The hard truths that BioWare don't want to hear.
By Tim Colwill on July 17, 2014 at 12:41 pm
BioWare are looking for your thoughts on Mass Effect 4, and you can give them in the form of this survey. We’ve taken the survey, naturally, but there’s a lot more to say than can be discussed in a simple questionnaire.
Here, below, we’ve catalogued the things that BioWare really need to be aware of when breaking new ground in Mass Effect.
That One-Button Control Scheme
BioWare’s decision to bind everything that wasn’t “shoot” to the space bar led to more than its fair share of frustrated screaming, especially in Mass Effect 3’s multiplayer. It’s our fond hope that whatever BioWare decide to do next with Mass Effect, they figure out that not everybody enjoys vaulting repeatedly back and forth over a low wall instead of reviving their dying comrades.
The Reapers have to go
The Reapers are a big deal. I respect that. They’re a galactic game-changer. But it’s time to move on and introduce a new threat, something even more terrifying and ominous. Alternatively, it’d be a nice change if there wasn’t a space-Cthulhu to deal with, and new-Shepard had to solve more local problems instead. Shepard, sorting out disputes over tax laws and property ownership? Let’s make it happen.
So does every NPC that can’t be romanced
There’s a whole internet industry that thrives on imagining fictional pairings between BioWare characters, and it’s time to step that up a notch and just make every character a romance option. I’m not talking disrespectful Witcher-style seductions where you get a trading card for every woman you seduce, but real, meaningful relationships that takes months or even years to come to fruition — even with the most inconsequential NPC, human or not.
Adding seventeen more wheels to the Mako is just a bad idea
I’m one of the three people on earth who actually genuinely liked driving the Mako around, but look: seventeen more wheels? That is a preposterous idea. Where would they even go? You can’t have an odd number of wheels. Just leave the Mako alone.
Conversations: just say no
We’ve had three games of this now, and quite frankly I think that’s enough. If BioWare have even the slightest amount of courage, they’ll do away with this unnecessary clutter. Heck, don’t even bother modelling the mouths on the characters.
This will have a number of other benefits too: A massively reduced download size for the game, thanks to the lack of audio, and no need to bother with translation and localisation costs.
Jedi Knights are the exclusive property of LucasArts. They belong in the Star Wars universe, and that’s that. It’s just insane to suggest that BioWare would put them into Mass Effect or that biotics should have access to lightsabers. That is just a stupid idea, dude.
Combat needs to be reworked substantially
We need to be fair about this. If we can’t talk to NPCs, we can’t just up and shoot them in the face either. Under my radical new proposal, all guns (and swords) will be removed from Mass Effect 4, and anybody wishing to solve a conflict with an ancient race of sentient god-robot spaceships will have to do so using expressive gestures and interpretive dance instead, as well as something this note I wrote on a napkin yesterday calls a “deep system of pheromone influencing”. Kinect support, anyone?
A forced cameo from Mario and Sonic
While this idea definitely has some merit, it really stretches believability. I’m really going to have to put my foot down on this one, no matter how tastefully it’s done.
BioWare’s documents reveal plans for a “lush, green planet populated only by cute horses of all colours which can be ridden into battle”. We have to stop this before it starts: Mass Effect 4 absolutely can not have a dedicated mini-game where you have to rub down your horse, braid its mane, and feed it sugar lumps delicately from your hand. There must absolutely not be an adorable, life-affirming section of the game featuring nothing but horse nuzzling and verdant, rolling hills.
The Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott should definitely not feature in BioWare’s next Mass Effect game. I’m sorry, but I really must insist on this point. The series has a history of crowbarring in unnecessary celebrities, but we have to draw the line somewhere. This is just a silly idea. I don’t know why you suggested it.
Okay! That’s all we can think of. Let BioWare know if you have any suggestions in the comments below!