How would you like Mass Effect to end?

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How would you like Mass Effect to end?

Post by JamesStone on Wed Feb 06, 2013 10:55 pm

IT is great, in my opinion. It fits perfectly with the theme of the game, it adds a layer of cunning and sofistication to the plot, and it makes one of the best IPs in the generation not ending in total batshit anti-logical insanity.

Yet it lacks something: an actual ending. Considering Bioware is deciding to stick to their guns, even if they are hypothetically rigged to explode in their faces, many fans turned to Headcannon to make up for that black hole of stupidity the original endings are.

Mine goes like this: The Crucible is the ultimate Reaper trap. A device, given to the galaxy species if their resistance is too strong (Which explains why the blueprints only appeared in the Mars Library now, the Reapers uploaded them to the archives when they arrived) to ensure they would never, ever win. In my headcannon, the Crucible is a massive EMP transmitter, sending a shockwave, which the Reapers are immune to (It's programmed to not go off if it recognizes full Reaper code, not just fractions of it like it on the geth, or EDI). They have been using the trap since the beggining of times, to ensure organics dropped all their resources into building it, giving them only what they need to know, oblivious to the fact they're building their own coffin. The Crucible uses the Catalyst (The Citadel's massive arrays)
But here's the twist: Due to the unique conditions the Protheans had (their cycle lasted much longer than any other), they were able to detect the trap and modify it, allowing the usage of the Reaper code to actually destroying them, causing the system frying EMP to cause a massive overload in Reaper ships, causing them to explode. They left a hidden program in their library which would add the subcode, modifying the Crucible to destroy the Reapers (I imagine a mission in which Shepard would discover some info regarding Protheans, and some notes - reading them would be optional - explaining that the Reapers left the library intact, but it being too damaged to tell why, and what they did with it).

The Reapers attack the Citadel to bring it to Earth, to try to make Shepard go through the beam and into it, and making it easy to put together the whole fleet, to be destroyed in the EMP. In my headcannon, the Reapers are created with the species, but they need a speaker. A great individual, worthy to represent the species in Reaper form and talk by them. One mind, defining how the Reaper thinks, acts and is. Otherwise, the Reaper lacks a personality, becoming a "simple" warship. In this cycle, Shepard is the one they deem worthy of such "gift", and try to obtain him at all costs. They planned to indocrinate him to make him willingly want to join them (How well would you think it would work if the Reaper could be controled by someone anti-Reaper? Consequences... unpleasent - for the Reapers). But when the Crucible landed, they noticed something. A new code. Somethiing they couldn't change without a human hand (the pannels are in the room where you fight Saren in ME1, and the Keepers are no longer controlled by the Reapers). So in their desesperation, they can't risk Shepard not being indocrinated.

The last 10 minutes of the game are the Reapers attempting to fast-indocrinate Shepard - by messing with his mind - by giving him three choices:

Destroy - not really a choice the Reapers give Shepard, but the last bit of Shepard's mind trying to fight back the Reaper attempts to control him. If this option is chosen, Shepard wakes up in the Citadel Tower room, battle still ongoing. He attempts to walk towards the pannel but it appears to become more and more far away. Shadows start to appear close to Shepard, and it appears they still have control over his mind. But at this point, an image of the LI/best friend comes and illuminates the darkness, shortening the walk towards the control room until it's right in front of Shepard. Harbinger appears, taking many holographic forms (Virmire Casualty, Mordin, Thane, Legion, LI, TIM, Kai Leng, kid etc...), and Shepard gets a dialogue line. If he awnsers Paragon or Renegade, he survives after activating the unmodified Crucible, showing he has the strengh to continue. If the neutral response is picked, he dies after the explosion. If he survives, at 6000 EMS, he wakes up in an hospital bed, with all his squadmates (ME1, 2 and 3), Anderson, Hackett and Victus at his side. If a LI was picked, the others will leave shortly after, Shepard and him/her will have a fluffy talk, then kiss, end of game. If no LI was picked, the game will end with Shepard looking at the sunset throught the window.

The EMS contribute towards this scenario in these ways - 6000 EMS give the nice ending that I described. 5000 EMS means that the Crucible was lightly damaged in the trip towards here, meaning that Shepard will require more Paragon and Renegade points to survive, because the Crucible will lightly damage all porters of the Reaper code (it will also hit the Normandy, leaving the shields low enough to be slightly hit by the explosion. Engineer Adams and the least picked Squad mate will die). 4000 EMS means that full research towards the Crucible was impossible, and it will target both. The EMP will hit all with the Reaper code, even if incomplete, but just knociking them out, will still destroying the Reapers. The Normandy shields will be out, meaning Engineer Adams, Dr. Chakwas/Michel, the least picked squad mate, the LI and Joker will die, some from the impact, others when the Normandy falls to Earth (it doesn't evacuate). At 3000 EMS, it will send the Overload with no distinction, destroying everything Reaper code related (Shepard, EDI, the geth ships if presented, the WHOLE Normandy - everybody dies - and any geth. The Relays get badly damaged). At 2000 EMS, the overload will target all Reaper technology, completely wiping out everyone said at 3000 EMS, the Relays and all ships in the galaxy (The cores are mass effect drives, Reaper technology), sending it towards a Dark Age.

Control - This one is the half indocrination. The Reapers are so desesperate that they don't care about ReaperShep, they want Shep to activate the damned thing, period. After the Control is picked and the cutscenes roll, Shepard finds himself in a bar, resembling Purgatory, with only one door. The game's objective is through that door. Through that door is a pannel, and after you go in, you can't go out. If you go through the door, controls will be stripped from you and you will be forced to activate the Original Crucible, EMPing the shit out of the fleet. But in this bar there are people, of course. The most important people in your journey: Your LI, Wrex, Aria, Anderson, Hackett, Mordin, Legion, Thane, Saren, Udina, and others. Each one of them has unique dialogue. Some dialogue options will get you "awareness points" (no Paragon or Renegade needed at this point). With enough awareness points, command will be taken from you and the camera will focus on Shepard, as he says "this isn't right. THIS ISN'T RIGHT!" and puts his hands around his face. The screen goes to black and we hear "Assuming Direct Control". Shepard will wake up harshly in the room where he fought Saren, and move towards the pannel. As in Shadow of the Colossus, you can make him move slower by holding the movement button down, but that only serves to slow the inevitable. You go to the pannel, Harbinger taunting you and explaining you the trap. As Shepard gets there and he starts typing in the console, a choice comes up. If picked, Shepard grabs his gun and starts pointing it towards his head. Considering Harbinger is in direct control, the player needs to make Shepard pull the gun towards his head. When it's close enough, Shepard will pull the trigger and kill himself, causing the same thing to Harbinger, still guarding the entrance to the beam, that happened to Sovereign: he will lose all shield power, making the fleet focusing him. If you saved the Destiny Ascension in ME1, or found the Kwunu Dreadnought in ME3 (if both, the Ascension will take priority) are ordered by Hackett to destroy Harbinger from orbit. The Reapers come to attack it as they predict what will happen, but the Normandy and Alliance Fifth Fleet will come to cover them. If there's no dreadnought available, Harbinger will fight and cause some casualties on Earth until the Rannoch fleet (Geth, Quarian or both) can blast him out of the sky. When this is done, the soldiers are able to move into the Citadel, and activate the Crucible (modified).

At 6000 EMS, perfect score, no losses. At 5000 EMS, The Reapers make some casualties in the Fifth, but still good. At 4000 EMS, the Dreadnought/most of the support fleet is destroyed, but it manages to fire. At 3000 EMS, the dreadnought is destroyed and so is most of the Fifth fleet. At 2500 EMS, the dreadnought, the fifth fleet and the Normandy go down. At 2000 EMS, they can't take Harbinger down fast, and for taking to long, most of the fleet dies before the Crucible can be activated.

Synthesis - full indocrination. After cutscenes, Shepard wakes up in his dream world. Only this time is different. The oily shades are now aliens, none the same and none known. Shepard keeps moving until he finds, at the Center, a Leviathan, Harbinger. Harbinger talks to Shepard, and he starts having flashbacks (Him modifying the code, him willingly stepping to a machine in the Citadel which teleported his processed matter to a gigantic ship, with a deactivated Reaper inside. Harbinger explains their motives to Shepard (most of it bullshit), and asking to accept the gift he was given. He can either do that, or revolt. If the first is picked, Reaper Shep appears from the ship and starts destroying shit. After 3 minute cutscene of the battle, the Reapers win and the cycle continues (there's a secret ending, where if you have 8000 EMS, you can win conventionally). If the other option is picked, Shepard flies towards the Crucible, sending a message to the Normandy identifying himself, rushing the fleets to protect him (at 1500 EMS, it fails, Reaper Shep and everybody dies). When he gets there, he latches to the Crucible, serving as an array, transmitting the activation codes to the Normandy, needing some minutes to process. During this time, the Normandy will be attacked hard, and the number of survivors from both inside the Normandy and the fleet depends on EMS (5000 EMS for all surviving Normandy crew and maximum fleet survival, 2000 EMS for everybody dies and the Reapers win). If sucessful, the code activates and Reapers win.

If Shepard dies in any way, the final scene will be his funeral, where some characters give a speech. The type of mood and the people assisting depends on choices and endings.

Blimey, that's a massive wall of text. And sorry to all the FemSheps out there, but putting he/she all the time would be hard.
That's my headcanon. What's yours?

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Re: How would you like Mass Effect to end?

Post by richie21 on Wed Feb 06, 2013 11:17 pm

refuse i wanna tell the Reaper warlord to CRAM his choices then battle Harbinger in an epic showdown that leads to all the dead Reapers! RAWRRR!!!

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Re: How would you like Mass Effect to end?

Post by magnetite on Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:08 am

I'm good with IT. Nothing better than a mind blowing ending.

Shepard wakes up, defeats the Reapers, followed by cut to credits would be fine with me. The rest can be left open to interpretation in my books.

Another thing would be a funeral scene to honor all those who gave their lives for the greater good throughout the trilogy.

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Re: How would you like Mass Effect to end?

Post by Ghost Of Kesak11 on Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:48 am

I want to have an ending were you defeat the ending and that I have an option to have a happy ending (for me building a house for tali.)

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Re: How would you like Mass Effect to end?

Post by DoomsdayDevice on Thu Feb 07, 2013 1:54 am

That was a good read. Not exactly what I would like to see, but some parts of that I really liked.

I'd like to see indoctrinated agent Shepard in a post control scenario, killing his friends (or if EMS was high enough) pulling the trigger on himself.

In synthesis - we see all kinds of happy reunions in a perfectly happy place, until the camera zooms out and reveals we're actually looking at life in the virtual reality inside of the new human Reaper. Everybody has been harvested and the virtual reality has been built from our memories. Shepard is the ruling personality of the Reaper and goes out to continue the harvest.

I'd like to see a scene in which masses of people are lining up to go into the human Reaper. Like mindless zombies they are flocking to their doom inside the Shreaper, lured to it by the Reaper horn like rats by the pied piper.

Destroy, Anderson pulls Shep out of the rubble, and tells him they need to go up the beam. Shepard looks around and sees he's still near the beam in London. A few quick flashes of the decision chamber in Shep's mind and Shepard tells Anderson the Crucible is a trap. The fleets assemble to blow up the crucible, possibly taking out Harbinger in the process. Then either we or the Reapers retreat from the Sol system. I dunno.

"A good leader is someone who values the life of his men over the success of the mission, but understands that sometimes the cost of failing a mission is higher than the cost of losing those men." - Anderson
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