Thursday, March 6, 2014
BioWare co-founder Ray Muzyka Finally Comments On Mass Effect 3 Ending Scandal

BioWare co-founder Ray Muzyka Finally Comments On Mass Effect 3 Ending Scandal

It’s way overdue, but finally the co-founder of Bioware, Dr. Ray Muzyka has commented on future of Mass Effect in light of the third entry’s controversy concerning its ending. He spoke of new games already being built and how Mass Effect 3 executive Producer Casey Hudson and his team at Bioware are already working to bring clarity to the game’s conclusion.

Here’s the full letter:

“As co-founder and GM of BioWare, I’m very proud of the ME3 team; I personally believe Mass Effect 3 is the best work we’ve yet created. So, it’s incredibly painful to receive feedback from our core fans that the game’s endings were not up to their expectations. Our first instinct is to defend our work and point to the high ratings offered by critics – but out of respect to our fans, we need to accept the criticism and feedback with humility.

I believe passionately that games are an art form, and that the power of our medium flows from our audience, who are deeply involved in how the story unfolds, and who have the uncontested right to provide constructive criticism. At the same time, I also believe in and support the artistic choices made by the development team. The team and I have been thinking hard about how to best address the comments on ME3’s endings from players, while still maintaining the artistic integrity of the game.

Mass Effect 3 concludes a trilogy with so much player control and ownership of the story that it was hard for us to predict the range of emotions players would feel when they finished playing through it. The journey you undertake in Mass Effect provokes an intense range of highly personal emotions in the player; even so, the passionate reaction of some of our most loyal players to the current endings in Mass Effect 3 is something that has genuinely surprised us. This is an issue we care about deeply, and we will respond to it in a fair and timely way. We’re already working hard to do that.

To that end, since the game launched, the team has been poring over everything they can find about reactions to the game – industry press, forums, Facebook, and Twitter, just to name a few. The Mass Effect team, like other teams across the BioWare Label within EA, consists of passionate people who work hard for the love of creating experiences that excite and delight our fans. I’m honored to work with them because they have the courage and strength to respond to constructive feedback.

Building on their research, Exec Producer Casey Hudson and the team are hard at work on a number of game content initiatives that will help answer the questions, providing more clarity for those seeking further closure to their journey. You’ll hear more on this in April. We’re working hard to maintain the right balance between the artistic integrity of the original story while addressing the fan feedback we’ve received. This is in addition to our existing plan to continue providing new Mass Effect content and new full games, so rest assured that your journey in the Mass Effect universe can, and will, continue.

The reaction to the release of Mass Effect 3 has been unprecedented. On one hand, some of our loyal fans are passionately expressing their displeasure about how their game concluded; we care about this feedback, and we’re planning to directly address it. However, most folks appear to agree that the game as a whole is exceptional, with more than 75 critics giving it a perfect review score and a review average in the mid-90s. Net, I’m proud of the team, but we can and must always strive to do better.

Some of the criticism that has been delivered in the heat of passion by our most ardent fans, even if founded on valid principles, such as seeking more clarity to questions or looking for more closure, for example – has unfortunately become destructive rather than constructive. We listen and will respond to constructive criticism, but much as we will not tolerate individual attacks on our team members, we will not support or respond to destructive commentary.

If you are a Mass Effect fan and have input for the team – we respect your opinion and want to hear it. We’re committed to address your constructive feedback as best we can. In return, I’d ask that you help us do that by supporting what I truly believe is the best game BioWare has yet crafted. I urge you to do your own research: play the game, finish it and tell us what you think. Tell your friends if you feel it’s a good game as a whole. Trust that we are doing our damndest, as always, to address your feedback. As artists, we care about our fans deeply and we appreciate your support.

Thank you for your feedback – we are listening.


About Ernice Gilbert

Ernice Gilbert here. Founder and Editor-In-Chief of Gamesthirst. Thanks for stopping by, make yourself at home!
  • Joshua Tompkins

    I finished the game a few days ago and I can see why hardcore fans of the game would be pissed. For me, I am okay with the ending. After reading this statement, I have one main problem with it. He keeps bringing up the fact that the game has such high reviews from critics, but TRUE HARDCORE fans of the game are the ones having problems with it. The reviewers have a duty to grade the game for what it is and they do it, but the fans grade the game by their emotional investment in the series. The fans are the people you have to worry about. The reviewers just do their job and move on, while the fans get invested into everything that Mass Effect series is and if you piss them off, you are screwed. The reason fans are mad is because they have meticulously chosen each decision through 3 games because, in the end, those decisions where suppose to have great impact on the end of the game, but with the way they ended it, It does not. That is why they are mad. They have really lost a lot of the fans confidence. They built the game up to be a certain way and it was nothing like it. I think the problem has gone to far, but some of these people have put hundreds of hours into these games, and they feel let down and betrayed.

  • Ghost250

    hey ernice this is also off topic but i found what they were teasing in OXM about that “Killer Sequel & Spectacular Reboot” its Assassin’s Creed III & Medal Of Honor Warfighter. to think i was hoping microsoft was gonna announce a killer instinct 3, knew it was too good to be true. this is about as meh as i expected to be.

  • Ernice Gilbert

    Assassin’s Creed III and MOH? Really. To think these guys were about to stun us….like you said, it’s a big ole MEH, there. Thanks anyway.

  • Ernice Gilbert

    @Joshua: good points, man. I think Bioware realize that they’ve made a terrible mistake, and have to find a way to sort it… That or like you said, lose loads of fans.. Good points.

  • Joshua Tompkins

    I just read something that is supposedly from one of the Mass Effect 3 writers telling of how he and some of the other writers where left out of the loop about the ending. They usually go through peer review sessions to find problems with the ending, and to see what might work better, but the ending never went through the peer review session. The post may be fake, or it may not, but either way, the ending the poster/writer talked about was much better than the ending we got.

  • Ernice Gilbert

    Link me, Josh.

  • Joshua Tompkins
  • nick

    im writing up a piece now how this is FAR from the best work bioware has done, but in short.
    choices feel insignificant, to get the ending i wanted i had to have full pargon which means you have to do all the side missions.
    in ME2 that was no problem because they were interesting and exciting, i was emotinally invested in them.
    ME3 though there as exciting and interesting as watching grass grow!
    and THE biggest problem with ME3 is i dont give a shit about the characters!
    everyone can die for all i care i just dont have the emotional attachment i had in 2.
    even jack who i ABSOLUTELY HATED in ME2 when she died even then did i cry.
    but in ME3 when some of my most favourite characters die i could not give a shit!
    thats whats hurt me the most with this,it just does not create the emotional bond the previous games have.

  • Ernice Gilbert

    So why wasn’t all these complaints reflected in the reviews? smh.

  • nick

    because 99% of the reviewers did not finish the game!

  • JerichoDeath

    He starts with “Our first instinct is to defend our work and point to the high ratings offered by critics – but out of respect to our fans, we need to accept the criticism and feedback with humility”.

    Then, he proceeds to defend the work and point out ratings while giving only a minor nod to the feedback.
    Your true critics are your hardcore fans. They are the people to listen to, not those reviews by people that likely did not finish the game in time for their own deadline to write the review.

  • Ernice Gilbert

    Good points, Jericho Death.