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Troy Bruno
Troy Bruno

Mass Effect 3 Ending Theoryl


However, according to Hepler, "we never had the sort of meetings you'd need to have to properly seed it through the game. We weren't that smart." This quote suggests that either the writing team simply didn't have time to implement a lot of their initial ideas, or there was a massive disconnect between what the writers had in mind for the ending versus how much the player would value the choices they've made throughout the entire Mass Effect saga.




Mass Effect 3 Ending Theoryl



Mass effect 3 ended in a very unorthodox fashion. Plot holes, no final boss fight, anti-climactic, nonsensical; you name it. Regardless, some hated it, some loved it. The group of people in the latter category most likely believe in the Indoctrination Theory (IT). Simply put, the It postulates that the ending sequence (after Harbinger attacks Shepard) is merely a figment of Shepard's mind, and this is where the remainder of the game takes place.


The indoctrination theory had some pretty interesting ideas. Though a few points were a massive stretch. Now that people have hindsight of the extended ending, they a prepared to label the whole thing as dumb. Personally I think some of the theorists were pretty clever in piecing together the theory, despite it being ultimately false.


Yeah i will have to agree on this! Why insult people for having a theory, crazy or clever. Mass effect 3 ending was very open and unsatisfying to many so i'm not surprised people made theories or their own endings.


I did feel like DA2 did the dialogue wheel better than mass effect, just by virtue of having those icons to indicate how you would say the line, I never found myself saying something completely different from what I had intended hawke to say. Also the friendship rivalry meter worked better for me than the approval meter in Origins.


This is definently why I like going to your blog here. Excellent write up as usual.I definently like the indoctrination theory. But I will through out that if this is actually what the ending signifies, then they couldn't have ended it anywhere else. You make the argument that they should have been more clear, but to make the ending significant they really couldn't have.The problem is in this day and age there is the internet. If, as you posit only one of the three choices, destroying the reapers, gets you past the indoctrination, the other two options become meaningless. People will find out that you have to destroy the reapers to beat the indoctrination, and to then continue your fight with shepard, otherwise, presumably you die, or you stay under the influence of indoctrination. Eitherway, only one of the three choices would allow you to continue on to the "true ending" that we seem to be desiring. So yeah, if the indoctrination ending is canon, then they couldn't have explained it. The point of indoctrination is that you don't realize it is going on. If you as the player realized it was giong on, it would ruin the effect. And I think this emotional effect is what they wanted all along.So in conclusion, I do hope they eventually release a better ending in the form of a DLC. And it is right that they do so. As that ending couldn't have been present in the game as is, and still have the same effect. But I do hope they are able to clear up a lot of the other plot holes later.


This is a really well-written assessment of a lot of the issues with ME3's ending. Well done.I always had the same problem with and idea about Indoctrination Theory as you mentioned here. In the Final Hours app, I believe it's mentioned that the developers scrapped some mechanices for a possible Indoctrination scene as being 'too complex' to pull off with their time constraints, so I completely believe that Indoctrination was the route they were headed down before they ran out of time and hastily put together something else.As for the issues with the Catalyst and the plot of ME1 - when you're watching/reading something that's well written and you have a question, investigating that question will usually lead you to some tidbit of info you missed or forgot about, and you'll go 'ohhh, right, okay' and move on. When you're watching/reading something that's not-so-well written and you have a question, you'll find yourself fumbling around to cobble together any number of possible explanations based on what you know. Forgiveable when it's just a subplot or something small and unimportant. Horrendous when it's a plothole that tears into the major culmination of two parts of a trilogy.Stuff like that leads me to believe that the ending was really rushed. Especially with the virtually-identical-no-matter-what-you-choose ending sequences, and the number of plotholes that could have been solved just by adding in a few more lines of dialogue.Like how in ME2: The Arrival we find out that destroying a mass relay effectively destroys the solar system it's in. Yet when the Catalyst tells Shepard that using the Crucible will destroy all the mass relays, he doesn't so much as ask whether or not that will toast the universe. It's not like the Catalyst is a figure we can place a lot of faith in - he throws around illogical arguments left and right and professes to control our most heinous enemies. I realize Shepard's pretty beat up, but taking two seconds to wonder whether or not we're on the fast-track to complete annihilation for EVERYONE, not just the space-faring races, would have been nice.Which brings me to another huge problem I had with the ending - why, exactly, are we taking the Catalyst's statements at face value? I realize it looks like a kid, but it just admitted to creating the Reapers. The REAPERS. The beings that don't just commit routine mass genocide, but do it in quite possibly the most cruel and malevolent way possible (see: needlessly melting people alive). I once saw someone rebut this argument with 'why does Shepard take ANYONE's claims at face value?' which is a ridiculous argument, since there are several very, very, VERY good reasons to assume that the Catalyst might not be 100% honest. Heck, even if you think he's telling the truth, there are decent odds that he's just plain wrong (see: everything that comes out of his mouth).As I understand it, the original ending envisioned for the series basically boiled down to choosing whether to sacrifice humanity to bolster the Reapers forces in order to stop another, even bigger threat, or destroying the Reapers once and for all at the risk of losing the rest of the galaxy to said bigger threat. That's probably why the current ending doesn't line up thematically with the rest of the series - they WERE going for a unity, faith, selfishness, selflessness, cooperation, pessimism vs optimism, self preservation vs greater good type of complex dilemma, hence the constant discussions of humanity's individual value as a species versus the importance of the galactic community as a whole. They just ditched it in favour of the synthetic/organic theme, which probably would have been valid at the end of ME1, but definitely fell into the same side-plot category as the genophage and such by ME3.Very disappointing, all in all.


I think when faced with those three (a. b. c.) options, you just want to chose d. and do what you set out to do and kill the reapers and save everyone.However, we did get that "We saved everyone" ending in ME2Here's just a couple things that Synthesis ending means (as I imagine it's intended as the optimal ending).1. Civilization will now develop along it's own path (not according to the path chosen for it by the mass relay tech)2. The Reaper solution, (which represented an imperfect synthesis of organic and synthetic life) is replaced in an elegant way that as a bonus, preserves the current galactic civilizations. 2b. The distinction of Organic and Synthetic is removed so Organics will not be dominated and destroyed by synthetics****** I don't believe this is a logical fallacy (replacing one threat with another) because the Reapers purpose was to maintain organic life in the galaxy. The "catalyst" believed that inevitably, synthetics like geth would destroy all organic life (not just advanced civilization). Also, it is of note that although the invasion meant many would die, the reapers returned to "harvest" and incorporate organic life in their own creation and not simply kill everyone.Of course that's not the ending I would come up with. My ending would be that the catalyst was a stargate and Jack Oneill and SG1 come through and save the day.


Player agency wasn't taken away. Those who think the destroy ending makes your choices irrelevant. If you convince the Starchild to let the geth live, not destroy the mass relay network so that it doesn't strand everyone in the Sol system, and have Shepard live or die, then you get a happy ending. That's what people want. They're mad because they didn't get a happy ending. They just think because the Starchild says about the geth dying, and the mass relays being destroyed actually believe the kid to be true. They don't think maybe this thing is lying to save its own skin. Of course, people say, well, they don't literally tell you the kid is lying, so everything he says must be true. Well, it's a Reaper, so it also said Shepard would die, but if your EMS is high enough you come out unscathed. So isn't that an indicator that the kid is lying? The Reapers also have the ability to control people's minds, so who knows if what you see at the end is actually real, but these people actually want the game to bash them over the head and tell them it isn't real.


In Mass Effect 3's original ending, players are given three possible options to deal with the Reaper threat. The first choice is to Destroy the Reapers and all synthetic life in the galaxy (this includes the Geth and EDI). Depending on the player's Effective Military Strategy (EMS), Mass Effect's mass relays, which connect the entire galaxy, are either heavily damaged or destroyed completely. The second choice is to Control the Reapers, with Shepard sacrificing their body to become the new dominant mind in the Reaper systems. The Reapers are then put to work repairing the galaxy and defending the masses. Depending on whether the player took a Paragon or Renegade route, how Shepard "protects the many" shifts accordingly. The third choice in Mass Effect 3's original ending is to Synthesize with the Reapers, leading Shepard to leap into the Citadel's energy beam which absorbs their body instantly. Life in the galaxy is transformed into a hybrid of synthetic and organic life, leading to an interconnected reconstruction of the galaxy and its societies. Should the player fail to make a choice or attack the Catalyst, the Reapers claim victory and destroy civilization. 350c69d7ab


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