Game Front 1-on-1: ‘Marauder Shields’ Creator Koobismo
The diveristy of the movement means that Koobismo says he has trouble calling Retake Mass Effect a unified success or failure — although, if one were to measure its success in things created or achieved, such as the work appearing all over DeviantArt or the Child’s Play fundraiser that earned more than $80,000 for charity, it seems easy to call it a success.
“The Retake movement clearly shows, at least in my opinion, that we — as gamers — are really coming of age,” he said. “I know, I know, a lot of media outlets tried to paint the situation in a completely different light, showing Retakers as crying, whiney babies. But I really think it’s quite the opposite — we have become more demanding in the way our expectations should be handled, we have become more mature in the way we view the relationships between game developers and ourselves, the audience. We no longer expect colorful ‘bleep-blops,’ as Dylan Moran would put it, we want our stories to be meaningful, our experiences complete, the narratives we spend serious time with treated with respect. The decision whether or not the Extended Cut fixed Mass Effect is totally up to you — but notice that because of everything that transpired in the last few months you were actually given an option to choose, your voice had an effect, as adequate or inadequate as it might’ve been in the end.”
And what of BioWare in this whole situation? In fact, it seems the Mass Effect developer is excited about the work going on with “Marauder Shields.” Koobismo posted a number of quotes from notable BioWare personalities, such as Community Manager Jessica Merizan and BioWare UK Community Coordinator Tully Auckland, on the poster created to celebrate when “Marauder Shields” hit 1 million views.
Koobismo said the response has been very positive, and that he’s hopeful for more interaction with BioWare in the future, as well.
“I may criticize the ending of Mass Effect 3, but I’m a fan of BioWare, I always was. Baldur’s Gate, KOTOR (Knights of the Old Republic) and Jade Empire were three of the few reasons I went into game development — this may sound silly, but they really were. The first time I received some backchannel communication from one of the people responsible for the first Mass Effect game, my heart missed a beat. He friggin’ loved me, and all I could do was love him back with all the caps lock I could gather.”
The overwhelmingly positive response to “Marauder Shields,” as well as having the comic mapped out for its next 33 episodes, has Koobismo thinking about what will happen next. He’s considering doing more work in comics, although just what the subject matter might be, he hasn’t decided.
“I’m already thinking about what’s next on the menu — perhaps focusing on other stories taking place in the world of Mass Effect? I have created tons of backstory for this series, after all,” Koobismo said. “Maybe we should move onto something completely original, an OC series based on my own IP, on the world I developed for my own purposes? There’s a lot of thinking on that before me. But I really want all our readers to have a say in this. People are reading my stuff and loving it — and I love them for that, it’s really a boost of positive emotions I needed in my life. If there’s a chance to get more of that stuff in the future? Yes, please.”
And of course, there’s just one more question: Will Blasto make an appearance in the comic?
“Spoiler warning: This one will have his own stand-off at the Purgatory.”
The entire “Marauder Shields” comic and audio book series is available at Koobismo’s DeviantArt page, koobismo.deviantart.com. The project also has its own website, which is still in development, at koobismo.com.