Mass Effect 3 has already gone gold, barreling down the stretch, heading towards the finish line to the thunderous applause of millions who are gobbling up every piece of media that has Mass Effect 3 stamped on it - from the recently released 'Take Earth Back' trailer to publicity stunts involving launching the game into orbit.
However, in terms of playability support, one aspect that has always differentiated Mass Effect -- and not in a good way -- from other similar games on the PC is the complete lack of gamepad support.
One aspect of PC gaming that has always separated it from consoles is the keyboard and mouse support, making some genres infinitely more playable on PC's, such as real-time strategy games and even FPS titles, due to more precise and exact aiming with a mouse as opposed to an analog stick. But some PC gaming enthusiasts still prefer the feel of an analog controller in their hands.
Hoping that Mass Effect 3 will break this trend? Unfortunately, device support for Shepard's final 'hurrah' will be limited to the keyboard and mouse. In what would appear to many gamers as a simple and easy solution, BioWare has stated that there is no malice in omitting the support -- it's simply a matter of the BioWare development team's being overworked and stretched too thin to provide adequate implementation of the proper GUI. BioWare senior designer Manveer Heir took to Twitter to respond to frustrated fans.
"There is a development cost in terms of time/effort to get all the graphical user interfaces so 360 buttons show up on PC. It may seem minor, but our GUI team was already stretched thin, and things were coming in at the last minute, so we couldn't add more work."
Ensuing comments from frustrated fans painted BioWare as a company that simply did not care about supporting players, saying they had a "we don't give a damn" attitude. Heir explained further that this isn't the case.
"Definitely not 'we don't give a damn.' It's unfortunate and I understand why people are upset, but there are dev (sic) realities, sadly."
Yours truly has experienced both Mass Effect 1 and Mass Effect 2 on both consoles and the PC. Though I was dismayed initially at the lack of gamepad support, I endured and overcame the issue. Considering that those who play the game on the PC have never had gamepad support, there is likely to be very little weeping and gnashing of teeth amongst the PC gaming populace as a whole.
I'll firmly straddle the fence on this issue while blowing away the Reapers on my PS3 come March 6.
PC Ranters, what is your take on the lack of support again? Indifference or angst?
Mass Effect 3 will be released March 6 for the PC, PS3, and Xbox 360.
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