My name is Jared Whittaker, one of the hosts and Audio Chewbacca of the Super-Fly Podcast and PCW! Welcome to Game Changer, a weekly burning missive about all aspects of video gaming with a little bit of opinion thrown in for fun. Proceed with caution and tread lightly, gentle gamers. It’s going to be good time. Like the first time you saw Super Mario 3 good time.
**Author note – The original version of the article published was a draft copy of the article that had grammatical errors. An updated version has been published. Thank you for letting me know about the issue. JW**
To whom it may concern,
How are you? Are you well? I hope that things are going well for you. It’s getting warm here in Yellow Springs where I live. We didn’t have a winter hardly at all, so I’m not looking forward to turning on my air conditioner anytime soon. Well, I hope that it’s steady weather where ever you you are.
So, the reason why I’m writing to you all is because of some interesting news I heard recently. A few weeks ago, Mass Effect 3 was released and the entire internet seemed to rejoice at the release of the game. Many people I know were very, very excited about the game. I, personally, am fairly indifferent about the game. I played Mass Effect 2 on my Playstation 3 and didn’t enjoy playing it at all. I found it slow and not as great as reviewers and fans of the series seemed to think it was, but everyone else seemed to be having a good time playing, so I didn’t pay it much mind. I’ve been playing Modern Warfare 2 multiplayer again and Skyrim, two of my favorite games that I haven’t spent enough time with.
So it really hit me funny to hear rumblings about people being upset about the ending of the game. Sure, sometimes the ending of some games really aren’t up to expectations. Borderlands comes to mind. After a pretty epic final boss battle, the ending fell flat. Totally flat. It happens. It didn’t really bother me. I just started playing the game over again. But you all seem to be very upset about it. But again, you can get emotionally involved with media if it’s well written and deeply engaging. Bioware is pretty good at storytelling in games. But when I read that people were actually online petitioning for Bioware to change the ending and that they are actually considering redoing it, I had to say something.
Mass Effect fans. I’m going to ask you to do one thing for me: GROW THE F*CK UP!
Really people? Really? THIS is what it’s come to? A game that’s already been called “Game of the Year” and the “Greatest Game in the History of Gaming”, a game that has literally only gotten the best of reviews from every media outlet I’ve read, INCLUDING the ending and all so called fans can do is bitch and complain about the ending of the game? Weren’t you all the same people screaming “Game of the Year” MONTHS before the game came out? Isn’t this the greatest game ever? What’s the problem? All of a sudden, you have no faith in Bioware because of the way they choose to end the Commander Shepherd story? I have to be completely honest with you, this makes all you Mass Effect fans seem like petty children. Kicking, screaming and crying when your game didn’t end the way you wanted. Grow up. You’re all seemingly adults, right? Start acting like it.
The biggest problem I have with all this is that, let’s say that Bioware caves to the mounting pressure from it’s “fan” base, and changes the ending to placate you. This throws the whole entertainment industry on it’s ear. Using this case as a precedent, any large, fanatical fan base could kick up enough internet dust that no one could be safe from the general public. The artistic freedom that game makers, as well as other creative outlets like musicians, artists and others employ to be creative is one of the most freeing feelings in the world. Looking at a finished product that you made is indescribable. And you want to just be able to say, “Oh I didn’t like this ending!! Change it to suit me?!?!?” What next? Online petitions and internet outrage screaming about wanting Dr. Dre to re-release the classic “The Chronic” album, just without all marijuana references?
And while I understand that when you put something artistic out there for public consumption, your art turns into a product, but this is too far. If you don’t like the ending of the game, simply deal with it. Complain to a friend or on the internet, (I hear that’s what it’s for) punch a pillow, play some other games that had that had “greatest ending in the history of ever”. But don’t browbeat a creative project into moving away from their vision of the story THEY were trying to tell in favor of they story YOU wanted them to tell. If you take that away from creative people, all bets are off and media as a whole will be at the mercy of people like you. And, to be quite frank, I don’t trust you to do ANYTHING creative, let alone make decisions in creative outlets that I’M going to be taking part in. Bioware made Jade Empire and Knights of the Old Republic. You made a big stink on Twitter, Facebook and your blogs and cried about how you hated the finish of a trilogy of video games and made gamers in general look like the stereotypical idiot man-children in the process. Thanks for that, jerks.
For the last time, GROW UP PEOPLE!
And a special message to Bioware: stand by the decisions you made when you wrote the script for Mass Effect 3. Don’t let faceless voices on the internet make you change the story YOU wrote and YOU wanted to tell to the world. If you don’t, it frankly could really break the back the entire creative process and ruin video games as well as the creative medium as a whole.
Thank you for allowing me the time and I hope that everyone does the right thing.
This is the ending in question. It goes without saying that spoilers are within the video. I encourage people to watch to see what all the fuss is about.
Jared Whittaker plays a lot of games. Not as much as he’d like, but as much as time and money will allow. If you want to play some games with Jared, you can find him on Playstation 3; PSN tag: JFX. He is also on Steam and Battle.net as JFX316 and while he doesn’t have an Xbox 360, he has the coolest Gamertag in the world: Obiwan Jaborni. Feel free to add him as a friend or email him at JWhittaker@PanelsonPages.com. and on Twitter as JFX316