Shepard's Story Won't Be The End
We're but two months away from Mass Effect 3, where Bioware will bring their sprawling, often brilliant space-opera to a - hopefully - triumphant end. While I have concerns regarding the focus on action over adventure and the ever-dwindling RPG elements, I still have faith in Bioware to deliver. And even if Shepard does meet his end in his climactic clash with the Reapers, it appears as if Bioware is already thinking about a fourth game, and your reaction to ME3 and its DLC may influence their decision.
"One of the reasons that I wanted to do Mass Effect as a trilogy is that it seemed to make sense if we’ve been at this for however many years – it will have been eight years – at the end of that, people will want some kind of re-imagination of what the experience will be for new systems and new tastes," executive producer Casey Hudson told Game Informer. "To some degree, we need to see how people respond to Mass Effect 3 and what they’re hoping to see in the future."
I think, reading between the lines, Hudson isn't willing to commit to any idea of a fourth game until ME3 is out and Bioware and EA can report positive sales figures. However, he's not just a profit-minded creature, and Hudson appears to be interested in gauging our reaction to Mass Effect 3, its new settings, characters and conflicts, and the slew of DLC Bioware no doubt have in store.
"There’s certainly a lot of things we could do with it," Hudson confirmed, in regards to a possible Mass Effect 4 title. "Even with our DLC, we look at what people are talking about, what people do fan art of, what people say they wish they could do. It gives us ideas about what some of the opportunities are that people would respond to."
Personally, if Bioware were to do a fourth Mass Effect game, I'd like to see a prequel. Yes, I'm actually advocating a prequel, which is usually the sort of tired, lazy concept I hate. However, Bioware stacked such a rich and compelling back story beneath all three Mass Effect games to date, the idea of witnessing the Geth rebellion first hand, or First Contact sounds very exciting, doesn't it? [Game Informer]