The Mass Effect 3 Endings You Didn’t See

Posted: March 28, 2012 in PC, PS3
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Mass Effect 3's Alternate Endings

In the past few weeks, there has been quite the kerfluffle raised about Mass Effect 3‘s disappointing endings. Or ending, really, as there isn’t a huge variation in the execution from one to the next. BioWare may be changing it, but that is really beside the point here. The following are merely some possible endings thought up for the trilogy: some silly, some sciencey, and some blatantly ripped off from other media. May contain spoilers. Enjoy.

Everyone Laughs

The final battle has ended. Shepard and crew head to Rannoch to help Tali build her new beachfront house, which is roughly the size of a typical sitcom set. During their off hours, they hang out at the new geth-run coffee shop, Consensus. In addition to romantic entanglements and other shenanigans, they also have to deal with Shepard’s “old buddy” Saren Arterius, the clumsy indoctrinated rogue Spectre. Of course, Saren’s zany schemes never pan out, and the epilogue ends with Shepard and friends laughing, freeze-framing, and cutting to credits.

Mass Effect 3's Alternate EndingsXenophile Extraordinaire

Shepard and Harbinger meet for the final showdown, but things go a bit differently than expected. Rather than find the belly of the Reaper stuffed with the makings of husks and alien tech, Shepard finds it softly lit, with some 1970s Earth-funk playing on its biomechanical speakers. Harbinger bellows out to Shepard, “You have assumed direct control…of my heart.” Shepard then proceeds to add another notch to his interspecies sexual relations belt, distracting Harbinger from giving orders to the Reaper fleet, ending with a mighty white-hot burst of energy into Harbinger’s core. And then the fleet opens fire. Shepard emerges from the wreckage, dusts his armor off, and says, “All in all, I still prefer asari.”

Always A Bigger Cuttlefish

From deep beneath the Pacific Ocean, the Great Old One Cthulhu wakes up with a throbbing headache. Wondering what the annoying, repeating “BWOM” sounds are, he rises out of R’Lyeh and marches along the ocean floor until he reaches dry land. He grabs a chunk of skyscraper and chucks it at the nearest Reaper destroyer.

“Can you keep it down? I’m trying to sleep!”

And he notices, then, that the Reapers have borrowed features of the tentacle-faced Old One’s visage in their own design. Naturally, he doesn’t take kindly to these deep space berserkers attempting to cramp his style, and thus begins the galaxy’s most sanity-destroying bro-down, which leads to the Reapers heading off to find another galaxy. One with really good therapists.

Humanity returns to Earth without a fight. Of course, they are promptly driven insane and devoured, 1D3 at a time.

Mass Effect 3's Alternate Endings

Tangent Universe Crossover

The final battle looks hopeless. Shepard sits on the bridge of the Normandy, waiting for Hackett to give the order. The fleet warps in… to find a massing of identical Normandy SR-2s waiting. Each is helmed by a different Commander Shepard, almost all of whom look completely different from one another. Some are male, some are female. Some have scars, some are fresh-faced. But they’ve done it. They’ve brought an unstoppable army. After all, if one could take down Reapers on his own, a whole army of them could do even more.

The side effects of an army of Commander Shepards after the Reaper defeat, however, are quite grim. Reporters with broken jaws fill emergency rooms, endorsements from myriad Shepards drown out all other sounds, and the small number of remaining batarians in the galaxy are mysteriously murdered within a week. Citizens of the Milky Way are driven insane by being asked the same questions repeatedly by the Shepards. Shepards begin ignoring their teammates and crossbreeding with each other. Soon, the human race has diminished and the Shepards are their own evolutionary branch, ruling the galaxy with an iron fist.

Leaving a lone scholar to wonder: would it have been so bad to let the Reapers kill us?

Mass Effect 3's Alternate EndingsMass-ive Attack

Rather than push their collective resources into construction of an unproven Prothean artifact which, for all they know, is just as likely to house an AI running on insane troll logic rather than being a weapon to kill the Reapers, the people of the galaxy focus on repurposing an already available asset: the mass relays. Fitting them with the finest radio telescopes available as gunsights and readying ship-sized chunks of inert mass as ammunition and then repositioning each one so that the shots intercept a Reaper vessel, the coalition attacks the Reapers in the Sol system with their new network of oversized railguns. While they are unable to hit every Reaper, they manage to make enough of a dent that taking back Earth proves to be much easier than previously imagined.

The Venus Gambit

The salarian STG lives by the mantra of “fight smarter, not harder”. Therefore, they concoct a plan to lead the Reapers over Earth into a trap: Have one or two fleets engage at long range from just outside the orbit of Venus; the distraction fleets draw the reapers close to the planet (well known in astronomy for its inhospitable environment and corrosive atmosphere; the exceptionally solid Russian Venera probe lasted 23 minutes on its surface).

Following this distraction, the second battle group would flank the Reaper fleet, pushing them into the acidic atmosphere. Those Reapers lucky enough to make it out would be easy pickings for the combined fleet. With the smallest number of casualties possible, this is the proposed “happy” ending.

Bookends

After arguing with Anderson and the Illusive Man, Shepard limps down to where he would meet the Catalyst…only to find a shattered mess of holographic chunks on the floor and a lone turian changing the heatsink in his shotgun. Shepard gets closer, to recognize the Spectre that was supposed to evaluate him.

“Nihlus? Aren’t you…Aren’t you dead?”

“I was only mostly dead.”

“How did you get here…I mean, before me and everything?”

“Don’t you ever listen? I said I move faster on my own.”

Nihlus steps forward and asks if Shepard has a way out planned.

“You made it here. I think you’re gonna make a great Spectre, Shepard.”

Shepard shakes his head with a smile. “Man, we have a lot of catching up to do.”

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Comments
  1. Rexly says:

    I’m torn between the Cthulu and the multiple Shepards ending. The fact that multiple Shepards are endorsing different stores on the Citadel was hilarious!

  2. ChalupaBell says:

    I don’t think Nihlus’ five minutes of badassery was enough. He was way too cool for five minutes.

  3. PascalTekaia says:

    I love the idea that all these Shepards have nothing better to do in their free time than break reporter’s jaws day in, day out.

  4. Khan_kok says:

    Sigh and another article makes their own alternate endings for Mass Effect 3. How original

  5. Massacred says:

    Never Forget:

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