‘Mass Effect 4′ Brings Back the Mako, Set During Commander Shepard Era

Published 8 months ago by

Mass Effect 4 Comic Con Panel

Let’s face it, although it was nice to see something from BioWare regarding the next title in the Mass Effect franchise, what EA had to show at their E3 2014 press conference was underwhelming. All we got were a few pieces of concept art and some brief quotes about the universe, before BioWare Creative Director Casey Hudson signed off with a, “We’ll have more to show you in 2015″ message.

But before they completely blow the lid off Mass Effect 4, BioWare took the stage at Comic-Con 2014 to share a little more about their vision for the future of the Mass Effect franchise in a panel titled “Charting a Course: Developing the Next Mass Effect.” The panel, again, mostly focused on overarching concepts more than concrete details, but it did include some newsworthy reveals.

First and foremost, BioWare wanted to establish that this next Mass Effect game will be set during the same time period as the first ME trilogy, but will not feature Commander Shepard. The developers didn’t rule out the possibility of running into familiar places, but since this game will focus on exploring a vast universe that’s not necessarily a given.

Mass Effect 4 Mako Concept Art

On a similar note, BioWare confirmed the return of the Mako — the all-terrain vehicle from the first Mass Effect. The crowd seemed very receptive to the idea of the Mako coming back, but that’s likely because they hope BioWare will be able to get things right this time.

The panel presentation also included some concept art for the new N7 armor sets players will be able to wear as either a female or male character. Whether that character will have a predetermined identity like Commander Shepard or if they will play him or her as a blank slate is unclear. It does sound like the player character will be an N7 Operative, which could put a unique spin on things.

While the idea of a new Commander Shepard-type character is intriguing, if BioWare wants to take a completely different approach we doubt fans would mind. Ultimately, it depends on how the story and gameplay work.

Mass Effect 4 New N7 Armor

And finally, the developers briefly touched on multiplayer — specifically that their focus is on a cooperative slant more so than a competitive one. That isn’t to say that competitive multiplayer won’t be in the game, but fans of Mass Effect 3‘s riff on horde mode will likely be the happiest to hear this news.

Unfortunately, that was it when it came to new Mass Effect news. We didn’t expect much from the panel, so what BioWare had to show was a surprise. The return of the Mako will likely draw a line in the sand among fans, but the brief footage they showed of the vehicle in action instilled some hope that this version will be much improved. Whether or not the game as a whole, however, can improve upon the original trilogy and welcome in newcomers won’t be clear until later next year.

How do you feel about the Mako returning for the next Mass Effect? Would you prefer a game that plays as close to the original Mass Effect games as possible or a radical deviation?

Mass Effect 4 currently has no release date.

Follow Anthony on Twitter @ANTaormina

TAGS: BioWare, Electronic Arts, Mass Effect, Mass Effect 4


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  1. All I want is to choose my own race to play as, so tired of humans.

  2. Alright, fine. Don’t feature Shepard. But at least tell us the Destroy option saved him! and there are lil Tali-human hybrids running around! I’ll wait as long as Mass Effect 6 to find out. During the same period as the original trilogy is a sneaky interesting trick… but i’d rather a game bearing the same Overarching name we know and love not to deviate TOO radically far. Also…. YES! MAKO!!!! It only needed a little work. Perhaps a way to customize your mako ride? nothing drastic! just little upgrades and custom pimps or the ability to trade out parts to make it more Hammerhead like. I’m cool with either, just bring back the exploring beautiful terrain feeling we got to experience with the mako. not touching the player hero subject. I want Shepard and all his deep companions back but one voice won’t change that and you can totally work them into something new if you tried hard enough. Multiplayer? Co-op? Nice! I wouldn’t mind some Splitscreen action though I have no idea how that would fit into a Mass Effect game. Maybe player 2 can be a companion character. Loved ME3’s online multiplayer, just find a different, less necessary way to tie it into the campaign mode and add one other game type other than surviving a horde. If you’re going to try to top the beauty that already is the first ME trilogy, please… take all measures and take your time to do it right. Hope Bioware sees this, my semi-anonymous gamer rant. Good luck and much love!

  3. when are people going to realize playing as different races in mass effect wont work? the only ones that might work besides humans are drell, batarians, asari, quarians. and those are all MAYBES

    • 1.) Why wont it work?
      2.) Thats most of them and thats the ones people want to play with an exclusion of maybe turians and krogan

      • I agree with you, omega. I know that they already said that the main character is going to be a human (an N7, more specifically), that doesn’t mean that there can’t be other races as the main character.

        They wouldn’t be able to have the “Shepard” or “Hawk” style of gameplay, as you see in ME and DA2, but they could easily go back to the DA1 system (the original one with the gray warden). If this is the case there are many routes they could go in future MEs.

        For one, they could go the route of, you have to be a Spector and your limited to Human, Turian, Salarian, or Asari. They could also take even more from the DA1 system and allow for different backgrounds based on which race you chose filtered to a common starting point, like Ostagar in DA1. (You forgot Salarians by the way…)

        josh says it can’t be done, when it has already been done in a different situation under different circumstances. This doesn’t guarantee that it can be done in this situation, but does mean that its more likely.

  4. If they can just make the Mako as much fun to drive as the M-44 Hammerhead from the Firewalker DLC of Mass Effect 2, I’ll be REALLY happy. I absolutely LOVED everything about that vehicle.

  5. Please let us just buy characters outright in the cooperative. Those packs were really stupid. Or have packs that just give us characters.

    • Or better yet, don’t gate the multiplayer content behind microtransactions at all. We’re already shelling out 60 bucks for the game.

  6. I don’t have a problem with the game taking place during the same time as the original trilogy. I don’t think it will be difficult at all to do it. In fact, I think it would be pretty easy. One thing people need to consider is that they have only said it will not feature Shepard, and that it will take place in the “Mass Effect universe”. Who is to say, though, that it has to take place in the Milky Way galaxy? You’ve got FTL travel and mass effect relays. Why can’t their be a relay to a nearby (or far away) galaxy? The latest news on the game suggests there will be a lot of exploration. Since we’ve explored much of the Milky Way (not to say there can’t be dozens, or even hundreds, of unexplored systems there), why not change the setting entirely? Maybe a large group of people (humans and aliens) set off through a relay and their job is to explore the “new” galaxy for settlement sites just in case Shepard doesn’t beat the Reapers. Maybe it’s just humans that go through. No one says the other alien races (or humans) can’t live in another galaxy. Plus you saw one of the first video clips they showed had a Krogan with a horn on its head. Very possibly that’s a sign of a lesser (or more) evolved Krogan race.

    Either way, having a simultaneous story is not at all a difficult concept if you think a little outside the box, and I’m looking very forward to seeing ME4 when it finally arrives. My guess for a release date is November 7th (N7 Day), 2016. I would love to see it earlier, but I’m willing to wait if it’s done right, and is as huge as they are hinting it will be (and there better be no PC delay!).

    • but what about those people that saved shepard and were hoping to continue off of his life line

  7. Why not make it to where you can play any any race at any tim. You could be a human and then do like a gta5 effect where you switch characters?i don’t know what the big deal about playing as other races is anyway. They are all humanoid type anyway. Bi pedal heads with mouths and eyes and ears all in the same place. No real difference.

  8. A new galaxy would be perfect what threats Rome this side of the universe, is it the Reapers or something that makes the Reapers look like angry children with matches. The universe is a big place with many possibilities. And multiple race choices is a requirement for certain game types now everyone wants to get their own story in these worlds just like when some of us were kids we would play our favorite superhero. Now you can, and now you can add stories hopefully without destroying the universe of those stories.

  9. Oh and Krogans and Turians go hard Geth are dangerously creepy but necessary. My belief is that you NEVER CREAT A.I. UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES BUT IF IT IS CREATED AND ASK ABOUT ITS EXISTENCE THEN IT HAS THE RIGHT TO EXIST. SIMPLY PUT WE DON’T CHOOSE OUR PARENTS neither DOES A.I.

  10. OK, no one is talking about what worries me– DAI is consoles only. Last time that I looked there were 511 PAGES of why doesn’t this work on PCs and when will you fix it on bioware’s forum, so let’s not talk about it being ported to PCs. EA is selling it on Origin as a PC game.
    EA is showing the same lack of respect in DAI that it showed in ME3.
    WHY is ANYONE expecting anything from ME4??

  11. i want them to continue off of everything that happened in the original mass effect trilogy. For example instead of playing as the original shepard you play as his/her child from your love interest in Mass Effect 3 and try to live up to your parents legacy. or you could select a species to play as which would be nice feature. but i mostly want true closure on the ending of mass effect 3 because i had a high enough global readiness for shepard to live. i want to know what happens after the extended ending after it shows him still alive. Dont let me down bioware i have followed mass effect all the way wouldnt want that to end now.

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