When complaining about BioWare's Mass Effect series, people tend to aim for the words "corridor shooter", where the player must hook around a doorway or wall during every shootout. As much as "counter shooter" is just a phrase for trolls, it's hard for me to counter that point, particularly with the more action-based Mass Effect 2. In any case, though BioWare believes Mass Effect 3 brings more changes to series than the shooting, it is aware of the criticism as producer Michael Gamble states in an interview with CVG:
We just want to tell the best story within the context of an amazing shooter. I think in ME3 we've actually brought back a lot of the customization elements that were missing in ME2: Weapons, armor, powers, each power now has nine possible ways of evolution. We brought back all that customisation. Like any transition between games, we want to polish everything. I wouldn't say one genre is winning out over another.
...How the player interacts with the gameplay space is one of the most important things, as players spend most of their time doing that. We've added a lot of new melee stuff, and it's all part of making combat seem more dynamic. Enemy behaviour is also different as enemies will now try and flank and come up close. There's definitely been an emphasis on making combat spaces into open battlefields in this game. We're trying to get away from corridor shooters.
I won't lie. I get nervous when developers start using phrases like "gameplay space", "dynamic", and "open battlefields" when describing one of my favorite RPGs. Oh, did I leave out "shooter"? La, la, la, la, la. Can't hear you.