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Everything posted by Oblarg

  1. You don't seem to get it. The Normandy is not some super-ship. It is outright stated in the first game that its main innovations are a big drive core and the stealth abilities. It is not primarily a combat vessel. It did not single-handedly defeat a reaper - the alliance fleet destroyed the reaper. It makes perfect sense that it would lose a fight against a cruiser - the fact that the only Collector cruiser is unable to defeat it in a pitched battle at the end of ME2 really puts a damper on the Collectors' supposed ability to threaten alliance space. You cannot talk your way around this. Now, whether or not this is a plothole or simply questionable writing depends largely on what BioWare intended - I've admitted as much in previous posts. Because my problem is not with the Normandy crashing after the fight, or with the similarity in performance between the upgraded and un-upgraded normandy. My problem is with the premise of the game being built around the fact that the Collectors are supposedly some massive threat, when upon closer inspection it's apparent that they're a complete ****ing nonissue. They could never advance past the undefended fringe colonies because they simply did not have the force to do so. They could never have completed their reaper. I don't give two ****s that the Normandy crashes after the fight. You, again, are missing my point. The **** does this have to do with any of the problems I have with the game? You could go on doing what, arguing against points I never made? I made a very concise list of the main problems I have with ME2's plot. They're all fairly large problems - so large, in fact, that the plot ceases to make much sense at all when you take them into consideration. You, however, refuse to discuss any of my actual problems in favor of just saying "I don't agree" over and over again ad nauseam. Why do you keep bringing this up? I don't care how much you like the game. I never attacked you for liking the game. Everyone else here is simply discussing the plot. Why can't you do the same? Interesting - "meandering mess that doesn't really go anywhere" sums up ME2 fairly well. You're given a foe who upon even a cursory inspection are not really a threat, and are told, in a moment of very questionable strategic sense, to go gather a bunch of teammates to charge through a relay into completely unknown conditions to deal with this non-threat. The entire plot is a throwaway excuse to hold together a bunch of otherwise separate character missions - that would be fine, perhaps, if it weren't done so ham-handedly. The character missions themselves are quite fun. It's a pity they're not brought together in any coherent, sensible manner. You see, here's the thing - the point I think you're trying to make (I'm not sure, because your posting isn't exactly eloquent) is something which has already been discussed and resolved a few posts earlier. Many of the points I'm bringing up could either be seen as plot holes or simply questionable story directions, depending on what you think BioWare intended. Do you think BioWare intended the Collectors to be a non-threat? If so, then sure, these aren't plot-holes - rather, it simply makes it seem as if every character in the Mass Effect universe is braindead (possible exception for TIM, who would then just be exploiting the fact that everyone else is braindead). So be it, that would be a coherent plot, albeit a really stupid one. However, I don't give BioWare that much credit. If BioWare really did intend for the Collectors to be some huge threat to Alliance space (which I contend they did, based on the dialogue), then they are most certainly plot holes - it's a pretty gaping plot hole if your Big Bad who wants to attack Earth doesn't have a force capable of penetrating even lightly-defended space. By now, I'm not attempting to convince you of anything - you've long ago showed that you have no interest in changing your position. I'm simply trying to get you to discuss what exactly you feel is wrong with my appraisal of the plot and its inconsistencies. This is something everyone else in the forum seems capable of doing. You should try it. The **** does "honesty" have to do with it? Everything I've said has been based directly upon game content. ...So, what? Is this supposed to gain you some sort of legitimacy, because you don't come here to actually discuss the game?
  2. Good for you. If you're not willing to discuss why you find them unconvincing, then you're essentially ruling out any possibility of reasoned discussion. You see, the fact that you disagree with me means nothing. Other people in this thread disagree with me, too. The fundamental difference is that their responses are well-reasoned and geared towards promoting a discussion. You, on the other hand, seem interested in little more than the ideological equivalent of putting your fingers in your ears and shouting "you're wrong!"
  3. There, paraphrased that for you. Why, exactly, are you still posting?
  4. Brady deserved to lose after that pointless hail mary bull**** when he gave up that interception. No one should win after such a blatantly stupid, ego-driven pass attempt. Any sane quarterback would have thrown the ball away there...
  5. The thing is, even were we to discard the lines about how they'd need to target earth to finish their reaper (in fact, let's be super-generous and say that they can do it without entering alliance space and thus without really risking their only cruiser and still being able to play to their strengths), it's still unclear what a new reaper would do. Sure, they could fling it at the Citadel and hope it fares better than Sovereign, but really, is that sound strategy? Especially coming from a hyper-advanced machine race? You'd think they'd have a better Plan B than "try the same thing over again and hope it actually works this time." Remember, as well, that in ME2 the conduit is deactivated - so it's unclear how they'd activate the relay in the first place without being able to get someone on the inside to take Citadel control (Saren's job in the first game, and the entire reason he spent so much effort searching for the conduit). So, even if we were to A) assume that the collectors could finish the reaper with only colonists from lightly guarded systems and B) further accept that trying to take the Citadel again with the new reaper is sound strategy (both assumptions require you to ignore quite a bit of the narrative and/or to cease critical thinking), it's not even clear that they could activate the citadel relay at this point to begin with. The really frustrating thing is that none of these problems would be particularly hard to write around - a few changes could make the plot a whole lot stronger and more believable, but as it is ME2's plot just strikes me as several partially-developed ideas strung together without any rigorous proof-reading. Good concepts are not enough - you have to implement them properly, and BioWare really dropped the ball there.
  6. Well, yeah, I wouldn't have a problem with the Collectors being a small hit-and-run force were it not for the fact that several of the characters outright state that they'd have to target earth to complete their human reaper, something which, given Earth's defenses and the minute scale of the Collector force, seems an outright impossibility. Once again, this seems like an oversight, not an intentional feature - BioWare could very well prove me wrong in ME3, but that opens a whole new can of worms as to why everyone in ME2 (most importantly Shepard) seems to labor under the illusion that the Collectors somehow pose a legitimate threat to alliance space (rather than simply the fringe colonies). It seems the options here are that the Collectors are stupidly weak and could not have ever completed their plans, or that Shepard and everyone he works with are effectively braindead for the entirety of ME2. I'm honestly not sure which of these I dislike the least.
  7. Honestly, greylord, I don't know why I'm bothering to respond to you when you're seemingly not interested in reasoned discussion so much as baseless ad-hominem. Still, here goes: Again, you're missing the point. The collectors, as they were presented, were incapable of attacking anything more than defenseless fringe colonies in the Terminus systems, because their entire fleet consisted of one fairly weak cruiser (rationalize away, but nothing changes the fact that your frigate, unupgraded, is able to destroy it in the final battle) and a collection of floating eyeballs. They were even driven off by a few defense cannons on Horizon. How, pray tell, would the Collectors even come close to accomplishing their goal of finishing the human reaper without the capability to penetrate alliance space? Right now you're just showing your own ignorance of Mass Effect lore. The Normandy version II is still a *frigate.* From the Codex: Frigates are light escort and scouting vessels. They often have extensive GARDIAN systems to provide anti-fighter screening for capital ships, and carry a squad of marines for security and groundside duty. Unlike larger vessels, frigates are able to land on planets. The most important role filled by frigates is reconnaissance. Sensors, unlike ships and communications employing the mass effect, are limited to the speed of light, therefore a stationary observer can detect a vessel a light year away only when its light year arrives a year later. Because faster than-light attackers always arrive before defenders can detect them with luminal sensors, attackers can always surprise defenders. For defense, fleets surround themselves with spheres of scouting frigates scanning for enemy ships and transmitting warnings to the main body. Frigates achieve high FTL cruise speeds because of their high-performance drives. They also have proportionally larger thrusters and lighter design mass, allowing them greater maneuverability. In combat, speed and maneuverability make frigates immune to long-range fire of larger vessels. In fleet combat, frigates are organized into "wolf pack" flotillas of four to six. Wolf packs speed through enemy formations, hunting enemy vessels whose kinetic barriers have been taken down by fighter-launched disruptor torpedoes. The wolf pack circle-strafes vulnerable targets, using their superior speed and maneuverability to evade return fire. Now, your frigate is not particularly special, as far as combat goes. The Normandy SR-2, unupgraded, is spec'd to the original Normandy (which, if you'll recall, is built for stealth and minor skirmishes, not for pitched combat), minus the size changes and a few other misc. upgrades (leather seats? haha) - you'd know this, too, if you paid attention to the dialog in-game. Now, explain to me, if such a vessel is able to destroy what is revealed to be the only collector cruiser, how exactly were the collectors much of a threat at all? Perhaps the reason the Alliance wasn't doing anything about the abducted colonies was because the collectors were a chicken**** excuse for an enemy - Zoraptor's theory is certainly more reasonable here than just accepting that somehow the Normandy is a super-ship and Joker is a super-pilot and somehow Shepard & Co. were able to do with one reconaissance frigate what the alliance wouldn't have been able to do with, you know, an actual fleet? What the **** are you even saying here? None of that is relevant. You can defeat the collector ship with the unupgraded Normandy. The Normandy is a single frigate. The systems alliance has a very large fleet. What threat did the collectors legitimately pose to human space? The irony here is that I haven't accused anyone of anything - I voiced my opinion on the game, and you jumped down my throat at a perceived attack on your love of the game. If your best argument is really nothing more than "well, you couldn't write better!" then you shouldn't bother replying in the first place. Christ, from the animosity you're showing you'd think I insulted your mother or something, not simply disagreed with you about the writing in a video game. Grow up. Well, this is rich - the guy spouting the ad-hominem has the balls to also demand "less whine and opinion and more objectivity." Go figure. So anything short of an outright break in the narrative's continuity is not really a plot hole? Glad to see you have such high standards.
  8. Fair enough, I could see that if you construe the plot such that the collectors aren't intended to be the massive threat that everyone in the game keeps saying they are, then it's not really a hole so much as a questionable plot direction. But I honestly think it's much more likely that BioWare were simply being very lazy writers. In either case, the collectors were a pretty feeble enemy and the second game felt like more of an excuse to have you do loyalty missions than any cohesive story. What's interesting about your interpretation, though, is it makes the railroading of the player into TIM's service that much more frustrating - if you accept that BioWare intended the collectors not to be a genuine threat, then you are essentially stuck playing the part of an intensely gullible hero being transparently exploited with no way of doing things properly. It also sort of brings up the question of why not a single character in-game has the wits to ask "why are we worrying about these guys when they only have a single ship that can't even deal with defense turrets?" You've still left unanswered the question of what sense it makes, of all possible ways to prepare for a suicide mission whose conditions you know nothing about, to go about gathering crew members and solving their personal problems. This simply seems like a very, very stupid course of action to me. I'm all ears for possible explanations.
  9. You win the fight even without upgrades. The SR2 is twice as big, sure, but it's still a reconaissance vessel. It's still a frigate. One designed for stealth, at that - not even the "wolfpack" type designed for offense. If greylord would stop the preteen antics and read the in-game codex, he might have learned that (and in addition learned that the upgraded firepower is only equivalent to a cruiser-class gun, and that the upgraded armor is pretty standard for any larger battleship - not that this matters, as previously mentioned you win the fight even without any of the upgrades). Now, if the collectors only possess one cruiser that can't win a pitched fight against a frigate, how could they possibly hope to succeed anywhere other than undefended fringe colonies? How is it that your primary foe being a complete and utter non-threat and your primary approach to how you're going to deal with this foe being completely moronic are not "genuine plotholes?" I mean, if you want to argue that the plot is fine and the ME universe is just populated by retards, go right ahead. But somehow, I don't think that was BioWare's intent.
  10. I mean, stuff like that doesn't bother me so much. Sure, it makes no sense, but it's not as overtly immersion-breaking as the big baddies who everyone is afraid of planning to abduct everyone on earth with a single cruiser that can be destroyed by a frigate that isn't even designed for combat. I mean, everyone already knew you were working for Cerberus (by virtue of that, in the future, information travels instantly to everyone), so while advertising that fact on your ship isn't wise, it's not going to really change all that much. The main problem is that you're working for cerberus in the first please.
  11. Nice argument. Very well thought-out. Would read again.
  12. Overthinking things? If this is past the depth of thought that should go into writing an RPG plot, then why bother hiring writers at all? If the Big Bad of your game have a plan which, after a cursory glance, obviously cannot work, then your game has a big problem. They could at the very least lampshade the problems if they're too incompetent to write something that doesn't have them. This is a game which advertises itself based on the strength of its narrative. It's pretty shameful that the narrative doesn't stand up to even slight scrutiny. I find it very hard to stay immersed in a game in which pretty much every aspect of the plot invokes Contrived Plot-Mandated Coincidences to not fall apart. TIM explicitly states that he has done nothing other than bring Shepard back exactly as he was. No loyalty programming, no failsafe, nothing. There is no physical limitation stopping you from saying "**** you, I'm leaving," and, in fact, given how awful Cerberus is (especially in the first game, what with setting Thresher Maws on alliance troops and turning colonists into husks), there's no compelling reason why you shouldn't. You missed the point. If you are given a suicide mission in which you will you be traveling into unknown space to fight a foe you know nothing about, the way you prepare for that is not to gather a bunch of crew members and sort out their personal issues. That is completely absurd. The number of situations in which such a crew would be actually useful is pretty slim, and as by your own admission TIM (and thus Shepard) knew nothing about what was waiting for them, why the hell would you spend the entire game in preparations that have almost no chance of being remotely useful? What good would all those crew members have been if Shepard had gone through the relay and been met with a collector fleet instead of a collector ship? Or if the collectors weren't so conveniently holed up in a base with a vulnerability for each specific crew member? Or if you hadn't so conveniently crash-landed on the base in position to infiltrate it in the way you did? Just about none at all. Hell, you didn't even know there would be a base there (of that sort, at any rate) at all! I could buy this if it were done in any half-sane way. My problem here is not with the concept, it's with the implementation. Sure, loyalty and focus are important for a team to get a mission done, but if you're going to go that route how about having the manner in which the loyalty mechanic works make at least a modicum of goddamn sense? There is no logical connection between the loyalty of a crew member and whether or not rocks will fall on him. There is no logical connection between the loyalty of your fire-team leader and whether or not the door jams and forces your tech expert to get out and push (thus taking a rocket to the face). The way in which your teammates fail if they're unloyal simply makes no sense, at all. It's piss-poor implementation, and that's why it feels like a last-minute clooge rather than a well thought-out plot element.. Send a probe, send a strike team that doesn't involve the guy who is so important that you needed to bring him back from the dead, to something rather than blindly rushing in with faith that it'll all work out in the end. These are the rudiments of strategy here, it'd be nice if the characters in the Mass Effect universe didn't all appear to be gigantic ****ing morons. The very reason the council will not listen to Shepard is because they do not believe the reapers exist. Shepard could fix this, easily, if he were to show them the giant reaper corpse floating in explored space. Furthermore, Shepard would not even be in this position (where neither the Systems Alliance nor the Council will help him) if he weren't working for the gigantic **** running a terrorist organization whom he has no legitimate reason to trust. And what of TIM, while we're at that? Why would he not show the reaper to the council if he were truly worried about saving the galaxy? And if he's not, where is Shepard in all this, to call him out on that? Shouldn't it become bleedingly obvious at that point that either TIM shows the reaper corpse to the council and wins over the support of everyone, or he's secretly working towards some other goal and Shepard should have no business working with him? The characters are so ****ing blind in this situation that it hurts. They had a grand total of one cruiser (it is identified as the same ship every time you see it) and one pack of floating eyeballs. That's it. Joker is a good pilot, sure, but do you really think that, given even the unupgraded Normandy SR-2 can take out the Collectors' cruiser, it would have any chance against an actual fleet, or even just against a reasonably built combat ship? The Normandy is a recon vessel, not a battleship. The Collectors had no chance at all of penetrating into even moderately-defended space with that paltry outfit - they'd probably have trouble dealing with the routine patrolls. Furthermore, they could not complete their reaper without attacking earth (this is outright stated when you board the ship), or at least going for some core worlds. This is an impossibility. The collectors are a nonissue. And you've completely ignored the fact that even if they defied all logic and somehow managed to abduct earth and finish their human reaper, it really wouldn't be much good in bringing the rest of the reapers into the galaxy.
  13. Do tell, when in previous threads, before now, have I ever claimed I was too tired to list plot holes? Oh, that's right, you're just strawmanning. Oh well, I'll humor you: 1. Shepard working for TIM: There's simply no way this makes sense, unless all the characters are braindead. Shepard doesn't so much as blink when he's asked to enter the service of a guy who has turned entire human colonies into husks and who was possibly responsible for a very traumatic event in Shepard's past. The main reason other Shepard's previous allies from ME1 refuse to work with him is that he's now working for Cerberus - not once is Shepard given the option to say "**** you, I'm leaving," which is what any sane person would do. Furthermore, even with in the frame of working for Cerberus, you're not even given the option of telling the systems alliance that the Collectors are behind the attacks, thus eliminating Shepard and Cerberus from suspicion and gaining allies. No, you're forced to work with a terrorist organization who clearly have ulterior motives, at the expense of Shepard's credibility, culminating in the absolutely atrociously written encounter with Kaiden/Ashley on Horizon. 2. Spending the entire game recruiting a "team": Why the **** would you do this? This forms the backbone of the plot, but given the premise it's just about the most useless, stupid way you could go about solving your problems. You know that your eventual goal will be going through the Omega 4 relay, but how the hell is a super team of soldiers supposed to help you with that? You know absolutely nothing about the nature of the Collector homeworld or what defenses it has, nor do you take any steps to find out. Through pure serendipity it just so happens that they only have one ship and some floating eyeballs to defend their base, and you crash land in the perfect manner to allow all of your squadmates to take a part in the resulting mission. It's contrived to the point of absurdity. There were so many ways this could be fixed, too - hell, even some simple exposition to tell you that you have *some* information about the Collectors that lets you know an assault team is going to be important in the final confrontation would be a vast improvement. As it is, Shepard should have been scrapping together a ****ing armada, not a group of super-soldiers with personal problems. Which brings me to... 3. The loyalty system: I've already mentioned this, but I'll go over it in full - it's not really a plot hole so much as an example of what, in general, is wrong with the game. Why, pray tell, does whether or not I've sorted out my teammates' personal issues change whether or not they get hit with falling debris in the final battle? I have no problem with the plot of the game taking a back seat to character exposition, so long as it's all tied together in a convincing manner. This is not. This feels like a last-minute write-in when they realized that the plot of the game had nothing to do with the majority of the missions. This doesn't make me feel like I've accomplished anything by ensuring the resolve of my crew. This simply makes me feel as if I've finished the game's arbitrary checklist of Things You Must Do to Not Have a ****ty Ending. 4. The Derelict Reaper: There are more things wrong with this than I care to count, but I'll stick to the obvious ones. Firstly, why the **** would you rush in there, knowing the research team lost contact, without any other attempts at gathering information? Yes, I realize Shepard is supposed to be Mr. Suicide Mission, but this isn't just a suicide mission, it's boneheaded stupidity. Furthermore, a derelict reaper sitting in a known spot seems like a great opportunity to convince the braindead council that you're not talking out of your ass - is there any convincing reason you, rather than telling them about it and using it to gain the support of the greater galactic community, choose to run in there, get the IFF device, destroy the reaper in the process, and then immediately hook it up to your ship? 5. The Collector Plan: Simply, the collectors, despite all the hype and the constant reminders of just how AMAZINGLY DANGEROUS they're supposed to be, are a non-threat. They somehow plan to abduct the entirety of humanity (Shepard himself mentions that they'd have to go to Earth to fill their ship), yet they don't bother to have more than one cruiser? A cruiser which, at that, is ultimately destroyed by a frigate which is designed for stealth rather than combat (the Normandy isn't some sort of super-ship, it's a reconaissance vessel)? Sure, picking undefended fringe colonies might be easy, but there's no way they'd ever succeed in getting much further than that. Of course, this could have been fixed by simply giving them more, and more imposing, ships and weapons, but they were unable to do this because they needed to keep the final battle contrived as **** so that they could weakly justify the fact that you've spent the entire game finding soldiers to fill your ship rather than taking any reasonable course of action. Furthermore, they were building a reaper - fine, so what? What good would a reaper do? Attack the Citadel again, except this time without the benefit of a Geth fleet (well, they could have that single Collector cruiser, that'd sure help!) and hope that they do better than last time? Pretty shoddy plan, there. And even then, it couldn't possibly work - Sovereign's attack relied on Saren being able to use the conduit to gain access to Citadel control - this is why you spend *all* of ME1 searching for the conduit. Without that, a new Human reaper couldn't do anything to open the Citadel relay and bring the rest of the reapers through. The entire thing reeks of half-developed ideas forced together without any real thought as to how to make them work. In actuality, that describes most of the game pretty well.
  14. Well, Kreia *isn't* a sith, though. She *was* a sith. She is neither sith nor jedi by the time she joins your party. There are several gigantic plot holes in ME2, but I'm too tired to list them now. Perhaps I'll compile a list later.
  15. Rationalize away, hurlshot, but the fact is the "loyalty" mechanic in ME2 is poorly thought-out and feels like a phony excuse to tie together a game which ultimately has you spending an inordinate amount of time doing things that have nothing to do with the central plot. Plot-wise, ME2 is a trainwreck. There's no way around it. The individual character quests are interesting and well-done, but they're not tied together in any convincing manner and the primary plot has so many gaping, unexplained holes that it's near non-existant.
  16. Yes, indeed, the quotes are now fixed. I'm not a huge fan of the new skin, but it's not terrible.
  17. They need to fix the ****ing quotes - they suck.
  18. Oblarg


    Riot will always be one of my favorite bands. Tragic loss.
  19. No, it's because if elected I'm rather afraid he'd do something psychotic like reverting to the gold standard. Sure, he's commendable for being the sole Republican candidate who seems to legitimately believe what he says and who doesn't shamelessly pander to a certain demographic, but he's still hopelessly disconnected from reality - only in different ways from the other candidates.
  20. I'd argue, wals, that the two are not inextricably linked and that pursuing the former is a futile endeavor which, even were it successful, would result in, at best, questionable gains for the market. SOPA and PIPA appear to me to be little more than censorship tools dressed up as anti-piracy litigation, promoted by corporations which make money by exploiting restricted distribution in a way which is quickly being made obsolete by the digital age. Record companies and movie publishers are losing relevance, and bills such as these are nothing more than a desperate bid to keep a now irrelevant service profitable by restricting our access to information. In their current form, they are clearly not usable to truly combat piracy. They are usable to shut down websites that would provide alternate avenues to content that do not profit the sponsors of these bills.
  21. So how do you feel about the seizure and forced extradition of one of the heads of MegaUpload? Even if you are against piracy that sort of behavior sets a dangerous precedent. Also none of these guys made money directly from pirated content, mostly came from subscriptions and advertisement spots. @TrueNeutral: good post There are things about this which still do not sit well with me (the RIAA's claimed "$500 million" in damages is ****ing absurd and I sure hope that's not taken seriously), but on the whole I think it's good that the site was taken down given how brazenly criminal the activities of their top executives were. If anything, it's a good example of why we don't need **** like PIPA and SOPA - there already exist perfectly effective legal avenues for pursuing those whose copyright infringement poses a genuine threat to the market.
  22. Well, I was initially peeved at this MegaUpload situation. That is, until I read the actual indictment, at which point it became abundantly clear that their top executives were shameless criminals and seizure of the domain name was probably justified. I do not wholly condemn end-user piracy, but piracy for profit is despicable, and those guys quite clearly deserve to be in jail.
  23. The free exchange of ideas is one of the few things which I strongly believe requires no (or minimal) regulation, by its very nature, to function. The internet is a communicative tool, not an alternate reality. Why should we needlessly restrict this legitimate extension of the basic human right to make ones voice heard, especially over an issue as comparatively trivial as piracy? I refuse to cede my own rights on no more justification than the (possible) benefit of several large corporations, especially when I fail to see compelling evidence that piracy is the drain on the industry which it is purported to be, especially in the case of businesses which overwhelmingly profit purely from antiquated IP law and exploitation of artists, and especially in a law that is so ambiguously worded as to make its abuse for purposes which have nothing to do with fighting piracy essentially unavoidable. The copyright law needs to be rewritten to work in the age of the internet - the internet does not need to be reworked to fit old copyright law. You'd probably call me a "big-government" type, and I think this is a ****ing outrage.
  24. Sorry, BioWare, but I don't want to tie my facebook account to my Mass Effect character. That's just about the dumbest idea I've ever heard. I play video games to get away from real life. And what the **** is a "core social gamer?"
  25. Oblarg


    Early Queensryche, obviously - just about anything is better than the drivel they're producing these days.
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