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The Mass Effect Community Thread

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Vengal

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Jul 25, 2013
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Seems like only DICE can use the engine to its fullest. Bioware had years to learn how to use unreal getting better with each game as they iterated their tools and likely built up a good internal knowledge base. The difference between ME1 and 3 is crazy.

I wonder how much collaboration there is between the DA and ME teams.
 

DOWN

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Hmm I thought the increasing linearity and some low res baked effects actually made me think BioWare couldn't do much with UE3. It felt like they hit a wall and you could see where they had room and where they didn't. They seemed like they really dropped some scale after ME1 for the sake of saving performance and only starting with DAI did it really come back in decent quality and variety.

And frankly despite the cross gen issues, DAI looks good for open world cross gen. It has better LOD for foliage than Witcher 3 on consoles. It's a massive jump over DA2 and a very solid jump over ME3, scale being the most obvious.

I think Frostbite is doing fantastic and I'm not sure what open world we have on UE that suggests it could handle a Mass Effect size game better than Frostbite.

Seems like people like to post a whole lot of "concern" over BioWare's abilities and the state of Andromeda, when they don't have any example of such a character-customizable game being done better, and the previews are distinctly positive.
 

Renekton

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I have to wonder why Destruction isn't pushed more with BW games on Frostbite, seems they gave it a good shot with DAI's alpha footage and then quit.
Man the FPS drops would get GAF and Reddit into a frenzy nowadays, which is why DICE dialled it down since BC2. I blame the PCMR cancer spreading its locked-FPS dogma into other platforms, forcing designers to be conservative.
 

The Artisan

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Correction: Reviews will be up on March 20th at 3 AM eastern, not 9 AM.
my prediction: critical acclaim. at least 90, definitely more on metacritic
I have not heard any new trilogy talk at all. I doubt they want to be handcuffed by that again. I'd expect them to move forward similar to the way the dragon age series is.
it's gonna be an anthology series from here on out? i'm not sure if i like that but whatever
 

goat

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Jun 10, 2004
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Man the FPS drops would get GAF and Reddit into a frenzy nowadays, which is why DICE dialled it down since BC2. I blame the PCMR cancer spreading its locked-FPS dogma into other platforms, forcing designers to be conservative.

Hey now, its not PC players fault locked box console players want to play a losing version of keeping up with the Jones's.
 

gspec

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Nov 19, 2013
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"No, they do their own thing."

They do their own thing.... Wow what a great answer.

So squadmates are glorified power detonators now? (They've always been glorified bonus powers but still).

ME1 system wasn't perfect but I loved how much control you had over your squadmates. Armor, weapons, items. ME2 was a step back, ME3 a step forward.

I expected them to incorporate and refine ME1 and ME3 systems...

They're going to use the same boring Avenger for the rest of the game and just scale the damage?

This is absolutely ridiculous. They are dumbing the game down even more. Are you kidding me?

What is the thinking behind this.
 

Sou Da

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Jul 26, 2014
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This is absolutely ridiculous. They are dumbing the game down even more. Are you kidding me?

What is the thinking behind this.

To keep them dedicated to their roles. Cora always charges in with her shotgun, Liam does a lot of melee etc.

Watch the Pax gameplay, they're pretty effective at what they do.
 

goishen

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Apr 19, 2015
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To keep them dedicated to their roles. Cora always charges in with her shotgun, Liam does a lot of melee etc.

Watch the Pax gameplay, they're pretty effective at what they do.


Yah, watch PB get downed like twice on her loyalty mission. Sure. "Pretty effective."
 

Madness

Banned
Jan 1, 2013
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Yeah, that very well could be why. They may not want to commit to Ryder until they see if people actually like them.

Probably why they have moved to Bro Ryder for the gameplay stuff since Sis Ryder took a lot of flack over her visuals etc. Gameplay was looking a bit janky. Hopefully it is good. All the stuff I have seen has gotten me excited again.
 

Bombless

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Oct 2, 2012
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Probably why they have moved to Bro Ryder for the gameplay stuff since Sis Ryder took a lot of flack over her visuals etc. Gameplay was looking a bit janky. Hopefully it is good. All the stuff I have seen has gotten me excited again.

Nah man, lyin' Bioware just wants to keep them womenz down! It's a conspiracy!
 

Killzig

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Mar 9, 2008
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Yah, watch PB get downed like twice on her loyalty mission. Sure. "Pretty effective."

Well she is wearing no armor and bringing a revolver to a mass accelerator fight in the ME universe. Seems like a pretty good job by BioWare there.
 

Dandy Lyin

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Jun 14, 2013
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it's gonna be an anthology series from here on out? i'm not sure if i like that but whatever
The only thing they have said is that they are not designing MEA as if it is part of a trilogy. Whether Ryder is the protagonist in the next ME game will likely depend on whether players take to Ryder, and how MEA does overall.
 

EatChildren

Currently polling second in Australia's federal election (first in the Gold Coast), this feral may one day be your Bogan King.
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They've confirmed Mass Effect Archives will allow you to upload your Andromeda save, but yeah, they're not committing to any sequential narrative with a set cast.
 

Tenacious-D

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Aug 27, 2015
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Reposting what I said on the PAX thread.

The whole "you can't change squadmates appearances and weapons" thing is odd considering that we've seen Peebee in a different outfit in that one early trailer.

https://gfycat.com/DeafeningVelvetyFruitfly

Seems counter-productive to have a crafting system but not be able to craft things for your companions.

Ian Frazier said on the logitech stream that there are no alt. outfits either.

The Nomad has more customisation than our squadmates. What a silly move.
 

Maledict

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Feb 16, 2013
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But at the end of ME2 it clearly shows them moving to our galaxy and things get all hyped up and stuff. Everything you're blaming ME3 for, is ME2's doing.

Also, regarding Sovereign my theory is that Walters had no idea what he was doing with the story, like always.

Another one is that the reapers could win anyways, and the Citadel attack is just a + tactical element of surprise and convenience for them. But that ruins the theme of an overpowering enemy even further than the death of Sovereign in the first place.


And disregarding all of that, I find it interesting how you though that a trilogy, featuring a huge enemy in the 1st game, wouldn't bother with us fighting them at some point.

ME1 ended on a hype note as well. That didn't mean we were going to be fighting all of them in a couple of years. Nothing at the end of ME2 implied they would be here next year - they were shown far outside the galaxy, slowly moving in.

And of course I expected to fight them, but not like we did. In the first two games the Reapers had been built up as an unstoppable threat. It took massive firepower combined with Shepherd directly attacking its linked Pawn to kill a single Reaper. I didn't ever think the end game of the trilogy would turn into a standard war against a powerful but beatable enemy. Everything about the first two games said that the reapers needed a way to get into the galaxy, and we stopped them twice, I assumed the final game would be us doing something to stop them arriving in the first place, as everything up to that point had shown us that if they arrived we just lost straight up.

That's where I think the trilogy started to go wrong. When they decided that despite everything we'd done in the first two games the Reapers had to turn up anyway. That Earth should be the thing we care about the most. That the citedal should be the secret macguffin to beat them (when it already was the macguffin in game 1). I do wonder how many of those choices came from EA applying pressure to make the game accessible to people who hadn't played the first two games.
 
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That's where I think the trilogy started to go wrong. When they decided that despite everything we'd done in the first two games the Reapers had to turn up anyway.

I don't think it was ever in the cards for them to not show up eventually. The ending of ME1 was very much that the Reapers would be the main threat again some day. Maybe they have a backup way to get into the galaxy, maybe we're going to go and take the fight to them in darkspace, maybe it's more agents of theirs we'll deal with, but at some point they're gonna be back in a big way.

IMO the real problem was that they forgot that they should probably sew the seeds for future plots in previous games. I think they realized this too late because they had previously decided that this was a "trilogy", but they also wanted ME2 to be only tangentially related to the overarching plot. It was like at the last minute they said to themselves "oh fuck I thought we had another game to squeeze in here, shit we better bring the Reapers back asap". Arrival DLC has literally the laziest possible explanation for the Reapers returning - they just fly back. And neither ME2 nor any of it's DLC packs really offered a coherent explanation for how they would be defeated.

ME3 then kept the bad decision making spree going by once again not really explaining what the plan was. By coincidence we found the blueprints for some device just as the Reapers attacked... we don't know what it is until the final mission, but we sure as shit are gonna spend the whole game building it. Since we don't know what the Crucible is, we also don't know what we're gathering forces for.
 

Garlador

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With modern engines we hit a wall with how many shader and effect algorithms are no longer baked but rendered in real time, the performance costs associated with this shift, and the difficulties in making the effects clean/high quality while retaining the intended dynamic effect. A lot of effects in UE3 (like shadows) are very, very basic and baked and not actually reactive to the environment (nor are characters/objects reactive to the shadows). Reflections too; simple cubemaps and cheap reflections in UE3 are convincing enough to emulate the desired effect even if it's not technically accurate or fully real time, and scale beautifully. Now reflection shaders (eg: Frostbite 3) are happening in real time. It's super neat to see distant explosions and gunfire reflected with positional accuracy on the rain wet barrel of your gun in Battlefield 1, but in order to keep performance stabilised the quality of the effect isn't all that great even if the real time technical complexity is greater than a baked effect in UE3.

I kinda feel they would have had similar problems in UE4, but who knows.
I think people really underestimate just how powerful and versatile UE3 was, and remains.

I think some of the most graphically impressive games we have RIGHT NOW still use the Unreal Engine 3.



And perhaps Bioware is still getting familiar with Frostbite. I know it's a totally different engine, with different pipeline needs and different strengths and weaknesses. Dragon Age: Inquisition overall looked great, but obviously had a few things that just really, truly sucked (shiny skin, really awful hair), but we all hoped they'd simply improve and get better with time, which is what happens.

But that still puts them at square one. Bioware with ME3 had multiple games released with UE3 and had learned how best to optimize the engine, reducing load times and making it a visual stunner for its time. They're back to the kiddie pool with Frostbite, and it's why a studio like DICE can run circles around them in getting the most out of the engine, given their familiarity with it.

I think about how ME1 looks and plays after how smooth ME3 looks and plays, and I understand - but am still disappointed - that we're back to ME1-esque "jank" again with Frostbite for Andromeda. Granted, that's just the preview stuff. Maybe the actual game will be far, far smoother than previews have implied.
 

Mindlog

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I would guess either because of the lack of EA access or because he has a gaming PC (or both).
Yup :]
I know I'm triple dipping eventually so perhaps I'll go ahead and play on the PC early. Really hoping the MP is great and brings all of the old crew back. We were hopeful for DAI being fun for a while. Bugs killed that one for me.
 

Vengal

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Anyone recently tried to use a steamlink with origin games? My link is setup wireless and I'm debating if I care enough to path some cables down there.
 

prag16

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Jul 12, 2012
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Anyone recently tried to use a steamlink with origin games? My link is setup wireless and I'm debating if I care enough to path some cables down there.

I haven't used steamlink, but I've used Steam in home streaming (works computer to computer rather than computer to steamlink).

On the surface it doesn't work, but when I added the actual Origin client itself as a non-Steam game, I was then able to get it to work (Iaunch origin from within steam on the remote PC and pick the game I want; boom, profit... origin must be closed on the host PC before doing this, or it won't launch the stream on the remote).

I've done this with Battlefront and Mass Effect 2 recently, so I see no reason why it wouldn't work for ME:A. I'll probably end up playing the majority of my time in this way on my TV rather than huddled in front of the gaming PC.
 

Garlador

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In terms of size and scope alone, ME:A is a gigantic leap forward when compared to their predecessor.

Few are arguing that, but "size and scope" don't make a good game, and I think we're well beyond the point of acknowledging that.

"This is our BIGGEST game ever!" we hear from some game's marketing team for the 100th time. "Just one zone is bigger than all our previous game's zones combined!"

"Look how big Far Cry's map is!" "Look how massive Just Cause 3 is!" "Look how vast the sky is in Skyward Sword!" "Isn't Skyrim just enormous?" "This Assassin's Creed is the largest yet!"

Dragon Age: Inquisition was truly the game that broke my "size and scale = good" bubble. You can have the biggest, most expansive, most staggeringly vast world map ever, and it doesn't do it a lick of good if the stuff within it is padded, unfulfilling fluff content.

It goes on forever... and yet I can't recall a single good quest that I did here.

It's one reason I kept retreating from "bigger" Zelda games with "larger" oceans and forests and fields and skies - which were vast but mostly empty and without engagement - and returned to the compact and focused worlds of prior Zelda titles (my copy of Breath of the Wild is in the mail...)

Look at all this nothing! Weeee!

I know it's the proverbial poster-child for everything good and perfect, but I do think of games like Dark Souls, where every element of the world is engaging and created with finesse and purpose. It's not the largest, but there's rarely a single moment in that game you're not actively engaged with navigating its treacherous terrain and fending off its lethal occupants.

Until I know for sure, I have my doubts that Andromeda's "huge scale" will come with "huge satisfaction" on top of it. DA:I was just such a colossal disappointment in having such a vast and gorgeous world hampered by almost nothing worth DOING in that vast and gorgeous world (yay, more shard collecting. My favorite...)

Big, open-world games are like playgrounds, and if there's nothing fun things to do there, it doesn't matter how big the game is if you're not having fun and the majority of your time is spent on fetch-quests, just getting to points of interest, or doing chores and inventory management.

I'm not just pulling that out of the blue either; Bioware has struggled with this even with the games I ultimately love. Replaying ME1 now and, well, driving the Mako across vast, empty planets and then hopping back into the menu every five minutes to turn ammo mods into omni-gel, or slowly scanning planets for minerals in ME2 just so my characters won't die in the end-game, or trekking all over the barren wastelands in Dragon Age: Inquisition to do such compelling tasks as "herd the goat back into its pen" and "fulfill the requisition request" while tripping over elfroot didn't make for the most compelling gameplay experience.

I hope Andromeda learned some valuable lessons from those games, because being "bigger in scale and scope" means nothing to me whatsoever.
 

prag16

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This with a wired connection? How's the performance.

Gaming PC is wired to the router, but the living room PC is connected via 5ghz wireless. There is barely perceptible lag (often imperceptible) I guess, so I probably wouldn't use it for a competitive FPS especially with the wireless mouse and keyboard adding slightly to the unreliability. But overall it works just fine, and haven't noticed any difference in performance between Steam games and Origin games streamed through Steam. It's pretty solid. Might be even better wired, but haven't tried it.
 

Heckler456

Banned
Apr 21, 2016
3,151
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Few are arguing that, but "size and scope" don't make a good game, and I think we're well beyond the point of acknowledging that.

"This is our BIGGEST game ever!" we hear from some game's marketing team for the 100th time. "Just one zone is bigger than all our previous game's zones combined!"

"Look how big Far Cry's map is!" "Look how massive Just Cause 3 is!" "Look how vast the sky is in Skyward Sword!" "Isn't Skyrim just enormous?" "This Assassin's Creed is the largest yet!"

Dragon Age: Inquisition was truly the game that broke my "size and scale = good" bubble. You can have the biggest, most expansive, most staggeringly vast world map ever, and it doesn't do it a lick of good if the stuff within it is padded, unfulfilling fluff content.


It's one reason I kept retreating from "bigger" Zelda games with "larger" oceans and forests and fields and skies - which were vast but mostly empty and without engagement - and returned to the compact and focused worlds of prior Zelda titles (my copy of Breath of the Wild is in the mail...)


I know it's the proverbial poster-child for everything good and perfect, but I do think of games like Dark Souls, where every element of the world is engaging and created with finesse and purpose. It's not the largest, but there's rarely a single moment in that game you're not actively engaged with navigating its treacherous terrain and fending off its lethal occupants.

Until I know for sure, I have my doubts that Andromeda's "huge scale" will come with "huge satisfaction" on top of it. DA:I was just such a colossal disappointment in having such a vast and gorgeous world hampered by almost nothing worth DOING in that vast and gorgeous world (yay, more shard collecting. My favorite...)

Big, open-world games are like playgrounds, and if there's nothing fun things to do there, it doesn't matter how big the game is if you're not having fun and the majority of your time is spent on fetch-quests, just getting to points of interest, or doing chores and inventory management.

I'm not just pulling that out of the blue either; Bioware has struggled with this even with the games I ultimately love. Replaying ME1 now and, well, driving the Mako across vast, empty planets and then hopping back into the menu every five minutes to turn ammo mods into omni-gel, or slowly scanning planets for minerals in ME2 just so my characters won't die in the end-game, or trekking all over the barren wastelands in Dragon Age: Inquisition to do such compelling tasks as "herd the goat back into its pen" and "fulfill the requisition request" while tripping over elfroot didn't make for the most compelling gameplay experience.

I hope Andromeda learned some valuable lessons from those games, because being "bigger in scale and scope" means nothing to me whatsoever.

Why is it that whenever people on this forum try to cobble together an argument, they always overblow every single flaw? Dragon Age Inquisition was a 100+ hour long game if you did every single thing there was to do. It didn't solely consist of the things you say the game was all about. In fact, shard collecting and inquisition request fulfilling is only a very small part of it, as were the flawed fetch quests. It had a 30ish hour long main campaign with a pretty alright story and story telling. Tons of lore. Things like, I don't know, combat? Dragons? Keep building. All among many other things. And all of those things happened in the open world too. Those things were so much fun to me that I finished the game twice.

The game had its flaws, but from reading your post, it's as if the game is entirely without merit to you. How you could hold such an opinion and still seemingly have any hope that Bioware can even make a functional game, let alone one that's fun to you is entirely beyond me.

Anyway, I refer to the size and scope not to claim that the game will be super fun or whatever. I'm referring to it because your previous post seems to claim that the game is a step back when it comes to the previous games, which it in all objective measures is not. It's a far more technically capable game with many more features, with many of them simply not possible in U3. And even U4 doesn't seem to have many open world games that work in the engine.
 

shinobi602

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Some feedback from a reviewer after several hours:

-Solid performance, very rare slowdowns on PS4, occasional pop in
-"Pacing feels good - if you are a fan and want to linger there's lots for you. If not you can speed through."
-"The characters already feel like worthy additions to Mass Effect, and as the most important aspect of the games for me that felt really good to see"
-Tempest is great to explore, tons of banter.
 

goat

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Jun 10, 2004
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Ugh, Dark Souls in my Mass Effect. Neogaf and the soulsbourne obsession. Not every game needs to borrow elements from those series. If they did, I wouldn't buy modern games anymore.
 

The Artisan

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Jul 13, 2014
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The only thing they have said is that they are not designing MEA as if it is part of a trilogy. Whether Ryder is the protagonist in the next ME game will likely depend on whether players take to Ryder, and how MEA does overall.

well if Ryder does end up being the protagonist in the next game then chances are andromeda could turn into another trilogy yeah? even if it wasn't planned
 

Heckler456

Banned
Apr 21, 2016
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Some feedback from a reviewer after several hours:

-Solid performance, very rare slowdowns on PS4, occasional pop in
-"Pacing feels good - if you are a fan and want to linger there's lots for you. If not you can speed through."
-"The characters already feel like worthy additions to Mass Effect, and as the most important aspect of the games for me that felt really good to see"
-Tempest is great to explore, tons of banter.

Well, that's good to hear. Any indication as to how long the game actually is? I know they're saying it's their biggest game yet an whatnot, but does that actually translate to a potentially 100 hour experience like DA:I?
 

emag

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Apr 26, 2012
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There are no bonuses for having earlier ME games/saves on your PC, right? No bonus weapons/armor/items or anything?
 

prag16

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Well, that's good to hear. Any indication as to how long the game actually is? I know they're saying it's their biggest game yet an whatnot, but does that actually translate to a potentially 100 hour experience like DA:I?

This is what I'd like to know. Kind of hoping the critical path isn't TOO much longer than the trilogy games; I'd be concerned about pacing.

Also, ESRB: Boobs are in. But not dongs or vaginas apparently. Missed opportunity.
 
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