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.
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.