Tag Archives: BioWare

BioWare’s New IP: Anthem

Before it got showed off at E3, I wasn’t really aware that BioWare was working on a new intellectual property. After all, they just released Mass Effect Andromeda and though we haven’t beaten it, it sounds like it’s open to sequels. Meanwhile, the ending of Dragon Age Inquisition definitely sets them up for Dragon Age 4. So they have two large universes they are continuing on with, which seems like a lot to be working on.

So with those two games being similar sorts of party-based RPGs, just one fantasy and one science fiction, I suppose it makes sense that if you were to be making another game, you would try to step out of that genre a bit. Enter Anthem.

The early reactions to this game compare it to Destiny, although I couldn’t quite tell if it was an MMO or more just multiplayer up to a certain number, a la Borderlands. Unfortunately, I’ll bet it’s not split-screen like Borderlands is, meaning that the odds of Holly and I playing this one are low.

Which is sad, because this game looks great! It further pushes some of the movement elements that we’ve really enjoyed in Andromeda (and which Holly used even more in playing Re-Core). It’s a big open science fiction world. And the loot!…

Basically, it looks like you’re playing Iron Man.

Different suits, different weapon loadouts, class-like functions on them (like the big old tanky one). I mean, even multi-target targeting and shooting missiles out. Very Iron Man. But like, in the, wouldn’t it be fun to be Iron Man sort of way.

It took me a while watching the video to quite realize that what I was hearing was the players, and not the characters, chatting. Still, it sounds like the main writer from KotoR and Mass Effect is working on this one, so story should still be important. Honestly, I would expect nothing less from BioWare.

If there’s a single player campaign, we might still end up getting this one and playing it that way. If there’s split-screen, we’re absolutely getting this one. If it ends up on our Mac computers, we could play this one. But requiring two X-Box One’s (or PS4’s) for a married couple in a single household? There’s a whole host of games that we can’t play because of the multiple consoles needed. So we’ll see where this one ends up!

Anthem is currently expected late 2018, so plenty of time between now and then (or possible delays) for all these details to sort out.

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Awkwardly: Still a Work In Progress. Re-Playing Mass Effect 3 for Throwback Thursday

We’ve been thinking and talking a lot about Mass Effect lately, what with the new game out this week. Which has had me thinking a lot about my re-play of Mass Effect 3… and the fact that I haven’t finished that. The whole point of it was to get to the end and see the “new” ending, but before that I got lost in the new DLC’s and all. I apparently stopped right before the best bit of the best one! 

With Andromeda out, I don’t know when I’ll be back to this game… but my initial thoughts on the re-play were interesting for me to re-read, so hopefully you’ll enjoy them as well!


I know, it’s happening. I’m going back to Mass Effect 3.

And I’m playing FemShep with the default look, so… this one!

The timing of the creation of our blog is such that we haven’t necessarily talked much about Mass Effect 3. I don’t think any other game has ever received quite the backlash that this game did. I feel safe in saying that because few games have ever created as much anticipation and fan buy-in as the Mass Effect games – playing the same character, with that many choices and decisions, for that long, is pretty much unprecedented. We cared. And, never have we seen a response like we did with this game – the studio went back and made an “extended cut” ending, supposedly to make it make more sense.

I say supposedly, because I had beat the game and was pretty much done with it before this ending came out. As such, I haven’t seen it. That’s one of a few reasons I decided to replay Mass Effect 3! So let me lay out some reasons, and then share some of my initial experience with the play-through, and maybe you’ll decide you need to re-approach this title as well!

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Ranking Mass Effect and Dragon Age – Comparative Opinions Episode 38

Welcome to the Comparative Opinions podcast! This week we went over an hour (sorry!) for hosts David, Holly, and Julia to rank the Mass Effect and Dragon Age trilogies. Our ranking might surprise you, because it surprised us! I think we have some replays in our future. It also psyched us up for the upcoming Mass Effect Andromeda!

Comparative Opinions is a weekly half-hour-ish podcast hosted on ComparativeGeeks.com. Subscribe for new episodes every Sunday!

https://www.facebook.com/ComparativeGeeks/

https://twitter.com/comparativegeek

Music is by Scott Gratton: http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Scott_Gratton/Intros_and_Outros

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Comparative Opinions: Representation in Video Games – Episode 22

Welcome to the Comparative Opinions podcast! This week, on the heels of hearing such positive things about the game Dishonored 2, hosts David and Holly talk a bit about representation in video games, how it’s improving, why it’s important, and why it’s important to celebrate that it’s improving. They are also less than enthusiastic about the upcoming release of Final Fantasy XV.

Comparative Opinions is a weekly half-hour-ish podcast hosted on ComparativeGeeks.com. Subscribe for new episodes every Sunday!

https://www.facebook.com/ComparativeGeeks/

https://twitter.com/comparativegeek

Music is by Scott Gratton: http://freemusicarchive.org/music/Scott_Gratton/Intros_and_Outros

Humans as the Latest Addition to a Multi-Species Universe: Mass Effect

Following up my posts about humans as latest additions to a multi-species universe, I would like to talk about the Mass Effect franchise. Besides being a huge Bioware fan because of their storytelling, I find that Mass Effect could be considered a “true” legacy to Babylon 5.


Mass Effect depicts a universe with multiple important alien species, which also have history among them. This is both brought to light in actual missions but also through discussions. One thing I love in video game is being able to interact and learn more about not only my character’s companions but also the larger picture thanks to the companions’ (or even other NPCs encountered) backgrounds.

Like in Babylon 5, the story engages at a point where humankind already works with alien species in an established setting. Yet, humans as the most recent addition still have to prove themselves and negotiate certain remaining barriers. The first game shows that well since the protagonist works on being the first human allowed into the prestigious Spectre force. This elite group answers directly to the Citadel Council. It is interesting to see that while nothing new in Science Fiction stories, Mass Effect featuring a hub of activity on the Citadel space station, also ties into the kind of successful setting Babylon 5 provided, as well in its treatment of political and underground organizations.

Mass Effect 2 Companion Team.

Mass Effect 2 Companion Team.

Mass Effect has a stronger military aspect than Babylon 5 did. The game is indeed strongly combat-oriented in how the player can progress. Yet Bioware storytelling approach, including the moral choices allowed in the conversations give a certain degree of realness to the interactions and the character development. The interactive nature of a video game is obviously different from how a spectator responds to watching a television show, but building credible characters, lead or supporting, remains a strong storytelling component.

It is interesting to see how humans are perceived and handle interaction with numerous alien species. The fact that the games allow for a solid level of customization as well as choice span, which can impact friendships, rivalries, or even romances, helps the player get a more complex experience. The game can be enjoyed for gameplay, story, the pondering on a possible trajectory for humankind in the future can certainly be a very engaging asset of the franchise.


If you played Mass Effect, what did you think of the different civilizations interacting? Did the evolution of humankind’s place in the grand scheme of things have an impact on your experience?