BioWare: Labelling next game as Mass Effect 4 a "disservice" - the trilogy is over
Posted: 07.02.2013 13:06 by Simon Priest Comments: 15
Chris Priestly of BioWare has warned against thinking of the next Mass Effect instalment as a numerical increment to Mass Effect 3. It causes "a lot of confusion" among fans thinking of it as a straight sequel.

The Commander Shepard trilogy is done with, affirmed Priestly, which is the only 'revealed detail' about the next title. It's about 'what happens next in the Mass Effect Universe', and not 'after Shephard'.

It's not known if BioWare will be setting the next game before or after the events with the Reapers and Shephard. Although the studio did ask what timeline fans would prefer.

"To call the next game Mass Effect 4 or ME4 is doing it a disservice and seems to cause a lot of confusion here. We have already said that the Commander Shepard trilogy is over and that the next game will not feature him/her. That is the only detail you have on the game," posted BioWare community manager Chris Priestly on the forums.

"I see people saying "well, they'll have to pick a canon ending". 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."

He continued: "I do not call the game ME4 when I talk about it ever, bucause that makes people think of it more as "what happens after Mass Effect 3" rather than "what game happens next set in the Mass Effect Universe", which is far more accurate at this point." It's not known therefore if player decisions will be carried over - a staple of the series.

"Obviously fans are going to speculate content, character and story until we actually reveal details in the years or months to come as you have almost no actual details, just don't get bogged down in "well how are they going to continue ME3..."."

BioWare Edmonton is handling the development of the next Mass Effect, with studio head Yanick Roy echoing Chris Priestly's warning of jumping to narrative assumptions.

"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," posted Yanick Roy.

Much like Dragon Age 3, the next Mass Effect is ditching its old game engine for DICE's Frostbite tech.

"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 doesnít mean that events of the first three games and the choices you made wonít get recognized, but they likely wonít be what this new story will focus on."

"I apologize for being cryptic right now, but itís early enough in development that we donít have much to share Ė things still fluctuate quite a bit," added Roy.

"As I have posted on Twitter though, the overall feeling of what you are discussing and asking for is very much aligned with what the team intends on delivering, and that makes me feel very good about where weíre heading!"

Recent PR rumblings at BioWare tease another dose of significant singleplayer DLC for Mass Effect 3, which appear centred around the Citadel and hammer wielding Krogan. The most recent was Omega starring Aria T'Loak.

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By danfreeman (SI Elite) on Feb 07, 2013
So despite you guys leaving the ending to ME 3 as ambiguous as possible( i will never get over that) it may all be for nothing. That`s just great,destroying a great trilogy and you may not even have something come out of it,could someone remind me why i am supposed to trust Bioware again?

I know it`s not their fault for the ending,the writing team is far too good to make something as crappy as that but with EA at the reigns,anything they try to make will just fall flat.
By herodotus (SI Herodotus) on Feb 07, 2013
I wouldn't be so fast in blaming EA. "SW: TOR" suffers greatly from this "ending nowhere" as well, so I WOULD be looking hard at BioWare's writing team, and more importantly the Lead Designer. Loads of build-up that ends with the player waiting on an elevator for other players to form a group just to finish the Story Arc. Very bad design.

"... a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."
By danfreeman (SI Elite) on Feb 07, 2013
Hero i think it`s universally acknowledged that Bioware has a very good writing team,every moment in ME 3 prior to the ending was nothing short of epic,many people would have put the game on number one on their favorites list if not for the ending so whenever there is a case of bad writing i really doubt it`s Bioware`s fault.
By herodotus (SI Herodotus) on Feb 07, 2013
Equally, what has EA to do with? They don't write the ending after all.
By danfreeman (SI Elite) on Feb 07, 2013
It is highly likely they told Bioware to have the ending ambiguous so they could make as many games in this series as possible and milk it for all it`s worth.
By herodotus (SI Herodotus) on Feb 07, 2013
Possibly, but then did EA tell them to make "Dragon Age 2" or "SW: TOR"? Equally ambitious, and equally woeful in the long ruin (sorry, 'run').
By danfreeman (SI Elite) on Feb 07, 2013
Hero EA owns them,if they are told to make a game they make it,DA 2 was shoved out to be sold asap something you can blame EA for,if it got more time it would have been even better than DA:O as for SW:TOR everyone wanted KOTOR 3 and Bioware i think is smart enough to know that they should have given us that instead of something that was clearly made to squeeze money another thing that is basically a trademark of EA by now.

Wow i am really playing devil`s advocate here aren`t i ?
By herodotus (SI Herodotus) on Feb 07, 2013
Yup, and as much as I have derided many a decision by EA over the years, I'm afraid my opinion of BioWare has dropped over the past 18 months. I no longer consider them a top notch group, but more lackies of EA just as Dice are.
By danfreeman (SI Elite) on Feb 07, 2013
Same here so any games they will make from now on i will be very skeptical about,with EA at the helm anything they create is bound to have some major problems.
By nocutius (SI Elite) on Feb 07, 2013
I lost most of my faith in them as well but not yet completely. I hope that EA learned to give them enough time to deliver a brilliant game without rushing them. DA2 is a prime example of a rushed game that could have been much better.
By herodotus (SI Herodotus) on Feb 08, 2013
It will take "KotOR 3" to bring me back into the fold I'm afraid, and that's not going to happen as BioWare has stated that the Story Arc in "TOR" is supposed to be their version of it.

PS> Dan, have you gone all "Guild Wars" on us?
By danfreeman (SI Elite) on Feb 08, 2013
I wanted to change my avy and this was the first thing i thought of,i may change it later though,i find it very hard to stick with an avy.
By FoolWolf (SI Elite) on Feb 08, 2013
I'm with Hero on this. BioWare have been on a decline for quite some time and their ideas would make for a movie/show etc but for gaming they are loosing out on the gaming part IMHO. Great stories etc - but in this franchise crazed age and AAA being what it is - well - somethings gonna give...
By HenoKutus (SI Elite) on Feb 08, 2013
Bioware and EA will make it a top notch title,no doubt about that.
The question is will they make it so you can choose your own race and there are so many possibilities to create another great foe,just like for example in the Stargate series we had the Gould system lords,then the replicators,then the Ori.
By SirRoderick (SI Elite) on Feb 08, 2013
I still know they can make a great game...I'm certainly not pre-ordering anything though. The talent is there, it just need to be directed like it used to be.