And the Winner is…

And adding onto my previous post I can now happily announce that the winner of Mass Effect 3’s default FemShep is our favorite GINGERSHEP!
After a week long voting campaign the red headed FemShep beat her competion like a red headed stepchild, doing all of us gingers proud. In March 2012, the galaxy will be saved by a pale faced, green eyed beauty. FemShep will appear on the Collector’s Edition of the game and will appear in her first trailer of the series. I feel that it is high time that Bioware gives her some credit. They say that only about 18% of all players play as FemShep, but I find myself unable to believe that statistics. I think there are many more out there.
The statistics looked as follows: GingerShep won with 19,576 votes, with the black haired femshep coming in at 12,838 votes. Dirty blond/brunette Shep had a meagre 5,574 and our blond pop star had a mimiscule 5,436.

Well done GingerShep, well done. 🙂

Mass Effect 3 – The Battle against the Blond

There are many ways to deal with awkward absences and one of them is to pretend that they never happened. So, for now – we’ll pretend that I have not abandoned you for over 60 days and I’ll write a review. As it is a Thursday.

The past month has seen quite an interesting movement in the Mass Effect universe. After Bioware declared that they were going to move its release on a few months, they’ve managed to keep themselves in the news through releasing trailers, statements and a beauty pageant for their award winning series.

Beauty pageant you ask, for a first person shooter? Why – yes.

Using the social Evil known as Facebook, Bioware posted six pictures of the different female leads, fondly known as FemShep (short for Female Shepard) to her fans on their website and asked viewers to vote for their favourite. The logic behind this was simple: Ever since the release of Mass Effect 1, FemShep has been ignored by her creators despite the fact that Jennifer Hale did an absolutely amazing job with the voice acting. (For myself, I always choose FemShep because there’s something… Charming about a female lead saving the galaxy. I’m tired of big, brawny soldiers running around and being heroes. Us girls can do it to). This time round, they decided that FemShep was not only going to get her own trailer (the video kind naturally) but also a marketing campaigne. And the fans could choose what she looked like. It sparked a bit of an outcry in the community. We had a default FemShep. She was a red head, with green eyes, shortish hair but not butch, and a lovely voice. But, we were game to see what Bioware had install for us.

The results were atrocious. I had gone to the page, looked at the candidates and thought: WHAT THE HELL?! I left without voting – I didn’t even want to get involved in that mess and my heart sank several levels when I realized that there was a chance Bioware might just muck this up. Eventually FemShep 5 won, a blond with luscious long hair.
And – there was a riot in the fandom.

Others, like myself – didn’t want a blond Shepard. Most of our Shepards weren’t blond. Mine was a red head. Most of my friends’ were red heads. Most of the fan fiction that I read had red heads in them. Red was the colour – and it was not there.

Luckily, Bioware seemed to have realised its mistake (after several articles like this one: and gave us a second round. And, this time – we could choose our colour. Naturally, I leapt in there immediately and showed my support to my fellow ginger ninja. And, it seems that – to date – the red head is winning, now by almost 5000 votes. The blonds are lagging FAR behind and the only one that is mild competition (and a pretty good second I should add) is brunette.

Seems that I’m not the only one who doesn’t want a blond to run around and save the galaxy.

And, don’t get me wrong – it’s not that I have anything against blonds, (we all loved Pamela Anderson in Baywatch), but I like to know that writers, creators and all of the other story tellers out there are sticking to what they started. If you give clients a specific image, don’t change it halfway through.

Stick to what we know and love.

Stick to a red headed Shepard. (To cast your vote, feel free to visit the voting page on Facebook.)

Mass Effect 2: A Commander’s Journal – Entry 1

Commander’s Log – Entry 1 – 2185CE

The date shocks me as I stare at it. Two years, two years since my last entry. Have I really been gone that long? Locked in a prison of my own body. In a coma they said. Dead others say.

Cerberus revived me to fight a war with no name against an enemy very few believe exist. A war I would never have seen if they had left me to die along with the original Normandy. I say original because I now sit in a copy, a hacked duplicate of my original beloved ship. Some things are the same, others – like the crew – so different. I have just returned from recruiting my first companion Mordin Solus the salarian geneticist who can supposedly help us fight the Collectors. He is the first of the Illusive Man’s party that I am to claim as my own. By rights, I should be choosing my own people, not following his orders but it seems for now, I have no choice. As told Joker, I got lucky surviving what I did. But, that luck comes with a collar and lease. I am, for now, a Cerberus agent.

A dog…


This is the mental dialogue I find myself imagining that my Commander Sheppard from Mass Effect 2 has with herself. I’m about five hours into the game. I had been 14, but then I found a way to download the Cerberus Network and restarted my game to make use of their Dark Horse Comic feature. Confused? Let me elaborate.

The Exciting.

This game might well become one of my favourites to date, knocking FallOut 3 out of its place (but let’s not get hasty). The dialogue is good, the system runs relatively well on the PS3 and as expected the dialogue is great. I love the details of the interpersonal relationships that you as Commander Sheppard can form with your crew. You also see old faces, link up with old friends from the first Mass Effect game and you have a nice, big and shiny new Normandy (even though you’ve had to endure seeing the first one blow up). All in all, this game is great and it might well keep me busy for months to come.

The Irritating.

As I’ve said before, when I just started playing this game, the copyright by Mass Effect 1 is held by Microsoft which means that it will never be released on PS3. Bioware overcame this issue by bringing out the PlayStation version of this game with an interactive comic book which gives you a broad overview of the first game. I’m saying broad because it takes what had been about a 100+ worth of gaming hours and reduced it to a 10minute comic. But, it does allow you to start your Mass Effect 2 game with the basic important choices of the first game in tact namely which of your crew members to save and who you want your primary romance to be. It redeems a lot of the game play which I found vexing in the beginning of my first start of the game. (For instance, I had chosen to sacrifice Kaiden Alenko instead of Ashley Williams, the default Mass Effect 2 start for a female Sheppard has it the opposite). But, the downside to this light is that you have to download this content despite the fact that they claim it comes with the game. Now, unlike in America, not all South African households have WiFi and more to the point, we pay quite a lot per megabite that we download (if you are your normal run of the mill household that does not possess an uncapped line). I decided – for the sake of the game, that I would try to download this pack but I had to MacGuyver my PS3 and my laptop together. Then, I had to fix my Vodacom Internet line and eventually jerry rig the whole system because my work computer that I was trapped on wouldn’t do what I want. Long story short – it was a LOT of trouble and throughout the 675MB download I kept praying that for some or other reason my connection wouldn’t be severed (which meant that I would have to pay for everything again). There, I have to say that Bioware and EA games were really REALLY stupid and short sighted. Even the ‘Game of the Year’ edition of Fallout 3 came with all the Downloadable content in game.

But, it didn’t irritate me for long and now I have the full benefits of the Cerberus network which is well worth the download. J

I will keep you updated on my progress and if you are interested, give you more ‘Commander’ Logs.

Happy gaming everybody.