After confirming last year that development had begun on what is now known to be Mass Effect: Andromeda, BioWare initially didn’t even have a working title attached to the project. So without having any idea on what to call the franchise’s newest installment, many started referring to the game simply as Mass Effect 4. However, despite the fact that all of the series’ sequels have been given numerical titles in the past, BioWare was quick to correct people from calling the upcoming game Mass Effect 4.
Eventually, the studio revealed that the reason they decided to go with a new naming scheme for Mass Effect: Andromeda was to differentiate the new project from the first Mass Effect trilogy. It has since been confirmed that the original Commander Shepard storyline fully concluded at the end of Mass Effect 3, so players will take control of an all-new protagonist in Andromeda. As a result, BioWare decided to stay away from naming the game Mass Effect 4 in order to separate the next installment from the first three titles.
At this time, little is actually known about Mass Effect: Andromeda other than that it will begin a new narrative tale following a new lead character. However, it now looks like it won’t just be Commander Shepard that is missing from the upcoming release. While answering a few community questions on Twitter, Mass Effect senior development director Chris Wynn revealed that it will be highly unlikely for fans to see any known characters return in Mass Effect: Andromeda due to the conflicting storylines.
@_Anderzzz story wise, it wouldn’t make much sense.
— Chris Wynn (@The1Wynn) August 10, 2015
The series’ cast of characters isn’t the only big change coming to Mass Effect: Andromeda either. Wynn also spoke about how the developer has to rebuild the game’s mechanics within a brand-new engine. Like many upcoming EA-produced games, including BioWare’s own recently released Dragon Age: Inquisition, Andromeda is built on DICE’s Frostbite 3 engine.
Wynn confirmed that the new systems will allow plenty of new gameplay features but reassured fans that the new title will definitely still feel like a Mass Effect game. This is because the team is attempting to rebuild similar combat mechanics as seen in Mass Effect 3. This will give the game familiar feel while still allowing room to evolve.
@Linkenski your assumption is a safe one. There are some new elements that make it more dynamic, but overall similar feel.
— Chris Wynn (@The1Wynn) August 11, 2015
Unlike the developer’s recent Dragon Age launch, Mass Effect: Andromeda is being developed exclusively on current-gen platforms. This means that BioWare won’t have to make any design compromises from dealing with the more limited system specifications of the older consoles. As a result, Andromeda has the potential to be vastly different from Mass Effect‘s last-gen counterparts, but series fans will likely be glad to learn that the developer doesn’t want to completely change the franchise’s core gameplay.
What alterations would you like to see BioWare make to the Mass Effect formula with Andromeda‘s new engine?
[Images via Twitter]