BioWare celebrated November 7th this year by releasing a new trailer for their upcoming game Mass Effect Andromeda. The trailer hints at the game’s story and features gorgeous gameplay footage. This was not the only news however as GameInformer, with Andromeda as their cover story for this month, has revealed several gameplay and story details.
The new game will take place in the Andromeda galaxy. The characters traveled there over the course of six hundred years aboard giant space vessels called arks in order to find new habitable worlds. There are four arks that will be investigating the Heleus Cluster, each of which is associated with a different race (the protagonist is naturally a part of the human ark). In addition to the narrative, GameInformer’s story broke news that loyalty missions would be featured in the game (making a return from Mass Effect 2). Players will also be able to explore the worlds of the Andromeda galaxy in the Nomad, a terrestrial exploration vehicle designed as a response to players’ issues with the the oft maligned Mako from Mass Effect 1.
A producer noted that the game’s traditional gunplay has been altered and streamlined so that it is more “dynamic and action-oriented…We no longer do the [Mass Effect 3] thing of pausing and aiming with the Wheel Up.” Finally, while players will still be able to customize their character in the game they will not have to select classes as BioWare wants players to be able to mix and match abilities across classes. This attitude extends to the new concept of choice in the game where decisions will no longer be coded as “renegade” or “paragon.” Instead, the developer wanted players to make choices based on tone but “not necessarily give you some sort of binary meter by which the whole world judges you.”
The GameInformer story described even more news related to the game and, with the new trailer’s release, it is great to be getting some clear information on what the game will be. As far as I can tell, Mass Effect Andromeda is shaping up to be a worthy successor to the original trilogy of games. The return of terrestrial exploration is the aspect that has me most excited as I always felt it lacking in the later games of the series, even despite the Mako’s poor handling. Aside from this it is good to see one of the major developers to use morality systems moving away from the binary of a good vs. evil and into a more complicated paradigm. While an official release date has not been announced a recent leak by Dark Horse Comics implies that the game could be released as early as March 21, 2017. Check out GameInformer’s “101 questions and answers about Mass Effect Andromeda” for more straight forward, and humorous, details.