Mass Effect Conversations Are 'Designed To Be Unforgettable'

Earlier today Stephen Totilo put together a nice piece about Mass Effect 3, and why the game now allows you to play Shepard as a gay man. Now Bioware itself has released a developer blog which explores the ways in which the team has attempted to improve the way relationships are built and sustained in the game.

Some, quite rightly, worried about how relationships would be handled in Mass Effect 3, especially considering the disappointment many had with Dragon Age 2. It looks as though the team is attempting to make the whole thing more dynamic and natural..

Now, more than ever, the relationships in Mass Effect evolve naturally. Characters react to your choices and actions, including, of course, romantic ones. We give you the opportunity to make every interaction mean something in the long term. It’s not simply about completing a conversation to get on to the next one; it’s about how you interact during each conversation. And it’s about each choice you make to evolve that relationship.

According to the blog the Mac Walters, a lead writer at Bioware challenged his team to make every conversation feel "unforgettable", and create memorable moments.

Conversations with characters in Mass Effect 3 are more than just opportunities to gain information; they’re designed to be unforgettable. I challenged each writer to make every moment memorable. The moments didn’t have to be long, and they didn’t require a lot of words, but they had to mean something—to the character, to Shepard, and hopefully to you.

Mass Effect 3 comes out next week, and I'm really looking forward to seeing how the whole thing pieces itself together. In Bioware I trust!

The Roadmap to Love and Happiness [Bioware Blog]


    I wonder if by 'memorable' they meant 'suckithaters.gif' dancing memorable? Otherwise each decision and conversation in both ME has been readily forgettable so far.

    Though I have been wondering aloud lately if that is a fault - or a shortcoming - of the medium moreso than the actual games themselves... Something to internalise for longer.

    They're already memorable. I can easily recall most of the conversations in ME1 and 2. What was seen in the demo was pretty lame. Some of the dialogue didn't even make sense.

    "You're not supposed to call me Commander anymore, James."
    "Not supposed to salute you either."

    Wut? What does that even mean? What is it supposed to insinuate? From what we've seen, the writing is kinda lame.

      I get the point you're trying to make, but the example you've given doesn't convey it very well. It's kinda self explanatory, I'm not sure how to even explain it. He's basically saying he still respects Shepard and so will treat him/her with the same respect he always has. Not sure how that's lame or nonsensical.

        So that's what he was getting at.

        What about that bit where Shepard is talking with Anderson, and he says "It's not so bad when you get used to the hot food and warm beds" or something. Is that implying that he didn't have a warm bed on the Normandy? His quarters looked pretty comfy to me. And he also had a culinary expert onboard.

        I dunno, most of the dialogue seems corny or forced, like out of a fanfic or something. I hope it's just the start of the game, and improves later on.

          Didn't shepard get thrown in prison after the Arrival DLC or something? dunno haven't played it, but i guess that's what he's getting at?

          That made sense actually. The line was used to convey that he isn't used to a cushy civilian life.

      I can't recall a single conversation, and can barely remember the themes, styles or tones of any of them.

      I mean, I'm sure my character was angry in some, confused when talking to Mordin, creepy when talking to anything with breasts and flippant when talking to human males, but all of those things are fairly superficial, and certainly not memorable.

      I do remember having moments where I (personally, not my character) was embarrassed to be playing a game with such poor scripting and scenes (though those moments did lead to interesting conversations with non-gamer onlookers at the time), and at times I laughed nigh-on uncontrollably at how bad some of it was.

      I sure can't distinctly recall any 1 moment from the games.

    There was only one memorable conversation, it involved punching a nosy reporter in the face xD

      That was definitely a memorable moment in ME2 :D

    Trollface Shepherd? Oooh kaay.

    Anyway, if my previous playthroughs are any indication, any love interest I have will be dead by the third act. My Shepard has had a string of bad luck there.

    So long as I can still falcon punch a reporter in the gut

    If there's one thing that I've learned from Bioware, is that they do love to talk absolute shit.

    I'm expecting a terribly written ME3.

    (This is coming from someone who 1000/1000'ed ME1 & ME2, and has completed 14 playthoughs between them).

      You sound like someone who has played Mass Effect games a fair bit. In the second one, who are the best companions to use if my Shepard is a gun-loving thug?

        Miranda and Kasumi.

        On insanity, Miranda having access to both Warp and Overload helps with resistances + her passive to group, and Kasumi's Flashbang is borderline overpowered.

        Combine that with choose Liara's Stasis bonus power on your Soldier, and there's nothing that will give you trouble.

        But if you're talking about it from a roleplaying point of view, a gun loving thug would like Jack and Grunt for company. :P

          I've used Jack and Grunt a bit, and it's cool having them support me when I'm being a prick, but I like the sound of wielding excessive power so I'll give the ladies a whirl. Thanks!

    Maybe Mass Effect 3 will merely emphasise the chasm between cinema dialogue and game dialogue. I mean, it can be really quite embarrassing sometimes - like losing your pants on the train in morning and having to spend the rest of the day in Y-fronts. "I can't get no respect." You pretend like nothing happened, but everybody knows . . . everybody knows.

    Do these guys pay writers? I mean actual writers, not a random old chap with a comb-over and elbow patches. Maybe they just make it up as they go along. Because, let me tell you, some of that stuff should of never made it past the ol' editing desk; just truly awful - like . . . elbow batches and greasy comb-overs always are.

    It just seems to be the attitude, "Heck, any rube can write dialogue, let's just do it ourselves! Yeee-haaah!"

    Not any rube can write dialogue, friendo. Not just any rube. Point Break has better dialogue than Mass Effect. Point Break!! (disclaimer: Point Break is pretty much the best film of all time).

    The end.

      *"Should HAVE never made it past . . ."

      "Should of" is just dumb.

        Thank you for correcting me, Fordsworth. You . . . complete me. And you probably wear elbow patches.

          I believe it's spelt "batches".

            Where? In opposite world! No, I'm only joking, crazy internet person. What was I thinking - elbow patches?

      Bioware is the company that hired Jennifer Hepler, a writer whose crowning achievement thus far has been MITH: Operation Smoking Jaguar.

      As the below image explains, Bioware produce some of the best, and some of the most godawful, worst writing in the industry:

        Oh, thank you. Some good, some bad. That's OK. But who am I to criticise, huh?You can't win 'em all. I just like flicking towels in the locker room.


    My personal opinion is that the first two games most memorable diologue form me came when the characters were being sarcastic or funny (or trying to be).

    From ME1-

    Shepard: You think I give a damn. That's cute.

    From ME2-

    Shepard (to Jack): It's OK we're not here to hurt you!
    Jack: Ah shit. A pussy.

    In fact, I felt that the Jack character as a whole was hugely memorable. Once you got past her appearence, she had some of the best dialogue, and displayed a greater variety of emotion than all of the other characters put together.

    Make them more memorable, take a leaf out of Obsidian's book with the underrated Alpha Protocol and make them timed events with actions linked them.

    I remember Gilbert and Sullivan... but that's my ringtone sooooo
    I guess I also quote assuming control a lot but that's not really conversation >_>
    I found ME1 and 2 to have some good lines, some funny lines and some horrible lines, but none stand out as 'memorable.'

    Has anyone tried using kinect for dialogue in the options? Its bit of a gimmick, but I kinda enjoyed speaking the dialogue options

      I'd consider using it purely for the ability to quicksave.

      No idea why they can't enable it for mics...

    I should go...

      Wish I could go...

    How has no one quoted "I'm Commander Shepard and this is my favourite store on the Citadel" yet? That's like meme status right now.

    unforgettable? probably by making extra dialogue DLC only which is bundled with overpriced merchandise.

    I think this picture reminds me why I love the dialogue and the expression of Shepard in Mass Effect 2

    Best. Shepard face. ever.

    I can't wait to never forget the horrible vitriol of James Vega's conversation.

    Fuck you BioWare, you got it right with 2, just fucking DO THAT AGAIN.

    Here's hoping that I can emotionally support my male squad mates by saying nice things when they dribble their boring life stories, without them asking to get it on, but knowing bioware I'll have to treat them like dirt just so they don't hit on Shepard .. bah

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