1) Per my belief that the ending is not happy
I think it’s a bit harsh saying that there was no way the Synthesis ending was “happy”. Yeah, the Quarians get totally screwed, as do all the other survivors now stuck without Mass Relays, but the fact that the cycle of organic destruction gets broken via everyone becoming half and half synthetic/organic is a happy ending, isn’t it? I mean, it’s a fresh new start for the ENTIRE galaxy. That should be exciting!
I simply don't buy it. I too chose Synthesis in my game, and I see the ending as being just as unhappy as I initially said. The relays are gone, and as such so is the supply chain of the galaxy. Everyone left in the Sol System will now be fighting for scraps, with the same occurring in every other system.
To be honest, I was happier when I was under the impression everyone would die when the relays blew. I thought "that sucks, but it's sacrificing everyone so the cycle can finally end once and for all". That seemed like the best choice. I was much more disappointed with it when I realized the horrible truth of the situation: I had just caused the inevitable, painful death of everyone as they slowly ran out of food and supplies. But hey, at least Joker and EDI will have robo-babies, right?
2) Per the Extended Cut
Additionally to be clear – the Extended Cut DLC isn’t re-writing the ending; in fact BioWare said specifically that it’s not. The purpose is to create a bit of closure and answer a lot of the questions people had when the game finished up. The way they described it in their blog post actually has me very excited; I feel like they’re really trying to make people happy.
Yes, in my ranting haste I didn't handle the Extended Cut DLC paragraph well. The offending line is:
Now I don’t follow the crowd with their “rewrite the ending” gusto, as you can’t just change the ending to make fans happy; that’s one of the worst ideas out there.
Basically, that line needs to be moved/removed. It was not my intention to imply that BioWare was changing the ending. This line was my response to those fans who believe BioWare should change the ending. In other words, I think they're idiots.
3) Per the PA Report
Also, unrelated to your post specifically, you should check out the PAReport’s editorial on the ME3 panel at PAX; apparently everybody seemed to come away happy. That should mean something, right?
What I notice most in that:
The panel pointed out that this content wasn’t in the game because they didn’t know fans wanted it. “The dev team stands by what was released in the core product, and we’re very proud of it. It was important though for us to listen to the community, and a lot of that feedback didn’t come until the game came out. Once we were listening we decided to include the extended cut. It wasn’t in the game because we didn’t know there was such a huge demand for it, to be honest with you.”
What content did they not realize the fans wanted?
“We want to give more closure about some of the questions you have,” Gamble explained, “and in general we wanted to give the players a sense of personalization with the endings. Many people mentioned that some of the choices they made in the game are not necessarily reflected in the ending scenes. We’re definitely going to focus on things like that. We want to make sure that when you see the ending of Mass Effect, you now have the information and context to be satisfied.”
So, the content they didn't know fans would want was specifically the content which showed the audience how their choices mattered. In addition, more information and context as to what exactly is going on at the end. I'm sorry BioWare, I don't buy it. You want me to believe that you created a game where personal choice is at the core of gameplay and story, and then decide the fans don't want to know how their choices are reflected in the ending scenes? That load of bullshit would dwarf anything you'd come across in Pamplona.
What I hear from that: BioWare didn't want to delay the game to deliver a solid ending. So instead they delivered an incomplete game initially, planning on adding the ending the audience wants (or even needs) a few months later. That makes me mildly sick, simply because I didn't think BioWare would pull such nonsense. Oh wait, that's right, EA's the publisher. Suddenly the world makes a little more sense.