Ex-BioWare writer shares early Mass Effect trilogy finale ideas

Drew Karpyshyn, a former Mass Effect writer, has detailed some of BioWare’s early ideas for concluding the game’s classic sci-fi trilogy – as well as some of the challenges the company still had to work out.

Karpyshyn was the principal writer for Mass Effect 1 and 2, but departed BioWare in the middle of the second game’s production.

In a new Reddit AMA, Karpyshyn discussed the trilogy, saying that while he was in the Mass Effect 2 writers’ room, BioWare had “some strong concepts mapped out.”

“Basically, it included enticing the Reapers via the Mass Relays before detonating the entire network to eliminate them…” “But also destroying/damaging the relays and isolating every galactic society from the others,” Karpyshyn stated.

“But there were certain concerns with that choice, such as what we would do in the following series of games.”

This is comparable to the finale of Mass Effect 3, in which the Normandy escapes into the Mass Relay network as Shepard’s chosen energy pulse is discharged from the Catalyst device.

That red/blue/green energy then zips around the galaxy via the Mass Relays, destroying the Relays themselves – though this was changed in Mass Effect 3’s Extended Cut after fans began writing essays about how it would send the highly connected Milky Way back into a miserable dark age after defeating the Reapers.

It’s also intriguing to hear Karpyshyn mention the idea of future Mass Effect games, and that BioWare had them in mind while Mass Effect 2 was still in production.

Mass Effect 3 was marketed as the “end” of the tale at the time, and the game’s first cut was significantly more abrupt until the Extended Cut provided far more detail on what happened next after your ending decision.

Of course, BioWare went on to create Mass Effect Andromeda, which moved the action to a new galaxy and significantly diverged from the main Milky Way plot before the events of Mass Effect 3.

After years on hold, the franchise is finally resuming production with a new installment scheduled to pick up the series’ plot in the Milky Way.

We analysed BioWare’s teaser banner artwork from last year to unearth a few major plot clues for the upcoming Mass Effect game.


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