Mass Effect 3 won't favour multiplayer over singleplayer

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It’s the end of the universe for Mass Effect 3, as the third game is set smack-dab in the war between the Reapers and everything else in the universe that has a pulse. If you’re going to make your final stand against extinction, then it’s great to know that you’ll have a friend at your side, as ME3 features a multiplayer co-op mode.

Of course, such added modes normally feature some premium content that single-player campaigns won’t have, but Bioware wants to assure their fans that they’ll still play a game that won’t skimp on any content when it launches in March next year.

The ME3 multiplayer aspect consists of players teaming up in four-man groups, tackling hordes waves of enemies. Completing these stages awards you with additional influence on your Galactic Readiness scale, a feature that will determine how the war against the Reapers will end.

Of course, some fans aren’t happy about this, complaining that this will have a negative impact on the single-player campaign. Bioware feels differently however, explaining that fans who choose to go it alone with a single-player experience will find that nothing has been closed off to them, and that their game will still be “amazing”.

“It’s a fun and novel way to increase that number and open things up by having a diverse range of experiences,” BioWare Edmonton general manager Aaryn Flynn told Eurogamer. “At the same time, you don’t need to. You can stick to the single-player campaign”.

“I’m sure there are a lot of completists out there who want to do that. They’ll have amazing experiences and they’ll get to see all the cool stuff they want to see just by doing single-player stuff”.

“It’s very optional. There’s nothing walled off to you because you didn’t play multiplayer and you’re going to be running around at midnight saying, I need three friends! Quickly! We’ve got to find a BestBuy that’s open! No. You’ll get your amazing ending and amazing experiences just by playing single-player if you want that way”.

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Flynn then spoke about how Bioware had anticipated such feedback from fans, ones who were “passionate about the series”, particularly as ,Mass Effect had been a predominantly single-player game in its first two outings.

“Multiplayer has come up in the past at the studio”, Flynn said. “But with Mass Effect 3 it felt like the right time, especially because of the setting. The technology matured nicely. We had good success with the single-player campaigns”.

“We thought, now it feels like the right time, with the setting we have, of an entire galaxy at war, to put something together that can be fun with multiplayer”.

“With Mass Effect 3, we were setting up an entire galaxy at war. It made sense that we could tell some pretty cool stories and weave a very interesting multiplayer mechanic into that setting, and that’s what we decided to do.”

With Bioware putting a lot of faith in their upcoming title, it will be interesting to see how all the new features that it includes will gel with each other. Multiplayer, Kinect support and improved squad controls are just a few features for the trilogy-ender, but it looks like Mass Effect 3 might just be a game that lives up to its ambitions and fans expectations.

Last Updated: October 31, 2011

Darryn Bonthuys

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