Walked in on Liara about to beat the crap out of Javik

15th Nov 2012

The attention to details found in Mass Effect 3 is pretty amazing. I'm on my 2nd or 3rd play through so I know the story pretty well and I wasn't planning on much more than reliving the cool parts but then I ran into a scene completely new to me. Even more amazing it's a time sensitive dialog between a base character and an extension character! Now that's quite an example in integrating DLC as well.

[Spoilers Ahead]

When i first read about the Prothean extra character (Javik) one of the first point raised in the article was how do you even tie in a member of an extinct species into the main story when he's an optional character? Knowing BioWare and their level of story writing others couldn't just ignore him in the game! Well I hadn't gotten the DLC on my first play through so it was only the second time around that I had him join my team. I found that they handled the situation pretty well, he had his own set of things to say when he came on missions, even manages to make his own sarcastic comments here and there. But there's a lot more to it!

I had just finished the mission on Thessia (which is a failure) so the Commander is all pissed off when he's back on the ship. I was actually surprised when i went to talk to Joker and EDI because he just gets angry at them when they try to crack a joke and tells them he's not in the mood. I was used to the casual going around speaking to NPCs and I had forgotten that the previous mission was a failure, and as such Shepard was not a happy camper. Something I had completely overlooked on previous play throughs. I thought I should go talk to the rest of the crew see how the dialogs were handled with them. Most the team members had something to say, Dr Chakwas had no special dialog (neither did the engineers), however I found Tali by the normandy memorial saying something about Liara who had just lost her homeworld. The map showed her a floor below with Javik.

That's when the story telling stepped up a bit, I was surprised to lose control to a cut scene as soon as I opened the door. Liara was pissed and arguing with Javik who was being his usual "you only lost your homeworld Asari I'm the last of my race..." to which she took offense yelling that the Asari has a name. Shepard steps in to ease things up a bit and Javik gives an inspired talk. That was the last place I expected cut scene.

To sum it up, they added an optional cutscene between a base character and an optional character at a specific point of the story only and it's out of the way. I could have completely missed it if i didn't go down to Javik's quarters, many players probably do miss things like this, with so many optional conditions to meet that's not a surprise. But I think this is what makes the Mass Effect series so amazing, everyone builds their own Shepard! To many ME3 is just a short game with a main story that doesn't offer it's price's worth in gameplay time (that perhaps made it up with it's multiplayer) and their Shepard is just this typical space hero, comes, kills, conquers. But to me Shepard takes care of his crew, and he's got friends from the previous games who are now in important places in the Galaxy like Wrex. So there you have it, people can complain about the ending all they want, the story telling in this game, DLCs included is above and beyond most other games out there! Thanks BioWare.

Everybody else can take example from this. That's DLC integration!