Watch Me Make Endings Better (Spoilers)

Frequent show contributor and At the Buzzer movie review Gary Sundt and I are working on a few scripts to break our way into Hollywood (admittedly, Gary is doing a better job than I). I need this to happen, because right now I feel like I’m the only person on the planet who knows how to write a good ending.

Good endings aren’t hard. All you need to do is find the right blend of the ENDING TRIFECTA (patented by me). The ending trifecta is composed of resolution, satisfaction, and artistic closure. Like the perfect recipe, you need a little of each to really have a great ending. If you resolve everything by explaining what happens to every character, but the resolution is that every character is killed in a horrible fashion, this satisfies the resolution and artistic closure of your ending, but offers no fan satisfaction (unless the fans hated your characters). Likewise, if you attempt to satisfy your fans by offering a cookie cutter happy ending, you might sacrifice true character and event resolution, as well as the final exploration of your artistic themes.

It’s a tough balance. Except it’s not. Watch me cover some universally maligned endings and demonstrate how they easily could have been made better. Continue reading “Watch Me Make Endings Better (Spoilers)”

In Further Defense of the Ending of Mass Effect 3

That’s right, another post about Mass Effect 3. I promise it will be my last one. Probably.

Yesterday, it was announced that Bioware would be releasing their answer to the fan outcry due to Mass Effect 3’s much maligned ending. This answer is the form of an extended cut DLC package that will offer additional cinematic and epilogue scenes. Some fans will still be disappointed because, unless some miracle happens, the additional scenes will expand off of the controversial ending that came blindsided players out of nowhere and will surely ignore the “indoctrination theory” that most fans (including myself) were hoping for most. Continue reading “In Further Defense of the Ending of Mass Effect 3”

Happy Urf Day Everyone!

As I’m sure many of you are aware, today is the ever so wonderful “holiday” of April Fools! So while I’d love to write a wonderfully long-winded blog about something serious or whatever, the fact of the matter is that someone will probably think it’s a joke. So I won’t be doing that today. Plus, all the guys are home today, which means we all get to play some Tales of Graces F and eat some burgers. So there is that too.

Instead, I’ll sum up some of my favorite video game related April Fools pranks that have popped up today…

First up! Blizzard Entertainment. Makers of World of Warcraft and Starcraft… Continue reading “Happy Urf Day Everyone!”

Legal action against Mass Effect 3 ending?

**I’m sure everyone has heard their fair share about Mass Effect 3 this month, and while I’d love to move on to better things I felt this particular piece of news warranted a discussion. Hopefully you’ll agree. Obviously, since this topic deals with the ending of the game, this article contains spoilers.**

Yep, you read that right. It would appear that someone (a Bioware forumite by the name of “El_Spiko”) is actually bringing a case to the Federal Trade Commission claiming that the ending of Mass Effect 3 isn’t just bad, but full out false advertising. Of course the idea of bringing a video game to the Federal Trade Commission over it’s ending is pretty ridiculous. I mean, people don’t exactly press charge every time they go and see a horrible movie (if you could, I’m sure Gary would have by now). But then again El_Spiko isn’t bringing up the claim because of his dislike of the ending, but because he feels the game’s ending (and therefore the product as a whole) was advertised to him and fellow consumer’s falsely. The question is, is he right?

I’d argue that he is. And here’s why… Continue reading “Legal action against Mass Effect 3 ending?”

In Defense of the Ending of Mass Effect 3 (Spoilers)

It’s almost a complete consensus: the ending to Mass Effect 3 was a disappointment. No resolution. No meaningful buildup. No closure. By all accounts, a failure on every front. However, after pondering a little more and thinking a little deeper, my question is: is it a bad ending? Or is it potentially the most epically epic ending ever?

Don’t get me wrong; as it stands, it’s a pretty subpar ending. It’s full of inexplicable plotholes. It ends a series built on dynamic choices by shoving three rigid choices down the players throat that have nothing to do with the thousands of preceeding choices to that point. It spends no more than seconds explaining what happens to the characters we have invested hours cultivating meaningful relationships with and getting to know.

So, yeah; by all qualifications, this ending is pretty mediocre, and I can agree with that. Fans aren’t even clamoring for a happier ending, necessarily, just one that doesn’t directly contradict the freedom and tone the entire series spent establishing. That’s like changing the ending of Harry Potter 7 to a black-and-white noir thematic style, where Harry removes his glasses in dramatic fashion and rips the head off Voldemort. Cool, maybe, but it defies everything the series stood for.

How can this ending be anything but a failure? Only if there are events going on that are a little deeper than how they first appeared.


Continue reading “In Defense of the Ending of Mass Effect 3 (Spoilers)”