Thanks to NeoGAF User shinobi602 and to GameInformer, we now know a lot more about Mass Effect Andromeda’s combat, such as the removal of the class system, and the implementation of a more dynamic cover system.
Here’s everything we know about the game’s combat system as of right now:
-Global cooldowns are now replaced by individual timers
-Pausing returns but only for switching weapons or using consumables; powers are instead hotkeyed for quick use in combat while squad commands are in real time
-Dynamic cover system (ala TLOU)
-Still a cover based shooter with a goal to get the player moving around the battlefield more
-Jetpack allows for more movement variety; you can quick dash instead of rolling
-Jetpack has a hover function that allows you to hit enemies seeking cover or survey your surroundings
-Less emphasis on linear, clearly telegraphed environments that tell you a combat encounter is coming (though linear areas are still in the game)
-Game Informer’s hands on was positive, feel the game has a clearer identity in combat than previous games
-You still queue up attacks, combos, order your squad, etc
-All key elements are still intact but the studio wanted to encourage more experimentation and wider variety of abilities
-Class system is gone; instead you have full access to abilities from all classes, you can mix and match skills from tech, soldier or biotics
-Goal is to allow players to try different approaches to combat without being locked in at the start
-However, you can still specialize once you invest enough points into a category of skills, you unlock a profile that can get you bonuses for your particular play style
-This is where class names like “Vanguard” (invest in combat and biotics) and “Adept” (invest in biotics) resurface
-Invest in multiple categories and you unlock the “Explorer” profile
-There is a narrative reason that allows you to reconfigure your points throughout the game so that you can try out multiple gameplay approaches without making multiple characters
-You can customize your helmet, chest, shoulders, arms and legs, more extensive than previous trilogy
-Many familiar weapons return, as well as new melee options like swords and hammers
For me, word of deeper customization of armor and weapons is perhaps the most exciting news in this information dump. But that’s because I’m weird. The most salient news is perhaps the removal of the class system. The ability to mix and match will not only open for way more gameplay options, but will go a long way in making everyone’s Ryder feel unique to them. That is until someone discovers the OP build.
Mass Effect Andromeda is currently slated for a Spring 2017 release on PS4, Xbox One and PC.