Note To Game Makers: Don't Force Me To Play Multiplayer
Multiplayer has earned its position in gaming and has become crucial in contributing to the industry's health.
However, after reading up on some information concerning the various endings (and how to achieve them) in Mass Effect 3, I started to think the future could get a little frustrating for those who have no interest in multiplayer, especially when it comes to certain genres.
In a post in the BioWare forums, Jarett Lee has elaborated on how to get the "perfect endings" in the team's recent gem; the explanation was necessary because some believed you had to get online and/or play the iOS spin-off, Mass Effect: Infiltrator, in order to see any of those perfect climaxes.
Now, Lee confirmed that this is not the case- "...you do NOT have to play multiplayer to get the best single-player endings." Doing so only contributes to your Galactic Readiness ranking, which will remain at 50% if you don't play online or tackle the iOS adventure. This doesn't determine the endings but in fact, it only affects the "Effective Military Strength" bar, which is an "indicator of how well you will do in the end-game." You can also raise this bar by collecting War Assets in single-player. The only difference is that if you play online and up that Galactic Readiness, you will need fewer War Assets to see the perfect ending(s).
Here's my problem with this whole thing- it seems that more and more, even in genres that in my eyes really have no need for it, multiplayer is starting to dictate. That bothers me. Even though in this case, it's not such a big deal, the next step seems inevitable: i.e., play online or you'll never see the best ending. Some game designer somewhere is going to do this, and I'm gonna be pissed. It already annoys me that Platinum Trophies are essentially impossible if you don't play online (I still say there should be two Plats; one for single-player and one for multiplayer). And when it comes to RPGs...I mean, come on.
It's nice that Mass Effect 3 has an online component - and it works well, too - but to have it impact in any way the single-player campaign just seems wrong to me. In short: keep multiplayer an option; don't start forcing it down our throats.
Related Game(s): Mass Effect 3
3/7/2012 10:39:30 AM Ben Dutka