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The UK advertising Standards Agency (ASA) has found that Electronic Arts (EA) did not mislead potential Mass Effect 3 players about the ending of the game.

In a ruling the regulatory body said that it could not uphold complaints raised, and that it will take no action against the firm.

At issue were promises made by the firm in its promotional material on its web site. This material suggested that players would have some involved control over their character’s destiny, something that finished players disputed.

Claims like “your choices drive powerful outcomes, including relationships with key characters, the fate of entire civilizations, and even radically different ending scenarios” were disputed by three people who argued that Bioware has “misleadingly exaggerated the variety of outcomes available in the game and the differences between the outcomes”.

Electronic Arts responded, saying that it thinks that the “ending experience of Mass Effect 3 (ME3)” is represented in the “last three to five hours of the game”, something that made some sense to the ASA.

There are some spoilers in the decision, so visit it at your peril. However, we can say that EA argued that the ending is determined by a large number of factors, including players’ total score and assets, and that some people could get a more bombastic ending than others.

The ASA agreed with EA and did not uphold the complaint. “The ASA acknowledged the complainants’ belief that players’ choices in the game did not influence the outcome to the extent claimed by EA,” it says.

“However, we considered that the three choices at the end of the game were thematically quite different, and that the availability and effectiveness of those choices would be directly determined [by] previous performance in the game(s).”

via The Inquirer


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