The future of Mass Effect is currently a bit nebulous at the moment. However, EA’s Executive Vice President Patrick Söderlund apparently “sees no reason” for BioWare and EA not to return the sci-fi series which made serious waves all last generation.
When speaking to GameReactor, who asked the vice president about his views on the franchise and where it needs to go in the future, Söderlund replied with the following:
“Well I think, my personal opinion is, I think that the game… I usually don’t do this, but this is one of those places where I feel like the game got criticised a little bit more than it deserved,” Söderlund said. “I think the game is actually a great game. Yes, we have to acknowledge the fact that there were some things that maybe we could have done better, absolutely, but as a whole, if you go in and you buy the game today with everything that’s in it today, I believe that that’s a game worth buying, personally.”
“So that’s the first thing I’ll say. The [second] thing I’ll say is, for Mass Effect as a franchise, that has such a big fanbase, and you know I’ve seen people saying ‘Oh, EA’s not making another Mass Effect’. I see no reason why we shouldn’t come back to Mass Effect. Why not? It’s a spectacular universe, it’s a loved [series], it has a big fanbase, and it’s a game that has done a lot for EA and for BioWare.
“What we need to be careful though of is, whenever we bring Mass Effect back again, we have to make sure that we bring it back in a really [relevant] way, and in a fresh, exciting place. That’ my job, and that’s Casey’s [Hudson] job, and BioWare and the Mass Effect team’s job, to figure out what that looks like, and that we don’t know yet, but we will.”
While Söderlund’s words should provide hope to Mass Effect fans that the series’ stay on ice is a temporary and not permanent one, you couldn’t blame them for still remaining nervous about the its future, or lack thereof.
Back in March, Mass Effect: Andromeda, a new start of the series separate from Mass Effect 1 – 3 hit, and well let’s just say it didn’t go over quite too well. Rather than buzz about being about how Mass Effect was back and better than ever, it was about how the game’s writing wasn’t up to snuff and about the bajillion of gifs, images, and videos showcasing the game’s countless ridiculous bugs and uncanny facial animation work. If you were to play the game today for the first time, a lot of these problems have been remedied for an end product that is vastly better and is actually pretty good (if you were to ask me). However, the damage was already done at launch, and the general public consensus around the game was that it was a complete botching by BioWare Montreal.
Speaking of BioWare Montreal, it no longer exists: it has either been dispersed or has merged with EA Motive. Meanwhile, recently EA and BioWare announced that not even a half year later, Mass Effect: Andromeda will no longer be receiving any single-player updates (canning any planned/likely DLC), just multiplayer updates. So while Söderlund sees no reason not to return to Mass Effect, it looks like no such homecoming will be coming anytime soon.
In other recent and related news, BioWare’s newly-returned General Manager Casey Hudson has said that he loves the series too much not to one day work on it again.