Mass Effect 3

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Kinkojiro

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  1. KkJiro
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    The Story of Ark Mod

    Ark Mod was originally intended to be a DLC sized mod that bridges ME3 to MEA. The general story was that the Reapers discover that the Andromeda Initiative have departed the Milky Way, send the Collectors to hunt them down, but the only way is to use the QECs that each Ark carried that linked them to the Milky Way.

    During five N7 length missions Shepard would hunt down and destroy the QECs, one for each race, based on maps in Rio (humans), Menae (turians), Thessia (asari) and Erinle (salarians) plus a final mission set on the Kholas Relay. Liara would leave her message and the Initiative would be eventually cut off, as per the MEA lore. The story of the mod would be a race against time as Shepard and the Collectors raced to seal the Initiative's fate.

    We originally conceived of the idea once EGM was largely finished and started work on it before MEA was launched. We started by working out how to build gameplay mechanics and use multiplayer assets in single player, doing the hazard maps in the process, and then started building missions. We had planned adding one or two temporary squadmates (who went through so many iterations - human N7 cyborg, quarian exile, a VI and even a volus), in order to give exposition and guide the story along.

    MEA came out, and some of the team, especially the writers, felt disappointed by it, had lots of other things going on and lost interest. Of the five missions originally conceived, gameplay was finished in three, and the other two had much of the art done, but without the writers the cutscenes, story and especially new characters just weren’t working.

    So, we eventually put out a cut back version of the Menae, the Operation Paladin mission, on its own without the story portion of it which tells what happened to the Turian team who were trying to recover the QEC from a nearby facility.

    The full version of the mod is unlikely to be finished, given I am busy with work, and other members of the team have moved on. Big mods are always a combination of artists, game designers, toolkit programmers, audio specialists, voice actors and writers. Any one skill is difficult to learn, nobody can do them all, so finding a group who have the motivation and time to give is even rarer. Therefore I want to give the tip of the hat to those who helped a lot, particularly Sil, Mgamerz and especially Furinax. We were very lucky with EGM that the team came together, and whilst I regret that the full version of Ark has not been made, at least we got one good mission.

    Finally, I would also like to say thanks to all the players for their kind words of encouragement and constructive criticism. It really helps.

    Kinkojiro
  2. KkJiro
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    Please leave comments for the team. Please do not post spoilers, bugs or about anything other than these missions.
  3. Katschaba
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    Even when we got only one mission it was great. It was really well written and overall polished that you wouldn't say it is not part of the base game. It was really fun to play so thank you all for sharing it with us Endorsed.
  4. Seroster
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    So I just finished one of the missions & everything seemed to go just fine, but now I'm pretty confused. There were 2 mission spots on Menae, & after I finished with the first one the other one is gone too. Does completing 1 remove both dots, or was I supposed to do the other one first? Was there a point to doing it as well? The way the pre-mission briefings were set up I couldn't tell if there was an order they were supposed to be done in, cause it seemed like they were both taking place "simultaneously". I suppose I can just reload & look at the other, but I'm relatively befuddled at what's happened... have I missed some exposition somewhere? Thanks.
    1. KkJiro
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      If you read the orders, you are deploying 3 teams: the Marines, Shepard's Squad and the Normandy provides air cover. If you read the highlights, one is Marine team, one is Shepard's squad. You can just go straight into the deploy Shepard's squad, it is just a minor role-playing action to deploy the marines, to remind the player that the marines deploy away from Shepard, it doesn't impact the outcome of the mission.
    2. Seroster
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      Yeah I'd read the summaries & understood they were deploying separately, I just didn't understand until I re-did the whole thing that the other option was cosmetic/RP material. I did the mission again & things went fine (though for some reason I kept crashing on transition after the final wave of fights was over). It was a very polished mission for being unofficial content. Where did you get all of the audio, if you don't mind me asking?
    3. StratKill
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      Nvm
    4. KkJiro
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      The sound effects came from mainly in game sources with some custom made pieces.
  5. operacha
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    Hoping the story of Arkmod continues...and we see some new missions on N7 Day ;)
  6. SilverAxe001
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    I appreciate effort you put in this making mission. I felt satisfied, when I fought the collectors.
  7. DoctorGenki
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    I like the changes made by this mod to the cerberus missions. Amazing how a change in the atmosphere can breathe new life into missions that become tedious after multiple playthroughs. A bit mixed with the palaven mission though. I was definitely impressed how this mission was made with old enemies from ME2 being brought back which was awesome. I just didn't like the difficulty jump that's out of place with the base game when you unlock it. Made the mission become more frustrating than anything else for me and I just wanted it to be done after a certain point. I probably wont be playing through that mission again personally but I still have to say amazing work with how you were able to create something like this at all. Even though I didn't enjoy it as much as most people, I still liked seeing "old friends" again.
  8. mig11
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    I havent reached nor played all N7:Missions and the amazing finale Im so hyped about, which is the main point of this mod, but I have a little feedback on balance diferences between N7:Cerberus Labs ( extremely well done in terms of spawns and introduction to phoenix project) and N7:Cerberus Abductions.
    The later one is suprisingly easy and forgiving in terms of enemy spawns and types in comparison to the extremely choking and amazing N7:Cerberus Labs, that is avaiable sooner. N7:Cerberus Abductions, while making it more interesting than vanilla for sure, it fails to deliver challenge so long the player behaves as you would in multiplayer taking cover inside buildings. The lack of Nemesis, Dragoons or any other higher profile cerberus operatives makes it a very stale mission. Maybe an increase on Spawn rates similar to that of the non compatible versions of Respawn mod could potentially improve the stakes in such a stressful civilian rescue mission.I can see lore reasons behind not giving this specific map any higher profile units as this is supposed to be a fully indoctrinated or rogue cell of cerberus, so Phoenix and Phantom projects out for sure, but maybe a single atlas or higher numbers could make it more interesting.

    So far this mod was worthit just for the changes on Cerberus labs being able to fight Dragoons in single player is amazing. Thank you for your work and dont mind much my feedback on this Im just crazy when it comes to dificulty in games, wish it was harder every minute haha.
    1. KkJiro
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      It is a fair point. I think rather than massively increasing enemy units, a better solution would be to force you to accompany the civillians (i.e. they start losing health if you are in the buildings without them). If you do that I always find the end section quite challenging (especially with acid rain pouring down).
    2. KkJiro
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      Actually this is exactly what Bioware originally intended. They cut the proximity to civillians part (maybe too hard)? I have restored it along with some extra Dragoons.
  9. Juanmf98
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    I'm loving it. I don't know how you managed to make rain or a damn sandstorm that had absolutely zero impact on performance but you did it. Thanks for this.
  10. Viekang
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    Love it. too bad with the whole mea disaster.
  11. pipendrusu
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    Hi there how can i do russian translate for this mod so other guys could use mine? It would be great.
    1. KkJiro
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      To do a translation you need to unpack the ArkMod tlk file (drag and drop on Mod Manager), edit the xml, do not change any xml tags or numbers, only the text. Drag it back on Mod Manager and repack it. Test in game. Finally if you want to publish it, please PM to confirm and once you have my confirmation, you can put your new tlk on nexus with a link as a translation for Ark Mod.
  12. Mohayo7484444
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    Having only played vanilla ME3, I was playing through the game for the first time with a lot of your mods which were really great, but when Operation: Paladin became available in game I kept doing other quests. I was saving it for the last possible moment because I saw in the trailer that it was set on my favorite location in the game, with the Normandy shooting at the Sovereign-class reaper and then trailer ends and caught a glimpse of a comment that said a lot of squadmates are fighting with you at once, I stopped reading about it to not spoil myself, and so I developed all these expectations about how the mission would be from those very exciting features.
    Don't get me wrong the other mods kept me interested as well, but during the whole playthrough in the back of my mind I was just thinking if it will be all I dreamed of or if I'll be disappointed, since I always hated that the biggest thing you can destroy in this game was just a regular small destroyer reaper and the primarch rescue was the only mission that felt like a warzone.


    And then I finally started it and it was so mother f***ing SICK. Best part of the whole game, no question. Gave me the same truly awesome feeling as the suicide mission in ME2. Even as I was halfway through playing it I was still in disbelief that it was so polished and how much the preparation mattered, how many new gameplay mechanics you guys put in (when the oculus marking mission came up, I was thinking will I get the rannoch laser pointer, is it really that good? there's no way these guys pulled that off, and, well maybe I didn't get the laser, but it was that good ANYWAY), how immersive the ambience was. Reading some comments here just makes me even more amazed of all the possible consequences, that you can lose some personnel from the Normandy if you fail a part of the mission. I'm glad the deeper references to andromeda were cut, because that game is just painful to remember, but I'm also glad you kept the vehicle in there.
    I could go on and on, but whoever is wasting their time reading this should just install it and play!

    The only thing I wish was a bit different was the explosion at the end, I wish it was more gratuituos and spectacular, I wanted to take some more time watching it. Apart from that, a couple heavy weapons would have been welcome but I'm just splitting hairs at this point. It's really a crying shame that your team is not planning anything more, as another years old comment on here said the EGM N7 rescue becoming a playable mission on Firebase: Rio, and another mission set on Firebase: Vancouver perhaps about preparing for the London battle (getting some crucial intel, personnel, or launching some nukes from there to London somehow which would give you a hand/explanation in turning London into the gray empty mess it ended up being) would make this game a 10/10 definite best game of the triology, though after this mod it's already damn close to being that. Well it still wouldn't have a good bossfight against harbinger, but I rambled enough, sorry for the long comment, this mission just reawakened all my old hopes for the game.

    TL;DR.: Completely awesome mod with breathtaking moments that complete what the base game was sorely lacking, still hard to believe it's a free community made project. Huge thanks to all involved!
    1. biokonw
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      I will second this comment. just finished. Really a piece of art, should have been part of the main game.
    2. KkJiro
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      Thanks very much. Really great to hear how much you enjoyed it.