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Did ME3 Get High Scores Because Many Critics Didn't Finish It?

The fans are pissed and yet, the review scores are, for the most part, through the roof.

Maybe none of those critics were fans (although that's difficult to believe). Or maybe, just maybe, the fact that many reviewers simply don't have the time to finish big games like Mass Effect 3 before posting a review played a role.

I did not finish ME3 before posting the review. Back in 2009, I posted a clarifying feature that dealt with the harsh truths of the state of game reviewing; accept them or not, those all remain true today. While a few - a very few - of the biggest sources have the staff and resources to play every game through to completion before issuing a review, for the vast majority of sites, it just isn't possible. And given the demanding nature of the gaming public, we can't afford to be late. You lose attention and traffic if you're frequently late.

I will absolutely guarantee that not every critic finished ME3 before writing the review. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if most didn't finish. Some hardcore fans who have complained bitterly about the endings have even suggested as much, saying there's no way the game would've received such high marks if more critics had actually completed the adventure. It's a perfectly legitimate question and one that deserves to be addressed. However, I can only speak for myself; you'll have to be satisfied with that-

First and foremost, in over a decade of reviewing games, I have very very rarely written a review, finished the game in question at a later date, and said to myself, "Gee, I want to change my score." The bottom line is that seasoned critics know when they've seen enough, when they can accurately gauge the product's quality, and this almost never requires us to complete the game. Perhaps when the day comes that sees much more complex storylines, this will change. But that's the only thing that will change; controls, basic mechanics, graphics, music, voice performances, etc.; these elements won't suddenly become much better or worse as the game progresses. That just doesn't happen.

Secondly, I've seen the endings now and no, I'm sorry, I wouldn't change my score. I really don't see what all the ruckus is about but admittedly, I'm not a huge fan of the franchise. Call that bias if you like, and say that it renders my score null and void, but that's the way it is. I would also direct you to reviewers I know completed the game and still awarded it a very high score, so perhaps this isn't too big of an issue. Thirdly and finally, maybe it's important to acknowledge that at its core and from an analytical point of view, Mass Effect 3 is a superior piece of work. At least doing that much will give BioWare some of the credit they deserve.

As for the rest...fight amongst yourselves. ;)

Related Game(s): Mass Effect 3

Tags: me3, mass effect 3, me3 reviews, mass effect 3 review scores

3/21/2012 8:53:12 PM Ben Dutka

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Comments (86 posts)

Qubex
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 9:23:17 PM
Reply

Funny, I have been quietly reading about all the controversy regarding the ME3 game ending. Now admittedly I have not purchased the game so I can't say too much about it at this stage, but my question is why?

Is the story that intricate and detailed that it warrants such a reaction? Can endings be that bad that a company is forced to change it? It's a game, it's a fun play through, you see the fireworks and then that is it... what more?

I will get ME3, but why all the fuss? I loved the demo and thought the presentation and dialogue were slick... I would just enjoy it for what it is...

Anyway, with regards to the review scores, it could very be that many of the critics did not finish the game otherwise they may have picked up on "why" the endings were poor and in what context, nonetheless, all this is probably a little overblown. I think the inherent quality (from what I can see) is there across all its production values...

Look at how many times Lucas has kind of "spoilt" Star Wars... people the world over still enjoy it and say "oh well"... and accept it for what it is.

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

Last edited by Qubex on 3/21/2012 9:23:59 PM

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Temjin001
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 9:28:19 PM
Reply

Doesn't Gamespot have a finish the game before it's reviewed policy?

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 11:09:17 PM

They do. However, I do cite them in my article as being one of the VERY few sources that are able to do that.

And besides, it has been abundantly clear in the past when they write reviews when the game obviously wasn't finished. So it still happens.

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telly
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 10:06:58 AM

I think it depends on the nature of the game, too. Do you need to master every Street Fighter combatant before you can write an accurate review of the latest Street Fighter? Probably not. But might you give your journos the time to play through a story-heavy game like Mass Effect if you can swing it? If you have the time/bandwidth, probably yes. Regardless, I think game reviews can be very accurate even before the game is finished, but it's an interesting thing to think about.

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Temjin001
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 11:13:01 AM

I see your point Telly. But arguably, a person could play through the story or arcade mode and claim they've "finished" it. Skill building games I assume have more of a quantitative perspective, regarding overall quality and offering. I learned a long time ago that critics are usually not a master of any given game. That's for the hardcore. Fighting games, for example, I look to the critics for the overall synopsis and general product offering, noting any glaring flaws or misgivings along the way. But leave the actual quality of the fight to my own judgement or to fighting game fan sites.

NG3 (yep, slipping it in again ;) is another game that can become similar to a fighter. Im pretty dissillusioned by the critical response, but placing myself in the shoes of a critics job, and their usual service to consumers, the game would probably be best approached cautiously by the majority of game players, as it's best kept secrets do not make themselves readily known(and NG3 does terrible at explaining anything), and I'm pretty much convinced most gamers don't play games of this type to the extreme as I do. I make it very technical for myself, hence why I enjoy it so much. I usally can't get as much technical fullfillment out of other like-genre types. Bayonetta could if I allowed myself to like playing better for the sake of point multipliers and stylishness.

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Excelsior1
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 4:14:47 PM

YES, they do Temjim and I salute them for it. That is the kind of professionalism I expect.

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Jawknee
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 9:37:31 PM
Reply

This whole fiasco is insane and makes me ashamed to be lumped together with these gamers. These raging nerds need to man up and deal with the fact that the ending is what it is. That said, I don't believe it would have changed many, if any review scores had they finished the game. Don't most reviewers take into account A LOT of things besides the story or ending? I mean Rage got fairly good scores and it's story and ending was atrocious.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:07:19 PM

Bioware says they did listen and are using fan backlash criticism in the new ending DLC.

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Looking Glass
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 7:38:04 AM

@ WorldEndsWithMe

Well actually as far as I know they didn't actually say anything about new ending dlc. They just said some things that hinted at that.

But even if true it could open another can of worms if Bioware charges people for something they probably should have gotten when they bought the game. What that would mean is essentially people paid full price (or more) for an incomplete game.

Another thing is that as I understand it the ME3 ending(s) is problematic on a number of levels. That there was apparently no closure is only one issue. I think it would be best if Bioware uses any new ending dlc to completely rewrite the existing ending(s). If they try to justify the existing ending(s) that could possibly make things worse.

In other words there are still a number of things that could go wrong with new ending dlc if Bioware doesn't go about it the right way.

Last edited by Looking Glass on 3/22/2012 7:38:39 AM

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telly
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 9:52:30 AM

Agree. I have loathed quite a few games in my day, regretted sinking dozens of hours into a quest that yielded a terrible resolution, and never in my wildest dreams did I considering demanding NEW endings.

I really, truly hope BioWare finds a way to diffuse this situation, both with the crybabies who started this mess and the defenders like me, who are at the moment appalled BioWare is going to augment the ending in way. What a weird, sad epilogue to the Mass Effect trilogy.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 1:47:59 PM

I read at an IGN interview it was a certainty

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aaronisbla
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 3:10:52 PM

that same article at ign never stated a brand new ending that retcons what happens at the end of me3, but that it would explain a lot of things

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Excelsior1
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 4:23:22 PM

Rage may have received decent scores but it was taken to the freaking woodshed for its lack of strong narritive and idendity. Just go thorogh Metacritic. The was easily the biggest gripe reviewers had with the game, and one I tend to agree with. The "ending" for that game was a letdown mainly because it somrhow felt incomplete. I say games have a long ways to go in terms of writing and storytelling.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:06:06 PM
Reply

I agree, if you are going to review a game and it comes out fantastic but the ending breaks the story you still have to take into account all those basic elements and countless others. You can't say the ending ruined the graphical presentation and so forth.

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Qubex
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 12:29:20 AM

True, but is the ending that bad that it breaks the whole trilogy... the complaints being made sound to me that Bioware really made errors... but for a dev such as them, surely it is not as bad as it is made out to be...

It maybe that people are more upset that choices made during the play through do not influence the outcomes enough. I can understand that but how many endings are enough?

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

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xenris
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 9:50:37 AM

Qubex, its because the fans of the series got hooked on the amazing lore and story that was in the first Mass Effect game. I think because of biowares history the ending is super confusing for the fans because they can't believe Bioware would write something so atrocious. On top of that the ending is literally A B or C, and they are practically the same, and you don't get to see the aftermath. For a game that promised closure they ended the game so fans could wildly speculate what happened to the galaxy, to shepard and to your crew.....How is that anything close to tying off the end of a trilogy?

In fact not all but a lot of fans think ME2 was an abomination as well. As it has a ton of bad writing and plot holes in it too.

Are they still fun games to play? Yes they are, but the hardcore fans invested in the story and the ending for those people was enough to make them feel super betrayed and lied to.

I have a list of quotes from bioware developers and staff saying that the ending would be this this and that, and that there would be so many you wouldnt be able to say I got ending A B or C. Which I might add is exactly what we got. Plus the writing in the last ten minutes REAAALLY factually makes NOO sense, if people think it does, then they have to be delusional. I say that with confidence as a number of people have dissected it to show that its utter nonsense.

Yes games are about the ride and some games don't need stories to be enjoyable. BUT when your game ME1 was so refreshing and full of mystery and created this awesome universe and set up a really cool story, well people are going to be mad. I think the people who are reallllly mad are the people who hated ME2 for straying so far from ME1s original story.

I honestly think they should have just made ME1 and then worked on a large expansion for two years and finished the reaper story arc and shepards story, while the original team and vision for the story was still fresh.

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Qubex
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 9:21:38 PM

Fare enough Xenris... appreciate the explanation... I will what you said in mind when I play through ME3...

Thanks again!

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

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Metal Head
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:14:07 PM
Reply

I'm still playing Mass Effect 2 and like the game so far. It will take a while for me to get Mass Effect 3, because Vita is hard to put down. I don't know how to review games, but I know what I like. I don't understand the constant complains for Mass Effect 3 ending. What I really hate are updates, patchs to fix a game.

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Nas Is Like
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:29:14 PM
Reply

Ben, can we please stop with the ME3 articles already? How many did we have in the last few days? Seriously...

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:34:06 PM

March and April are tough traffic days.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:39:17 PM

It's called current events. You may not have realized, but we're supposed to cover those.

You're lucky there aren't more; most sites DO have more.

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Nas Is Like
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:48:59 PM

Obviously I realize it, no need to be a smartass. I've been here long enough to know that.

But not every current "event" needs an article written about it. I guess you're the one that didn't realize that.

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Jawknee
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 11:08:17 PM

Sorry Ben, I'll amend my comment. Just get sick of seeing these kinds of posts from people when the solution to their dislike is simple.

If you don't like it NAS, don't read it.

Last edited by Jawknee on 3/21/2012 11:17:23 PM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 11:10:38 PM

Okay, okay, everyone calm down. Jawknee, I appreciate it, but no need to go on the offensive.

And I admit, I was a bit of a smart-ass myself. It's true that we've done a lot of ME3 coverage but I think it's in the site's best interests. Hope that's a better explanation. :)

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 3/21/2012 11:10:55 PM

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Underdog15
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 11:26:28 AM

Ben, are you seeing someone?

Nah but seriously, it's probably a good practice to just not read stuff you aren't interested in. I read most articles here, but not all of them.

ME3 is the only real blockbuster that's released in the last month, and it's definitely trending across the internet. Ben would be stupid not to keep up with it all, if for nothing else, the health of the site.

Last edited by Underdog15 on 3/22/2012 11:28:43 AM

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PC_Max
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:32:57 PM
Reply

Well, you just have to look at Skyrim which was full or bugs and major issues that it still retained high scores and GOTY award. I have not played this game but that surprises me IF all that I heard about the bugs/issues is true. I think I will have to play it and judge it for myself.

I have read reviews of other games a long while back that had major frame rate issues that were given low scores. I get confused because I guess when its a certain issue, it warrants a low score... or maybe just maybe because a gamer or critic plays the game with no real issues that is what counts, regardless if a large number of users hit the issues.

Ugh!! comes down you to... borrow the bloody thing of a friend, if they bought, try it out and see before maybe you decide to buy it.

Ah.. the gaming world can be just soooo fickled. Long live gaming and everything good and bad it brings. :) Keep playing!!

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:39:44 PM

It depends on if there are reasons to forgive some of it like a massive open world setting with tons of things going on at once, or if it really shines in other areas. Assassin's Creed gets away with screen tearing murder, but there's a lot else going on there.

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Qubex
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 12:31:12 AM

Dragons flying backward? :)

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

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1torulemall
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:34:41 PM
Reply

If you bought a book and up until the last chapter the book was great and then the last chapter is(as they say still to start ME3)crap or disappointing does this make the whole book a bad one?The feelings/experience the book(game/movies/series/etc) up to the last chapter are to be disregarded completly?Only the destination counts not the journey?
Do you ask for the writer to remake the last chapter if you didn't like it?For better or worse this is the creation he wanted you to read.To ask someone to change his creation it is selfish and immature the least.Accept it for what it is and on his next creation punish or reward him by making the purchase or not.I just hope this phenomenon won't appear anytime soon cause its quite sad.

All the above for the artistic part of a game(music/story/art direction-etc) not the mechanics or technical aspects so considering that no the critics shouldn't care whether the end is good or bad.Just if the game is good or not and the reason.

Last edited by 1torulemall on 3/21/2012 10:41:14 PM

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xenris
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 11:05:23 AM

Its more like this, you get to the end, and it makes no sense and confuses you, and goes against the lore that the book had just established, but then WAIT. The last page has a form you can detach from the book and fill out your information. You can send cash or a cheque and you will get the messed up ending explained to you in a couple months for the low price of 9.99.

Heres the other thing. Its what Bioware was promising, countless times about how the ending would provide closure, have a huge amount of diverging endings, wouldnt be an ABC choice, would tie off EVERYTHING. I have posted the quotes on other Mass effect articles on this site so if you want to see them they are there.

This is what is leaving a sour taste in peoples mouths. People are standing up to this which is good. THEY supported and paid for the game and were lied to. Its not like going to a movie and being mad, you lost out on like 10-15 bucks tops. Its 70$ for a game, its not cheap and people who spent that because they trusted the reviewers(who mostly didn't finish the game) are pissed.

Here is the biggest kicker, its basically been proven that this was planned. On Xbox live people found that there is a screen that says this. "Commander shepard has becoem a legend by defeating the reaper threat. Now you can continue to build that legend through further gameplay and downloadable content."

So yes it is enough to ruin the series for hardcore fans. It is ENTIRELY different than the book or movie analogies people keep giving, or the art ones. A lot of the people who dont get this backlash from the fans probably didn't play the first ME game. Thats the trend I have been seeing at least.

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aaronisbla
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 3:33:48 PM

The ending wasn't planned out due to that screen at the end. They have always done this so those who purchased dlc at a later date, From Ashes or any future dlc, can go ahead and play it without starting a new record. They did this on ME2, and on Dragon Age

It also allows you to finish any sidequests that are currently still available at the time, since it starts you back before the last Cerberus mission. The ending may not have been good, but lets not look too far into something as normal as a 'continue to play if you want' screen...

Last edited by aaronisbla on 3/22/2012 3:36:21 PM

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xenris
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 10:57:06 PM

Oh its not that screen that makes me think they planned a DLC ending. Its the terrible dream like ending with nonsense writing, that goes against everything all previous games have developed lore wise.

Its obvious that either the indoctrination theory is true, and that we will have to buy DLC to see how the game really ends. Or the ending was the worst planned out ending in any game ever and has some of the worst writing in any medium.

Sounds bold sure, but do some research on the ending, tons of people have dissected it and it is factually just plain terrible writing, and on top makes no sense within the context of the game and the first 2 games in the trilogy.

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aaronisbla
Friday, March 23, 2012 @ 4:57:40 AM

the ending totally makes the indoctrination theory a viable story arc, but the ending could have been written and done much better.

I dont understand it, Bioware went thru great lengths to not repeat the same mistakes some thought two made, as far as the action and hell, even the story goes. The addition of less characters made for a tighter narrative, and it had better pacing.

Some plot holes from 2 that people had gripes with were even somewhat settled, like they explain why cerberus appeared to be a nicer organization to you in me2 than they really are. But then they murk it all up with ten minutes of the ending....baffling

I began thinking indoctrination after the events on arrival, but i did't expect such a vague ending

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xenris
Friday, March 23, 2012 @ 9:54:07 AM

Exactly, thats kind of my point with all of this. Either its the indoctrination theory which the more you look at the story the more it seems highly likely, or its the worst writing bioware has ever done >.<

I hope its the indoctrination theory, but I would still have some gripes as, that would still mean that we got no closure and they perhaps planned to sell us the real ending as DLC.

Like I said earlier and in other ME3 articles on this board, the devs have been quoted saying that the ending would bring full closure, and there would be no speculation. You wouldn't be able to count the number of endings etc. Then we get an ABC ending that is completely ripped out of Deus Ex, almost word for word.

But yeah we will just have to wait till april and see what Biowares move is with this ending thing. I'm intrigued to say the least :P

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Deano34249
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:40:36 PM
Reply

Indoctrination Theory anyone??
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ythY_GkEBck

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aaronisbla
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 3:31:16 PM

its probably the only way the ending makes any since, ever since Arrival, i thought shepard was gonna go down this route. Too much evidence supports this theory

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 10:41:27 PM
Reply

I prefer the way A Clockwork Orange ended in the film versus the book.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 11:11:31 PM

Ugh.....I can't STAND Kubrick.

I know, I know...let the flaming begin. ;)

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Jawknee
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 11:18:00 PM

Neither can I. :)

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 11:35:43 PM

That's the only work I found to contain a useful exploration of an important question about mankind. I only mentioned it as a classic like the ME franchise was destined to be before this particular explosion of rage.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 12:06:21 AM

Sorry World, but the Russian authors were doing that long before Kubrick. War and Peace comes to mind. ;)

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Qubex
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 12:32:44 AM

Sorry guys, but I have great respect for Kubrick's work...

Q!

"play.experience.enjoy"

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 3:33:20 AM

I never got into Russian lit so I can't say when the whole "programmable man" idea was best characterized.

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goldentinny
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 9:48:33 PM

Frankenstein dealt with all of those issues, and extremely well, in 1818. I could read that book forever.

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maxpontiac
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 11:02:03 PM
Reply

A reviewer that doesn't finish the game? Shocker! / sarcasm

You can always tell when a reviewer doesn't spend the necessary time on a software title.

It's why a professional system needs to be established in order to force the required time needed for some titles.

Don't have time? Don't review it. Simple.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Wednesday, March 21, 2012 @ 11:36:51 PM

That doesn't make a lot of sense.

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maxpontiac
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 8:36:55 AM

Think about. If there was a reviewer entity that goverened websites and its writers, it would eliminate several problems.

1 - As with any professional group, you get professionals who are serious on the job. These people are not accountable to the publishers and developers, they are accountable to the entity they represent.

2 - Having a professional group brings instant recognition and peace of mind. A reviewer who is part of this entity is serious about his trade. No longer will his reviews only affect the studios and cost employment of others but the reviewers neck will be on the line. Reviews can hurt people with little or no fallout on the author.

3 - Credibility. Any reviewer who is in fact a part of this professional collection will instantly separate themselves from the rest of the pack. This would bring the industry into a more serious and positive light.

Hope this helps.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 1:50:30 PM

But if you can't review it without playing all of it this site would go under in two seconds.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 5:26:47 PM

Either that, or we'd have to find another way to stay interesting. But no matter what, we'd certainly lose a lot of respectability. All major sites are supposed to have reviews...fast.

It's deadly if you don't deliver, but it's ALMOST as deadly to kill yourself doing it. ;)

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 3/22/2012 5:27:12 PM

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Spanky
Sunday, March 25, 2012 @ 3:11:54 PM

I agree to a point...I am on my third playthrough of Assasin's Creed Revelations and my review would have changed after the ending and with each subsequent playthrough. It would've been a solid 9 before finishing but because of the ending, and the control issues that have cause me to de-sync, or lose 100% so many many times I can't even begin to count. The controls on this game are hovering around 5.5 for me about now. It's a shame the game could've been SO good. They should've took some notes form the control in the Batman games. I never once died in that game due to poor control.

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JDC80
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 12:07:57 AM
Reply

I just finished my second go through with Mass Effect 2 and only lost two people Legion and Miranda. But I'm still going to play through Mass Effect 3 and if I have time I just do the whole damn thing over again because I did save before starting the last mission. Ninja Gaiden 3 came in today.

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Ariakon
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 12:57:22 AM
Reply

I think it's unfair to paint everyone who is dissatisfied with the ending as entitled or spoiled. My problems with the ending came mainly from the fact that it seemed like a literal Deus Ex Machina, in which the plotlines and threads that had enthralled me for 3 games were nearly discarded and replaced with something that may have worked in another setting, but for the Mass Effect universe, were jarring and misplaced. I wouldn't have minded a dark ending, and thought from the beginning that the main characters would most likely meet grim fates, but the ending provided left me cold and dampened my enthusiasm for the game as a whole. I do believe it is fair to dock the score for the game somewhat, if only because the story is what elevated it above the fun-but-dumb games like Gears of War or Killzone. Now, does that mean I want Bioware to change the ending? No, but I also feel that I should be able to voice my legitimate concerns about the storyline without being branded as spoiled or a whiner.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 1:01:06 AM

...and this has what to do with the article?

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telly
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 1:39:43 PM

For what it's worth, I think complaints are totally fine. I mean, the whole point of video game message boards, forums, etc. is to share your feelings on video games, right? It's those who call for a re-write that drive me up the wall.

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Ariakon
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 1:10:02 AM
Reply

Sorry about the wall of text, I was just responding to some of the earlier comments. I did state in there that I think it would be fair to grade the game lower because, for certain gamers like myself, the storyline was the series's greatest strength. I was trying to explain that the ending did actually affect my enjoyment of the game, so if I were to review it, I would factor that into the score. It went from a near ten for me to a 9 or an 8.5, because the ending did affect my overall opinion of the game as a whole. Sorry if I meandered too much in that first post.

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bigrailer19
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 1:29:23 AM
Reply

Well it's bed time n I just got done taking a final for my statics class so forgive me of typos and such.

But although I'm burnt out on the subject, I would like to chime in on reviewers finishing games. I used to believe that a review should be done after the game was completed. I realize with time constraints it's tough to make that happen. So hire me! Just kidding. Hire Worldendswithme! Anyways in regards to ME3 the story has been good so far, it really has. I havnt finished it but even if I had and the endings are bad. The scrore I would give it wouldn't change, considering all the other parts of a game you must take into account. The game or rather the ending could be some sort of let down for the player at the end, but I don't think something like that should scew the score. Anything personal shouldn't affect it.

I need to just finish the game so I can really see what's going on!

Last edited by bigrailer19 on 3/22/2012 1:30:15 AM

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Ariakon
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 1:31:46 AM
Reply

To be fair, the first twenty-five to thirty hours of the game are fantastic, so the review scores aren't wildly overstating the game's strengths. Some did get a little hyperbolic, though, and it hurts a little to see that I didn't enjoy the game as much as they did.

Last edited by Ariakon on 3/22/2012 1:47:57 AM

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unapersson
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 2:19:10 AM
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The problem is that reviews are now a part of the business of video games and that business wants a big successful launch with the majority of sales being on day one. The goal seems to be to jump to the top of the charts in week one, even if that means a plummet in week two.

Maybe it's the rush to finish a game and release it immediately leaves a lot less of a window for reviewers to do their job. So they no longer get sight of them earlier enough. Magazine reviews could potentially come after the game was on the shelves, but the internet just makes things a lot more immediate.

Slow burners are tucked away and not given shelf space. Older/cheaper titles are competition for new ones. A game that is not an immediate success is considered a flop. It's not the boutique style hobby it used to be and this is part of the price we pay for its popularity.

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berserk
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 2:36:51 AM
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Man , if you guys are tired of reading news about me 3 ending simply don t read them .

It s one of the biggest gaming related stuff that people are talking about , of course he will talk more about this then anything else .

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FxTales
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 2:56:51 AM
Reply

My question is when reviewers finished the game did they not notice they gaping plot holes and inconsistencies?

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 3:34:08 AM

If they paid attention to the story I'd hope so, if they just shut off mentally until there was action then no.

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Vivi_Gamer
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 3:16:59 AM
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I find this amazing, people let Mass Effect 2 slide onto the PS3 without any chance of playing the first ME on the console, yet they complain at the ending of ME3... Priorities!

As for the matter at hand, I think this reaction is a sad era for the industry, I'm all for the fans having a say but bullying EA into changing the ending because the fans whinned about it, come on! That's out of line.

On reviewing games, Well I'm not a reviewer, so I don't think it's my place to say but I would have thoguht it would make sense to compose a review after they've at least completed the story. However, I can understand how time consuming it would be to do so and I do enjoy reading reviews upon this website so I think generally you can bypass it with a good 5-10 hour session.

Last edited by Vivi_Gamer on 3/22/2012 3:20:55 AM

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aaronisbla
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 3:13:31 PM

dude.....let it go about not being able to play the first game on ps3. you're beating a dead horse already. The majority of the people who are complaining about the game are from all consoles, and since it sold more on the 360, the majority of those are coming from them

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___________
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 4:17:32 AM
Reply

its obvious it would of not got as high a score if reviewers finished the game, simply because the WHOLE premise of this was making players suffer from the decisions they made in ME1,2,3.
which it does not do!
but that said i think this has benefited from allot of reviewers not being so emotionally attached to the series as fans are.
if you were to compare gamers that love the games to journalists that do id wager journalists would be outnumbered at least 2 to 1.
just seems to be one of those games that allot of gamers love but allot of journalists dont see it.
and thats probably got to be with the fact that there not investing the time into it.
to really fall in love with the series you need to put allot of time and effort into it.
something reviews just dont have.


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Gamer Girl Gemo
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 4:49:02 AM
Reply

Honestly, the review scores need to stay the way they are. The endings may have not been the smartest way to end a story, but overall, this game was magnificent and beautiful, down to the very T. Although I'm part of that group of fans disappointed with the endings, I would never give this game a lower score because of its endings. It doesn't deserve that. This is one of the few games that I've been so emotionally invested into, that I felt every character's loss, whether minimal or vital, hit me in the very bottom of my heart. I can't count just how many times I was so heavily involved into this game's world, that I nearly forgot that it really was fictional.

So, I don't believe that a ten to fifteen minute scene should break a game that's utterly flawless otherwise. Sure, it was a really bad call on the writing department and could have used a little more tying up, since it is the third and final game... But the journey and all the events that led up to it just barely make up for it, in my opinion. I'm very glad, however, that Bioware finally addressed the whole ending situation and are going to be doing something about it. That's definitely earned a little more respect points from me that they are addressing this issue instead of ignoring it.

Even through all of this, and even if they didn't change the endings or even address them, I would still support Bioware with all my heart. I didn't abandon them through DA2's poor performance, and I won't abandon them because of a lousy ending in ME3. Some fans I can't say the same for, but they'd just be missing out on a really great developer with so much more potential left in their team.

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Douchebaguette
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 6:32:28 AM
Reply

Attention:

I notice the previous articles of ME3 included Levine's opinion on how their game would be spoiled if they were forced to make a new ending from the fans.

Well, he should have this shoved in this face; from the original creator of the Mass Effect series:

http://www.strategyinformer.com/news/17086/mass-effect-writer-drew-karpyshyn-reveals-original-mass-effect-3-endings

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karneli lll
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 8:31:08 AM
Reply

And the plot gets thicker

http://www.gameranx.com/updates/id/5695/article/mass-effect-3-writer-allegedly-slams-controversial-ending/

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DemonNeno
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 8:52:32 AM
Reply

I can't say for certain what all this messy fuss is about. Perhaps it's legit and I'm willing to entertain that view. However, DEMANDING a new ending? Isn't that a bit much? It's like picketing Woody Allen's place because you didn't like his film's ending...

I've played plenty of games with mediocre endings. Despite this, I still enjoyed the fame and didn't find it preventing me to replay. I know I sound crazy, but I'll always play games for their game play rather than it's ending.

For the record, this ruckus is far more entertaining than all the Whitney Houston crap I've been subjected to recently.

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JackC8
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 8:52:51 AM
Reply

If the story of a game qualifies as "art", like a novel or movie, then obviously you can't write a proper review without finishing it. To do so is to admit that you're reviewing a product.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 10:12:34 AM

Yeah. That makes perfect sense. Because everyone knows when someone is "finished" viewing a painting so they can offer a judgment.

'rolling eyes'

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Underdog15
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 11:32:03 AM

Not true. People regularly review books without reading to the end. That's more than common, and the time commitment is often at least a little similar. Movies are an easy 2 hour commitment. Paintings aren't really comparable since the amount of time needed to full study it is completely subjective. For example, the Mona Lisa has entire courses devoted to it's study. Much of Picasso's work does as well.

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D1g1tal5torm
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 9:57:01 AM
Reply

Trouble is...With RPGish games, story is a pretty key element.

If the ending is as bad as all say it is, thenit should have an effect on a mark in that category (of reviewer have one that encapsulates it).

So in reality, it probably would of received slightly lower marks if they had played it thru.

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SaiyanSempai
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 12:59:32 PM
Reply

@ WorldEndsWithMe

Hey World, usually I agree with a lot of what you say, as I think our viewpoints are very similar. But I definitely want to respond to your response to PC_Max about the bugs in Skyrim.

I heard a lot about the debilitating issues with the game and the patches needed for the patches. Like PC_Max, I also wondered how that game got such good reviews in light of all the issues.

To me, its all about intent. The developer intended to make an ambitious game. Hopefully a good one. But I don't think they don't deserve a pass on ambition alone. For me, I think a LESS ambitious game that's coded perfectly is more deserving than a buggy ambitious one.

Just my 2 cents...

And I just don't know what to say about this Bioware mess. Aside from the fans going a little overboard with the ending. OK, it was a crappy ending. Unfortunately it happens. Take the disappointing game out of your console/PC and put in the next game. There is just too much energy going into this.

I still trust game reviews....mostly. Depends on the reviewer...

Last edited by SaiyanSempai on 3/22/2012 1:02:40 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 1:52:00 PM

I don't think we disagree actually, I don't think ambition alone can overcome bugs, but there are things that rebalance the scale.

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Excelsior1
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 4:12:10 PM

No way the PS3 version of Skyrim desirved the scores it got for the way it shipped on the PS3. Bethesda REFUSED to send the PS3 version for review. Hello? That is so damn increminating in itself it's pathetic. Still infuriates me to this day PS sites reviewed the 360 verion which was ofcourse the best version.

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matt99
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 1:26:55 PM
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Even film reviewers don't always finish a movie before reviewing it (Roger Ebert says he watches a minimum 45 minutes) so it's no surprise that game reviewers can't always do it considering games are over 5 times longer than movies. And honestly I have never watched a movie, read a book, or played a game that has had a drastic change in quality from the first half to the second. I've had some that disappoint me, but not enough that I would score it differently in a review.

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Excelsior1
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 4:04:13 PM
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On an epic series like Mass Effect that was coming to its grand finale it would have been nice if reviewers you know actually completed the game. Talk about laziness. You can switch it narrative mode and bang that game out in a few days. Wah, I don't have time to finish the game but that's okay free pass. It's called taking pride in your work. Finishing every medicore game out there might not be required but a game with a loyal fanbase like this deserved to be played all the way through. I can think of very few jobs that let people get by half-assing it. In most fields that would leave one unemployed pretty quickly.

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SaiyanSempai
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 4:34:20 PM
Reply

@ World,
True. If a game has 10 things going for it and 1 is messed up, then yeah, that's a pretty good ratio. As opposed to a game that only has 3 things going for it and 1 is messed up...

Still, some of those bugs I read about were really bad. And yeah Exelsior, you jogged my memory - I remember reading that Bethesda didn't ship the PS3 version for review. Pretty dirty trick on Bethesda's part.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 5:29:38 PM
Reply

A note about Skyrim-

The problem with scoring the PS3 version is that the major issue with that version did NOT appear until you've played for a good long time. I believe it was like a minimum of 35 or 40 hours.

As some people know, I used the 360 version for the review on this site (and I told everyone when I did, just to clarify). However, even if I had received the PS3 version for review, the score would've been no different. Why? Because I'm sorry, there's just no way I could've played that long before people started looking for the review. Plus, I wouldn't have needed 35 or 40 hours to figure out the score. No critic would've needed that much time.

The Skyrim PS3 thing was definitely an anomaly. It's not something you see very often, that's for damn sure. And I don't mean generally - Bethesda's games always seem to be buggy on Sony's machine - I'm just referring to the very specific nature of this one big problem.

Last edited by Ben Dutka PSXE on 3/22/2012 5:30:14 PM

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karneli lll
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 6:46:29 PM

To be honest, reviewing a 360 game and assuming all is well with the ps3 version is just wrong. Its like all you cared about was putting out a review. Totally sad

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Excelsior1
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 6:48:09 PM

No business reviewing the superior 360 version on a PS site when you knew Bethesda was hiding the PS3 version from reviewers. End of story. That game was nowhere as good as 360 version when it shipped whether it was the damn crashes or longplay. I completely agree it is wrong to review a 360 game and assume the PS3 version is just as good. Now everyone knows Bethesda's games run buggy on Sony's systems....Exactly. That's why it deserved more scrutunity. Not less. Fallout 3 runs like crap on the PS3. The majority of gamers know there are sections of that game that are damn near unplayable on the PS3 to this very day. Broken Steel, anyone? I bet you between Skryim and Fallout 3 I have hard reset my PS3 50 times. After 100hrs of hours of play. Fire up Fallout 3 on the 360...runs like a champ. I have tried a new hard drive....Now Skyrim is a lot better now but it is inexcusable it shipped the way it did on the PS3....let alone counting the 360 version for the review. Pathetic in my book. Still irks me that was done when the entire gaming community knew Bethesda swept that crap under the rug and reviewers just smiled....that's okay. Next time that happens Ben I'
ll buy you the PS3 version for you so readers can actually you know read a review of the PS3 version which was impossible to find on the damn internet. Why? Becuase that's exactly what Bethesda wanted. To shape the reviews in their favor and because of either lazy or cheap reviewers they got away with it.

Last edited by Excelsior1 on 3/22/2012 7:17:00 PM

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Underdog15
Friday, March 23, 2012 @ 9:16:12 AM

"It's like all you cared about was putting out a review"

That's all I cared about too. This far into a generation, a multi-platform release should be identical from one platform to the next.

I appreciate getting reviews in a timely manner no matter the version. Especially with a one man wrecking crew.

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D1g1tal5torm
Friday, March 23, 2012 @ 4:33:53 PM

Sorry dog but so wrong.

I would've been pissed if a 360 bayonetta review had been done as if the ps3 version for the sake of a speedy review.

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Crabba
Thursday, March 22, 2012 @ 10:53:42 PM
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Well, I don't care so much about the ending (have still to play the game) as I do with the day-one DLC garbage and that a lot of people are complaining that ME3 is even more of an action game and less of an RPG than ME2 was, which in turn was much less of an RPG compared to the original Mass Effect...

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SS4
Sunday, March 25, 2012 @ 4:11:42 PM
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Score shouldnt be affected by endings...thats stupid. I remember on the NES were ending was a Congratulation screen and the Atari games that never ended...weve come a long way... and NO ending should not affect the score imo.

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HazySun
Tuesday, March 27, 2012 @ 7:49:55 AM
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Since there is usually a minimum of between 3-4 weeks between the time a game goes gold & is in stores for us to buy I would have thought the obvious solution would be to get the game out to review sites as soon as its gold giving reviewers more than enough time to finish the game before giving their final score. I would agree that a good reviewer can usually gauge a game with just a few hours of play time however there is always the possibility of a real turd slipping through because it wasn't played long enough before being reviewed.

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