Why is Mass Effect a trilogy?

Mass Money Ka-ching. That’s the sound Mass Effect developer BioWare has heard since November. It’s like a lullaby that allows executives to sleep easy. Quite often that same sound is what drives developers to create sequels to games. BioWare, however, claims otherwise.

According to an interview with MTV’s Stephen Totilo, Ray Muzyka, co-founder of BioWare, said they wanted to try something new after Knights of the Old Republic. "Something that’s big and ambitious. What about a trilogy? … it allows you to have different pacing in parts of the story. So we’re excited about the next installments."

As someone who respects story over all else, it’s nice to hear Mass Effect was planned to span three games. This way BioWare doesn’t have to cram all the details about their galaxy or characters into one game and then hope it sells well. By being upfront about how many games it’s going to take to tell the story, BioWare can get away with not telling you everything in the first game.

That was part of the problem with the Halo series. The first game was a complete game; told a great story, had great characters, and basically properly introduced the FPS to a new generation of console gamers. Halo 2 only existed because Microsoft waned to sell more hardware, and the third game only existed because Bungie ran out of time making Halo 2. Strange circumstances to create a trilogy, no?

The little I know about the Mass Effect story intrigues me. I’m interested in seeing where the story goes; I’m a sucker for science fiction and a franchise like this isn’t something that’s going to drop off my radar.

BioWare seems to have had the right idea planning the whole thing from the get-go. It’s way more interesting than hearing a developer say, "we just really like making oodles of cash and draping ourselves in it." Shepard wearing a money suit would really take away from the emersion of the game.


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Author: Creighton DeSimone View all posts by

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