Alas, here we are, the true ending to Mass Effect 3.
Launching nearly a year after Mass Effect 3, Citadel is the title’s fourth and final expansion pack and sets a different tone for the series with its quirky sense of humor and little to no emphasis on saving the galaxy. It’s a breath of fresh air and is the perfect gift for fans of Mass Effect to say goodbye to Commander Shepard, the Normandy and the Mass Effect trilogy.
Based before the final assault on Cerberus, the plot behind Citadel is the Normandy crew visit the Citadel during shore leave while the ship is being repaired. Captain Anderson hands over his luxury apartment to Shepard, feeling that it’s a burden on his shoulders while he helps out on Earth. Shepard reluctantly accepts the gift and looks forward to enjoying his short vacation. Things take a turn for the worst when a group of mercenaries attack Commander Shepard and Joker while they’re enjoying a dinner at a seafood restaurant. This lays the groundwork for what’s to come, as we’re embarked on a new journey and watch Shepard fall through the floor aquariam (something that’s constantly brought up throughout the expansion pack).
The apartment feels inappropriate and tardy once you’re finished with the pack. Players are given the opportunity to spend credits on decorations but if you’ve already played and finished the main storyline, chances are you won’t go back after finishing Citadel.
Citadel doesn’t take itself too seriously, despite the stakes rising sooner rather than later, the party members never pass up the opportunity to crack jokes. While some of the jokes are funny, it’s weird hearing serious party members such as Javik, a Prothean who has been in a cryogenic sleep for the last 50,000 years, crack jokes about the mercenaries, the fish tank incident and the expansion pack’s antagonist. There are times where it feels like Bioware tried too hard to make the expansion pack light-hearted and it shows. Instead of laughing, I felt like my party members were smoking that funny stuff before grabbing their guns.
Level design and writing are all top-notch in Citadel. Once the action is done, you’ll get to the meat of Citadel and spend time with current and former crew members. It’s a bittersweet moment for Mass Effect fans who have developed a relationship with these characters over the years and is the perfect setting to say goodbye. The biggest complaint many fans have had with Mass Effect 3’s single player DLC was how they take place before the ending and thus provide nothing of importance. That isn’t the case with Citadel. Regardless of how you felt about the game’s ending, Mass Effect 3: Citadel is a must-have for any fan of Commander Shepard and the Mass Effect Trilogy.