Mass Effect Andromeda was designed to fulfill the promises of the first game

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Video games rarely live up to the hype that they generate before release. Hell, just look at anything that Peter Molyneux unleashed since the 2000s for a prime example of this. Freakin’ Fable, teasing me with ideas of trees that grow with me and rasslefrasslerassle…

ANYWAY! If there was game that kind of failed to meet expectations, it was the first Mass Effect. That’s not to say that it was bad, but fans had to temper their hopes and dreams somewhat when the first game launched. And that’s something that Mass Effect: Andromeda wants to remedy, by giving fans the ultimate experience in that particular Bioware universe.

“One of our big taglines – in fact it’s at the top of my design doc – is “fulfill the promise of Mass Effect 1.” We wanted to take everything that was good about Mass Effect 1, and everything that wasn’t so good but was at least headed in a good direction… like the Mako,” lead designer Ian Frazier said to Glixel.

Let’s be honest, it wasn’t a very good car to drive, but it was cool, it had its moments. Let’s take that idea, that concept, and make it better, expand upon it, build upon it. We tried to do that across a lot of different areas. The idea of exploring those uncharted worlds? We wanted you to feel that excitement about not knowing what’s over the horizon that you felt in Mass Effect 1, but be able to offer a lot more content and variety and interesting stuff than we could’ve back then.

That all ties into the idea of exploring space in a manner that comes off as far more immersive than in previous Mass Effect games. “As far as experientially, we wanted it to be more or less what you had in Mass Effect 3. You have a simple map where you can choose where you want to go and see what’s out there and find anomalies,” Frazier explained.

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But we wanted that to be much more immersive. If you look at Mass Effect, especially 2 and 3, you’re moving the little ship across the map. It does the job, it gets you there, but you’re under no illusion that you’re actually flying through space. We wanted to sell that vision, that idea of space a lot more strongly. So when you choose a destination in [Mass Effect Andromeda], you’re actually looking out that window, seeing your course correct, and then flying to that spot.

If it’s another star system, you go to warp and you see the crazy lines, but if it’s within the same system, you’ll just see yourself fly there. You’ll fly past moons and stars en route to your destination. What’s cool, or at least what I get excited about because I’m a dork, is once you arrive somewhere, you can exit out of the galaxy map and that’s what you’ll see out the window.

EA and Bioware’s guardians of the Andromeda galaxy game launches on March 21. Hopefully there’ll be a few awesome mix-tapes floating around in space waiting to be discovered.

Last Updated: February 28, 2017

Darryn Bonthuys

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  • Alien Emperor Trevor

    Funnily enough I never really felt I was missing any of the stuff he’s talking about, although planetary scanning can GITFS.

    Where I thought they dropped the ball was with their “all your choices matter” stuff over the years. When it came to the last game they… didn’t matter all that much really.

    • miaau

      The Rachni. I could have ignored more or less everything else, but the Rachni. If you choose to kill them in ME1, they MUST stay dead. No mission with Grunt on ME#, nothing like that, sorry. You wiped them out.

      • Dutch Matrix

        There wasn’t just one Rachni queen? (Stretching here I know but…)

        • miaau

          yeah, yeah, I know, big galaxy and all that.

          Still, a cop out, if they choose to go down that road. The Rachni wars were a very long time ago, like 1000 to 2000 years

        • Matthew Holliday

          The rachni splintered into different groups, most common theory is that the rachni wars where the reapers first attempt at wiping the galaxy, but some resisted the indoctrination.
          Enter the rachni queen you saved.

    • Dutch Matrix

      Oh but it did! Kaiden died in the first ME and he wasn’t in the 3rd one! 😛

      • miaau

        Yeah, last play-through, ME1 through to 3, I let Williams live for the first time…. Man, she annoyed me at the start of ME3…… Really. Not even sure why, just annoyed

        • Matthew Holliday

          finding her hungover and passed out in her room sorta made it all worth it though.
          Just for that scene.

          • miaau

            I must admit, that was amusing.

        • Dutch Matrix

          She doubted your motives. That’s why. Here was all hero Shep and the first thing she does is go “No way buddy! I do not trust you at all, cerberus punk!” I hated it as well but thought was brilliant story telling.

          • miaau

            Yeah, but her character felt insincere in that. It felt forced. Everything about her felt forced.

          • Dutch Matrix

            I didn’t pick up on that. I was just smitten with Williams make-over to be honest.

          • miaau

            Ah yes, well, I was not. At all. For some reason.

          • Dutch Matrix

            One thing I can say is the voice actress doing Ash never sounded convincing, so she never really sold her role all that well to me. So it could be that as well?

          • miaau

            Yes, it is exactly that. Felt forced.

          • Dutch Matrix

            That whole Ash getting injured scene felt forced and out of place.

      • Alien Emperor Trevor

        I played ME1 8 times. That twit died every time, no matter how convinced I was that this time I would save him.

        • Dutch Matrix

          I killed of Ashley once. Regretted it ever since. Now it’s also “Sorry Kaiden but you ugly bro.”

    • Matthew Holliday

      Also didnt feel like Id missed all that much.
      But then again, the marketing budget for games these days is probably more than ME1 cost to make.
      We didnt have expectations like this back then.

  • Matthew Holliday

    Marketing rhetoric.
    snoooooore.
    Ive already preordered, but the more they talk about irrelevant BS like this, the more Im expecting to be let down.

    Im concerned enough as is with the boring, politically correct and inclusive character lineup and the cookie cutter relationship building from dragon age inquisition.

    The stuff theyr talking about is reminiscent of the BS the no mans sky devs were spewing.

  • miaau

    If ME1 was marketed as a space exploration game, then, yes, I would have felt let down.

    I, on the other hand, saw it in a shop just after buying the Xbox 360 and saw it was an RPG and it was on sale. So I bought it…. No expectation. The opening scenes had my wife and I both glued to it. She kept coming back for more cut scenes. The opening grabbed us.

    • Original Heretic

      That’s where a lot of good games grab audiences that they wouldn’t normally.

      • miaau

        Yeah, games, movies, books, sometimes a lack of expectation enhances the experience far more than months of intensive marketing

        Busy reading my old Simon R Green books again. Fantasy and amusing. BUT, leaving the Deathstalker books for last. If you have not read them, do so.

        • Dutch Matrix

          Good point. I never read up on any ME2 hype. Just got the game and was blown away by the awesomeness of game and story and the heartbreak of losing squad members. RIP Jack…

  • Original Heretic

    So they actually want you to feel the space travel? Kinda like No Man’s Sky?

  • miaau

    Also, this game is not Freelancer 2, is it? No, it is a squad based RPG, right?

    So…. Why this effort?

    • Dutch Matrix

      I think with the tech we have today compared to then, it could work. It need not be either/or…

      • miaau

        When a big game like this tries to several things, the focus and the experience feels diluted.

        Well, that has been my experience so far………

        • Dutch Matrix

          I am hoping for a bit of a different experience. Kinda like how I imagined/played Star Wars as a kid. Epic space battles, exploration and planet/foot based combat.
          Hmmmm. Best game engine ever was/is the human brain…

  • Craig “CrAiGiSh” Dodd

    I’m ready .. to be fulfilled …

  • chimera_85

    I don’t know who felt the first Mass Effect didn’t live up to expectations but I will find you, and I will hit you with a N7 hammer.

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