Speaking on BioWare’s forums, community manager Chris Priestly discouraged referring to the next Mass Effect game as Mass Effect 4. “We have already said that the Commander Shepard trilogy is over and that the next game will not feature him/her,” he wrote. “The game does not have to come after. Or before. Or off to the side. Or with characters you know.”
Clarifying those remarks, BioWare Montreal’s Yanick Roy stated 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.” According to Roy, there may be some recognition of choices made in prior games, but if so it would not be the thrust of the new story. Details about that story, he added may be several months away.
You’ll forgive me for tagging it Mass Effect 4 for lack of anything else to call it.
BioWare’s Casey Hudson has put to Twitter the question of whether Mass Effect 4 should follow or precede the trilogy as it stands. Mass Effect history nerds may recall that ‘prequel’ puts it closer to the First Contact War (or Relay 314 Incident, depending on how your knees bend), while naturally anything post ME3 leaves the galaxy in a state of disrepair.
Check the tweet itself, and its responses, this-a-way.
Rumblings about Mass Effect 4 have already begun, with BioWare more or less confirming it after asking for fan feedback via twitter. With the project in its early stages, little is currently known about the title. However, BioWare did confirm that ME4 will run on DICE’s Frostbite engine, most recently used in Battlefield 3. Development has also been handed off to BioWare Montreal from their Edmonton studio, who developed the original trilogy.
With the Mass Effect Trilogy already available for 360 and PC, BioWare has revealed a date of December 4 for the bundle to hit the PS3 in North America. The European release will follow on December 7.
DLC-wise, the PS3 version will include Bring Down the Sky, Kasumi, Overlord, and Lair of the Shadow Broker. Mass Effect 3 will remain as it shipped, with the Extended Cut still free for download separately.
With last year’s orchestral album based on video game music under their belt, the London Philharmonic Orchestra is putting together a second one. The tellingly-named Greatest Video Game Music 2 launches on November 6, and includes the following tracklist: Continue reading ‘London Philharmonic Composes Second Game Music Album’ »
Via BioWare’s official blog, the oft-hinted Omega DLC for Mass Effect 3 has finally been confirmed. As was expected, the content will involve Aria T’Loak and her attempt to reclaim Omega, which was seized off-camera by Cerberus during the game.
Enforce Omega’s One Rule starting November 27 for all platforms (28 for PS3 in Europe). The original post can be read here.
BioWare has revealed plans to update Mass Effect 3‘s multiplayer, namely adding a challenge system: a series of MP-centric achievements, with players scored through the clearance thereof. An upcoming N7 HQ website will track progression through these challenges, with gold-level challenges granting exclusive titles and banners. Additionally, the weekly Operation events will be replaced by weekly Challenges, with prizes granted immediately on an individual basis rather than globally on a set delay.
The latest Mass Effect 3 expansion will bring back the Collectors, currently the only enemy race to successfully kill Commander Shepard… mostly. She got better, of course. Anyway, this multiplayer DLC, titled Retaliation adds six new maps, sixteen new characters, and the insectoid Collectors as enemies. Existing maps and forces will also see various updates, such as maps with major environmental hazards.
The content goes live on October 9.
BioWare has just announced a collection of the Mass Effect trilogy, covering all three games for all systems. This includes the original Mass Effect for PlayStation 3, which will also be released separately as a digital download. The box sets will include a limited selection of DLC, though the choice of content may differ based on platform; it is known that add-ons like Lair of the Shadow Broker (ME2) and Leviathan will not be among them. While the Trilogy Edition will not have an option for a Female Shepard cover, the official Mass Effect Twitter did mention it had “a little something special planned for FemShep coming.”
PC and 360 versions go live on November 6 in North America, with the PS3′s date still unknown.
With the departure of co-founders Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk, BioWare Edmonton’s general manager, Aaron Flyn, outlined the company’s upcoming projects. Apart from the already-mentioned Dragon Age installment, Flynn confirmed that Mass Effect will see more content. Following the Omega DLC for Mass Effect 3, Executive producer Casey Hudson plans to develop another full game in the universe, though no details have been given at this time.
As the title suggests, Nintendo UK announced the Wii U version of Mass Effect 3 will include the From Ashes DLC at launch; that being the one adding the Prothean squad member, Javik. As previously mentioned, the game will also feature the Extended Cut built-in, along with a digital comic covering events from the previous games.
Amidst the hubbub of Comic-Con, Mass Effect producer Mike Gamble commented on DLC for the third installment. While no singleplayer DLC besides the Extended Cut has been confirmed, he did state that Commander Shepard would remain the central (playable) figure. And speaking of the Extended Cut, Gamble confirmed that the Wii U version would have this installed by default over the original ending.
BioWare has just released details of the multiplayer-centric Earth DLC for Mass Effect 3. The content features the previously rumored new maps for Rio, Vancouver, and London, three new weapons, and six new human N7 classes. Set for a July 17 release on all platforms (excepting European PS3, which launches July 18), the content will be free for download.
The much-talked-about Extended Cut DLC for Mass Effect 3 is finally upon us, free and waiting only for you to update your copy. If you’re one of the three people that hasn’t notice this yet, stop reading this and go find out if the rumors about it de-suckifying the ending are true.
Nintendo’s press conference this morning held an unexpected announcement buried in a video montage; it seems that Mass Effect 3 will be appearing on Nintendo’s new Wii U console. Bioware confirmed on its Twitter feed that ME3 would be available for the console at launch.
Bioware has announced the release of the Rebellion Pack, a second free DLC for Mass Effect 3 multiplayer. The Rebellion Pack will give players new weapons, six unlockable characters including Vorcha and Ex-Cerberus agents, and two new maps: Firebase Jade, an abandoned Salarian reservoir on a jungle planet, and Firebase Goddess, an Asari stronghold on Thessia. Additionally, players will receive a gear slot that allows them to carry a gameplay bonus from match to match. A new in-mission objective will be added to the existing three that randomly occur during waves three, six, and ten.
The Rebellion Pack is due for release on May 29 for PC, Xbox 360, and PS3 in North America. PS3 owners in Europe will see a release date of May 30. The pack is free for all those with an Online Pass.
Full details available on Bioware’s blog
Five years prior, Mass Effect was BioWare’s new, unproven IP, and exclusive to the 360. Now it’s a critically acclaimed, multiplatform epic that’s broken records all the way to its third and presumably final chapter. Expectations couldn’t be higher, and no doubt BioWare could empathize in feeling the weight of a galaxy on their shoulders. Although noticeably flawed, for the most part Mass Effect 3 is every bit the emotional, action-packed, and deeply personal adventure it was advertised to be, and it’s not fair to claim that a highly criticized ending undermines the whole experience. Yet here I am, about to say exactly that: Mass Effect 3 fumbles the end so spectacularly that, rather than feeling satisfied or eager to revisit the saga, I’m just ready to put the whole sad mess behind me. Continue reading ‘Mass Effect 3 – Staff Review’ »
Ah, 16-bit-era Shadowrun. Come for the cyberpunk revenge plots and foxgirls, stay for the considerable XP/money grind so you can break the game in half. Good times, both SNES and Genesis. Anyway, on to the news:
- Sony’s financial woes catch up to them, doubling their loss forecast and forcing 10,000 layoffs. “Holy s***, now what?” indeed, Mr. Hirai.
- Jack Tramiel, Commodore International founder and the man behind the C64, died at 83. Yet another legend in the tech field that I knew almost nothing about.
- Peter Molyneux speaks out about leaving Microsoft for his indie venture. Will it change the world, or will it OH JUST REMAKE SYNDICATE ALREADY GODDAMNIT
- The Better Business Bureau weighs in on the Mass Effect 3 ending furor, which is my personal “this has gone way too far” threshold.
- Meanwhile, Victor Ireland rather gloriously misreads Steam’s effect on RPG sales, while his own Clash of Heroes 2 Kickstarter falls well short of its goal. Time to serve the Newell? I’d say so.
- Wired’s Chris Kohler takes a scalpel to the argument that used games are hurting the industry. The conclusion: the industry is hurting the industry.
- Project X Zone‘s creators are among the least likely to localize anything, Wasteland 2‘s Kickstarter coasts to a comfortable finish, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – And I’ll Keep Lying, I Promise’ »
EA has just released the Resurgence Pack DLC for Mass Effect 3. As previously announced, the pack includes two new maps, six new classes – or “Krogan Vanguard and those other guys” as I call it – and an assortment of new weapons. The pack is free for all players with a valid online pass code.
It used to be that when a game was patched it ran better, but times have changed. Today, if players download the new Xbox 360 patch for Mass Effect 3, they’ll be rolling the dice. The game might resolve underlying issues… or it might cause the system to freeze on the initial menu screen, rendering both the single player and multiplayer campaigns unplayable.
Multiple threads have appeared on BioWare’s forums and other sites regarding the issue. At this time BioWare is aware of the problem, but there’s no word on when–or if–it will be fixed.
BioWare and its parent company EA have been awash in bad press of late. Controversy surrounded Mass Effect 3‘s ending, and voters at the Consumerist chose EA as the “worst company in America.”