Mass Effect 3 will return players to the first game's Citadel environment, promises the game's lead writer, Mac Walters. While the Citadel was intended to play a larger part in Mass Effect 2, storylines involving the area were mostly trimmed from the game for plotting reasons. This greatly reduced the time players of the sequel could spend in the area, despite its central role in the series' politics – but missions cut from the sequel will return for Shepard's final outing...
“There was a Mass Effect 2 plot that was a kind of callback to the first Mass Effect that was going to be on the Citadel, and we cut it,” says Walters, “but now it's made a resurrection in Mass Effect 3.” He's not saying what exactly that plot entails – and would you want him to, or rather find out for yourself? However, lauding the “second chance” afforded by his position at the head of the trilogy's writing staff, Walters assures OXM he's happy with the way the Citadel has returned to Mass Effect's storyline.
Walters admits the challenges of plotting a three-game arc presented some issues – but he'd rather call them hurdles than problems. “Sometimes they're hurdles that we've given ourselves, so we kind of smack ourselves in the head,” he admits, particularly with as flexible an attitude toward storyline development as the Mass Effect team has demonstrated.
There's also further confirmation that Mass Effect 3 probably won't mark players' final glimpse of the series' world. While Walters is looking forward to a change of pace after seven years of Shepard, he says his dream would be to “take a break, then come back to revel in it again and enjoy it.”
But there's still the third game to release first, which is still due to hit shelves in March of next year.