Mass Effect 4: Five Influential Ideas That Bioware Can Borrow From Other Games

Posted By | On 17th, Sep. 2012 Under Feature | Follow This Author @GNReith

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The Wii U has featured heavily in the past few days of gaming news (this is relevant, I promise), with announcements of pricing and release windows flooding in left, right and centre. The launch lineup has also come under scrutiny following its reveal and, whilst everyone may be focusing on the fact that we’re getting a new version of Mass Effect 3 on Nintendo’s home console, that’s no reason to forget about Mass Effect 4. We’re always contemplating what we’d like to see in the sequels to our favourite series, but we thought we’d take a different format for this article and analyse five ideas from other games that Bioware could use to influence new mechanics in Mass Effect 4.

A More Complicated Morality System – The Witcher 2

As sacrilegious as it is to admit, I always preferred the original Dragon Age to the Mass Effect series (notice how I ignore Dragon Age 2 in this sentiment). The reason behind this preference is solely due to the choice systems in the two games. The circular dialogue system of ME is hugely streamlined and well designed, but it means the game always tells you what is objectively right and wrong within the game universe based on the orientation of each option, a fact further enforced by the points allocated to you based on your actions. I don’t care if they call it Renegade and Paragon, the fact of the matter is that it’s really frustrating when games tell you that your actions are evil or just. If a character has an issue with my methods, as they do in Dragon Age, that’s fine, but don’t tell me what’s right and wrong in a more objective sense Bioware, as it totally undermines the complexity seen in your games elsewhere. Just get rid of the moral points system altogether, as this ambiguous morality worked incredibly well in the recent Witcher 2. Now that game had some interesting choices.

Properly Interesting Weapons – Borderlands 2

Sci-fi games often offer a disappointing level of creativity when you consider they’re set in the future. Whilst Mass Effect features creative alien races and world lore, the actual weapons are as dull as dishwater. Even if your firearms shoot plasma, you’re still just wielding a normal pistol. Bioware ought to look no further than Borderlands 2 for its inspiration, as previews have already shown us crazy top-loading weapons, disposable guns that explode etc. Why can’t Mass Effect have more stuff like that?

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  • Dexter

    Definitely not, Mass Effect is Mass Effect, not all these other games. The weapons might be “dull as dishwater”, but it’s a hell of a better game than Borderlands (which for all it’s different guns, most feel the same) IMO. It’s not supposed to be morally ambiguous, it’s good and bad, and that’s what fans of the series enjoy.

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  • nah I think ME 3 is a great game (well the destroy ending with high MS and the EC is good), sure some plot holes need fixing in the DLC, which is already happening (see leviathan), I will never pick control or space green magic 😛 so i don’t care about those…

    anyways in ME 4 I agree with the more witcher 2 style moral choices, but everything else I don’t care to see, I just want more weapons more enemies and more characters that i love and care about

  • Mistter Doctor

    Ya i agree with dexter if they got too creative with the guns they would break the awsome world they have created. One thing i love bout ME is the cool history and journal stuff you can read that makes the universe, that bioware has created, make a sense. if they start breaking the laws of the world they have created by making wacky guns that dont make sense with the current story then the game would suck.


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