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Submitted on
June 27, 2012


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And so the end creeped upon us. With the Extended Cut behind me I can finally say that I've seen the full extent of how BioWare wanted to end the Mass Effect trilogy... And I disliked it. Don't get me wrong, the Extended Cut is a vast improvement over the vanilla endings and I think that everyone should check it out - but it is still the same unfitting ending, it is still something taken out from another story and sewn onto Mass Effect's glistening skin, with it still kicking and screaming (yes, this is just a personal opinion and no, I am not bitter about that - I just dislike how it ended). The themes that made Mass Effect so great are still either nowhere to be found, or twisted around to present a vision I just cannot accept as something that belongs there. My fanface is itching, my writer sense tingling... Not the way I want to end one of the greatest sci-fi experiences of my nerdy little life.

There will be no extended cuts to the Extended Cut. Either you love the current finale, or you don't - it's as simple as that. And you know what? I'm fine with that. A lot of people seem to feel better after playing the EC, and I'm probably a bit jealous that I do not... But regardless of how you felt about it, regardless of how you feel about the StarChild, the reinterpretation of the Cycle and all the little things that broke this experience in the end for me - you're welcome here. Because our story continues. I will weave it until the very end, our own finale, one that I will find badassfully adequate, thematically fitting, powerful enough to be fondly remembered and undeniably respectful to the characters we've all come to love. "But I carry strength from souls now gone. They won't let me give in..."

I think the word "respectful" needs to be emphasized here. I'm not a hater, I seriously suck at hating - and I generally call for mellowing down the emotions. This is not an effort to put any pressure on BioWare, as it never was - people who follow me on twitter and tried to keep up with some of my comments know that I love BioWare with all my nerdy little heart, that I support them - as I did since the Black Isle years, since my mind was blown by Baldur's Gate, since KOTOR, which was one of my main inspirations to go into the world of game development. As you could have seen in some of the quotes published on our "thank you for one milion views" poster… BioWare has been very supportive of this little series. I can with all certainty say I have made friends within BW ranks, real coolcats, and I'm pretty sure that as this series progresses, we will see even more support. Why? Because it's made out of pure fan love. From caring. Nothing else.

Speaking of which... I've recently heard two contradictory opinions about the future of this series, as discussed by two lovely people that care about Marauder Shields very much - one thought that now, after the EC, our viewership will dwindle as people will just move on. The other one thought it will rise up to the skies, since Indoctrination Theory has officially been laid to rest and people who found hope in it, will look for hope elsewhere. I have no opinion on any of that. All I can say is that whether it's made for a million people or for a few dozens of interested fans, this series will end when it's supposed to end. I will keep making it even if I create it for an audience of myself and one of my dogs (the second one obviously disinterested). But if you can, help me spread it around, keep the beacons burning. With some of the "Retake ME3" communities being dissolved (some for the better, some for the worse), many people not satisfied with the EC and ME's endings in general will be inclined to give up on this fascinating universe. Let's get them on-board. Because with each pair of breathing lungs we're stronger, we're a more viable alternative, we are proving that the Mass Effect experience will live on even if some claim it will not. And if you are one of the people who loved the original endings - at least you'll have something to read and have fun with until the next big DLC hits the virtual shelves. "Death will take those who fight alone... But united we can break a fate once set in stone."

Each and every day I'm incredibly proud of this lil' comic series, and I'm extremely thankful for each of your tweets, comments, pat-on-the-bottoms. Don't go anywhere. Stay, discuss, share your opinions, wear the colors proudly. Together "we'll free the Earth and sky" - or rather enable our favorite characters to do that. And even though some of you may be dead sick of hearing this over and over again... Hold the line. This term means a lot of different things to different people, its meaning ever-changing and warping, but it always meant the same to me - not giving up to resentment and dismissal, holding onto the experience you find dear to you, being the kind of fan that BioWare cherished over the years - the one who's emotionally engaged, the one that wants to be a part of the story. And as for people still talking about us like we're a bunch of whiners? "Just hold the line until the end. Cause we will give them hell..."

I really can't say where all of this is going and whether we will continue on beyond "Marauder Shields" (keeping my fingers crossed) - but I'm proud to be here with you. I will be here, saving the Mass Effect experience for myself, because its something that has given me a lot over the years. I hope you'll be right by my side.

Nihlus lives. The hope is alive. Shepard will return. Our story continues.

"Crush my heart into embers... And I will reignite..."

...I will reignite.…

P.S. Just as a slight spoiler for those of you who don't follow me on twitter: this series will cover the keepers, the Citadel's core and the reason/purpose/logic behind the human Reaper from ME2's finale... Amongst other things. ;)

P.S.2. Also, we'll see the Geth, Rachni and all kicking some Reaper arse. Promise.

P.S.3. Also, here I am, listening to the incredible "Normandy" and "Take It Back" over and over again, thinking about the song that Miracle of Sound will be unveiling tomorrow... and Gavin (Miracle of Sound) just twitted me this: "Your ending is the best one!" I love that guy.

P.S.4. As I'm receiving more and more info that a lot of people in BioWare are having fun reading my lil' series... Welcome. Thank you. I love you.
  • Mood: Caring
  • Listening to: Malukah's awesome *Reignite*
  • Reading: My own *complete* MS scenario
  • Watching: Reapers falling out of the sky
  • Eating: Too much
  • Drinking: Not enough
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I agree 100%.

Also, if the reason for the reaper genocide was stopping organics from making synthetics that would betray them, THEN WHY NOT JUST DESTROY THE ROGUE SYNTHETICS!? Swoop down, save the Quarians from the Geth, and tell them not to make AIs again.......stopping a synthetic revolt by killing their makers is akin to stopping an infection by killing the afflicted, or firebombing a district where there is an outbreak of malaria.

Also, if the synthetic/organic problem was the case, WHY DID THE REAPERS WIPE OUT THE PROTHEANS!? The Protheans had a more humane solution to renegade synthetics, which is WIPING OUT THOSE ROGUE SYNTHETICS. And forcing all organics to conform to their doctrine, which is having them evolve as biotics who can share thoughts with touch, with no need for synthetics. The Protheans solved the problems the Reapers were trying to solve, albeit in a more humane fashion.

Also, if the whole reason for genocide was the inability of synthetics and organics to coexist, WHY DIDN'T THE REAOERS STOP FIGHTING ONCE SHEPARD GOT THE GETH AND QUARIANS TOGETHER IN PEACE!? Shepard just solved the organic/synthetic conflict in the most peaceful way possible with both sides emerging victorious and unscathed. The Reapers should then be asking Separd for advice, not trying to wipe him out.

Defenders of the ending will point to the Catalyst saying how the Reapers were programmed to do what they do and they cannot stop the genocide, because they are not as aware of the war as the organics are, being in a higher plane of vision. But that falls apart if you inspect the actions of Harbinger and Sovereign. Harbinger was able to act with agency in dealing with organics through the Collectors, getting specimens in exchange for advanced technology from pirates and others in the Terminus systems. Sovereign is an even more blatant example: IT ALLIED WITH THE SAME SYNTHETICS THAT IT WAS SUPPOSED TO STOP FROM EXISTING. THE REAPERS EXIST TO STOP ORGANICS FROM CREATING SYNTHETICS THAT WOULD DESTROY THEM, BUT HERE IS ONE REAPER, ALLYING WITH THE VERY SAME THING HE WAS SUPPOSED TO PREVENT! In these actions, the Reapers displayed both independence and awareness of their actions, and the impact their actions have on the galactic community.

All of these reasons destroy the catalyst's logic. And it's supposed to be an AI who is far advanced than the sentiments. Whereareas it's solutions could be outdone by a 5 year old with ADD syndrome.
Keep writing, I just finished it myself (Destroy) and while I thought the whole production was good, I prefer to see where you're going with this instead of choosing any of them again :P
PowerOptix Jul 9, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm late to the party, I know. But I stayed away from everything ME3 extended cut related so I could experience it for myself. Now that I finally have, I feel like adding my voice.

I walked away from the first feeling hurt and betrayed. I went in to the second expecting to be dissappointed. And I was. While still vastly better than edition one, it did not address any of the issues I came out with;

1) The sudden focus on sythentics vs organics as being the central issue of the game in light of the Reapers being revealed as synthetic-organic constructs and ending the war between the Geth and Quarians peacefully.
2) The Illusive Man being forced into the role of Saren v2.
3) Harbinger being built up in the second game to end up an almost non entity in the third.

So you still have me signed on, Koobismo. I will continue to hold the line. :salute:
Just read the Gamefront article. Couldn't agree more with the following:

“Marauder Shields,” a comic strip created by DeviantArt user Koobismo based on a meme born of the controversy, is one of the biggest and best-received things to come out of the ending controversy.

It's awesome that you're getting all this recognition, much deserved!
I'll definitely agree: So far your ending is infinitely preferable to the Bioware ending, EC or not. EC assuaged the hurt for a couple days, then I thought back and realized it didn't actually solve any of my real issues. Looking forward to seeing how your ending plays out.
Also, EC makes new plot holes of its own. Why didn't they just use the Normandy to get to the Conduit, or to pick up Shepard to get back behind the lines to formulate a new attack plan? And if Normandy was within firing range of Harbinger, why didn't he shoot them down? He was gunning down the other tanks and soldiers and shit, yet he can't shoot a frigate that's looking him at the face!? WTF!?
I'm okay with the extended cuts. I think it clarified a lot of the nitpicks I had with the ending. I, however, do look forward to seeing the conclusion you're crafting. It sounds like it shall be as epic and as badass as I originally hoped the ME3 ending should have been.
Kudos on the comic! It is great to see someone with talent giving the series the treatment it deserves (unlike some software companies). Wherever you take the story I will always appreciate the creative effort you put into it..

As we say:

Hold the line.
EC was better yeah, but better in a way like putting sprinkles on poo. you can pick out the parts of EC you like just like you can pick out the sprinkles off the poo, but in the end, it's still sprinkles off of poo.
Because I'm now squeeing that people want to hear my opinions on stuff, I'll reply with the same article, third time in this topic... :D Read this: [link] Yaay. :D
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