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    Mass Effect 3, Multiplayer, Galactic Readiness, and You

    The saga of Mass Effect 3’s multiplayer has been a sweet harmony of he said she said discord, where some media outlets kept saying “yup!” others maintained a solid stance of “nope.” As of last night, the fans have finally received a solid word from the Twitter of Mass Effect overlord Casey Hudson himself.

    Fans, rejoice! Or don’t. Multiplayer in Mass Effect 3 brings the series’ downward spiral to a to a fitting anti-climax. Mass Effect embraced RPG elements and a more deliberate pace of gameplay. Mass Effect 2 stripped away much of that RPG feeling and replaced it with tighter shooting mechanics, bringing the game more in line with titles such as Gears of War and its ilk. The additions to Mass Effect 3 include continued idiot-proofing, an increased focus on melee combat, and now, multiplayer. This post on the BioWare forums from a team staffer has all the details, but let’s touch on some of the points.

    So what exactly will the multiplayer of Mass Effect 3 entail? What’s been detailed at this point is four player online co-op (no mention of local), where players will “fight to liberate key territories from enemy control.” Sounds a bit like the increasingly popular horde mode, done ME style. Dashing the hopes of the uninspired, it’s been confirmed that you will NOT be playing your Commander Shepard in multiplayer, nor will you use the likes of Garrus, Thane, Liara, or any other occupants of the Normandy who play a large role in campaign. Instead, you will create a character through different combinations of class and race, combining skills and racial traits with your allies to wreck shop. Customization details are limited at this point, however players will level up, characters will progress, and weapons will be upgraded.

    Expanding on the omnipresence of decisions and consequences throughout the series, Mass Effect 3 features something called “Galactic Readiness” which comes into play in the campaign, specifically when engaging the Galaxy at War mode. While not tied specifically to multiplayer, Galaxy at War will pool much of Shepard’s actions and decisions to calculate Galactic Readiness, which will no doubt culminate at the end-game, where the free galaxy will most likely do war with the Reapers. There are several ways to impact your Galactic Readiness, with multiplayer being one of many. BioWare has stated multiplayer is NOT a necessity, so in the event you do not play nice with others (or you just plain suck), your Shepard's story will not be altered.

    In complete honesty, I’m worried. I always assume the worst when multiplayer is shoehorned into a single player game, and though BioWare is adamant that co-op will not detract from the single player experience, nor will it have any impact unless the player deems it so, it’s easy to be jaded. We know Shepard’s story will end with the trilogy, but perhaps BioWare is testing the water for a continued Mass Effect experience with a greater focus on multiplayer in the future. Or maybe not. Maybe EA brought the hammer down and forced multiplayer into third installment of the series in an attempt to appeal to a wider audience, bolster sales, and justify the god damned online pass, which renders used sales near pointless. This announcement is still green, and Mass Effect 3 is still months away, but my fingers are crossed that BioWare and EA haven’t fucked up one of my current favorites.

    What say you faithful reader, yay or nay on ME3 multiplay?

    via Destructoid, Joystiq

    Reader Comments (1)


    February 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHypnos

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