Originally Posted by Sean Spamilton
Wow you've put a lot of thought into that! You've come up with some interesting ideas. One thing though about running into other races. Wouldn't all the races of any consequence have already been discovered / revealed during the Reaper invasion? - after all that was set to see extinction on a global scale and everyone everywhere was being attacked. It's not like a race capable of fighting somewhere decided to " sit this one out ". I could see a race of lesser beings, not advanced enough to take part - but then your new crew and ship could just obliterate them if they gave them any guff. I just don't see how they can introduce a new race of any consequence without it sounding contrived. " oh yeah - the _______ were here all along, just planning their next attack!! " ... I like the space exploration idea though!.. if it were set in the past it would be doable.
Thanks for the compliment and thumbs up (Sean?). There's a big lake near my house I walk most days and it takes an hour to complete so I often do a lot thinking during this time (some of it more useful than others).
Though not perfect the ME trilogy ranks as my favorite set of games (closely followed by the Halo series). Like Bioware or not, they've created a wonderful, rich universe via ME that's provided me with many hours of enjoyable play. I'm looking forward to playing the next iteration of ME in whatever form it comes.
Concerning your point about the discovery of all threat races by the Reapers, you raise a valid critique but I think good writing could explain the survival of several races based on my admittedly shaky memory of ME3 (including the Leviathan DLC which is indirectly relevant). I haven't played ME for more than six months. Here goes my attempt to justify the exploratory squadrons finding intact, advanced races:
1: Though the Reapers are almost undefeatable as a group, they are neither omniscient or omnipresent. Leviathan DLC Spoiler Alert: You'll recall from Leviathan that the Reapers didn't know where the Leviathans were hiding, and I consider them the most potent race in the game (and by extension the greatest threat to the Reapers). The Reapers had to rely on shadowing-ironically enough-"inferior" human research teams to find the Leviathans. Thus, given the size of the Milky Way galaxy (diameter of ~ 120,000 light-years, the estimated number of Earth-like planets (~40 Billion), and the finite number of Reapers who invaded the Milky Way (I don't recall any number given in ME2 or 3 but based on the cut scene at the end of ME2 let's use ~ 1000 for argument sake), I think it's quite plausible that the Reapers have not detected all advanced civilizations in the Milky Way. Further, I only mentioned 40 billion Earth-like planets. What about advanced civilizations that reside on non Earth-like planets...?
2: What if some of the advanced races discovered and engaged by the Reapers (but yet to be discovered by the exploration squadrons) are sufficiently advanced that they defeated the Reapers in combat? This isn't implausible. Beyond the fact that Shepard leveraged various local forces to kill 3 Reapers in ME3, you'll recall from ME2 that something practically destroyed one of the larger Reaper types in space in the distant past (the mission where Shep had to board the derelict Reaper to determine the fate of a research team). In short, Reapers are powerful, but not indestructible.
3: Would the Reapers actually attack every advanced civilization in the galaxy? IMS, the rationale (flawed logic notwithstanding) for the Reapers annihilation of organic life was to end conflict between organics and (presumably sentient) synthetics. What if some the advanced races realized the potential threat of sentient synthetics and thus never created them? Would the Reapers still attack these races?
4: Related to item 2, even if the Reapers decided to destroy all organic life in the galaxy given their finite numbers, they likely couldn't attack all races at once in the timeframe of the Earth conflict or even a year or two later. Indeed, you'll recall from ME3 that despite the relatively large number of Reapers deployed against the counsel and non-counsel races, they did not attack all of them at once (ie the Salarians, and the delayed attack against the Asari). Thus, is it plausible that the expeditionary squadrons could reach some advanced races before Reapers intent on destroying them. By the way, this could make for a fascinating, surprise mission where one squadron would team up with a newly discovered advanced race to fight one or more Reapers who stroll into the race's system to destroy said race.
Putting all this aside for a moment, you made another important point that I agree with concerning the discovery of less advanced races. This should occur in the interest of realism, and it will make gameplay and choices just that much more interesting. How will the player treat these races? With respect and care or indifference and contempt (or a combination of the two depending the race)?