So a couple of weeks ago, BioWare announced that they will be dropping all support for Mass Effect: Andromeda, at least for the single player content (which, let’s be honest, is why the vast majority of people buy Mass Effect for anyway). That means they will no longer be rolling out bug fixes or any additional content for the game (yes, that means no more DLCs either), which is a huge bummer considering the amount of potential they had for additional storylines.
This really didn’t come as much of a surprise after EA essentially absorbed BioWare Montreal, which was the studio behind Mass Effect: Andromeda. Still, it’s a damn shame that they had to completely drop the game and potentially end the entire Mass Effect franchise with nothing but a huge disappointment. To me, it isn’t enough that they’re only planning on continuing the story through novels and comics as I’m not too keen on having to consume other forms media just for the sake of continuing a story or expanding on a game’s lore. Now that’s not to say that I won’t read any of it, but now I feel like I have an unfinished and broken product sitting in my digital library.
The game itself was, to put it politely, mediocre at best. The actual gameplay was amazing, probably the best gameplay experience of the series so far, but the writing was just plain bad. Shame too, since the story and characters are what carries the Mass Effect games. Fail at that aspect and what you’ve got is a fun game with tacked on fanfiction.
I actually whipped up a quick video on my first impressions after a couple of hours of gameplay. It mostly deals with the hilarious amount of bugs and janky animations in the launch version of the game. Here it is:
If you can’t watch the video right now, what I basically complained about is how every few minutes of gameplay something breaks. My character would sometimes get stuck in a weird animation loop or enemies will get permanently stuck in a T-pose where they can’t do anything but slide around. At first I tried to be a little optimistic about the game, but it just got worse the longer I played. I would die ingame and it would softlock by not showing the game over screen and refusing to open the main menu, it would crash every now and then, and of course there’s the horrendous animations in and out of cutscenes.
Despite all of its problems, I still kinda liked it by virtue of it being a Mass Effect game. I was actually looking forward to the upcoming story DLCs, especially the Quarian ark storyline teased at the end of the game (for context, the Quarians, one of the alien species featured in the Mass Effect franchise, haven’t arrived in the Andromeda Galaxy yet). Who knows, maybe they could have redeemed themselves with new storylines. The fresh new setting of the game had so much potential, and the ending shows that we’ve barely seen anything from the main antagonist race, the Kett.
It doesn’t matter much now, I guess. I’ll probably still replay the game every now and then just like I do with the original trilogy, but Mass Effect: Andromeda will forever be a disappointing mess that’ll never be fixed, and that just makes me sad.