Mass Effect: Andromeda: This month has been an exciting one for fans of the Mass Effect series after BioWare made good on their promise to provide an extensive look at what to expect from Mass Effect: Andromeda. The game that is slated for release during the first quarter of 2017 has been a major talking point of the gaming world ever since it was first revealed at the 2015 E3. But while news about the upcoming game has been more or less sporadic, November has seen a flurry of action surrounding the title, especially surrounding what we may see in terms of gameplay.
The creators of Mass Effect: Andromeda have given out some hints about how some of the missions and quests will roll out in the game. One of the most widely talked about features of the upcoming game is its expansive open world setting supported by EA’s powerful Frostbite 3 engine, and this world will facilitate the inclusion of numerous exploration options and side quests alongside the main mission. While these are certainly not new to the series, Mass Effect: Andromeda will have certain tropes to make traversing off the beaten path way more fun than ever before.
First off, the new game will bring back loyalty missions, but this time around they will be completely optional. However, they will be worthy of pursuit in case you want to explore the world around you more in depth. “Because they veer off of the critical path, it just allows you to tell very different stories,” says game director Mac Walters to GameInformer. So the focus in these missions will be on the character and where he comes from. They also have the potential to lead the player to new, unexplored places.
The different planets that Mass Effect: Andromeda will feature will all be explorable, and the player will be aided by a rebooted version of the Mako, the six-wheeled vehicle from the first game in the series. The new vehicle in Mass Effect: Andromeda, named Nomad, will be a more protective and able version of the Mako, and players will find it useful to dodge environmental hazards as well as to find objects that are difficult to reach. “A big focus for us is making sure that the Nomad handles better, drives better, cascades better – that it has all the nimbleness that the original Mako did without any of the frustrations,” say the creators. Exploration will also aid the player to find and scan certain objects that may prove to be useful for crafting purposes. Expect to come across giant bosses that you are required to fight, but such advanced levels will not be playable without some degree of preparation.
Another addition in Mass Effect: Andromeda will be the drop zones, which can reveal all the points of interest on the map. But while these points of interest will give the player an idea of which places to explore, other unmarked locations will also have their fair share of thrills to offer. “We don’t want to just give you map markers to follow. We want you to explore, and find things, and stumble upon them,” explains Mike Gamble, the game’s producer.
Mass Effect: Andromeda is slated for release within the first quarter of 2017 for the Windows PC, PS4, and Xbox One. Watch the cinematic reveal trailer for the game below.