New Mass Effect – Reading Between the Lines [Video]

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[youtube] With many fans desperately wanting a follow up to Mass Effect 3, the new Mass Effect, or Mass Effect 4 as some are calling it until an official name is revealed, couldn't get here fast enough. Fortunately, its release may just be around the corner, with retailer Amazon already listing it on its website. You can bet Mass Effect 4 will be one of the biggest games of the new generation, yet developer Bioware has revealed virtually nothing on it, aside from the fact that it will be a "clean sheet" design that will allow its team to tell a new story without being held back by the story and characters that have become so celebrated in Commander Shepard's trilogy. Just what is the famed Canadian developer cooking up behind the scenes? After watching the game's E3 trailer, we speculate:
"As we starting by designing the next Mass Effect game, we start by asking fans what they want -- you know, what Mass Effect means to them. One of the things that fans have told us most about what they want in the next Mass Effect game is to go somewhere new and to move forward...We are taking you to a whole new region of space. This world is so vast that you can just kinda continue on to the horizon, and there is more and more for the player to enjoy."
So it's clear Mass Effect 4 will be massive, more so than any of the previous games, and has been confirmed to take place in "new region of the universe." Just how massive we don't know, but an open-world layout similar to that of the The Legend of Zelda: The Windwaker, isn't farfetched. Instead of being restricted to small hubs on planets and space stations, we imagine large sprawling sections that can be deeply explored by the player.
“New places, new characters, new people to fall in love with…”
So not only will the game world be huge, but it will also be littered with more intractable characters to form relationships with. Then again, this is something we've come to expect from every iteration of Mass Effect. With Commander Shepard's story more or less completed, we will likely be able to finally play as another race besides humans in the single-player campaign. In fact, it has been confirmed that the new Mass Effect will feature entirely new characters, so Krogan, Asari, Turian, Quarian, Salarian, Prothean and Geth -- get ready to make your pick! We wouldn't be surprised to see a few more races introduced to the increasingly expansive Mass Effect universe. After wall, the adventure takes place in a new region of the universe. Any concerns about the next Mass Effect being a multiplayer focused first person shooter or anything crazy like that can be put to rest. The core mechanics -- strong interactive narrative with permutations of consequential dialog options and solid third-person gameplay -- that made the first games memorable will be back bigger than ever. Exploration of random planets will make a big return after being all but eliminated from Mass Effect 2 and 3 -- count on it! No more probing Uranus from the safety of your spaceship -- it will be all about getting down and dirty with whatever new planet you stumble upon as you venture the galaxy. [gallery link="file" columns="2" size="large" ids="259,260"]
“Imagine what we can do now with the power of new consoles and amazing software. It all looks fantastic…we’ve never seen these characters this real before…We think fans of the series are going to be surprised at how far we are going.”
Bioware has proven itself to be a creator of beautiful games. Mass Effect 1 was pretty, but Mass Effect 2 and 3 were stunning on the Xbox 360 and PS3. Benefiting from a host of cutting-edge next-gen tools, Mass Effect 4 will be jaw-dropping. We expect a level of realism and artistic immersion that will set a strong benchmark for not just future Bioware games on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, but also for those from other developers. Better physics technology entails more visceral and engaging combat, courtesy of smarter AI and more realistic environmental effects. There will be a lot more enemies to take down at one time and in a variety of different ways. If the new Mass Effect is a sequel rather than a prequel, there will be a more robust online feature that lets you build and rebuild multiple world states from the previous three installments that the game can seamlessly pull data from to use. It's a tool primarily geared towards those who have never played a Mass Effect game or those who want to experience everything possible in the new game. So there you have it, a breakdown of the biggest things we expect from the new Mass Effect. Now it's your turn to speculate. From your own research, is there anything you want to add? Head over to the comment section to share your thoughts and excitement for Bioware's upcoming project.

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