Developer Bioware returns to the industry of interactive entertainment with a recent addition to the Mass Effect Franchise. Bioware released the Mass Effect trilogy, a series which centres on the galactic exploration of Commander Shepherd and his multi-species crew, back in 2007. Mass Effect has traditionally been a science-fiction series which sees humanity extend its place from Earth to the further reaches of the galaxy. The original trilogy seemed to focus on players exploring new planets and making contact with unique alien species across the Milky Way Galaxy. The latest offering from Bioware is Mass Effect Andromeda, an entry to the Mass Effect franchise which aims to reach beyond the Milky Way and explore the Andromeda Galaxy. Mass Effect Andromeda trades series veteran Commander Shepard, for a new protagonist as Mass Effect Andromeda aims to introduce players to a new narrative and galaxy. The protagonist this time around seems to be either Scott or Sara Ryder, depending entirely upon the player’s choice. As Ryder, players embark on a journey to explore the Andromeda Galaxy, as part of The Andromeda Initiative, an initiative focused on the exploration and colonisation of new planets as they search for humanities next home.
In Mass Effect Andromeda, Ryder is known as a Pathfinder, an individual responsible for securing the future of the species. The Pathfinder seems to also be proficient in combat with specialised weaponry and special abilities. As the Pathfinder, players seem to be given a breath of control over the various aspects of the world, from upgrading their spacecraft and vehicles to mastering combat tactics and obtaining new knowledge about the Andromeda galaxy. Mass Effect Andromeda reintroduces squad mechanics as players tailor a team to accompany them as they explore the surfaces of new planets. Players may interact with their squad in a variety of ways from orchestrating a coordinated defence effort to tactical insertions or providing valuable support. Ryder and the squad explore the Andromeda galaxy and its planets by using The Tempest, their primary method of transport. The Tempest is a spaceship which uses an onboard galaxy map to facilitate exploration of new planets and moons. The Tempest may allow the Pathfinder to fulfil their role in the Andromeda Initiative by providing a host of onboard features. Aboard The Tempest, players may converse with their crew, interact with the onboard AI and customise The Pathfinders load-out.
Whether acquiring knowledge on a distant alien civilisation or recruiting talented individuals into the Andromeda Initiative, players are presented with a variety options and potential ways to achieve their mission. Mass Effect Andromeda aims to provide a personalised narrative where the decisions players make might continually shape the ongoing narrative of the game. The Mass Effect series seems to return to space exploration and provide an original science-fiction narrative for players to immerse themselves. As the Pathfinder, players may spend their time exploring new planets and moons, immersing themselves in the diverse array of areas to explore within the Andromeda Galaxy. This level of control over strategic aspects, character customisation combined with Mass Effect Andromeda’s expansive world may combine to provide a comprehensive galactic adventure for players to engage with. Bioware aims to provide an accessible entry to the Mass Effect series with new characters, narrative, and locations. Mass Effect Andromeda aims to reinvigorate the series with a slew of new features and a compelling narrative which may drive players to the ends of the galaxy.
How else might Mass Effect: Andromeda aim to reinvigorate the series with an original tale, characters, and location?