Archive for July, 2012

Mass Effect is going to be permanently half-dead within 10-15 years.

Posted in HJ Journal on July 1, 2012 by HolyJunkie/Jakob

Picture this: It’s 10-15 years into the future. A kid who was 11 at the time hears stories from his old man or uncles about the wonders of two video games called “Mass Effect” and… let’s say “Left 4 Dead.”

Okay, before you Dev-Savvy dudes start railing on me about how “Origin is crap, Long Live Steam,” let me explain that this is going into a certain aspect beyond that Origin is crap thing.

Origin is crap, I admit. The very idea of it, while admirable, was just a complete botched attempt to dislodge Steam’s dominance. It’s like Origin was their 1st-level Paladin that had an attack of opportunity on Steam’s 20th-level Monk, and then EA rolled a 1.

It’s that much of an embarrassment, really… Wait, I’m already talking about that same crap.

Anyway, Mass Effect and Left 4 Dead 2. Say it’s 10-15 years later. technology is relatively the same. Steam still works fine, Half-Life 3 isn’t out yet, and iPad 3s are worth $200.

Okay, that’s wishful thinking, but you get what I mean.

A little boy, who was at age 11 by 2012, is now 26 years old, and he’s hanging out with his ex-gamer badass Dad and Uncle one day. The grizzled ones are both talking about old games they played back in the first decade of Y2K. The boy’s curiosity is piqued when he hears mention of two excellent games called Mass Effect and Left 4 Dead.

Different games, I should say, but they both are fitting for the example I’m going to conjure right out of my ass.

The young man asks about these games, and the Father and Uncle then go on about how much fun they had with fighting the Geth, Paragon’ing Saren into shooting his brain, fighting the Human Reaper and spitting in Illusive Man’s face, and whatever the hell they did with the romancing mechanic. They talk about how they managed to best a Tank on Insane difficulty with just the two of them and crappy pistols. They talked about the immense amount of fun they had.

They both mention that their computers crapped out a long time ago, so they would need to reinstall everything in order to allow the young gamer to play the old nostalgic pieces of excellence.

Left 4 Dead- and Left 4 Dead 2 for that matter. – THE ENTIRE EXPERIENCE, I SHOULD ADD.

  1. Log onto Steam
  2. If you already have Left 4 Dead 1/2 purchased, download everything.
  3. If you haven’t purchased either, fork over the money and enjoy old pieces of the past.
  4. Download the DLC. While waiting, go read the father’s old copy of World War Z to get you in the zombie-killing mood.

Price is as follows: However much L4D and L4D 2 costs, and maybe the cost of a new computer in case your current one craps out. That’s it.


  1. Buy Mass Effect 1 on Steam, because it’s available on Steam and that’s cool.
  2. Buy a new copy of Mass Effect 2, utilize the code, and buy ALL of the DLC separately.
  3. Buy a new copy of Mass Effect 3, utilize the code, and buy ALL of the DLC separately.
  4. If your computer craps out, you’ll have to reinstall everything on a new computer. Worst-case scenario, the codes won’t work on account of being used and YOU’LL HAVE TO BUY EVERYTHING OVER AGAIN!

The costs are as follows: 3 games- prices vary, but may remain high- possibly double that if you need to buy a new code. PLUS all the extra dollery-doos that would go into the DLC and crap. Hell, if your computer craps out, you might need to buy a new computer entirely.

Now let’s go over the steps on how to legally gain a functioning NES and a cart of Super Mario Bros. 3.

  1. Purchase NES machine- maybe from a pawn shop, or a well-organized pawn shop with more dignity and contacts with people who can fix old machines- said shop happens to be run by a kindly Jewish woman- Wait, that’s too specific.
  2. If you’re purchasing the NES machine- unless the person who runs the shop is a greedy piece of sh*t, you will most likely have the cords available.
  3. Obtain a television with an RF input… or was it output? Anyway, if one’s not available, purchase an RF-AV switchbox. Those things are remarkably cheap, and you can get them in most hardware stores that have computer parts.
  4. Obtain game cart- which considering its nostalgia value, would be sought after and kept safe from all sorts of damage.

OR, thanks to the Wii Shop Channel, and assuming you have a Wii (given the insane sales the Wii pulled through, the question is not “Who has a Wii?” but instead “Who doesn’t have a Wii?”)

  1. Obtain Wii if you don’t have one
  2. Obtain Wii points card- or use your credit card or crap if you’re lazy.
  3. Purchase game for like, 800 points
  4. OPTIONAL: Obtain Gamecube controller- or Classic Controller if you’re nuts.

Total price: Whatever the Wii cost, whatever the controller cost, and the price for the points.

My estimate for how it all turns out, here’s my guess on most expensive to cheapest.

  • Wii with Mario Bros. 3
  • Mass Effect Trilogy- as in the entire experience
  • NES with Mario Bros. 3
  • Left 4 Dead AND Left 4 Dead 2- with all DLC.

That’s not even counting the Emulators that can play those ridiculously old games for free. I personally like Emulators for those old games, because no one- and I mean NO ONE is making N64 carts anymore, but you can still get the same gaming experience many years after the last N64 finally breaks beyond repair.

In 10-15 years, no one’s going to be making copies anymore. That means within that time scale, the number of available copies of the complete Mass Effect experience will drop to a big fat goose egg. Even if you manage to save a used copy of Mass Effect 3, you can’t get the DLC, you can’t achieve the entire Mass Effect experience. A huge portion of the game series is the ability to import your character data from the previous games to apply changes to the sequel story. Much of that is ruined because the experience is ultimately very incomplete. In 10-15 years, there’s no way you can fix that… Well, unless you’re a Bioware Employee who can code the entire experience into a form that emulators can work with. First off, that sort of thing might get you fired. Secondly, Mass Effect’s scale is just humongous compared to… well, most games on the market today.

“Oh! Well it’s massive scale is why it’s worth more!” So says a complete idiot. Yeah, the very same idiot called the entire series “A complete waste of time” after taking one look at the Ending and thinking “Meh, lame. I prefer my endings to be explosion-tastic and all good with no consequences! DURR”

Yeah, I saw the endings. I saw all the endings, and I saw the extended cuts too. I found the endings to be kinda weak, but I also found the Extended Cuts to contain a crapload of spoon-feeding. Good lord, guys. Ever bloody think about what can happen given the information the endings gave?

Let’s take the so-called “Paragon Ending” for example.


Shepard’s essence is torn apart atom-by-atom until he vanishes entirely. From there, Shepard has assumed direct control over all Reapers. That’s excellent and cool-sauce- oh wait, you can’t give Tali any lovin’ anymore.

… Huh… Wait, what can we do now?

Oh yeah, Shepard controls the Reapers now. Shepard now has unwavering control over a humongous fleet of giant cockroaches that built the Citadel and Mass Relays. Hm, what to do?

What can we do? Whatever shall we do? The Mass Relays are all destroyed and that dumb kid Catalyst with the bland VA is toast! Whatever shall we do-


Good lord, man. Controlling the Reapers means you get to control Reaper tech. That means you have the most advanced machines in the history of existence. You think a stupid ending is going to be able to tell you everything Shepard can do now that he/she controls THE GODDAMN REAPERS?!

Jeez, you guys love being spoon-fed, doncha?

I could also go on all day about the Renegade Ending and the In-between ending, but I’m done ranting for now. There’s an excellent lightning storm and it’s a calming show.