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Mass Effect 3, Your Edition

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26 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jun 17, 2015 10:01 am

I believe that TIM simply doesn't trust anybody else to know how to do better.

I guess one could say that he is simply covering his own self-interest up with flowery language about doing it all in the humanity's best interests. Or maybe both statements are true at the same time?

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27 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Fri Jun 19, 2015 2:47 am

I believe you are partially right there Yikari. I just feel there is still a lot missing to his character.  I really should say to me there is a lot missing in his character and in others to tell a good story.  
That is the real issue for me I think.  I am looking for a good story, where the characters are well developed and the story itself contains hidden experiences people can relate to.  When done right, I feel a good story can provide more than just entertainment, if that makes sense.



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28 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Fri Jun 19, 2015 4:04 pm

If anybody is interested I might get one to posting a link to my mass effect 3 rewrite (if I get down to editing it).
Talking about dividing Mass Effect 3 into two games Is an interesting idea. The reaper war is a huge event which admittedly was pathetically portrayed in Me3. At the very least. I would have had the game be longer and the actual struggle in-game take at least a few years.
Major changes I would have gone with, would be:
1. 4 act structure (4th act being set
Around omega and collector base) + ending + introduction
2. A lot more side stuff
3. Kai leng is a character
4. 18 squad mates ( all returning, + batarian + few new ones)
5. A Batarian squadmate would have been so much more appropriate for this game
6. More harbinger and epic last boss fight
7. Space combat

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29 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Sat Jun 27, 2015 3:18 pm

A lot of great replies.

I think the first change to ME 3 happens in ME 2. I love ME 2, it is one of the few games that I made a point to get all achievements. However, I feel like 2 kills the trilogy narrative. It is a bit like the Dark Knight. It is great but 1 and 3 fit together better as a narrative and 2 is an outlier. The same is true of ME 2. I think ME 2 should have been an expansion to add the new NPCs, like DA Awakenings.
ME 2 should have been the gathering of resources for the fight to come and getting the galaxy together. If they had done that then 3 would not have felt so rushed and they could have spend more time on it.

I wish that the Keepers and the info scan on the Keepers had mattered. The way to do this would be one of the changes in ME 3. Harbinger should have been the final encounter of ME 3, you could even maintain the star kid. You do this by making Harbinger the citadel for the Reapers. He is not a shut down button but the command and control. The final battle should have been and infiltration into Harbinger. If you want to keep the crucible and the Citadel matter then have the crucible be like the conduit from ME 1. The keepers are the key to opening it and getting into Harbinger. You then have a fight up to the control center in Harbinger. The final confrontation is between Harbinger and Shepard in his CPU. Similar to Fallout 3.

The parallel is a battle outside between gathered forces; including a Rachni that matter. Endings depend of how strong the army is, the choices made, and the NPCs assigned to each area. If you are not strong enough you can beat the final boss but still effectively lose. I like that idea more than the ones we got. It leaves many open possibilities and allow for a new game that can be somewhat personalized along the lines of DA: I.

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30 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Sat Jun 27, 2015 3:36 pm

OmegaSpruz wrote:4 act structure (4th act being set
Around omega and collector base) + ending + introduction
I have to ask where you think the two act breaks are in ME3?  Keep in mind that the definition I use for act break is an action or decision that propels the narrative forward and cannot be taken back.

Here is the way the originator of the definition put it:
FilmCritHulk wrote: SO HULK’S GOT ANOTHER OF HULK’S FAMOUS WORKING DEFINITIONS FOR YOU. AND IT’S NOT OUT OF HULK’S BUTT HERE. IT’S ONE USED BY MANY GREAT SCREENWRITERS, PROFESSORS, AND OTHER WAY-SMART PEOPLE. AND THE BEST WAY TO PUT IT IS TO DEFINE AN ACT BY ITS POINT OF SEPARATION FROM THE NEXT. THUS:

THE END OF AN ACT IS A POINT IN THE STORY WHERE A CHARACTER(S) MAKES A CHOICE AND CAN NO LONGER “GO BACK.”

THE FIRST THING TO UNDERSTAND IS THAT THE USE OF THE WORD “POINT” IS PURPOSELY VAGUE.  AFTER ALL, THERE ARE MANY DIFFERENT KINDS OF STORIES, ALL WITH MANY DIFFERENT KINDS GOALS, AND THAT MEANS IT CAN SORT OF BE ANY KIND OF MOMENT.

“But Hulk! Couldn’t that point really be anything? Like a character just leaving his house and grabbing coffee or something?!?!”

OKAY IT HAS TO BE SLIGHTLY MORE VALID THAN A SIMPLE CHANGE IN ACTION OR THE ENVIRONMENT. THE ACT BREAK CAN BE A NEW AND INTERESTING PLOT DEVELOPMENT, A POIGNANT CHARACTER REALIZATION, A PERSONALITY REVEAL, TWO PREVIOUSLY UN-MET CHARACTERS BECOMING FRIENDS, OR EVEN, IF HANDLED CORRECTLY, SOMETHING AS INSIPID AS “NO! THE BAD GUYS ARE HERE! RUN!” … AN ACT BREAK CAN BE ANYTHING AS LONG AS IT HAS A SIGNIFICANT CHANGING EFFECT ON THE NARRATIVE RESULTING IN THE CHARACTER CHOOSING AN ACTION DEFINED BY THAT CHANGE; ONE THAT CAUSES THEM TO MOVE FORWARD IN THIS NEW REALITY WITH UNDERSTANDING.

MORE IMPORTANTLY, AN ACT BREAK CREATES PROPULSION.

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31 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Sun Jun 28, 2015 8:18 am

Well as of now they are supposed to be Tuchanka Genophage Mission, and Reaper fight on rannoch.

That said the way me3 is structured it wouldn't fit this definition of an act break.

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32 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Mon Jun 29, 2015 1:20 pm

Having given some thought to it, the only act break I can pinpoint is near the beginning of the game.  It is the end of the conservation between the Turian Councillor and Shepard that leads into the Menae mission.

This might help explain why ME3 is such a narrative mess (alongside Bioware's cultish obsession with, and lack of understanding of, the Hero's Journey).

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33 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Mon Jun 29, 2015 1:34 pm

ME3 is a narrative mess ( alongside all other kinds of messes) is because everything happens for no reason, almost as if someone cut out entire missions or at least cutscenes in between such the quarian dreadnought mission following straight after the Cerberus coup on the citadel, without any form of lead in.

Mass effect 3 has the story of war, that's why I think many smaller accidents around the galaxy could serve as a good overall structure to the game, however as it is right now the many smaller stories such as Genophage, quarians, Cerberus are unconnected by any narrative and plot threads. As standalones those stories are quite good ( how many of us cries during Tuchanka mission?) yet they do not build toward a single purpose or goal. The only necessary missions for the end goal (ie find crucible) are mars, thessia and cronos. Everything else can be cut out.

In previous bioware games such as KOTOR you would have all those stories on different planets, which would be connected through the goal of finding the star maps and thus it makes sense to go to those planets to accomplish a higher In-game goal. Mass Effect 3 does not.

Dream sequences are pointless, I believe the case could only be made for the last one to make any sense.

Rant over.

PS I believe for bioware the dream sequences were the act breaks now that I remembered them.

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34 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Mon Jun 29, 2015 3:26 pm

Interesting idea about the dreams, but if Bioware was using those to separate the acts then that means they failed miserably on that. It would require Shepard to be a character (who develops) instead of a brick.

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35 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Mon Jun 29, 2015 3:38 pm

How amazing would it have been if the actual dream sequences were actually well made, such as facing the horror of choosing the virmire survivor, imagine seeing yourself as a civilian on a Batarian colony moments before the explosion of the relay etc etc this could have been so good.... It would definitely be one of the changes if make....

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36 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:17 am

Speaking of dreams, I feel like star kiddo would have come off better (still bad but better), if instead of random kid the faces of those who Shepard caused death too, good and bad, would have been the ones speaking to Shepard at the end.

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37 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:29 am

Hi there Wink

Interesting ideas all round.

Personally, the thing that bothered me the most was the fact that the Reaper invasion happens right at the start of the game, even before in fact.

This obviously creates an immediate state of urgency that I feel doesn't translate well given the structure of the game : although the gameplay is more action orientated than ME1, the narration still revolves around a small group going around the Galaxy doing quests at a leisurely pace.

Also, by having the Reapers attack everywhere en masse seems to negate all our efforts from the first 2 games.  I acknowledge that we were only slowing them down, but in terms of player investment it makes me ponder why I bothered in the first place.

As many have mentionned before (on this forum or elsewhere), it would have been interesting to see Shep's trial and use this as a tool that allows the Commander to convince the Council and the Galaxy at large, that the Reaper threat is real once and for all.
This could be a chance to expose the events of the previous games to newcomers through narration while not not alienting series veterans.

The main mission would be to continue slowing down the Reaper invasion to the point where they only have one or only a handful, depending on your actions, entry points into our realm (I might be wrong here in assuming that the Reapers need entry points, apologies).  The enemy would still be overwhelming, but at least you have been able to choose the battleground and given yourself time to prepare., which leads to the next point:

You would go around the Galaxy seeking allies and support from various species, and depending on your choices build forces for the inevitable final showdown with the Reapers.
Also all lingering plot points from previous games could be tied up during this phase.
The difference is that that Reapers aren't actually here destroying everything yet, while we go around solving people's personal issues.

The antagonist would still be Cerberus, via TIM who has been indoctrinated and is being used as a tool to help the Reaper's arrival, à la Saren.
In fact there would indoctrinated agents in every species, even characters that have been allies, that could make for some tough calls for Shepard.

Finally the Mass Relays would be revealed as the main item that allows the reapers to navigate to our Galaxy and destroying them would be one way to defeat the machines.
I was never bothered by this part of the ending: the Relay's are Reaper technology, part of their plan to harvest advanced sentient species, so getting rid of them makes total sense. To free ouselves from Reapers, we must free ourselves from any influence that they could have on us, including that which seems to make our lives easier.
But as I mentionned, this would only be one possible outcome depending on your choices.

Have a good one Wink

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38 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:44 am

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Last edited by Wethewax on Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:08 am; edited 1 time in total

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39 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:58 am

Simply deactivating them or dismanteling them in a non-cataclysimic fashion?
Whatever the way they go, it's what they represent that makes them a necessary sacrifice.

The Galaxy has to rebuild through it's own means and ideas.
Breaking the old cycle must have a price.

Also, I did say that this would be just one possible ending.
It would make sense to include an ending where the Relay's remain, but there would have to be a twist: maybe the threat of a Reaper return in the future in some way?



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40 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 10:04 am

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Last edited by Wethewax on Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:08 am; edited 1 time in total

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41 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 10:10 am

Very true (my memory is not my best tool Laughing )

To get around that, make it a plot point that the team discovers a way of deactivating them without blowing up the Galaxy.

To expand on that idea, have situations where your decisions can actually blow up the Relay's as in "Arrival": a great loss (a system) for a greater gain (taking out many Reaper's and their entry point)
Renegade

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42 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 11:01 am

Shutting down (or blowing up) the Mass Relays is going to do more harm than good. Since the 1% of the explored galaxy is widely dispersed across the relay chain, turning them off will destroy galactic civilization.

And that's before you take into account that the Reapers know the time of harvesting has come and are already on their way. So, when they reach the Milky Way; they'll find that we already did their job of isolating the systems and nebulas from one another. This gives free reign to do what they want with absolute impunity. The question that needs to be asked in this scenario is 'Will the records on the Citadel be deleted before everyone there starves to death before the Reaper's arrival?'

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43 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 11:17 am

@SilverDragonRed

Yes it would end Galactic Civilization as it stands, but my point is that it is Reaper technology that has allowed all advanced species to use these technological wonders.
I never said it would be pretty, but closing the relays seems for me the best to way completely free the Galaxy from the Reaper's. I say this this simply from a moral perspective: I see the Relay's as symbolic chains that kept the Galaxy locked in a "golden prison".

I did say that in my "edition" Wink we would be prepared to the idea that the relay's are going, so people would be relocated to there home planet's (or wherever they want to be).

Also I said that we would be stopping the Reapers from getting to the Milky Way, or to be more precise  greatly limiting their access.

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44 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 12:19 pm

In your edition, how would Shepard go about convincing the Citadel species to sepaku the entire interstellar society?  And keep in mind that to protect themselves as much as possible, each government will have to deactivate all Mass Relays, purge all census data (except for each planet's own records) and star charts, and dismantle their starships alongside colonies and outposts.

Also I said that we would be stopping the Reapers from getting to the Milky Way, or to be more precise  greatly limiting their access.
As for this, there is no stopping the Reapers from getting to the galaxy; and even with limited access, the Reapers would still win.  They are superior to the combined Citadel forces in all categories of logistics save industrial production.  To defend against that, everyone would have to wipe away all presence of having been in space and hope that fools the Reapers.

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45 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:52 pm

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46 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 10:07 pm

@SilverDragonRed

Wink A lot of nit-picking, but I'll take it as a compliment.
Bear in mind that these are just ideas about a game that will never exist.

About there being no way of stopping the Reapers from coming to the Milky Way, that would basically be the major part of the plot in this setting, and finding a way to prevent them coming from anywhere is what would give our allies an edge in the final confrontation.

I'll be honest, I don't have a whole game or story fleshed out in my mind.
But the one idea I'm attached to is the sacrifice of ther Relays. It's a hard loss but the pâyoff is freedom from the Reapers, a fresh start.

It just makes sense to me, and I always saw the Reapers as vastly superior and basically unbeatable through conventional means (we're talking an army of Reapers, not just beating them one at a time).
So the only way of stopping them would be to cut there access to our realm.

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47 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Wed Jul 01, 2015 10:14 pm

Wethewax wrote:
How about this as an addition to your idea?

The Crucible is actually a new type of FTL technology that allows you to travel even faster than Mass Relays, and that advantage of speed gives an advantage against the Reapers, and makes Mass Relays redundant.

What do you think?

Interesting, although once you're going FTL, speed becomes somewhat irrelevant, so maybe you mean that this new device could allow you to get from one location in space to another instantly without having having to pass through a relay?

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48 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Thu Jul 02, 2015 12:26 am

@Samu

Nit-picking is something I do as a writer.  The back-and-forth question and answer session is what can add verisimilitude to an idea.  Don't get me wrong; your idea is a fantastic one that thematically ties back into the first game (but not the second).  But, it will be a hard reset on the setting; and (in-universe) the biggest obstacle to the idea is the Council who has been indoctrinated by the Keepers.  So, another forge in the chain that would have to be broken.

Samu wrote:
Wethewax wrote:How about this as an addition to your idea?

The Crucible is actually a new type of FTL technology that allows you to travel even faster than Mass Relays, and that advantage of speed gives an advantage against the Reapers, and makes Mass Relays redundant.

What do you think?

Interesting, although once you're going FTL, speed becomes somewhat irrelevant, so maybe you mean that this new device could allow you to get from one location in space to another instantly without having having to pass through a relay?
Great idea that adds to the thematic narrative you would have presented.

I just need to correct Wethewax on this though.  The Mass Relay's observed speed for slinging ships across space is 3.15 trillion c.  This is the fastest FTL speed in sci-fi (outside of the Time Lords), and means that a ship using one of these could theoretically jump from one edge of the galaxy to the complete opposite in one second.  There is no faster than that when it comes to in-galaxy travel.  So, the best the alternate Crucible could do is allow for ships to create their own massless corridors for travel.

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49 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Thu Jul 02, 2015 7:47 am

SilverDragonRed wrote:

Nit-picking is something I do as a writer.  The back-and-forth question and answer session is what can add verisimilitude to an idea.
 

No worries. I'm the same: put an idea to the test Wink

SilverRedDragon wrote: the biggest obstacle to the idea is the Council who has been indoctrinated by the Keepers.  So, another forge in the chain that would have to be broken.

As I mentionned in a previous post indoctrinated people would the major antagonists (as the Reapers full-blown invasion isn't happening in this version) and dealing with them would create many choice possiblities, sometimes hard ones (if the indoctrinated person is someone you've interacted with before for ex).

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50 Re: Mass Effect 3, Your Edition on Thu Jul 02, 2015 9:46 am

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