I love Mass Effect, but I’m impossibly bored of the yearly N7 Day teases
I love Mass Effect, but I’m impossibly bored of the yearly N7 Day teases

I love Mass Effect, but I’m impossibly bored of the yearly N7 Day teases

I love Mass Effect, but I’m impossibly bored of the yearly N7 Day teases

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I want to be absolutely clear right at the outset of this article: I love Mass Effect.

Mass Effect teaser for N7 Day 2023.

Adore it, even. I’m a big ol’ science fiction nerd – and Mass Effect sits up there as one of my absolute favorite sci-fi universes. Above Trekking and Wars; far in advance of silly old Stargate or Firefly. It’s probably even above Battlestar Galactica, which Mass Effect owes a great deal to. Maybe it’s not quite above Doctor Who, or Red Dwarf – but those are respectively magical adventure and comedy shows as much as space things, really – so I don’t even think they count in this comparison.

Anyway, my point is, I’m relatively Mass Effect obsessed. I want a new game, I want it to be a success, and I want it to be face-searingly good. I’m even a noted Andromeda defender. But man, I am starting to get tired of the yearly drip feed of information on the next Mass Effect game.

In fairness, I do like how BioWare has decided to announce the new Mass Effect. Just as it did with the upcoming Dragon Age: Dreadwolf ,the studio has decided to do away with some of the silly secrecy that often surrounds video game projects and treat it more like a movie production. They said out loud, both on their own blog and elsewhere, ‘We’re making a new Mass Effect’.

This has a number of advantages, of course. Most importantly, it helps with recruitment – it’s easier to get high caliber applicants if it’s clear what you’re working on. Mass Effect and sci-fi fans will be tempted to join BioWare to get involved. Other studios have done this too, like how IO Interactive announced it’d be working on the James Bond 007 franchise right as it opened up a shed load of job posts to work on the project. Cyberpunk 2077’s first trailer, which is one of the best tone-setting reveal trailers of all time, was primarily released to kick-start recruitment, as CD Projekt needed people who wanted to work on that sort of game rather than medieval fantasy.

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It also keeps fans placated. Especially under EA, which has a bit of a history of quietly shelving franchises and killing studios, it’s a clear and confident message: Andromeda struggled, and its team was liquidated, but Mass Effect will continue, and we’re already working on it. All good.

Teased image during the Mass Effect 2022 N7 day
An earlier tease for the next Mass Effect, depicting what very well may be a new, man-made Mass Relay.

Games take a long bloody time to make now, though, and therefore the smarter idea, I feel, is just to… shut it after that point? Tell the world you’re making a game – maybe put out a tone-setting trailer if you’ve the resources to do that. Answer the odd question about the title in interviews. But otherwise… maybe don’t show anything until you truly have something to show? This is what Cyberpunk did – there were five years between its teaser trailer and a real reveal of the actual video game.

BioWare has chosen to mostly do that… except for every November. The company considers November 7 something of a holiday, given that the date matches up to the Mass Effect universe’s iconic red and white-striped ‘N7’ armor. And so, every N7 day for years, the company has slowly pushed out teasers for the next game in the Mass Effect universe.

Given BioWare has yet to release the new Dragon Age, I find all this a bit frustrating. The next Mass Effect game is, by all accounts that I’ve heard both publicly and privately, years away. But year by year, we get the drip feed… and I’m actually beginning to think this is worse than just having radio silence until there’s some meat on the bone and a release window in sight.

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We’re clearly not anywhere near that period. In a blog posted just three months ago, made after the studio had a bunch of brutal job cuts, BioWare’s general manager described the next Mass Effect as being in the pre-production phase. The game probably won’t enter full production until after Dragon Age Dreadwolf ships. It’s ages away.

I get the idea of keeping fans hyped – but sometimes, less is more. As the old Roman proverb goes, absence makes the heart grow fonder.

More than anything, though, after years of these teases… they’re slowly becoming less effective on me. I consider myself the prime audience for these flashes of lore and information. A Mass Effect megafan, a saddo with a statue of the Normandy prominently displayed in my office. When Casey Hudson posted that first blog post with concept art for the next game back in 2020, I pored over it with a detailed eye tantamount to obsession. When the first trailer aired during The Game Awards that same year, I imported it into Premiere and frame-by-framed it, eyes wide like a mad man. But three N7 days later, yesterday’s teaser just sort of washed over me. Water off a duck’s back. I’ve been teased one too many times.

Sometimes, less is more. And until there’s a little more to show… I really do want to see less of the next Mass Effect.

SOURCE : www.vg247.com

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