Despite how profoundly influential your choices at the end of Mass Effect 3 would have been on the entire galaxy (not to mention the future of the human race) those choices won’t be reflected in Mass Effect: Andromeda.
Bioware confirmed this in an interview with Eurogamer, with studio boss Aaryn Flynn saying that the company acknowledged criticisms of Mass Effect 3‘s ending, and that it was something they wanted to leave in the past.
“We want [Andromeda] to be a new story and it would be very hard to say it’s a new story, but also that you need to understand how [the previous trilogy] ended,” Flynn said.
“It’s important for us to have elements from the [original trilogy] for fans to have in the background,” said creative director Mac Walters. “Ultimately this is intended to be a fresh story, but we want to have things for people to find and go, ‘Oh, I remember that character.'”
This presents a number of fascinating challenges for Bioware.
Firstly, I wonder how such an expedition to another galaxy was initiated when, during Mass Effect 3, resources were so tight, and the Reapers threat was so strong that such a major initiative would surely have been compromised. I can’t imagine that it would have been kept secret considering the scale of the expedition, although we’ve seen Bioware casually skip over Cerberus’ own outrageous rise to power, despite the human race being small scale compared to other races in the galaxy.
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Reports out of E3 have Andromeda being set a hundred years or so after Mass Effect 3, which could mean the expedition started around or before the time of the last game. The logistics of planning a large-scale Ark project seem impossible considering the galaxy was in the midst of a massive war, so perhaps they build and leave after Mass Effect 3, and arrive a few hundred years later.
I would much rather that than any sort of connection with the original trilogy. Bioware seems conflicted about how it can bring in favourites from the original games into Andromeda, but that might involve some small cross-over, which in turn might only confuse things.
It all just confuses me. Deep inside the lore there is information about the technology not being capable of travel outside of the galaxy. If Cerberus were to investigate and examine Reaper technology, the Reapers would have to first be defeated, which would defeat the purpose of travelling to another galaxy.
Of course, you can’t rule out the possibility of humans and other friendly Milky Way races from simply wanting to explore. But there’s still the question as to how and when the technology was created.
I’m definitely looking forward to hearing more about Mass Effect: Andromeda out of Gamescom.
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