ColJendon / Member

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ColJendon Blog

Mass Effect 3: Leviathan And Why It Matters To Me

Obviously, SPOILERS for Mass Effect 3 AND Mass Effect 3: Leviathan follow.

So the reason I feel Leviathan is one of the greatest DLC packs for the Mass Effect trilogy is because it answers one of the biggest questions in the lore, a question the Catalyst and his little speech tried to allude to vaguely: Where did the Reapers come from? It totally renewed my love for the series because, honestly, the whole debacle with the ending of ME3 and everybody hated the ending and they were clamouring for a change, it just left a bad taste in my mouth. I didn't think the original endings were all that bad. I feel as though people couldn't get past the fact that all their questions weren't answered, and they don't know what happened to their team.
If anybody knows BioWare, they know that there is going to be DLC. I assumed that before ME3 even came out. If someone makes a movie with a cliffhanger ending, nobody gets up in arms and cries, "I need closure now!" You'll just have to wait until the next movie! Is it a little different because all of our choices seemingly had little to no effect on the final outcome? Yes, of course. But still, I felt the whole outcry and "Hold The Line" movement was just kind of... childish. ANYway...
Back to Leviathan.

A Leviathan and Shepard
So these aliens, the Leviathans (even though that's not their proper name), we saw at the depths of the ocean on a far-flung planet. They reveal that they were the first apex race of the galaxy, and that they have the power to control other organic lifeforms. They referred to other races as their "tools" to accomplish whatever they wanted done. It's similar to the concept of Reaper Indoctrination, but less sinister. These Leviathans observed other races and found that they would eventually (read: over countless generations) build for themselves synthetics to carry out their will. Basically, making robots to do all the hard work and make their life easier. The synthetics would sooner or later realize who they were and rise up against their makers (Quarian and the Geth). So these Leviathan, being the haughty god-complex-imbued race that they were, realized that "Tribute does not flow from a dead race." They then built The Intelligence.

The Catalyst

This Intelligence was created by the Leviathans and was given one purpose: preserve organic life at all cost. This Intelligence grew and studied the development of organic races, and came up with the idea for the Reapers. Once an organic civilization would reach the apex of their evolution, their kind would be "harvested" and then "preserved" in a Reaper. The Reaper would have the entire essence of a species within itself and would be a kind of monument to that race, thus "preserving" them.

So basically, these guys were the first race in the galaxy to achieve sentience and rise to power. Their actions brought about the Reapers and started this whole cycle of harvesting. Insane.

This just makes me love Mass Effect even more because it adds a whole new dimension! These Leviathans are basically the creators of the Reapers, even if they were made by the Intelligence betraying them. This just makes me so excited at the possibilities of stories about these creatures, before and after the ME trilogy. Crazy.

Dragon Age III or Bodahn and Sandal are the new C-3P0 and R2-D2

So I was playing Dragon Age II today (still am, in fact) and at the beginning of Act 3, Bodahn asks Hawke if it would be okay if they left his service in the near future. He says that Sandal got offered a position in Orlais because the Empress was impressed by one of his enchantments.

ENCHANTMENT!

Now, before this I had a conversation with Sandal because he said he had seen a "scary lady" by his bed and her laugh frightened him. And I was already thinking about how cool it was that they were in Dragon Age: Origins as well as Dragon Age II. So when Bodahn said that they were headed to Orlais after this, I thought to myself, "Maybe Dragon Age III will be set in Orlais?"

Thedas

Now if we look at this map of Thedas (which isn't the entire Dragon Age Universe, incredibly), DA:O started out the series in Ferelden, in the south-east. Next, DA2 went to Kirkwall, a city on the southern border of the Free Marches. It would only make sense that the Dragon Age saga continues on towards Orlais and the west, because who doesn't love a good romp through a mystical land? Going to Orlais would continue to open up the Dragon Age universe while still being close to Ferelden and the Free Marches (lands with which players are already familiar. I just think it would make sense to do that: reveal the lore going from one town/province/country to the next.

Obviously, this is all just speculation, but it would be awesome if it were true. I have high hopes for the Dragon Age series (which were not tarnished by DA2), and I seriously look forward to the next installments.
Oh, and about that scary lady in Sandal's room, I wonder who that could be?

Flemeth

Anyway, I also found this, which furthers my excitement, and shows I'm not the first to notice this. There are some people who have put WAY more thought into this that I have. Either way, if it's in Orlais or not, I will definitely be pumped for the new game. So that was it; I just wanted to say that Dragon Age lore continues to surprise and enthrall me, and I expect it to do so for the foreseeable future. Cheers!

P.S. So, if Bodahn and Sandal are to be staples in every Dragon Age game, then I guess that would make them the C-3P0 and R2-D2 of Dragon Age. Always there, observing and helping, never really major players? I don't know, just throwing it out there.

Mass Effect Loose Ends

So I am anxiously and eagerly awaiting Mass Effect 3. I have my pre-order all in line and I am sooooo excited. Anyway. So, in my anticipation I wanted to complete another playthrough of Mass Effect 1 and 2, playing as FemShep (I've never seen that side of the ME galaxy, might as well now!). Going throught the first game again, I've been noticing some things. And this really has no far-reaching implications, just a few observations. ^_^

I'm pretty sure I remember Casey Hudson saying that they wanted to do a lot more DLC than they ended up doing for Mass Effect, and that leads me to believe that there are things in the game that would have been developed more with the addition of DLC. For instance, in Fallout: New Vegas, there's a bunker that you can see and travel to, when you get the first DLC pack, you can actually go into it. But it is there without the DLC. I believe they built similar things into Mass Effect.

For one, there is a giant room in the traffic control center of C-Sec that looks like a big Ender's Game battleroom. There's also an elevator-looking thing right next to it which leads me to believe they had plans to make a DLC for that area. How cool would that have been? I would have loved to face off against VI enemies yelling at my squad "THE ENEMY'S GATE IS DOWN!!" You could have even done online multiplayer or leaderboards with your friends, etc. the possibilities are... well, not endless, but full of potential!

Furthermore, there's that Dr. Chloe Michel on the Citadel who is being harassed by persons claiming to work for someone named Banes. If you follow the leads and track down any information on this guy, it leads to a dead end. Captain Anderson says he's dead and that Admiral Kahoku knows about him; if you ask Kahoku about him, he says Banes is dead and that's the end of it. Something just seems a bit fishy with it, fishy in the Mass Effect "there's-more-to-this" way, and I bet that's another loose end that was never tied off with a DLC pack.

I was just thinking about how cool it would have been to have more DLC for Mass Effect 1, and I would even be happy if they released it some time after Mass Effect 3, even. Sure, the game came out over 4 years ago, but that doesn't mean people don't still play it. I fully expect that, once Mass Effect 3 comes out, I'm going to want to go back to Mass Effect 1 and start a new career, shaping the world with the end in mind. I know I'm a bit of an eccentric weirdo when it comes to this, but I'm sure there are others out there like me... right?

Forever Alone

No? That's okay.

My Favorite Video Games Live Memory

Well, there are a few parts to this, the first being the costume contest at a show in Chicago about a year ago. A little hispanic kid about 9 or 10 years old was dressed as Master Chief. It was clear he made the costume himself, as it was mostly cardboard; it wasn't terrible, but it was shoddy in an adorable kind of way. There were about half a dozen other contestants, with professionally-made costumes or at least halfway looking professionally-made costumes. Anyway, when it came time for the kid to say into the microphone who he was dressed as, he lifted up his helmet and said in a sweaty voice, "Master Chief... from Halo... Halo 3!" It was so awesome, and the crowd voted him as the winner. I felt proud to be there.

The second part was at the same show, when Tommy asked for everybody to hold up their phones, some guy in the balcony held up a laptop, to which Tommy said, "Is that a laptop?!" He asked if it was a PC or a Mac, and the guy said "Mac!" And everybody booed. LOL. Hey, you gotta know you would have received a little flak with a Mac going to a video game show. Oh man, it was epic.

It's The Most Wonderful Time... Of The Year

And no, I don't mean Christmas (though that time *is* quite wonderful). I mean E3. Ah, what a great way to break in the summer. Every year, we get loads of new information on upcoming games, announcements of new games in development, and, as always, lots of awkward moments during press conferences. :D
Just kidding (maybe).
Anyway, I am so freaking excited about all the new stuff that was announced/given more information. The three games I'm most looking forward to are Mass Effect 3 (of course), Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, and BioShock Infinite. Sure, Arkham City, NFS: The Run, Minecraft (on Xbox 360! ... It's Minecraft... on Xbox!), and a bunch of other games look AMazing, but seriously, I can't get 'em all. I swear, I would buy SO many games if I had the money. And stuff like E3 is great, but it's also depressing, like, "Man, I'm going to be so broke!"

But yeah, I love these things. My wife is very gracious and has tolerated me being completely immersed in G4 coverage and websites like GameSpot and GameInformer. She is excited about some of the Kinect stuff, though; those kinds of games she actually does get into.

But anyway, I just love being completely surrounded by loads of video game news and new game announcements and new trailers and everything else! Maybe one day I'll be able to go to E3, but I'm not going to hold my breath. It'd be fun, but I don't know how soon I'll be getting into the video game industry. Oh well.

GameSpot is so awesome. Forever.

So I frequent a lot of gaming sites, and aside from gameinformer.com, GameSpot is my favorite. Game Informer I use for news, but for community, GameSpot is where it's at. The forums here and the TV shows, the reviews, the Unions, it's all great!

Also, something happened to me today which has solidified my faith in the GameSpot awesomeness. I got a package, and I was like "Hmm.. I wonder what this is?" I opened it, and it had Divinity II: The Dragon Knight Saga in it! And I was like "NO WAY!" I had entered to win a few weeks ago while watching Today On The Spot by answering a trivia question about it, and I won!! I couldn't believe it! I never got an email or message on here telling me, so this was a complete (and welcome) surprise. I had seen this game and I thought it looked pretty awesome, and I almost bought it the other day, but now I'm glad I didn't!! I am so excited to just dive into this game and go crazy!! Thank you GameSpot!! :)

Television, Television

OK Go's song about the incredibly popular home entertainment device has never been as apropos as it is today. TV has grown completely out of control and it kind of saddens me. Sure, I love watching TV [not all of it, but a select few shows --How I Met Your Mother, Craig Ferguson, The Soup, Seinfeld, and The Big Bang Theory], but the idea of TV programming just upsets me. How a station once devoted to music (it even named itself Music Television) can now show barely any music (and I use the term lightly) and fill its best slots with shows about girls being extremely young and pregnant. Also, it irks me to no end how "reality" TV shows have completely blown up and are hugely popular. How did that happen? I mean, honestly, has anybody ever watched one of those shows? It's completely nonsense! It's a bunch of crap rolled up in a layer of scripted and unnecessary drama with a sprinkling of hot girls to catch people's attention. It's all the same, inane, boring garbage.

Anyway, it just really bothers me how much stupidity is on the air. Now don't get me wrong, there are fine shows out there, but the amount of trash through which you must sift to get to it hardly makes the effort worthwhile!

Now, I said all that to say this:

I wish there was a video game show (much like Today On The Spot) in the mornings. It could be in the same time slot as Good Morning America / Today / whatever other morning shows there are. I looked to see what G4 (the channel supposedly tuned to the video game audience) had playing at 7:00 and 8:00 in the morning, and it's just the same filler crap that they play from 1am on. I've been thinking about it for a bit now, and I think it would be very awesome. I would be getting ready for work, eating breakfast, checking weather, maybe battling some Darkspawn in Dragon Age Legends on Facebook, and watching a video game morning show. I would honestly wake up earlier to watch it if there was a quality show (read: not X-Play) devoted towards video games. Anyway, that's my two cents.

Christmastime

(Not that I'm on this site everyday being super active, but) I'll be gone for the weekend enjoying the Christmas things at relatives and what-not in the Quad Cities, so I'll say to the people (if any) who read this: Merry Christmas! I hope you have a great time with family and/or friends and/or enemies. And yeah. Peace!

Okay, going.

So OK Go is a band. A pretty good band at that. And they have this song called White Knuckles. They recently opened a contest to remix this song, so anybody could get the multitracks and spice it up as much as they want. My friend Linell and I have been working on our own remix and we finished it today. If you want to, or if you just feel bored, you could go check it out and if you like it, you could vote for it! That'd be sweet and I'd like you a lot more haha but yeah, even if we don't win this contest, I'm glad to have been a part of it. It's always fun to do stuff like this, and I love audio engineering and all this post-production stuff like remixing. Once I get my own ProTools rig (we used Linell's this time), I'll probably remix this song a lot more times just to have fun. Same thing with Lily Allen's music (random, I know). Anyway, if you do, sweet, if you don't, sweet. And if you're reading this, thanks for making it all the way to the end.

Making Enemies

Why doesn't anybody obey the speed limit while driving? I mean, nobody does. Why? It's a law just like it's a law that you have to pay taxes. Why does everybody break it without batting an eyelash? Just a thought. It really upsets me sometimes when people speed by me like it's freaking NASCAR. There's no point to getting to your destination a few seconds later (save for situations like childbirth or hostage situations), why put yourself and other people at risk? It just doesn't make sense.

On a less... contemplative note, I saw The Social Network today. Apparently, a theater by my home has $5 movies on Saturday mornings. New releases included. I may have to start going more often. Anyway, it was a really great movie. It's seriously dominated my thoughts the entire day. I talked to my family about it all day (I think they're getting sick of it). It was just an incredible movie. Also, the music really drove home the intensity of the movie. And I think I figured out why I (and a lot of other people) love this movie: it's about something we all understand and can relate to.

When you go to see an opera, it's understood that you should read the playbill before it begins so you know the back-story. Knowing what has come before gives you context, allows you to understand references made by characters, and enriches the story. The same is true with this (and probably everything else, too). Most everyone knows what Facebook is. If they're not already on it, they've heard about it and/or seen how it works. It's something we all know about, and it gives the movie more meaning. If the movie had been about a guy who made a really successful website about gaming (like GameSpot), less people would enjoy it, as less people have experienced GameSpot than Facebook.

Don't get it wrong, it's not a gimmicky movie full of cheesy Facebook references. Far from it, in fact. It's an engrossing story with great film-making to deliver it in spectacular fashion. When it ended, I thought to myself, "That's it? Geeze, it was just getting good!" It was over two hours long and I could have watched it for another two hours. Ever since I left the theater, I've just wanted to watch it again.

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