2012
    First off I would just like to say that I am a HUGE man of the Mass Effect series, played the first 2 numerous times, and even read the first three books (I would have read the 4th, but since it was a different writer, and had overwhelmingly negative reviews due to glaring inconsistencies with the established history I seemed like it would be a waste)

    Now for Mass Effect 3 - I will try
    to keep this as spoiler free as possible, but some will probably make it in. You have been warned.

    The story continues about 6-8 months after the last DLC of Mass Effect 2 "Arrival" when the reapers invade Earth, as well as other planets throughout the galaxy. You escape the initial events in order to try and rally the other races of the galaxy to mobilize a massive counterattack to take back Earth, and ultimately the galaxy as a whole. Along the way you meet up with familiar faces from the first two games. Some only last little while, others will stick with you until the end, and you have the option to continue your romance with whomever you were going after (assuming they survived the first and/or second game). To me the character connections and development was the best in the series, and to my memory the best in any video game series to date. From having a friendly shooting competition with Garrus to Tali getting drunk using an "Emergency induction port" It just serves to bring a closeness with companion characters that no game has ever done before. It's not just sunshine, rainbows, and puppies though. Numerous characters end up making sacrifices so that you can succeed at your mission, which ultimately leads to my low review score but more on that later.

    Game play wise this game plays really similar to Mass Effect 2, combat is a bit more challenging and smooth. Weapons are now allow for much more customization through the use of extended barrels for damage increases, scopes for better accuracy, and ammo that allows to shoot people through cover, albeit with reduced damage. The cover system has also been improved quite a bit and plays more like Gears of War, though not quite as responsive while moving in cover, but it's still an improvement over ME2. Combat wise you see a decent variety with enemies, and in some cases it's better to target a specific enemy first as they can "buff" other enemies with armor, shields ect, but as mentioned earlier it's near identical to ME2. One last thing is that you now have a weight system that determines how often you can use your powers. For soldiers it's not as big of a deal since you have all 5 weapon slots used, and with the use of Ammo powers (ammo powers don't have cooldowns and weight does not effect them) it's not as big of a deal. For Classes with numerous Biotic/Tech powers It's more of a concern since you rely on weapon damage much less than the soldier, so it makes you think about what weapons (and how many) you want to load up with. The only notable thing missing are boss battles. Yes you do have certain enemies that you have to burn through multiple layers of defenses, but there is nothing like there was with Saren at the end of ME1 or the human reaper at the end of ME2. Now as many people across many sites have been saying the first 99% of the game is fantastic, it's the last 1%, or 10 minutes that completely ruin the game, and for some people the series. Without getting into specific spoilers it boils down to two main gripes I have with the ending. 1) Is that the plot device used to end the game came out of left field, there was no foreshadowing, evidence or anything else to prepare us for the emergence of this "Deus Ex Machina" and 2) The player loses any semblance of control or choice that they have had throughout the entire series, when it matters the most. The player is simply given options, that quite frankly feel disjointed from the overarching themes of the Mass Effect universe, and you have no way to argue or protest, it simply "is what it is." Add on top of that the "different choices" lead to what is ultimately a near identical result since you see ABSOLUTELY NO consequences of your decision. Heck you don't even know if most of your companions live or die! Ultimately all the choices and relationships you made, all the sacrifices you, your companions, and even the galaxy at large made end up seeming meaningless were unworthy of the ending they received. Graphics 9/10
    Gameplay 10/10
    Sound 10/10
    Story 1/10 (I was nice and rounded up to 1 since there was at least SOMETHING there) first 99% 10/10 last 1% -10/10
    Replay value 1/10
  89. Mar 12, 2012
    Would have given a 9 or 10 if not for the final 5 min. The shockingly nonsensical ending really did make the whole experience a negative. The promises made about this game and it's endings, as well as the precedent that the Mass Effect 2 set in terms of choice in the ending, were not executed with the quality one would expect (or at all).
  90. Mar 13, 2012
    Quoting SacredJefe from ign comments:
    "Fans of the ME series are mad because there are GLARING plot-holes in the endings and because NONE of our decisions in the three games MATTERED in the end. No matter how you played the game, there were only three endings with slightly different variations that were only barely noticeable. Bioware promised us sophisticated endings, not this crap
    where every ending is pretty much the same damn thing with different color lights. Ignore the people who say "we" deserve better, because the matter of the fact is MASS EFFECT deserves better."

    it sure deserves better.
  91. Mar 13, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. First of all: The game doesn't deserve a "1" as rating. Nevertheless I'm rating this way as a warning to everyone thinking about buying.

    Have you ever read an awesome book, or watched an amazing movie that touched you emotionally on a level never experienced before. I have - with the with the Mass Effect series! Now imagine at the end you get the very worst ending you can think of where everything the characters did or stood for was rendered useless. I have - in the final minutes of Mass Effect 3.

    I consider myself mentally stable. To see an ending like that has left me devastated. I experience physical symptoms of a minor depression - lack of appetite, lack of motivation.

    I played Mass Effect since the first game. And Bioware games since the first Baldur's Gate. Despite being a grown man, waiting for this game made me feel like a seven year old again. Eagerly waiting for Christmas. Now I feel like my parents have pulled a cruel, cruel joke on me. For years hinting that I would get an amazing present. Bulding up my expectations. Then under the Christmas tree, the most amazing package, artfully wrapped. I unpack it, laughing, crying all the time. And then inside I find a weird looking remote control with three buttons (red, green, blue), I'm confused! Yet I press one of the buttons - still hoping - and all it does is annihilate everything around me. Now I sit in the ashes of the greatest game ever and cry bitter tears. All I can hope for is sparing others what I had to go though.
  92. Mar 13, 2012
    Mass Effect has always been a hyrid of RPG & shooter. After 2 amazing games they have removed the key feature of the previous games, ability to shape who Shep is and what he says. Their idea of canon shep is like a cancer in the game as shep is regularly talking on his own, spouting opinions that aren't based on the character built over 2 games. Full decisions equates to some decisions in reality. If you like Mass Effect 2 characters you are not going to like how they are sidelining and for the main part weak storylines. I was especially disappointed in Miranda's while Legion/Mordin probably had the best.

    Me3 squad is lacking diversity. On the bright side the DLC character is truly amazing. If you are going to buy the game make sure you play it with Ashes to ashes dlc installed. I would have liked more proper dialogue with crew and less prerecorded chatter.

    The endings are truly terrible. In a game about choice all your choices matter for nothing. There's no diversity at all in the endings, just the same railroaded results with a minor aesthetic difference. As a conclusion to a trilogy it is an epic fail as evidenced by the hugely unfavourable response from players. I don't like multiplayer and especially don't like fact they've made it pretty much a necessity to get certain things happen at end.
  93. Mar 13, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I'm sure you heard it all before. If you haven't then:

    Hold the line.
  94. Mar 14, 2012
    It gets a zero from me. Bad ending, your choices do not matter, disappointing relationship . If you like the Mass Effect series do not play this third installation it negates the whole series.
  95. Mar 14, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Steaming pile of crap.
    I just played the Mission where you are forced to choose between Quarians and Geth. It's a lie. there is no choice. Either way is inconsistent with the choices made in the previous game. Hours of forced cinematics, no real game play based on choice. It's like a weekend of bad D&D with the worst power-tripping DM ever.
    This game sux all ass and I refuse to play to the end.
    DON'T WASTE YOUR MONEY! Bioware is ****
  96. Mar 14, 2012
    Worst game ever IMHO. At first, what I dislike - Bioware said that gameplay id about 40 hours. Where is this 40? I playing very slowly and finish this game after 20 hours. Ok, its not the general problem. Everybody whos saw 3 ending is shoked, as me. First 15-20 hours is amazing, but ending.... I cant give more than 1 point out of 10. A lot of fans whaiting epic ending of this game. After final movie I have a lot of questions, but whos give me answers for them? DLC? Ok, I dont say that developers must give us content for free, but general story must be comlited without any DLC. Now about positive side of the game. Weapons upgrade and shooting me pleased. Thats all. Expand
  97. Mar 14, 2012
    The combat was pretty fun, the multiplayer started fun but got repetitive since it is entirely co-op horde mode and there was no competitive multiplayer. The story had a few strong moments. Never in my life did I think that just the ending of a piece of entertainment could retroactively destroy the positive experiences I had with that piece of entertainment. Mass Effect 3 managed to do just that. I had heard the ending was bad before I even started the game, but I wrote this off as only a few people who were very vocal, and believed that I would enjoy the ending when I got to it. I was completely mistaken. The ending not only made no sense, but it took away any possibility for the player to make a significant choice, and made the player feel like all the choices made up until this point of the game were utterly worthless and had no impact on the game whatsoever. It left me feeling incomplete, as if the reapers were never defeated and the Mass Effect series never really got an end. It caused me to immediately uninstall the game and not even think about playing through the game again, which I was originally planning on doing. I didn't think it was possible, but this game single-handedly in the last 10 minutes or so, ruined my love for the Mass Effect series and Bioware. It was a disappointment and what could have been a terrific game was ruined because of it. Expand
  98. Mar 14, 2012
    Mass Effect is in my opinion one of the best games ever. The first game I finished at least 4 times but the second I finished more than 8 times. Mass Effect 3 gives me no desire to re-play it again unless Bioware change the ending that I think is a complete sh@t. I hate it and hate Bioware to destroy what for me was the best game ever.
    I will not buy any Bioware game anymore.
  99. Mar 15, 2012
    The first 95% of the game is a 9. Solid gameplay improving in every way over ME2. Combat mechanics are tighter. There are more weapons and weapon mods. Classes make more sense. Load times are better. I mean, I really can't say enough positive about the first 95% of the game.

    But that all falls apart at the climax. The minute you head for the point of no return, the games plot and logic
    fall apart, culminating in a confusing nonsensical ending that resolves nothing.

    The ending of the game damages more than just this game, but the previous two titles as well. You are left with complete and utter disappointment that also ruins the replay value of these games. When one portion of a game not only ruins your enjoyment of the title you're playing, but also of two additional games that you can never bring yourself to play again, it's worth more than just a point or two off the total score.

    I've been a gamer my whole life. I can remember using a tape drive to load games on a C=64 at school. Never in my history as a gamer have I seen a company drop the ball this badly at the 1 yard line.

    If something is done that fixes the ending (doesn't have to make it happy, just make sense), I'll reconsider my score.
  100. Mar 15, 2012
    low score for the ending, shame bioware, shame

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. Apr 11, 2012
    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.
  2. Apr 5, 2012
    A game that's more shooter than role-playing, and a conclusion that's more spectacular than dramatic. [Apr 2012, p.47]
  3. Mar 31, 2012
    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.