BioWare

Mass Effect: Andromeda

The era of Mass Effect may not have completely come to an end, but that’s certainly how it feels with BioWare confirming a long-running rumor this weekend. Mass Effect: Andromeda is not getting single-player story DLC. Though its multiplayer will continue to be supported, update 1.10 was the final one for the main game, and no further content is coming to single player.

Here’s what BioWare says about the matter, including what’s going on with the clearly-teased-for-DLC storyline with the Quarian Ark:

“Early in development, we decided to focus Mass Effect: Andromeda’s story on the Pathfinder, the exploration of the Andromeda galaxy, and the conflict with the Archon. The game was designed to further expand on the Pathfinder’s journey through this new galaxy with story-based APEX multiplayer missions and we will continue to tell stories in the Andromeda Galaxy through our upcoming comics and novels, including the fate of the Quarian Ark.”

I’m wondering if these “upcoming comics and novels” will also go on to address the other lingering questions of the game, questions that were presumably being saved for the sequel, like the true “benefactor” of the Andromeda initiative, the fate of Ryder’s family and the details of Kett and Remnant’s history. Because from where I’m sitting, it seems incredibly unlikely that if BioWare ever does return to Mass Effect, it will be for Andromeda 2.

BioWare

Mass Effect

Confirming the absence of single-player DLC comes at a time when everyone believed this to be the case for months. I actually think that BioWare might have been planning this all along, as even before the tepid reception to Andromeda, they were not selling a season pass for story content, which is unusual in this day and age, and that may have implied this was a path they were considering from the start.

I’m also willing to venture a guess that BioWare has made a not-insignificant amount of money from gacha-style loot boxes in Andromeda’s multiplayer, and that’s why that mode will continue to be supported with new items that can be found in those loot boxes. We haven’t seen the total elimination of single player DLC in games certainly, but microtransactions and loot boxes specifically are incredibly appealing for publishers and developers as they can bring in truckloads of money with a fraction of the effort that would go into crafting one-time-use $10-20 DLC.

The lack of DLC was whispered about practically since launch when the narrative began to take shape that Andromeda was a failure. While EA pushed back on that notion, citing Andromeda sales (including its loot boxes) as a revenue driver, no hints about DLC came. Kotaku eventually reported that they’d heard single player DLC would never arrive, in part because there was no one left at BioWare Montreal to even make it, as the team had mostly been shuffled into new projects, including BioWare’s upcoming Destiny-fighter, Anthem.

BioWare

Mass Effect: Andromeda

This is sort of a sad end for Mass Effect, one of the more beloved gaming series out there, but BioWare wants to make sure that you know it’s likely not the end. Returning BioWare GM Casey Hudson had this to say when responding to a fan question about the fate of Mass Effect, and whether he’d want to return to it:

“Yes! I love #MassEffect too much to not want to work on it again in the future. Thanks for the support – it means everything to our team.”

But the timetable of when BioWare even could return to Mass Effect is unclear. Anthem is shaping up to be massive undertaking which will require DLC and sequels of its own after it launches, no doubt. And EA will likely keep tossing Star Wars properties at BioWare as well for as long as they have that license. It’s hard to see where Mass Effect fits into all this, but I’d be amazed if we returned to that universe in any significant way within at least the next five years.

Still, I’m sad about this. Andromeda had its shortcomings, but in my opinion, got a worse rap than it deserved, and left players hanging with major story questions that will now have to be resolved in comics and novels, instead of through gameplay, if the mysteries are even solved at all. Mass Effect deserved better, and the franchise feels like it’s being buried alive instead of eulogized with the proper respect it deserves.

Follow me on Twitter and on Facebook. Pick up my sci-fi novel series, The Earthborn Trilogy, which is now in print, online and on audiobook.

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BioWare

Mass Effect: Andromeda

The era of Mass Effect may not have completely come to an end, but that’s certainly how it feels with BioWare confirming a long-running rumor this weekend. Mass Effect: Andromeda is not getting single-player story DLC. Though its multiplayer will continue to be supported, update 1.10 was the final one for the main game, and no further content is coming to single player.

Here’s what BioWare says about the matter, including what’s going on with the clearly-teased-for-DLC storyline with the Quarian Ark:

“Early in development, we decided to focus Mass Effect: Andromeda’s story on the Pathfinder, the exploration of the Andromeda galaxy, and the conflict with the Archon. The game was designed to further expand on the Pathfinder’s journey through this new galaxy with story-based APEX multiplayer missions and we will continue to tell stories in the Andromeda Galaxy through our upcoming comics and novels, including the fate of the Quarian Ark.”

I’m wondering if these “upcoming comics and novels” will also go on to address the other lingering questions of the game, questions that were presumably being saved for the sequel, like the true “benefactor” of the Andromeda initiative, the fate of Ryder’s family and the details of Kett and Remnant’s history. Because from where I’m sitting, it seems incredibly unlikely that if BioWare ever does return to Mass Effect, it will be for Andromeda 2.

BioWare

Mass Effect

Confirming the absence of single-player DLC comes at a time when everyone believed this to be the case for months. I actually think that BioWare might have been planning this all along, as even before the tepid reception to Andromeda, they were not selling a season pass for story content, which is unusual in this day and age, and that may have implied this was a path they were considering from the start.

I’m also willing to venture a guess that BioWare has made a not-insignificant amount of money from gacha-style loot boxes in Andromeda’s multiplayer, and that’s why that mode will continue to be supported with new items that can be found in those loot boxes. We haven’t seen the total elimination of single player DLC in games certainly, but microtransactions and loot boxes specifically are incredibly appealing for publishers and developers as they can bring in truckloads of money with a fraction of the effort that would go into crafting one-time-use $10-20 DLC.

The lack of DLC was whispered about practically since launch when the narrative began to take shape that Andromeda was a failure. While EA pushed back on that notion, citing Andromeda sales (including its loot boxes) as a revenue driver, no hints about DLC came. Kotaku eventually reported that they’d heard single player DLC would never arrive, in part because there was no one left at BioWare Montreal to even make it, as the team had mostly been shuffled into new projects, including BioWare’s upcoming Destiny-fighter, Anthem.

BioWare

Mass Effect: Andromeda

This is sort of a sad end for Mass Effect, one of the more beloved gaming series out there, but BioWare wants to make sure that you know it’s likely not the end. Returning BioWare GM Casey Hudson had this to say when responding to a fan question about the fate of Mass Effect, and whether he’d want to return to it:

“Yes! I love #MassEffect too much to not want to work on it again in the future. Thanks for the support – it means everything to our team.”

But the timetable of when BioWare even could return to Mass Effect is unclear. Anthem is shaping up to be massive undertaking which will require DLC and sequels of its own after it launches, no doubt. And EA will likely keep tossing Star Wars properties at BioWare as well for as long as they have that license. It’s hard to see where Mass Effect fits into all this, but I’d be amazed if we returned to that universe in any significant way within at least the next five years.

Still, I’m sad about this. Andromeda had its shortcomings, but in my opinion, got a worse rap than it deserved, and left players hanging with major story questions that will now have to be resolved in comics and novels, instead of through gameplay, if the mysteries are even solved at all. Mass Effect deserved better, and the franchise feels like it’s being buried alive instead of eulogized with the proper respect it deserves.

Follow me on Twitter and on Facebook. Pick up my sci-fi novel series, The Earthborn Trilogy, which is now in print, online and on audiobook.

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