Mass Effect executive producer Casey Hudson asks whether fans want the next title to take place before or after the events of the main trilogy. Hudson tweeted the question last night, the latest in a line of queries which, if serious, mean the game is still very early in pre-production.
We know the next Mass Effect will be based on the Frostbite engine with some customization from the Dragon Age 3: Inquisition team, and that it is being built at BioWare Montreal as opposed to the trilogy's home of BioWare Edmonton. BioWare Montreal studio director Yanick Roy said the game will respect what made the series successful while exploring new angles.
Hudson also noted significant player interest in playable alien races in an earlier tweet. The Mass Effect trilogy allowed players to customize their protagonist, but only to the extent that he or she remained a human commander of the Systems Alliance. On the other hand, BioWare allowed players to choose between playing several races with unique backgrounds in Dragon Age: Origins.
Setting the game after the trilogy would be challenging, as the galaxy is irrevocably altered in varying ways by Shepard's choices. A prequel could have the opposite problem, leaving few important decisions up to the player since its events must logically lead to the established material.
It's a tough call, and unfortunately punching the reporter won't help this time. When would you set the next Mass Effect game in the series' timeline?