BioWare remains cryptic about the next Mass Effect


BioWare has recently released footage of their panel discussion at San Diego's Comic-Con 2014 where they have finally released some information on the upcoming Mass Effect game, although besides what they revealed they were very tight-lipped during question time. Here's a summary of the highlights for the 30 minute video:


  • Mike Gamble (producer) explains that what is shown is subject to change
  • The new hero's armour (male and female variants)
  • The N7 logo appears on the hero's armour
  • The game will be running on DICE's Frostbite engine
  • The Mako is back but not as you remember
  • The new Mako is more agile and has no cannon/armaments
  • Need for Speed: Mako Wanted
  • Apparently the Mako can drift? It seems to be more like an armoured car than an APC
  • The Mako is intended to be a fast response, point-to-point vehicle where you can get to where you want with a minimum of fuss.
  • The new Mass Effect is about exploring new worlds so that is why they wanted to bring the Mako back.

Question Time

  • The game is not called "Mass Effect 4"
  • BioWare will not say when the story takes place but will reveal that you're not playing as Commander Shepard, that Shepard is not a central part of the story and that the new Mass Effect is about exploring new uncharted areas.
  • There will be alien companions on the team. The races you know to some degree are still present alongside some new races as well.
  • There are no plans to add Plaver versus Player multiplayer since Mass Effect is mainly a co-operative experience when it comes to multiplayer
  • BioWare said they're looking into making the Mako customisable but would not confirm it. When asked if the Mako would have thrusters like the original they said it would depend if it needed them or not. They are currently playing around with the physics of the Mako and want to make it as responsive as possible. They want to make sure it isn't frustrating to drive and easy to get stuck which was one of the major complaints from ME1 fans
  • Audio director Francois Lafleur is already looking at recruiting composers
  • There will be some armour customisation options such as the colour of lights and snap-on accessories
  • There will be some armour customisation options such as the colour of lights and snap-on accessories
  • BioWare didn't directly answer a question on whether you can play as other races besides humans. All they could confirm is that humans would at least be one of the playable races.
  • BioWare are aware of the fan reaction to the ending of Mass Effect 3 and will take the lessons learned there when they can.
  • Frostbite allows for some better animations but it's unlikely there'll be any improvements to facial motion capture since there's probably 60,000 lines of dialogue in any given Mass Effect game meaning its cost prohibitive.
  • When asked if the new Mass Effect would allow you to explore other galaxies, BioWare said they've considered it but wouldn't say anymore.

So as you can see, BioWare really didn't reveal much at all but let's see what important facts we can glean from what was said and then we can go into some juicy speculation :).

Important Facts

  • Humans will be a playable race in the game
  • N7 exists in this universe
  • Some races from the original Mass Effect trilogy will make a return
  • There will be new races in the game
  • The Mako is returning, or at least a vehicle that is similar
  • The new Mass Effect is about exploring new worlds
  • The game is not "Mass Effect 4"


There was some speculation before that the next Mass Effect game would be a prequel potentially set during the First Contact War. The most recent information would lead me to suggest otherwise. Why? As mentioned there's apparently already a bunch of races in the game suggesting Humans have already met them and hence gone past the stage of first contact. Also it seems unlikely that the game is set between the First Contact War and the rise of Commander Shepard since as mentioned, there are new races not to mention the M35 Mako is a relatively recent addition to the Systems Alliance by the time of Mass Effect.

Given the above line of reasoning, there can only be two options here:

(1) The new Mass Effect is set far in the future where everyone has forgotten about Shepard
(2) The new Mass Effect is set in a parallel/alternate universe

If Option 2 became a reality, it would be a major cop-out and I seriously don't think Mass Effect fans could let that one fly. Option 1 seems the most logical (especially considering the Stargazer ending to Mass Effect 3) but if Shepard isn't a central part of the story, then how could this work? Unless Shepard has become mistaken as a myth in the future - if that's the case then you can get around Shepard not being central to the plot.

And then there's Option 3 where there actually is a way that the new Mass Effect can occur before or at the same time as the original Mass Effect trilogy, and that's if somehow Humanity managed to send off some soldiers on a covert mission into deep space without anyone else knowing. Maybe Humanity had stumbled across a "special" mass relay that is able to transport ships to a different galaxy? If they were cut off from the Milky Way in the process that would explain why nobody's ever heard of Shepard and would allow the exploration of strange new worlds and new civilizations.

So what do you think? Any theories on what the new Mass Effect game will be about? How do you feel about BioWare's presentation at Comic-Con?



  1. Looking at that while vehicle that Maco will be using on the game. There is a rumors that buying Mass Effect complete edition you will have a chance to get that vehicle RC model. This is called a gaming fan version and is available on pre-ordering a Mass Effect 4 pc version game.


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