BioWare: Next Mass Effect Isn't Mass Effect 4

 Pages 1 2 NEXT
 

BioWare: Next Mass Effect Isn't Mass Effect 4

image

Like a cat in a box, BioWare Montreal boss Yanick Roy says the next Mass Effect game both is and is not Mass Effect 4.

BioWare Community Coordinator Chris Priestly made an interesting comment a couple weeks ago when he said that calling the next game in BioWare's space opera franchise Mass Effect 4 is "doing it a disservice," and claimed that he never refers to it by that name during internal conversations. "I see people saying 'well, they'll have to pick a canon ending'," he wrote. "No, because the game does not have to come after. Or before. Or off to the side. Or with characters you know. Or yaddayaddayadda. Wherever, whenever, whoever, etc will all be revealed years down the road when we actually start talking about it."

It's actually a pretty straightforward idea - don't make assumptions about the next Mass Effect - but as the conversation continued, BioWare Montreal Studio Manager Yanick Roy decided to inject some clarity into the situation. "What Chris is saying is that thinking of the next Mass Effect game as Mass Effect 4 would imply a certain linearity, a straight evolution of the gameplay and story of the first three games. But because we are switching to a new engine and need to rebuild a bunch of game systems, we have an opportunity to rethink how we want these systems to be going forward instead of just inheriting them from the previous games," he explained.

"Story-wise, the arc of the first trilogy has also been concluded, and what we will do is tell a new story set in the Mass Effect universe. That doesn't mean that events of the first three games and the choices you made won't get recognized, but they likely won't be what this new story will focus on," he continued. "In other words, because the game takes place before of after the first trilogy does not mean it necessarily is a straight prequel or sequel."

I would hazard a guess that BioWare would also like to draw a line under the Commander Shepard trilogy in order to distance it from future games in the minds of people who either loathed the ending of Mass Effect 3 or can't imagine a Mass Effect game without the crew of the Normandy. That's a big hill to climb, and BioWare would very likely prefer to do it with as fresh a start as possible.

Source: BioWare Social Network

Permalink

Sigh; I'm really glad that they are (probably) not making a direct sequel, or prequel for that matter, of the original Mass Effect trilogy but I cannot buy another installment in this series. Given I paid the Australia Tax ~$100 last time round and was denied multiplayer or online content due to errors with their registration process that still haven't been resolved anything Bioware ships has to be nothing short of life-changing in it's quality.

We both know that's not going to happen.

Good. Hopefully people don't take that the wrong and understand that the FOURTH MASS EFFECT GAME IS NOT MASS EFFECT 4. It's not a sequel to Mass Effect 3 because there will be no Commander Shepard nor the story about the Repears...well I don't know about that one but you get the idea.

Mass Effect is pretty much going the way of Star Wars now. A universe with an extremely vast amount of lore, content, and exploration that we have yet to see.

You know.. I want to get excited about this. I would like to say I am looking forward to a new Mass Effect game. Unfortunately, all I feel is trepidation.

First trilogy? Just how many games are they planning to release?

Still, those comments seem pretty sensible: Shepard's story is done, for better or worse. I'll be curious to see what they do with this, and hopefully they'll do something decent with what they've got. I mean, with a world like that they could pull off something really interesting if they explore it right. If we're lucky.

"That doesn't mean that events of the first three games and the choices you made won't get recognized, but they likely won't be what this new story will focus on," he continued.

Well it's not like most of the choices we made were recognised within the trilogy either, unless you count the same thing happening but with a different line of dialogue. So I'd be surprised if anybody was even expecting it to happen for the next game.

I imagine that it will be like Fallout 3 with New Vegas. Yes, they happen in the same universe, but they do not directly link to one another in any way. Which to be honest I quite like in games. It allows you to enjoy the setting without feeling like a story is being dragged on for too long. Not that this is the case for Mass Effect as I am done with the series.

The new engine suggests it will be a next generation game as well.

It's pretty obvious and they've already said it at least once. But I guess that's how PR works.

Personally, I'm pretty excited about a new Mass Effect that has nothing to do with Shepard and his/her crew.

Andy Chalk:
"I see people saying 'well, they'll have to pick a canon ending'," he wrote. "No, because the game does not have to come after. Or before. Or off to the side. Or with characters you know. Or yaddayaddayadda. Wherever, whenever, whoever, etc will all be revealed years down the road when we actually start talking about it."

Brilliant.

This is exactly what I said they should do if they made another game, if they wanted to make it work.

This is reassuring news.

Can't wait

I figured it would be a spin-off

I'm guessing it will be a while before they release information about the game's actual content.

Yes, enough Normandy and Shep. Something new. Just don't Dead Space 3 or Dragon Age 2 it.

So it'll be about as connected to the original trilogy as those games were to each other?

oldtaku:
Yes, enough Normandy and Shep. Something new. Just don't Dead Space 3 or Dragon Age 2 it.

You know... I wouldn't mind having co-op, it would've saved me a lot of time having to backtrack because my squadmates couldn't make it through a door on time.

On the other hand...
Praetorian: Champion of the Citadel!

The pessimist in me reads this and thinks they're going to take too many liberties with the story/lore and turn it into something unrecognizable :(

Pretty much what I expected, really. The ME universe and lore base is easily large enough to fit many stories within multiple genres. I'm definitely excited to find out more about their plans.

An EA-executive and a Bioware-representative in a meeting.

"So Chris, buddy, what do you plan next? C'mon, you guys are a cash cow, people will buy anything you put out,no matter what you do and daddy needs a new condo."

"Well, actually we have some nifty ideas, considering a new setting, some new gameplay ideas and we finally wrote another script, so we don't have to recycle the Kotor-story for the 20th time."

"Uuuh, Chris, Chris, Chris, what did we say about the n-word? C'mooooon guys, you know how this works: I ask what your next game is and you put a number behind a title I already know. What about.... *scuffles through a little folder* ...this Mass Effect-stuff? I mean that's a safe shot, right? Most controversial response I ever saw about one of your games and the bloody masses still bought it like the little sheep they are supposed to be."

"Well...I guess you're right but...we kinda concluded the story, you know? We made a pretty big deal out of it being the end of the trilogy? And our rep DID suffer some serious blows and I don't think the dust settled on this one yet."

"Hm, I see where you're coming from. How about that: It's Mass Effect....but not the Mass Effect they know?"

"What, you mean like a reboot?"

"Uuuuh no. No. Nonono. Evil word, very unpopular. People HATE that word. No reboot."

"So...you WANT a sequel?"

"No sequel, no. You just said it, you concluded the..erm..what's the word again?" -"Story?" -"Yeh, that's it, story. No, you need to rework the existing story."

"But... if we use the Mass Effect name and set pieces...but cancel out everything we established about it before...that's a reboot, right?"

"....Okay, Chris, love your work so far but...here...we have a seminar, over at our place...come there next friday, 3 a.m., we have an amazing guy, he'll teach you everything about how to describe that rework-thing without using that nasty "Reboot"-word, alright? Alright!"

"Okay, I guess...but what should we name this re...work then?"

"Why, Mass Effect 4 of course. It is the fourth game in the series, isn't it?"

"....I'll see you at the seminar."

Legion:
[quote]

I imagine that it will be like Fallout 3 with New Vegas. Yes, they happen in the same universe, but they do not directly link to one another in any way. Which to be honest I quite like in games. It allows you to enjoy the setting without feeling like a story is being dragged on for too long. Not that this is the case for Mass Effect as I am done with the series.

Only problem in ME's case is that Mass Effect's effects occurred on a much, much larger scope than anything that happens in Fallout. It would be almost impossible to not have them directly link together unless they occurred so long before or so long after the events of 1-3 that those events had no bearing.

If the next set occurs during/parallel to the events of ME1-3, you're going feel like the guys in that crappy Lord of The Rings game who spent the entire adventure trying to catch up to the people who actually mattered.

Well, this is sorta reassuring to read.

I still have a very bad feeling though, considering how Bioware's been doing recently - but hey, you never know, EA might finally leave them alone now that the triology hype is over.

..If I see the slightest glimps of the Starchild though - I'm heading straight for the airlocks, with or without a suit.

I'd love to see a brand new story in the Mass Effect universe. Maybe something that takes place in the two years Shepard was dead and the Reapers weren't heard of. I hope that we'll be able to pick an alien race for the protagonist this time.

Andy Chalk:
"What Chris is saying is that thinking of the next Mass Effect game as Mass Effect 4 would imply a certain linearity, a straight evolution of the gameplay and story of the first three games. But because we are switching to a new engine and need to rebuild a bunch of game systems, we have an opportunity to rethink how we want these systems to be going forward instead of just inheriting them from the previous games,"

Hahaaa, oh wow. Calling it now - ME4 will ditch whatever vestigial adventure/RPG elements are left (which isn't all that many at this point, anyway) and go full-on futuristic TPS/FPS with modest weapon customization and a buttload of cutscenes. Now that EA have killed MoH perhaps they'll push Mass Effect as a competitor to Halo... Mass Of Duty anyone?

Fuck you very much EA.

"Story-wise, the arc of the first trilogy has also been concluded, and what we will do is tell a new story set in the Mass Effect universe." If you're doing another ME game this is very much the way to do it. Same universe, different everything else. Good move, assuming they stick with it. :)

Headbiter:
snip

Lovely bit of sculpture you've done there. I like the straw, and it looks very mannish.

More games after the conclusion of Shepard's story seemed inevitable from the very first game. The scope was too great. Like Star Trek and Star Wars before it, it would be barmy to have such a vast universe sustain only one narrative.

People like to play up the old EA boogeyman. But I've been a Bioware fan for long, long time and I simply do not buy it.

csoloist:

Andy Chalk:
"What Chris is saying is that thinking of the next Mass Effect game as Mass Effect 4 would imply a certain linearity, a straight evolution of the gameplay and story of the first three games. But because we are switching to a new engine and need to rebuild a bunch of game systems, we have an opportunity to rethink how we want these systems to be going forward instead of just inheriting them from the previous games,"

Hahaaa, oh wow. Calling it now - ME4 will ditch whatever vestigial adventure/RPG elements are left (which isn't all that many at this point, anyway) and go full-on futuristic TPS/FPS with modest weapon customization and a buttload of cutscenes. Now that EA have killed MoH perhaps they'll push Mass Effect as a competitor to Halo... Mass Of Duty anyone?

Fuck you very much EA.

It'll be the Battle of Shanxi, but instead of the rather minor conflict we were told about it's going to be 'an epic tale of human heroism', we'll be locked to a human protagonist, story will only be 6-7 hours and you can buy in-game DLC to refill your ammo if you get low. There will be multi-player with random DLC that outclasses anything that came with the standard game, an online pass, and it will be shut down 6-12 months later despite the revenue from the online pass supposedly be used to keep the servers up.

Though if they do actually come up with something original that doesn't feel like it was made at the demands of EA's analysts I will be a bit more optimistic about it.

Hasn't this been explained a couple of times over? And who, in their right mind, would actually think that "Mass Effect 4," or previously known as that, would be directly related to the original trilogy? I expected slight nods, as the article said, but a prequel or sequel? I think when Chris asked that poll on BSN a while ago he was being a tad misleading. Typical Chris.

Still, I love the universe and a new story will be interesting to see, no matter how much I love my Shepard.

This whole statement sounds needlessly defensive.

"OMG guys! Don't call it Mass Effect 4 because it really is nothing like that last game you now all hate. Really, not even connected."

Seriously?

I don't know how I feel about this. I know the Mass Effect universe is huge, but for me ME was purely about Shepard and the reapers. Much like Halo 4, I'm not sure I'm ready to welcome more stories in that world.

Headbiter:
An EA-executive and a Bioware-representative in a meeting.

"So Chris, buddy, what do you plan next? C'mon, you guys are a cash cow, people will buy anything you put out,no matter what you do and daddy needs a new condo."

"Well, actually we have some nifty ideas, considering a new setting, some new gameplay ideas and we finally wrote another script, so we don't have to recycle the Kotor-story for the 20th time."

"Uuuh, Chris, Chris, Chris, what did we say about the n-word? C'mooooon guys, you know how this works: I ask what your next game is and you put a number behind a title I already know. What about.... *scuffles through a little folder* ...this Mass Effect-stuff? I mean that's a safe shot, right? Most controversial response I ever saw about one of your games and the bloody masses still bought it like the little sheep they are supposed to be."

"Well...I guess you're right but...we kinda concluded the story, you know? We made a pretty big deal out of it being the end of the trilogy? And our rep DID suffer some serious blows and I don't think the dust settled on this one yet."

"Hm, I see where you're coming from. How about that: It's Mass Effect....but not the Mass Effect they know?"

"What, you mean like a reboot?"

"Uuuuh no. No. Nonono. Evil word, very unpopular. People HATE that word. No reboot."

"So...you WANT a sequel?"

"No sequel, no. You just said it, you concluded the..erm..what's the word again?" -"Story?" -"Yeh, that's it, story. No, you need to rework the existing story."

"But... if we use the Mass Effect name and set pieces...but cancel out everything we established about it before...that's a reboot, right?"

"....Okay, Chris, love your work so far but...here...we have a seminar, over at our place...come there next friday, 3 a.m., we have an amazing guy, he'll teach you everything about how to describe that rework-thing without using that nasty "Reboot"-word, alright? Alright!"

"Okay, I guess...but what should we name this re...work then?"

"Why, Mass Effect 4 of course. It is the fourth game in the series, isn't it?"

"....I'll see you at the seminar."

Yeah that's kind of the vibe I kept getting as I was reading the article, as in giant neon letters with airhorns, sirens and confetti cannons saying "REBOOT."

I'm not necessarily against change...but I am very much against someone fucking up the game series I love more than anything other game ever, even with the horrible ending thing. But...everyone deserves their chance I guess and maybe they'll do a really good job and I'll be super happy with the developers...That's possible right?....

Right?

*crickets*

RIGHT?

I can't wait for more details to come out.

I want to be excited, but I can't help but ask "so, is this one going to be shit too?"

I'd actually like to see a different galaxy. The Reapers must have sent a few scouts to other galaxies to see how they're evolving.

Proverbial Jon:
This whole statement sounds needlessly defensive.

No defense is needless when there is this much attack.

what i really want is a break away from the humans for a while

just exploring what the other races were like beyond their stereotypes

In other words: "We ain't touching that (ME 1-3 storyline) with a ten foot pole again." What you get when you're under papa EA's roof.

I think/don't think that Bioware are/are not talking total bullshit to distance/not to distance their new game from the previous games and the shitstorm that did/did not happen over the ending. They blatantly want/don't want to have to spend time and effort dealing/not dealing with the utter omnishambles that the ME3 finale was/wasn't. Trying to further explain/not explain what the fuck the Starchild was going on about/wasn't going on about would/wouldn't drive any writer insane.

...man, this double-speak stuff is hard. Props to the Bioware guy for being so fluent in it.

j-e-f-f-e-r-s:
I think/don't think that Bioware are/are not talking total bullshit to distance/not to distance their new game from the previous games and the shitstorm that did/did not happen over the ending. They blatantly want/don't want to have to spend time and effort dealing/not dealing with the utter omnishambles that the ME3 finale was/wasn't. Trying to further explain/not explain what the fuck the Starchild was going on about/wasn't going on about would/wouldn't drive any writer insane.

...man, this double-speak stuff is hard. Props to the Bioware guy for being so fluent in it.

Thanks i really needed this, ive had such a bad day but you helped me laugh from reading this :)

Headbiter:
An EA-executive and a Bioware-representative in a meeting.

"So Chris, buddy, what do you plan next? C'mon, you guys are a cash cow, people will buy anything you put out,no matter what you do and daddy needs a new condo."

"Well, actually we have some nifty ideas, considering a new setting, some new gameplay ideas and we finally wrote another script, so we don't have to recycle the Kotor-story for the 20th time."

"Uuuh, Chris, Chris, Chris, what did we say about the n-word? C'mooooon guys, you know how this works: I ask what your next game is and you put a number behind a title I already know. What about.... *scuffles through a little folder* ...this Mass Effect-stuff? I mean that's a safe shot, right? Most controversial response I ever saw about one of your games and the bloody masses still bought it like the little sheep they are supposed to be."

"Well...I guess you're right but...we kinda concluded the story, you know? We made a pretty big deal out of it being the end of the trilogy? And our rep DID suffer some serious blows and I don't think the dust settled on this one yet."

"Hm, I see where you're coming from. How about that: It's Mass Effect....but not the Mass Effect they know?"

"What, you mean like a reboot?"

"Uuuuh no. No. Nonono. Evil word, very unpopular. People HATE that word. No reboot."

"So...you WANT a sequel?"

"No sequel, no. You just said it, you concluded the..erm..what's the word again?" -"Story?" -"Yeh, that's it, story. No, you need to rework the existing story."

"But... if we use the Mass Effect name and set pieces...but cancel out everything we established about it before...that's a reboot, right?"

"....Okay, Chris, love your work so far but...here...we have a seminar, over at our place...come there next friday, 3 a.m., we have an amazing guy, he'll teach you everything about how to describe that rework-thing without using that nasty "Reboot"-word, alright? Alright!"

"Okay, I guess...but what should we name this re...work then?"

"Why, Mass Effect 4 of course. It is the fourth game in the series, isn't it?"

"....I'll see you at the seminar."

A Mass Effect fan and anti-fan meeting on a forum.

"Hey guys, look, Bioware is talking about taking ME in some new directions. It'll be interesting to see what they're talking about and judge whether or not it looks like a good idea once we actually know anything about it and can form a more informed opinion."

"No, they're just milking a dead franchise because EA told them to! EA! EA! EA! EEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!"

"But... the world was clearly created to be larger than just one storyline. There's a lot of room for other things to explore, and it's clearly a universe they have a lot of love for. And take Star Trek as an example, it's gone off in a lot of other directions that reference previous stories but don't-"

"No, they're clearly doing a reboot because it doesn't involve the old story but they can't call it a reboot because they know everyone hates reboots. Bioware is dead! EA! EA! EEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!"

"Ok, so, you want them to do something new and different then? New setting, new characters, new gameplay, all that? Even though they've already done that three times in the past ten years, which is something of an impressive achievement for a major company in the current market, and every time it seems like people complain that they were too different from the things they used to make."

"No, no, no. Don't you know how this works yet? They announce anything and everyone says they don't care anymore because reasons. Something about endings and hamburgers and how awesome Balder's Gate used to be. That's just how it works I'm afraid. Either they're not innovating enough or have strayed too far from that one thing that everyone liked. Either they're phoning it in or they're doing what they want instead of giving us exactly what we want without challenging us at all. Either they're a hollowed out shell of evil people intent on draining every last cent from their fanbase or they're a hollowed out shell of sympathetic people being manipulated by evil people into draining every last cent from their fanbase. Take your pick, no one can seem to come to a concise agreement on why we don't like them anymore, except things are different and we don't like different. And EA! EA! EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

Nimcha:

Proverbial Jon:
This whole statement sounds needlessly defensive.

No defense is needless when there is this much attack.

You make a valid point.

I'll readily admit that I was quite bitter for a time after the whole Mass Effect 3 ending issue. I just couldn't understand how such an infuriatingly broken ending was greenlit, especially from within Bioware of all devs. But I never allowed any of it to ruin the rest of the trilogy for me. In fact I'm playing through the whole trilogy again right now.

I shall watch "Mass Effect 4" with great interest; it will most likely be a game I'll be interested in playing. I just want to see Bioware move on from the ME3 ending stigma. Then again, there's still EA's business practices to provide the haters with negative ammunition.

Mike Richards:
EA! EA! EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

I'm going to have to go back to calling them Electronic Arts after reading this. It's honestly quite dizzying!

Mike Richards:

A Mass Effect fan and anti-fan meeting on a forum.

"Hey guys, look, Bioware is talking about taking ME in some new directions. It'll be interesting to see what they're talking about and judge whether or not it looks like a good idea once we actually know anything about it and can form a more informed opinion."

"No, they're just milking a dead franchise because EA told them to! EA! EA! EA! EEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!"

"But... the world was clearly created to be larger than just one storyline. There's a lot of room for other things to explore, and it's clearly a universe they have a lot of love for. And take Star Trek as an example, it's gone off in a lot of other directions that reference previous stories but don't-"

"No, they're clearly doing a reboot because it doesn't involve the old story but they can't call it a reboot because they know everyone hates reboots. Bioware is dead! EA! EA! EEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!"

"Ok, so, you want them to do something new and different then? New setting, new characters, new gameplay, all that? Even though they've already done that three times in the past ten years, which is something of an impressive achievement for a major company in the current market, and every time it seems like people complain that they were too different from the things they used to make."

"No, no, no. Don't you know how this works yet? They announce anything and everyone says they don't care anymore because reasons. Something about endings and hamburgers and how awesome Balder's Gate used to be. That's just how it works I'm afraid. Either they're not innovating enough or have strayed too far from that one thing that everyone liked. Either they're phoning it in or they're doing what they want instead of giving us exactly what we want without challenging us at all. Either they're a hollowed out shell of evil people intent on draining every last cent from their fanbase or they're a hollowed out shell of sympathetic people being manipulated by evil people into draining every last cent from their fanbase. Take your pick, no one can seem to come to a concise agreement on why we don't like them anymore, except things are different and we don't like different. And EA! EA! EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

You hit the nail squarely on the head with this one. I see no reason to judge a game harshly when you literally know nothing about it. We haven't even seen a single screenshot or been told what it's going to play like.

 Pages 1 2 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here