BioWare Reveals Aims for the Next Mass Effect

Creative Director, Mac Walters, has plans to make Mass Effect familiar, yet fresh in its next installment.

In a post on the BioWare blog, the lead team members of the next Mass Effect dished out some details on the game’s development, and their plans moving into the series’ bright future.

Mac Walters has been submerged in the Mass Effect universe for nearly 10 years, leading the writing team for the second and third games, and even writing several of the comics. For him, the next game should visually stand out and have an overall experience that does more than simply improve upon its predecessors’.

“We’re working to bring back some of that wonder and sense of exploration that we had in the original trilogy [and] while we’re making a next-gen title, we want to ensure that we’re stepping our game up so that this isn’t just Mass Effect with shiny new features. And we do that by having deep characters and a compelling story with choices that matter.”

Walters also notes that Shepard’s story begins after he has already been made a hero, but the game’s new protagonist will not be so acclaimed right away. “We’ve been looking at more of a hero’s journey: how you become a legend and what it takes to get there.”

The blog post also mentions several recent arrivals to the Mass Effect development team, most notably Chris Schlerf, who served as Senior Writer for Halo 4. Schlerf had this to say about his involvement on the new project:

“Every day is a revelation and every day I get to play in a new corner of the universe […] To me, it’s always about what makes my characters tick and what stories I can tell through those characters that will actually engage people about their own lives. It provides a mirror to that player’s experience [so that they are] not just sitting back in an armchair.”

My Opinion:

While not surprising (after all, this is BioWare), it is at least encouraging to find that the Mass Effect team has such a heavy focus on characters, setting, and how those elements can drive the overall plot. The attention to “choices that matter” is not surprising after their dismal presence in Dragon Age II and Mass Effect 3 received such community pushback. But BioWare seems to be on track to have learned from past mistakes.

I’m ready to explore a new Mass Effect story, especially as a fresh character. I can’t wait to learn more about this new hero’s origin.

Jordan Loeffler is an Associate Writer for MONG who drives a 2006 Pontiac Vibe with Minnesota license plates even though he lives in Portland, OR. She’s seafoam green, and she drives like a wave. You can follow him on IGN.

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