6 Things We Don’t Want to See in ‘Mass Effect: Andromeda’

Wednesday, 22 February 2017 - 4:24PM
Wednesday, 22 February 2017 - 4:24PM
6 Things We Don’t Want to See in ‘Mass Effect: Andromeda’
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Image credit: BioWare, EA
Mass Effect Andromeda is now only a month away from release, and fans of the ten-year-old sci-fi series are beginning to get excited. With a lengthy five-year development period finally at an end, there's little to do but sit back and wait for the game's release on March 21st.

This, of course, gives fans of the series plenty of time to debate what the new game should be like, and how it should play. While the original Mass Effect trilogy is a lot of fun, it's far from perfect, and there are plenty of gameplay elements from these earlier titles that we'd really prefer not to have to deal with again.

6. Awkward Mako Driving

In the original Mass Effect, players got around the game's various planets by use of the M35 Mako, an all-terrain vehicle which in practice proved to be anything but adaptable. Players spent hours constantly falling from rocks, getting stuck in frustrating positions, and trying desperately to dodge enemy attacks in the clunky rover.

Game studio BioWare has confirmed that the Mako will be returning for Andromeda, but have made a point of showing off its sleeker handling and faster cruising speeds. It looks like the studio has worked hard to fix the problems from last time, so here's hoping they've actually succeeded.

5. Clear-Cut Morality Choices

Mass Effect has always followed BioWare's standard branching storytelling formula, in which players are able to make choices that affect the game's story. Mass Effect has always had a clear difference between morally good and evil choices, as made evident in the dialogue options.

While these often help the player to define their character, this morality structure feels a little dated compared to other games, as the game punishes players from deviating from their standard morality.

According to BioWare, Andromeda's choice system will be more nuanced and won't be tied to morality, but it remains to be seen how much extra freedom the new system will give players.

4. Forced Multiplayer

Different people come to Mass Effect for different things. With the third game in the trilogy, BioWare introduced an online multiplayer mode for players who prefer the action and combat to the storytelling aspects of the game. Unfortunately, the studio decided to tie the effects of the multiplayer campaign to the single-player story, so anyone who wanted the best ending had to grind through hours of online gaming.

Now everyone wants to play Mass Effect competitively, so this kind of approach is frustrating who are more interested in the game's story than its combat. Here's hoping that this time around, players won't feel forced to slog through online matches in order to have a satisfying offline experience.

3. Clumsy Sex Scenes

Mass Effect has always been about living the full Star Trek exploration fantasy, and sometimes that means bedding aliens. Fair enough, plenty of people enjoy that. What's often less enjoyable, though, are the game's awkward sex scenes, which, thanks to the limitations of the character models, don't look particularly convincing.

Technology has developed a lot in the past five years, and with the Frostbite game engine, BioWare have an incredibly powerful tool upon which to build Andromeda. Let's all cross our fingers that the resulting romantic moments feel a little less like mashing two action figures together.

2. Day One DLC

EA has a habit of forcing downloadable content on players. With Mass Effect 3, plenty of on-disc content was locked behind an additional paywall which made things frustrating for players who'd just shelled out for the main game.

This time around, there won't be a Season Pass for Mass Effect: Andromeda, so here's hoping BioWare has reigned things in a bit. There's still every chance that players will have to pay piecemeal for new experiences, but with any luck, there won't be major characters that we have to pay extra for at launch.

1. A Linear Ending

Perhaps the most controversial element of any Mass Effect game is the ending of the third title in the original trilogy. Fans were outraged that all branching story paths led to the same single point, with the player's final decision only serving to change which color of lasers shine out in the final cutscene.

It felt like an enormous anticlimax for what had, up until that point, been a thoroughly enjoyable, well-written game series.

There's no doubt that this time around, special attention will have been given to all possible decisions that players make, in order to craft a more satisfying ending. That said, delivering what players want is always going to be a challenge, as no pre-designed conclusion to Andromeda can possibly live up to what each individual player has in their head.

But it's worth being positive. While all we can do for now is speculate, considering the track record of previous games in the series, and how long this new title has been in development, there's every chance that Mass Effect: Andromeda will live up to our expectations.

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