Mar 16 2012
Much ado has been made about the ending of Mass Effect 3, which is undeniably one of the most disappointing in video game history. Whether it was a sudden draught of creativity, a complete lack of competence or a ploy to sell future DLC, I’m not sure, but in any case, it’s a tragedy.
The real shame in it is that it overshadows everything else that came before it, the other 99.5% of the game that is really damn good. I wish people wouldn’t lose sight of the fact that up until the end, Mass Effect 3 is a phenomenal game, and in my opinion, the best in the series.
I was so enraptured by it, as I played I made a list of my favorite moments from the game that I’d now like to share with you. If you’ve played through it, see if you agree. If not, there are obvious spoilers ahead.
In chronological order:
1. Thane’s Prayer
It was sad enough running into your old friend Thane as he stayed in the hospital suffering through the final stages of Kerpal’s syndrome. The conversation you have with him about how he’s at peace and done fighting is one of my favorite in the game.
But little did I know that his story would get even more heart-wrenching. As the Citadel is attacked (again), he throws himself into the fight despite his illness and ends up taking a sword to the gut to save a council member.
As he lays dying in the hospital, his son asks you to recite a prayer with him which asks for forgiveness and to be at peace. Afterward, he dies, and you turn to his son confused. Why would he make such a prayer, when he died a heroes’ death? The prayer, his son says, he wanted for you. *tear*
2. Thresher Maw vs. Reaper
You won’t find too many action-oriented moments on this list, as what I find most compelling about the game is usually the characters, but there’s no denying how absolutely astonishing this was.
On the Krogan homeworld, options are running out when it comes to getting rid of a Reaper that blocks your path. But you’re informed that you can summon an old enemy to help fight a battle for you. The mother of all Thresher Maws is a sight to behold, and though you’ve killed many of her children, this is her world as well, and she’s going to defend it to the death.
Seeing a giant Maw tackle a Reaper head-on is by far probably the coolest visual moment in the series history, and for a game that is best in its quieter scenes, this is one action sequence that really shined.
3. Mordin’s Seashells
Mordin was one of my favorite characters in Mass Effect 2, and though I didn’t take him on many missions, he was always my favorite person to talk to on the Normandy.
But the quirky comedian had a darker side. His work on the genophage made him responsible for the plight of all Krogans, but he undergoes a change of heart once he sees what it has done to the species.
The entire mission on Tuchunka is all about his redemption. After the Maw defeats the Reaper, he says that he alone must be the one to ascend into the crumbling dispersion tower and distribute the cure. Earlier he said on board your ship that after all this was over, he’d love to find a beach and relax. Before he ascends, he turns to you. “Would have liked to have run tests on the seashells.”
Girlfriend: “Are you crying during a video game?”
Me: *sniff* “No!”
4. Liara’s Time Capsule
Liara and I had a complicated relationship. Though she was my girl of choice in Mass Effect 1, I ditched her in the second game as she seemed changed and lost in her pursuit of the Shadow Broker, and I found Tali to be more worthy of my affections. Coming on board, I had to have the awkward conversation with her where I flat out said, “Let’s be friends.” “Oh, alright,” she said sadly.
But friends we became, and there was a quiet moment I shared with her that really did move me. As we press on toward fighting the Reapers in one last battle, Liara comes to your cabin and says she’s making a time capsule filled with all the galaxy’s history, should we not survive. She wants to know what she should say about you.
If you let her decide for herself, she gives you a glowing character endorsement that extols you as one of the finest people she’s ever met. Even if you’re not together anymore, it’s a touching moment, and it’s amazing to me the game is actually able to manufacture friendship convincingly, not just romantic relationships.
More Unreal Posts