Mass Effect 3’s original controversial ending won’t be in the Legendary Edition - it’ll be replaced by the extended cut.
The aftermath of the release of Mass Effect 3 is primarily memorable because of how much the internet lost its collective mind over the game’s ending. Such was the backlash that petitions raged and FTC complaints were filed - and eventually, EA and BioWare altered the ending through the release of a DLC ‘Extended Cut’ expansion.
The new Mass Effect: Legendary Edition remaster of the trilogy unifies all downloadable content from across the series into a new package - and as part of that, players won’t have an opportunity to experience that original, controversial ending - instead, the Extended Cut is the new default, canon experience.
“We wanted to include as much of the content as possible as DLC, and then also incorporate it into the experience as you would if you’d downloaded that content. For those people who had the extended cut, that sort of became the experience for them, and so that will be the experience for everybody playing the Legendary Edition as well,” explained Legendary Edition project director Mac Walters, who also served as a writer on the trilogy and director of Mass Effect Andromeda.
“Ultimately, y’know… you finish a game and there’s things that you wished you had been able to do, things that you’d want to add on… for me, the extended cut was really that opportunity to add a little bit more love, a little bit more context around the ending. So to me, that is part of the canon.”
The Extended Cut of Mass Effect 3 added a variety of new cutscenes to the final portion of the game, tweaked dialogue in existing scenes, added a fourth major choice to the game’s ultimate finale, and offered varied epilogues offering more detail on how your choices changed the Mass Effect universe.
Some other minor ending dialogue tweaks were inserted by the Leviathan DLC, which is also included here - and so if players undertake that mission, they’ll be able to hear that dialogue in the Legendary Edition, too.