GTX0 successfully deep-cleanedNewpost / newreply revamp Part 1Easy easy post formatting
GTX0 AnnouncementsFeedbackHelp | SandboxNewest Posts | Replies | Hottest
NIFE UpdatesRoadmapRequests | HelpDiscuss Game Worlds



https://metro.co.uk/2018/08/04/the-problem-with-video-game-reviews-readers-feature-7796459/
There's the main article. I'm new at this whole posting news thing so bear with me. I guess my format will be to read the article myself and then post a couple paragraphs explaining my opinion on the matter. I'll try to do five of these per day. Throw proverbial spaghetti noodles at the wall and see what sticks and generates discussion.

-

This article is about how No Man's Sky was critically panned back when it released a couple years ago on PS4, and how those old reviews don't do justice to the updates and improvements that have been generated in the time since release. And yet those reviews are going to be the bulk of the reviews people see when it releases in fully improved shape on Xbox One very soon.

The same thing happened with Battlefield 4, Mass Effect Andromeda, and likely a number of games that come out rushed and then get debugged and polished well after release dates.

I am not going to get too opinionated on this since it's my first news article post. But do you think there is a problem with having old reviews stand, or is there a problem with companies rushing to meet deadlines and rightfully paying for it when they sell unfinished crap?

No Man's Sky averaged 71/100

Do you think it still deserves that score?

settingsOptions
There are 69 Replies

I think they should probably do a quick update to any reviews one month after launch of a game. So many games get their problems fixed that it's worth informing people that it's the case.

As for anything after that it's hard to say. Often if there is a major update to a game such as free DLC or a huge rework update then many sites will report it, so while their initial review doesn't change they do let people know "Hey this update happened and the game is fun now" or "It happened but the game still sucks".

Honestly though for a game like Mass Effect Andromeda I never experienced any bugs in my PC playthrough (at launch) and none of the patches fixed my main issues with the game (story/universe building/that sort of stuff). While some people might like to know the problems they experienced were fixed, I'm not convinced that fixing the bugs would have improved the score all that much.

The article you linked to makes a good point too, they're unlikely to see much of a return from updating an old review and since they're only doing it to generate those clicks for ad revenue there's little for them to gain for updating.

That said this is one of the reasons why I tend to look up gameplay videos at a time when I am interested in a game. Tend to get a more accurate feel for it I will like it or not that way.

Posted August 5th by Moonray
Moonray
 

I think that companies that release shit like No Man's Sky and ME:A should be punished thusly (or preferably even harsher) for their hubris and greed.

Posted August 5th by Cruinn-Annuin

I think that companies that release shit like No Man's Sky and ME:A should be punished thusly (or preferably even harsher) for their hubris and greed.


Ok but what about the fact that No Man's Sky has drastically changed via free update since launch? Do you still think they deserve to be condemned despite putting in that time to make it better?

Posted August 5th by Moonray
Moonray
 

Yes. "Rush it out, we'll fix it later" is a shitty attitude. People should get a whole, finished, functional product when they pay their price (or even pre-order, as many did with NMS). The actual exchange is becoming more and more slanted in the favor of the corporation for the sake of their profits.

Posted August 5th by Cruinn-Annuin

Honestly though for a game like Mass Effect Andromeda I never experienced any bugs in my PC playthrough (at launch) and none of the patches fixed my main issues with the game (story/universe building/that sort of stuff).

I agree, none of my issues were fixed. I had a gamebreaking glitch that teleported me to an island that I shouldn't be able to set foot on, about a kilometer away from where the level barrier actually is, and I die if I head in the proper direction and then I respawn on the island again.

Frankly Mass Effect Andromeda isn't interesting enough to start from the beginning again. Especially when the same damn glitch, or another random problem might occur. It's a beautiful game but a largely pointless one.

I think they should probably do a quick update to any reviews one month after launch of a game. So many games get their problems fixed that it's worth informing people that it's the case.

That would be reasonable. Give devs one month to get their shit together. If they haven't fixed things after that long, then the game shouldn't have come out like that.

But doesn't it set a bad precedent where all developers feel comfortable releasing incomplete games?

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

The actual exchange is becoming more and more slanted in the favor of the corporation for the sake of their profits.
@Null

And then there are companies like EA and Eidos Montreal who intentionally withhold essential plot elements like Javik in Mass Effect 3, and basically half the fucking game in Deus Ex Human Revolution Mankind Divided. They sell these "extras" as DLC and pretend they aren't fundamental to a person's understanding and enjoyment of the plot. I would even argue Shadow Broker DLC in ME2 is essential. Liara gets nothing without it.

The whole industry almost is just overly monetized scum that mercilessly takes advantage of the consumer. At least most patches and debugging is free, but sometimes they don't do an adequate job of it.

In this case I think No Man's Sky should get a break but Mass Effect Andromeda should not. EA has a terrible track record and they've done this kind of thing before, even within the Mass Effect franchise.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Yes. "Rush it out, we'll fix it later" is a shitty attitude. People should get a whole, finished, functional product when they pay their price (or even pre-order, as many did with NMS). The actual exchange is becoming more and more slanted in the favor of the corporation for the sake of their profits.


Ok but as I noted they released these fixes for free, they made no profit from doing so and ultimately lost out because a lot of people refunded the game.

Your opinion is that a game that was once shit, must always be considered shit and can never be allowed a second chance?

I agree with your thoughts when it comes to a lot of AAA games, I mean you just have to look at Star Wars: Battlefront. They released a husk of a game missing a lot of the iconic features that the previous games in the series had established and then sold them back to people as DLC. That's shitty. But a company fixing their game for free? Surely you can at least agree it would deserve a second chance?

The whole industry almost is just overly monetized scum that mercilessly takes advantage of the consumer.


Just my opinion but I say this is untrue. There are a lot of smaller publishers who don't follow the same practices as the big AAA publishers. They are just as much a part of the industry even if their profits & teams are probably much smaller.

Posted August 5th by Moonray
Moonray
 

I did say almost. Ubisoft, EA, and Activision are all scummy ultra monetized degenerate copy and pasters who want the most money for the laziest job. Preordering the most expensive version of Call of Duty Black Ops 4 costs 160 something dollars. Most Assassins Creed games are shit and have scummy dlc pay walls. And EA needs no introduction because their last half decent game was Dragon Age Inquisition which is a last gen port. Those companies are the biggest third party devs. They run the show. They set the example. And it's a bad example.

Bethesda, and first party companies like Naughty Dog, 343, and Turn 10 are much better because they have to be. Only quality sells exclusives. And Nintendo is still PRETTY good although they are releasing more dlc than ever before and Smash 4 Wii U is ultramonetized garbage. What happened to unlocking levels and characters by playing well?

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

I will correct myself on one thing. Titanfall 2 is actually pretty good. I forgot it was EA. But they still monetized the shit out of it after it got good reviews. They waited until it was praised. Activision did the same thing with Black Ops 3. The pay to win and scummy random loot crates didn't show up until after it got good reviews. Rockstar did with with GTAV. It's never ending.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Your opinion is that a game that was once shit, must always be considered shit and can never be allowed a second chance?


My opinion is that they should suffer the backlash for releasing things that are low quality or incomplete. The repercussion of rushing something out and then fixing it later (or, more deviously, cutting content for later sale) is bad press and they should expect to live with that. The "problem" in this context is not with the reviews. It's with the fact that the publishers did this shit in the first place. They're shooting themselves in the foot and then blaming the consumers, as if we should add a simpering "but maybe they'll fix it, so don't judge them too harshly" clause to reviews.

They should get a second chance (particularly because people shouldn't be so stupid as to decide if they're going to buy something based on Metacritic score or review blurbs - at least look at gameplay footage), but that doesn't mean that their first chance gets erased from the books.

Indeed, there are problems with the psychology and economics of mass consumption and the culture of review and criticism that surrounds it, but this clearly looks like the industry trying to cut themselves more slack to fuck around with to me.

The corporate-greed-driven "content" mill that is the modern gaming industry needs to die. The anxious, hypercritical, falsely discerning culture of consumerism also needs to die, but not because they're causing a problem for the former.

Posted August 5th by Cruinn-Annuin

Null: On the opposite end of the spectrum: What do you think of games like Titanfall 2 and Black Ops III which come out to great reviews, and then add in bullshit loot crates and pay to win elements after the fact that make the game less fun and rewarding afterwards?

Should those reviews be overruled?

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Null: On the opposite end of the spectrum: What do you think of games like Titanfall 2 and Black Ops III which come out to great reviews, and then add in bullshit loot crates and pay to win elements after the fact that make the game less fun and rewarding afterwards?


Should those reviews be overruled?


If it is established that the added elements "make the game less fun and rewarding", yes. To be clear, I'm not saying that reviews should be written at launch and should never change. I'm just saying that there's not a "problem" like the title of this article says. It is what it is. People should know that and not rely on a single snapshot to try to get a full moving picture.

Personally, I was extremely insulted by Payday 2 when they added lootcrates (after the head developer not only promised that they never would, but said that we should be ashamed for even thinking that they would), enough to change my Steam review to a negative.
http://gtx0.com/read/review-payday-2

Posted August 5th by Cruinn-Annuin

The relevance of any consumer review will always be limited to the time and place in which it was written, given that what it purports to do is give contemporary readers a buying guide for the new release in question. I don't really think this is a problem for reviews though. The mistake is in treating the initial reception as the final word when it is anything but. Mario Kart 64 was a favorite among kids of our generation, but critic opinions were mixed at the time. This divide is perhaps even more pronounced for the first Super Smash Brothers. Word of mouth (and a clever media campaign, but that came later) turned Pokemon into a titanic, multi-billion dollar franchise. If the success of Pokemon Red and Green had reflected it's Famitsu score (29/40) then it would have probably never been localized overseas. The snowball effect of Pokemon's success owes a great deal to a bunch of Japanese kids that liked it and then told their friends.

The older a review gets, the less useful it becomes regardless of whether or not it has been updated to reflect the latest patch. If No Man's Sky ever truly transcends what it was at launch then this quality will, one way or another, speak for itself.

And Nintendo is still PRETTY good although they are releasing more dlc than ever before and Smash 4 Wii U is ultramonetized garbage. What happened to unlocking levels and characters by playing well?

Yeah, I felt the sting on that one. Didn't buy a single dlc character. I probably won't for the Switch iteration either, though my opinion on it may soften if all of the currently announced characters are available for free upon release.

Edited August 5th by Famov

Miyamoto used to say "a delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad." Some of the glitches fixed via patches during the Gamecube era include character UVs on some of SSBM's trophies so you can't see strange pieces when clipping the geometry. On a more extreme example, later releases of Twilight Princess fixed the game-ending glitch regarding the broken bridge. If games launch miserably, it's difficult to reel in from that initial outset.

Smash 4 Wii U is ultramonetized garbage

Dude, there are like a million playable characters and stages WITHOUT DLC.

Posted August 5th by mariomguy

Sure, you can get by without them. But wasn't amiibos monetization enough? Did they really have to jam the extortion dagger in and twist it that hard? At least Amiibos are something cool. One of the few cool ways I've seen video games monetized. Digital content is worthless to me, but a Cloud figure is pretty dope.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

While I do sometimes look at reviews I rarely find them very helpful. And then my favorite game of all time was given an almost meh score (at least but some people's standards) by "critics" which is somewhat infuriating. And then I stumbled upon this obscure 3ds games and looked up reviews. Literally every single one rates it awful and yet I played it for a bit and actually had fun and was rather interested in it's story and it's rather unique brand of making choices matter, branching paths, and other interesting stuff considering the genre (turn-based like fire emblem). Now I do get why they rated it so poorly, it has a lot of issues but if you look past all of them and this is your sort of thing you can definitely have fun with it. And that is what matters: FUN.

Edited August 5th by KnokkelMillennium

They could at least 3-4 years into Smash 4's lifespan release a version that has all the characters on the disk. That's what bethesda does with it's dlc for skyrim, fallout, and oblivion eventually. A game of the year version or something.

Posted August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

intentionally withhold essential plot elements like Javik in Mass Effect 3


I think Javik adds a bit to the game, but to call him "essential" to the game's plot is objectively false.


Miyamoto used to say "a delayed game is eventually good, but a rushed game is forever bad."


Also objectively false. Especially in modern times when you can issue patches in a way that you couldn't do for most of the '80s, '90s, and early '00s. But I get the gist, and generally agree, particularly when remembering what a load of horse shit "crunch time" is and how abusive it is on the studios' employees to ensure a game releases at a somewhat arbitrary deadline.


Now I do get why they rated it so poorly, it has a lot of issues but if you look past all of them and this is your sort of thing you can definitely have fun with it.


Well...duh. If "this is your sort of thing," you can obviously get passed any flaws and have fun with it. There's nothing wrong with examining the construction of a piece of media and reviewing it through that lens. A game (much like anything else like a movie or book) can be bad and still enjoyable to a particular audience. A critic isn't telling you what to think or issuing a universal decree that everyone must abide by. The point of reviews is to give you information so *you* can ultimately decide if it sounds like your sort of thing.




As for the topic, I think if a game has fixed enough stuff from launch to genuinely merit a new review with a better opinion, they should write a new one and attach a link to the original post. There's still value in keeping up an original review of an original game so people can see how things developed.



Posted August 5th by Jet Presto

You're wrong, Jet. The Protheans are a central element to understanding Mass Effect. ME3, even with Javik has significantly less characters than ME2. He should have just been included. You can tell by how seemlessly he's written into the game that he was intended to be a natural character, not DLC. They just got greedy, and I'm ashamed of you for defending that decision.

Posted August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Well...duh. If "this is your sort of thing," you can obviously get passed any flaws and have fun with it.


But that's exactly why the review is worthless. If it isn't your thing, then you won't like it regardless. It's worthless to people who aren't into that genre and it's really only important for people who are. I'm saying it wasn't nearly as bad they made it out to be.

There's nothing wrong with examining the construction of a piece of media and reviewing it through that lens.


Sure but that won't stop me from saying it's worthless when it is.

A critic isn't telling you what to think or issuing a universal decree that everyone must abide by.


But that's exactly what tends to happen anyway. People take their opinions far too seriously.

The point of reviews is to give you information so *you* can ultimately decide if it sounds like your sort of thing.


And in the example I mentioned before they all fell short of mentioning the positives and going into greater detail about it.

Edited August 5th by KnokkelMillennium

Leviathan "adds a bit to the game" - Aria "adds a bit to the game" - Javik is as important as Liara or Garrus to Mass Effect 3, and actually gives more insight into the game's lore than either of those characters (at least in the confines of Mass Effect 3).

I also noticed that you didn't deny that the shadow broker dlc is essential.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Keep in mind that the ME thing was day fucking one DLC. This was content that was ready to go and was cut from a finished product in order to charge more.

Posted August 5th by Cruinn-Annuin

The Protheans are a central element to understanding Mass Effect


No they aren't. You literally need no background at all to understand the story of Mass Effect, which is that a group of sentient machines feel tasked with wiping out all intelligent organic life every 50,000 years. If anything, the Protheans primarily serve as misdirection. They did not create the mass relays, the Citadel, or even the Catalyst. They are only notable for being the previous generation that failed to stop the Reapers. Which is literally irrelevant to the central story.

and I'm ashamed of you for defending that decision.


Not that I give a shit whether you are ashamed or proud of me, but where exactly did I defend the decision to cut him?

Leviathan "adds a bit to the game" - Aria "adds a bit to the game"


Right. They are non-essential storylines and characters that add color to the universe or lore, but have no real impact on the central story or themes. They are nice additions, but not required. The same thing is true of Javik from almost every conceivable angle.

I also noticed that you didn't deny that the shadow broker dlc is essential.


I admit I missed that bit in your post, but I would say the same thing. It *isn't* essential. It is a nice addition that further adds color to the world or characterization, and certainly matters more to the central plot than Javik does, but it is not *necessary.*

We do not need something showing us how Liara became the Shadow Broker between ME2 and ME3 because they explain that Liara has become the Shadow Broker within the central story of ME3. Frankly, the jump between her being "a shy geologist in ME1" to "a badass information broker in ME2" is a much bigger jump than the "hunting down the Shadow Broker in ME2" to "became the Shadow Broker in ME3." Yet you're not calling for a DLC to explicitly show us what happened between ME1 and ME2 with Liara. It is not *necessary.* The central story of both games do a totally adequate job filling you in on what you need to know.

Another way to look at it is this: without the Shadow Broker DLC, you learn that Liara has become the Shadow Broker either way in the main story of ME3. What changes if you go back and play the Shadow Broker DLC? What new information would you discover in that DLC that would be relevant to the central plot or even the central character of Liara in ME3? (The answer is "nothing." There is no information in that DLC that changes any understanding of the character or story of ME3. Literally all it does is add to the lore and depth of world, which is *non-essential,* albeit really welcome and nice.)

Javik is as important as Liara or Garrus to Mass Effect 3


Definitely not as important as Liara. Maybe as important as Garrus.

To understand the necessity of a particular character, you have to examine what they do to push the story forward. Liara is necessary because she is quite literally the one who discovers information about the Catalyst. Thus, she is important to the central plot. Can you think of any way whatsoever that Javik pushes the story forward? Providing insights to the world's history is neat, but it does not push the story forward. Thus, he is not necessary. There is no stretch of the main storyline in which Javik is required either, the way that Tali and Legion are necessary to bridge the gap between Quarian and Geth, or the way EDI is required to get through the base near the end.

Garrus is interesting in that I don't really recall anything that he is required for within the central story. (Could possibly be because he is the only optional character in ME1, thus it is possible you could get to Palaven having never recruited Garrus, so he couldn't be as essential to the main story there.) However, Garrus is a narrative short-cut. As we saw with James, introducing a new character for the third and final game would make it hard for players to truly connect emotionally. Garrus, given that you likely had him on your squad and came to love him in the previous two games, is an easy, quick connection for players. I'm not saying players would not have connected easily to Javik (frankly, I'd have preferred him in the squad to James). But for the emotional bond, Garrus fills that role pretty easily.

The only way to argue Javik was "necessary" was that he connected to one of the central themes of the franchise: togetherness versus solitude. The Protheans failed because they conquered other intelligent species, not by forming alliances and partnerships. In this way, Javik connects to a central element. However, it is still ultimately unnecessary because ME3 already went to lengths to make the entire game about that theme. We are introduced to that theme on Palaven, when the Turians refuse to help Earth because they have to fend for themselves. We get that theme again and again and again. Any time you go to a new world, that species refuses to help because they have to protect themselves. The central campaign of the game is about uniting everyone, so you do not *need* Javik to push that theme.

Quite literally, Javik only adds more color to the world. That, by no definition, means "required" or "necessary."

He adds quite a bit to the history of the world, but nothing that is actually *essential.* Adding to the lore by the third game is not as important as it was in ME1, where pretty much the only thing that game got right was its emphasis on lore. It was the depth of the world that made that game, really, and set off in motion the events of ME3.



Posted August 5th by Jet Presto

Keep in mind that the ME thing was day fucking one DLC. This was content that was ready to go and was cut from a finished product in order to charge more.


Right. I'm not arguing that it was not intentionally cut to charge more, that it wasn't greedy, or that it isn't indicative of a larger industry problem.

There are two simultaneous truths here. What was cut was not essential to the game. And they cut something interesting specifically to be able to get more money. These are not contradictory thoughts.

Posted August 5th by Jet Presto

Javik pushes Liara's entire character arc forward. He makes her more important. He proves her right and teaches her so much even by saying "I'm a soldier and I have nothing to say". That is a definitive answer. It's that lack of scholarly interest Javik has, he is the avatar of vengeance and he only has one more mission. "Who cares what we were? We're dead. I'm here to do what I should have done 50 000 years ago."

Also - do you know how I know the Shadow Broker is essential? Well for one, the game developers want you to romance Liara. And two, I didn't buy it. So I got to Mass Effect 3 and Liara is suddenly this badass shadow broker who can actually fight. She isn't the shy kid you met in ME1 anymore. That DLC is the apex of her character evolution. By having played ME2 and 3 before buying that dlc, I experienced the absence of it. And her character makes no sense without it. Its similar to meeting James without watching paragon lost (which I also did). You have no idea who he is. Liara might as well be a stranger when you meet her on Mars if you haven't played the Shadow Broker dlc.

Javik is a major character, and if you find some poor soul who played through ME3 without having his dlc, they missed out big time. I've never done that. I bought it immediately. But I have kicked myself for not knowing about Liara prior to playing ME3.

You can do without Kasumi and Zaeed. You can't do without Javik and the shadow broker dlc. The game sucks without them. ME2 is still good, but ME3 sucks without those two.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

The issue of being "cut" is also a bit debatable. It's clear the content was always planned to be included in the game (as most DLC often is), but given the deadlines, it seems just as likely true (if not more, really) that given Javik's non-essential standing in the central game, the decision was made to make it a DLC rather than part of the main game, so that they could ship the game more or less on time. Elements were added to the disc so they could more effectively integrate the DLC, which BioWare had done before a couple of times in previous games. And they worked on that after the game was sent to certification. Doesn't mean the content was "good to go and they intentionally cut it." (Frankly, I suspect that this was indeed the case, but BioWare has never been particularly good at understanding the perception of their actions.)

I'm not entirely sure I buy that the content was "ready to go." But even if I believe BioWare (which I do), it does still highlight the problem central to this thread, which is the idea of rushing games and getting them out there before they are ready.

Posted August 5th by Jet Presto

I'm surprised no one tried to tear my previous post apart yet

Posted August 5th by KnokkelMillennium

I get why Bioware/EA did it. People buy story-based games used, play them once, and sell them. The only way EA/Bioware gets a cut from that exchange is if they hold important parts of the story hostage.

That's what they did with Liara and Javik.

If you're still not with me, I'm afraid we'll have to agree to disagree.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Like, playing ME3 without having played the shadow broker dlc - is like watching dragonball z and skipping the episode where Frieza kills Krillin.

Posted August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Can't reply to everything right now but wanted to quickly say this...

Well for one, the game developers want you to romance Liara. And two, I didn't buy it. So I got to mass effect 3 and Liara is suddenly this badass shadow broker who can actually fight.


Point 1 makes no sense. They offer romance for a lot of characters, how do you figure they want you to go down this one specific route?

Point 2 I never bought or played Shadow Broker and I was aware of her transformation as a character. I believe it actually started in a comic set between the games, but ignoring that ME2 itself establishes she changed after Shepard died (pretty sure with the right dialogue options you can get her to tell you). The DLC only explains how she becomes the Broker and re-explains the comic book for people who never read it. It's like Star Wars, you don't need to know how Vader became mostly robot but you want to know. You don't need to know how Liara became Broker but you want to know.

If you want to argue "essential DLC" then ME2's Arrival and ME3's Leviathan are the only ones I felt were essential (and Leviathan is only essential because they added a new AI character in the last 5 seconds of the story with no explanation).

EDIT: In fact I'm not sure Leviathan is even essential because I think the AI gives enough info to at least explain itself (even if it is a dumb addition). The DLC just satisfies the curiosity of its origin.

Edited August 5th by Moonray
Moonray
 

That's dumb. Obviously you want to not have spoilers. You want to experience the story, not have it recapped briefly and boringly. Everything in gaming is a want, not a need obviously. But in the context of already being in a story, you need to understand the journey as much as the result.

Its gay that people cuck out and actually defend giant corporations who extort your money. Grow a pair.

Sorry if that sounded mean, but it's like ramming my head into a brick wall over and over again when I listen to people go through financial stockholm syndrome and not even cuss them out for being filthy scummy shitty companies.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

It's extortion. You're already almost a hundred hours into a 3 part story, and they charge 8 dollars for this and 12 dollars for that, and there's so fucking many dlcs. Jesus Fucking Christ. I didn't sign up for this when I bought ME1.

Imagine if a Stephen King book you purchased showed up at your door, and page 35 goes right to page 67 and there is a note saying if you want those missing pages, you better put in your credit card information.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Javik pushes Liara's entire character arc forward.


No, it doesn't. It creates an entirely new "mini-arc" with her that is exclusively connected to Javik, yes. Her larger, more central character arc is completely separated from him. That mini-arc is also exclusive to ME3, not the trilogy.

He makes her more important.


No, he doesn't. She makes *him* more important, because she is literally the only element he has any sort of discernible impact on (and only because of the "she always thought this about Protheans, and he thinks she's stupid for thinking that" mini-arc that is absolutely non-essential, albeit fun and a good little character arc. But it is exclusive to Javik, and literally nothing else that is actually central to the game.)

Also - do you know how I know the Shadow Broker is essential? Well for one, the game developers want you to romance Liara.


First of all, romancing Liara is *also* not essential to the game. It's why you don't have to do it. Second of all, if that were the reason, why did they leave Liara predominantly out of ME2 if that were essential?

She isn't the shy kid you met in ME1 anymore.


She wasn't that shy kid you met in ME1 anymore when you ran into her in ME2, either. On top of that, there is *no growth between Shadow Broker and ME3.* Liara *starts* ME3 where she *started* Lair of the Shadow Broker. So if you couldn't buy that development between ME1 and ME3, why would you have been able to buy it between ME1 and ME2/Shadow Broker DLC? If you did, it would have explicitly been because the main storyline of ME2 *already* establishes her as a capable badass. (Also, you had an entire game in ME1 of her learning to fight and honing her skills. Her ability to fight by ME3 should not be unbelievable, especially if you played ME2, even without the DLC.)

That DLC is the apex of her character evolution.


No, it's not. It's just icing on the cake that was already baked into the main story of ME2. There is no character evolution in the Shadow Broker DLC. All it does is show you what they have already told you. That "apex" is quite literally where she starts ME3.

And her character makes no sense without it.


It absolutely does. We know she was interested in Protheans, hence why she would be digging for artifacts on Mars. We knew from ME2 that she was an information broker, so would have added incentive for digging around for information. And she was literally in our party fighting an actual Reaper back in ME1, so she has additional incentive for her to take an interest in discovering information about the Reapers. Becoming the Shadow Broker is literally the least relevant element of her when you meet her on Mars. It's even the least interesting element of her character in the entire game, to be honest. Because ya know that whole mini-arc with Javik? Yeah...that stems from her interest in Protheans established in the first game. Has nothing to do with the Shadow Broker. The *only* reason her being the Shadow Broker even matters is that she can kind of get you more resources for the final battle (which also doesn't matter much).


Its similar to meeting James without watching paragon lost (which I also did).


I've never seen Paragon Lost and I have to admit, I had no problem with this. I didn't know who James was when the game started, but that was also completely fine. I didn't know who Joker was either at the start of ME1, and that wasn't a problem. I didn't know who Mordin was when we were introduced to him. I didn't know who Javik was when we uncovered him in the DLC. The important parts of James's characters - the ones relevant to the story and themes of the game - are revealed throughout the course of the game. I don't need some nonsense over-explanation and hand-holding. I am capable of going with the flow of the story. And obviously, the events of Paragon Lost don't matter to the central experience of ME3. (What even is Paragon Lost? Does it just show you the thing that James literally tells you all about in ME3?)


Javik is a major character,


He adds a lot of value to the game by being a fun, humorous, intriguing character. I am not arguing that. But he literally has no bearing on the central story of the game, or even the central character arcs of anyone on board the Normandy.


and if you find some poor soul who played through ME3 without having his dlc, they missed out big time.


Yeah, so, that was me, and while I liked the game more with Javik in it than without him in it, I was not lost at all or missed any central story elements or themes to the game.


You can do without Kasumi and Zaeed.


This is going to sound like blasphemy, believe me, I hate saying this: but you can do without half the characters in ME2. And you can do without Garrus in ME1. You can do without James and Javik in ME3.

Posted August 5th by Jet Presto

And you can do without playing it at all. Are we just spouting facts?

Posted August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

What if you go to the movie theatre, pay for your ticket, and in the middle of the movie security comes and says "I'm sorry sir, but we have to pull you out of here for 20 minutes unless you hand us 5 dollars right now. But you can go back in and watch the end of the movie if you want after we let you back in."

Posted August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

But in the context of already being in a story, you need to understand the journey as much as the result.


Everything you need to understand about the journey is in the main game. Why do you feel like you need every part to be clearly described to understand it?

This is like, you don't need to understand what happened that caused the Millennium Falcon to do the Kessel Run in 12 parsecs. That doesn't matter. What matters is that Han Solo is cocky and he thinks his ship is the fastest hunk of junk in the galaxy. Making a movie to explain the Kessel Run is literally unnecessary. Or like, we don't need to know what the One Ring actually does or how it actually works to understand that bad people are after it and it needs to be destroyed. Or how you don't need to know what the xenomorph is in the first Alien film to understand that it is scary and dangerous and a threat to everyone on board. It's also like how you don't have to get any real information or details about Shepard's past to know they've been through some shit. It might be a nice addition, but it is unnecessary to the central purpose of the fiction.

Not everything in narrative fiction needs to be detailed like a history book. Sometimes, creative fiction is allowed to be creative. This is a growing problem with nerd fandom in that everything has to be explained, it seems, and there is little room for art.

Its gay that people cuck out and actually defend giant corporations who extort your money. Grow a pair.


What, do you just have a hat with random internet edgelord "insults" that you pull out randomly every once in a while?

Either way, your dickishness aside, you're once again choosing to confuse arguments. I am arguing about the writing and the narrative function of these elements of the game. I am arguing about *the art.* I'm not arguing about the business side of it. Even though I don't necessarily think that they did something as shady as intentionally cut finished content from the disc to sell for more money, I still think the fundamental problem is that they did not give their team enough time to finish, because the publisher wants these games out at particular times to maximize their profits, and I think that is bad (and as I said, even abusive to their employees.) But I'm arguing about the *art.* You are confusing my criticisms of your point that these DLCs are "necessary" with a defense of the practice.

Posted August 5th by Jet Presto

I do apologize for that comment. But I still feel that way. I don't understand why people are resigned to their fate of letting the world roll them. At least pretend that you feel disgusting for buying something extra that should have come with the game.

-sighs-

You make it so I have to be upset for all of us.

Posted August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

And you can do without playing it at all. Are we just spouting facts?


...ok, so we done with you pretending to even attempt to understand the argument?


What if you go to the movie theatre, pay for your ticket, and in the middle of the movie security comes and says "I'm sorry sir, but we have to pull you out of here for 20 minutes unless you hand us 5 dollars right now. But you can go back in and watch the end of the movie if you want after we let you back in."



This happens already with movies. They're called deleted scenes, and you get them when you pay extra for the home video release. These scenes are not necessary to the film (mostly - I still think that deleted scene between Okoye and W'Kabi was pretty essential to their established arc). That is why they were cut, and you only get access to them when you spend more money later.

But you're also making false equivalences on top of your blatant ignorance to the arguments I'm making. I guess it's to be expected. If you don't understand fiction, you probably won't understand these arguments either.

Posted August 5th by Jet Presto

Its not just games, you know? It's inflation, increasing food prices, Jesus its like 22 bucks for a popcorn chocolate bar pop combo at the movie theatre. Every faggot on the planet wants to nickle and dime you just a little bit more. I find it irritating when it happens. But I find it even more irritating when people who are getting nickled and dimed actually defend the big kid demanding lunch money.

Like yeah, Playing the Mass Effect Trilogy is not an essential part of life. But why is it so unfair to expect that if you pay for a game, you get the whole game?

I'm exhausted guys. You just aren't on the same wavelength as me. You're willing to let the little things go, and I'm not. But think about how often you just let it go. It adds up.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

At least pretend that you feel disgusting for buying something extra that should have come with the game.


I'm more disgusted with what these deadlines do to their (largely not unionized) employees more than the slight inconvenience to me as a consumer. Me having to spend $12 for a new chapter that serves to just better fill out the world or adds icing to the cake I already ate is annoying, but I'd hardly call it "disgusting." What crunch time demands of their employees, though...

Posted August 5th by Jet Presto

I sound annoyed because I'm actually angry and disgusted.

Posted August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Jesus its like 22 bucks for popcorn at the movie theatre


Yeah, I mean, that's largely not the theater's fault. Our staff has to eat, too.

But we're also arguing different things. Again, I was - from the get-go - arguing about *the art.* And an argument like "Javik is necessary to the game" is inherently about the art too. Now you want to make it about the awfulness of late stage capitalism, which is a fundamentally different conversation. I don't think you were really on your own wavelength when we started this discussion. The argument should be "DLC is greedy" if the issue is about money, not "Javik is necessary to the fiction."




Posted August 5th by Jet Presto

I'm more disgusted with what these deadlines do to their (largely not unionized) employees more than the slight inconvenience to me as a consumer. Me having to spend $12 for a new chapter that serves to just better fill out the world or adds icing to the cake I already ate is annoying, but I'd hardly call it "disgusting." What crunch time demands of their employees, though...

It is disgusting. And the people who made Mass Effect Andromeda lost their jobs. And they were probably good people in over their heads. EA doesn't care. They nickle and dime their own workers too.

Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

But we're also arguing different things. Again, I was - from the get-go - arguing about *the art.* And an argument like "Javik is necessary to the game" is inherently about the art too. Now you want to make it about the awfulness of late stage capitalism, which is a fundamentally different conversation. I don't think you were really on your own wavelength when we started this discussion. The argument should be "DLC is greedy" if the issue is about money, not "Javik is necessary to the fiction."

--

From my point of view it's the same conversation. Because I feel like you saying Javik isn't necessary to the story is the same as saying EA/Bioware was in the right not to include him for free even though he was obviously scripted to be, and originally going to be.

Of course, if he was included for free I'd probably be bitching about Aria or Leviathan, who knows. I hate the gaming industry. I just want to play games.


Edited August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Can we at least agree that this was the single best track from gen 7 gaming? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VTsD2FjmLsw

Posted August 5th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

They're doing that release on xbone and PC, with all the latest updates, so it's bound to get better reviews for those two platforms at least.

Posted August 6th by ShadowFox08

Null:
They should get a second chance (particularly because people shouldn't be so stupid as to decide if they're going to buy something based on Metacritic score or review blurbs - at least look at gameplay footage), but that doesn't mean that their first chance gets erased from the books.


For the record I was never suggesting the original review should be removed or have any of its statements remove, just that an update should be added that says "Yea so it was bad but they did some work and it's better in these ways now".

Jet Prestos:
They are only notable for being the previous generation that failed to stop the Reapers. Which is literally irrelevant to the central story.


I think you're undermining their relevance to the story a little as they were ultimately responsible for our cycle surviving & winning. If they hadn't shut down the Reaper's control of the citadel and relay network then the Mass Effect trilogy would not have happened :P

But your point is valid, beyond serving as a backstory they aren't important at all.

Can you think of any way whatsoever that Javik pushes the story forward? Providing insights to the world's history is neat, but it does not push the story forward.


It's actually worse because he actually is of very little help when it does come to Prothean stuff that isn't just "Oh we studied your species, lol you were so primitive back then". I seem to recall there was more than one moment when he doesn't know something because he was "just a soldier".

Red Leaf:
Its gay that people cuck out and actually defend giant corporations who extort your money. Grow a pair.

Jet Prestos:
What, do you just have a hat with random internet edgelord "insults" that you pull out randomly every once in a while?

I'd like to point out I also don't appreciate that you're bringing world forum dickery into this part of the site.

Red Leaf:
From my point of view it's the same conversation. Because I feel like you saying Javik isn't necessary to the story is the same as saying EA/Bioware was in the right not to include him for free even though he was obviously scripted to be, and originally going to be.


These two points aren't the same thing though.

If Harry Potter met a character called Grigglybutt who told him all about the wizarding world prior to Voldermort's first rise, is that important? If JK Rowling then removed that scene becasue she felt, correctly, it didn't contribute enough to the actual story at hand. There is nothing wrong with that. That is the "art" side Jet is talking about. It's nice information to have for a lore enthusiast but it's not essential to what's happening (and you'll note that all Javik does is provide unessential lore).

What you are talking about is if she did that but instead of leaving it out she took the scene and tried to sell it back to you later. This has nothing to do with art, however it can sometimes be motived by a desire to enhance one's work. Ultimately though this is the part you have a problem with. If Javik had been removed and was never seen again (but someone found out he had existed at one point) I doubt very much that we'd be having this conversation, because your argument isn't in whether or not he enhanced the game but in the fact that they made you pay to have him in the game. You're just trying use the former to justify the latter being a problem, that's the only place any overlap comes in.

I am not a fan of the fact that Javik was turned into day1 dlc, especially when it later turned out some/most of it was on the disc anyway. I think it was a pretty shitty move, but I also understand how unessential he is to the game. Most of my first few playthroughs I didn't really bother with him, I sometimes unlocked him and then just ignored him. It wasn't until after beating ME3 a few times that I actually took Javik everywhere to see what insight he might offer. I still feel like I got more from the story by interacting with other characters.

Edited August 6th by Moonray
Moonray
 

Ill. Never understand people who defend people who rip them off

Edited August 6th by Brandy

Brandy: Right?

I am done with this thread unless it's about the original topic.

Posted August 6th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Literally noone in this thread defended it...

Posted August 6th by Moonray
Moonray
 

One thing you should and probably do know about me is that when I get defensive like this and in the other thread it's because I feel slighted already. My perception is already negative and sour.

How do you think I am going to react when do these evasion tactics like saying javik isn't needed or rare games aren't needed, when the alternative is an inferior product in both cases.

Like keep on doing it if you want, but now you have some insight on why I am defensive. I want all of us to get better bang for our bucks. You included. And yet in these threads I am always the outnumbered bad guy. It doesn't take much to fluster me when all I want to see is a better world for you and me and you don't even want it.

Edited August 6th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

The reason the conversation went that way is because the argument you were making hinges on this idea that any of the DLCs were essential to the story. That's why Jet started saying they're not and why I later agreed with him.

You can't just say something and then get annoyed when not everyone agrees with you.

No one disagrees that it'd be better to have DLC for free in games. Jet and I just disagree one your opinions on how essential said DLCs really are.

Posted August 6th by Moonray
Moonray
 

I can't keep up with this thread, but to address concerns regarding Smash Bros:

All of the characters that have ever been in Smash Bros. will be on the Switch version. So, it's a brand new game entirely, but out of the box it has all the DLC. I think Nintendo (Mario Kart, Smash Bros) and Media Molecule (with Little Big Planet) handled DLC very well. It helps that the main game was beefy enough and the DLC didn't come until later.

Posted August 6th by mariomguy

Smash DLC wasn't needed but I personally felt it was overpriced for what I was getting at times. The excuse I was always offered was how much work goes into an individual fighter, and while that's true they all require a lot of work, I don't think that's really a fair excuse considering any DLC requires a lot of work.

To compare it to Mass Effect 3's Javik (since we've been talking about that already.

The DLC costs 800 BioWare points (that's £8 in superior British currency) and includes:
New Character for your team, fully voiced, animated, etc.
Two New Missions on a planet not otherwise featured in the game, though there is asset reuse here.
New weapon that has a unique model and uses its own flashy effects.
All existing characters also get one additional outfit.

By comparison I can buy a Mewtwo in Smash for £3.59 and I get:
One character, full animated & what not but only a few lines of dialogue.

It doesn't take much to realise that the amount of work that went into these two things is completely in favour of Mass Effect 3 (and I picked one of the lesser effort DLCs at that), yet somehow they are offering me far more for my money and the imbalance only gets worse if I add more Smash characters to my basket. Not only that but Mewtwo is one of the cheaper characters (because apparently they can't even be priced equally???).

I honestly would have expected something more in line with Mario Kart's DLC. Stages & characters bundled into one pack. I mean I just looked it up and I can buy both DLCs in a bundle from Nintendo for £11.00 but if I do this fairly and go for one DLC it's £7.

So for £7 I am getting:
3 Characters (admittedly these no doubt take less individual work than a smash character)
8 Courses, on an individual scale some of these are so detailed that they must take a lot more work than a smash stage does.
4 "Vehicles" (debatable as I seem to recall it just was just parts, but still took them time to make I guess).

So for the price of (just less than) two Mewtwo's I am getting a lot more.

Smash should have followed the same route and bundled some stages and characters into a DLC pack at a similar price to MK8's DLC.

They handled it well from a perspective of not feeling like I'd got an incomplete game (but few games do that anymore anyway) but from a pricing perspective they got greedy with Smash and so I can't praise them for that. I praise them for MK8 though.

Posted August 7th by Moonray
Moonray
 

I'm pretty sure you can opt out of Garrus joining the Normandy in ME1, thereby ommitting him entirely from the trilogy.

As someone who played the game initially with zero DLC, and then with every single piece of it (yes, even the disappointing Firewalker DLC from ME2), there's only two pieces of DLC that are arguably no-brainer necessities. And that's Arrival in ME2, best played as the very last thing you do before you transfer the save file to ME3, and the free Extended Cut for softening the thunderous blows of that dire ending to the trilogy. Everything else is discretionary if you ask me. Leviathan probably adds the most important adjunct information, and Citadel - even though I sort of have to suspend elements of disbelief in order to try and place it chronologically within the narrative of the 'literal end of sentient life as we know it' pacing of ME3 - is the most fun.

I would add it's a bit difficult to say what peripheral story elements are necessary in ME, as a lot of exposition is driven by picking dialogue choices. There are number unique bits of dialogue and encounters you'll only ever see in a playthrough as a result of a specific order of wheel choices. No two playthroughs between players are exactly the same.

Posted August 7th by Arch
Arch
 

I'm pretty sure you can opt out of Garrus joining the Normandy in ME1, thereby ommitting him entirely from the trilogy.


You can't omit him from the trilogy, but you can keep him out of ME1. (He shows up as Archangel in ME2. (I'm preeeetty sure that is a mandatory mission in ME2.) This is the reason why I argue that Garrus is - even if just slightly - more necessary to ME3 than Javik. (But it's also totally possible you didn't recruit Garrus in ME1 and then he died at the end of ME2, so. I think it's marginally more significant for the writing shortcut, but these two characters are ultimately of equal importance in ME3, from a narrative perspective.)




One thing you should and probably do know about me is that when I get defensive like this and in the other thread it's because I feel slighted already. My perception is already negative and sour.


I hadn't noticed... Sarcasm aside, I've interacted with you here for years. You don't really need to explain how you work at this point.


How do you think I am going to react when do these evasion tactics like saying javik isn't needed or rare games aren't needed, when the alternative is an inferior product in both cases.


Maybe like a healthy person who is capable of rational thought and who isn't tying too much of their individual identity into a video game, I guess.

I made the argument I did because it's true. Javik isn't necessary to the central experience of ME3. Or even ME overall. You are mistakenly thinking, for some reason, that I am therefore saying he sucks, or he shouldn't have been part of it, or he adds nothing. Again, you are using my argument about the narrative and the text to jump to some conclusion that I am totally not at all even slightly irritated at paying for DLC (I don't have as much a problem with it, generally, as everyone else, but I'm not entirely excited to pay extra - which is why I usually don't do it).

I also made no evasions.


I want all of us to get better bang for our bucks. You included. And yet in these threads I am always the outnumbered bad guy. It doesn't take much to fluster me when all I want to see is a better world for you and me and you don't even want it.


Getting a slightly better deal on a luxury product that you need money to enjoy in the first place is hardly making the world better for you and me. If anything, this is also a selfish approach. As I've mentioned several times now, the Javik DLC incident is more concerning to me because the system of development is designed to take advantage of non-unionized workers. Crunch time is abusive to employees, which is WAY worse than you "not getting enough bang for your buck."


Posted August 7th by Jet Presto

Yeah because EA is a paragon of virtue in the video game industry. They need to be called on their shit. How am I greedy when EA is the one capitalizing?

Oh you said selfish, not greedy. Same difference really.

Edited August 7th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

EA needs to do both of the following things: Pay their workers a fair wage while giving them enough time to complete projects, AND sell people complete products. Both.

Posted August 7th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

They shouldn't cut any corners. And I haven't bought a single game from them since Andromeda and I won't be buying Anthem. The only place you can hirt them back is by declining to buy.

Posted August 7th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

You can't omit him from the trilogy, but you can keep him out of ME1. (He shows up as Archangel in ME2. (I'm preeeetty sure that is a mandatory mission in ME2.)

I did not know this.

I am sure there's a vid or write-up somewhere, but how different is that Archangel encounter if you don't bring him along in ME1?

Posted August 7th by Arch
Arch
 

Also Garrus has a stick up his ass in ME1.

Posted August 7th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

I did not know this.

When I found out you could pretty much miss him it blew my mind. I also saw some playthrough where by the end of ME2 only Kasumi was alive. Wild stuff.

Posted August 7th by Fox Forever

I've actually never played without Garrus, so I don't know. I can't imagine it doesn't drastically change him. The character arc has to feel a bit underwhelming if you don't go through the whole "starts at C-SEC, becomes a vigilante, becomes a SPECTRE" thing. I also don't know if he talks much about his dad in ME2. I saw his introduction sans ME1 recruitment, and it's just a few lines of dialogue to explain who he is. I imagine it doesn't change the game all that much, though.

Posted August 8th by Jet Presto

I am sure there's a vid or write-up somewhere, but how different is that Archangel encounter if you don't bring him along in ME1?


I did it once (using a savegame editor to swap choices in/out because I couldn't bring myself to not recruit him!). From what I remember the encounter itself isn't much different, the main difference is instead of getting a happy reuinion with Garrus you just get this introduction to who Garrus is instead. Given he elaborates on what happens between ME1 and ME2 anyway it's again mostly the same but with a bit more detail.

The rest of the game plays out very much the same after that. They just swap out any reference to past adventures with Shepard with something more neutral.

It's mostly just the player's attachement to the character that fills in the blanks I think. If you managed to play ME1 and not recruit Garrus then I imagine you get a very different feeling experience with him in ME2 despite how little the game actually alters him.

Posted August 8th by Moonray
Moonray
 

Don't you meet Garrus in ME1 briefly whether you recruit him or not?

Posted August 9th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

He does make contact but idr if he contacts you physically or via a comm message to request to be on your team.

Posted August 9th by Fox Forever

Pretty sure you meet him in person before discussing Eden Prime/Saren with the council.

Posted August 9th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Yea I think the game forces some kind of meeting but it's brief. I can't recall if ME2 mentions it or just assumes you have no idea who he is.

Posted August 9th by Moonray
Moonray
 

In ME2 Shepard and Garrus both remember each other by name. But Shepard says "Garrus Vakarian?" in a questioning tone.

Posted August 9th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king
Reply to: The Problem with Video Game Reviews
Enter your message here

Site Rules | Complaints Process | Register Complaint Facebook Page
GTX0 © 2009-2017 Xhin GameTalk © 1999-2008 lives on