Mass Effect 3 falsely advertised, says BBB

Better Business Bureau reports BioWare's promises for meaningful player choices in spacefaring action role-playing game not fulfilled.

The Mass Effect 3 drama continues. Since the game launched last month, fans have vocally expressed their distaste for the endgame, claiming BioWare did not allow players to fully forge a unique destiny. Now, these users have scored a strong ally: the Better Business Bureau.

In a post to the firm's consumer news and opinion blog, BBB director of marketplace services Marjorie Stephens explained that BioWare directed a misleading advertising campaign for Mass Effect 3.

"The issue at stake here is, did BioWare falsely advertise?" she wrote. "Technically, yes, they did."

Stephens made her claim by analyzing two of the game's much-distributed marketing taglines. The first line she examined was a promise that Mass Effect 3 players will be able to "experience the beginning, middle, and end of an emotional story unlike any other, where the decisions you make completely shape your experience and outcome."

Of the line, Stephens says BioWare did not deliver players the ability to fully craft their own unique experience. "There is no indecision in that statement. It is an absolute," she said.

The second marketing line Stephens referenced was, "Along the way, your choices drive powerful outcomes, including relationships with key characters, the fate of entire civilizations, and even radically different ending scenarios."

Regarding this statement, Stephens says BioWare's messaging is very subjective. Reading this line, she claims, a player would have a difficult time reaching the conclusion that "the game's outcome is not 'wholly' determined by one's choices."

Stephens ended her blog entry by noting companies have a responsibility to accurately craft their marketing messaging.

"The lesson to be learned here is companies should give careful consideration to how they word their advertisements. Otherwise, there could be detrimental effects, especially in the era of social media and online forums."

Last week, BioWare announced Mass Effect 3: Extended Cut, a free piece of content headed to gamers this summer. The content aims to address fans' concerns regarding the Mass Effect 3 endgame by providing "greater context," but no new endings.

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"Mass Effect 3 falsely advertised, says BBB" was posted by Eddie Makuch on Wed, 11 Apr 2012 08:34:24 -0700
Filed under: Video Games


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