It’s been nearly five years since the release of the original Mass Effect on Xbox 360. Over the course of two sequels, Mass Effect has become one of the defining game series of this console generation. On November 6th, BioWare and Electronic Arts are giving fans and newcomers alike one last chance to experience Commander Shepard’s story from the very beginning with the release of the Mass Effect Trilogy.
As the title so clearly implies, the Mass Effect Trilogy will contain all three Mass Effect games, neatly encapsulating the entire history of Commander Shepard’s battle against the Reaper menace. Whether or not the collection will also include any and/or all of the series’ DLC has yet to be announced. Priced at $59.99, the Trilogy will arrive packed in what Electronic Arts terms a “Premium Foil Box” adorned with custom artwork.
The Mass Effect Trilogy brings the original Mass Effect – once an Xbox 360 exclusive – to PlayStation 3 for the very first time. In addition to its spot in the collection, the game will be made available as a standalone digital download on the PlayStation Network. There is a bit of a catch, though: while the Xbox 360 and PC versions of the Mass Effect Trilogy will go on sale November 6th, the PlayStation 3 edition won’t – all EA is saying for now is that the game “will be available at a later date.”
Speaking of later dates, BioWare is designating November 7th as the first annual “N7 Day,” which is described as “a worldwide celebration of the Mass Effect franchise.” Exactly how that celebration will play out is currently unknown, though the press release announcing “N7 Day” advises fans to keep an eye on the official Mass Effect website for “updates and announcements for a variety of in-game, online and live events which fans can congregate and fly their N7 colors.”
There can be little doubt that the Mass Effect Trilogy is a solid value, especially for neophytes and PlayStation 3 owners who have yet to experience the series’ opening chapter. That being said, we have a number of questions about the collection, and none looms larger than this: why isn’t the Mass Effect Trilogy coming to Wii U? After all, Mass Effect 3 is en route to the system (though it won’t be available on day one), and Electronic Arts has gone to the trouble of producing an interactive comic designed to get Wii U players up to speed on the events of Mass Effect 1 and 2. Why not simply release the Mass Effect Trilogy for Wii U and allow the system’s owners to play the first two games for themselves?
As for the versions that are being released, there are the previously stated issues about DLC and the Trilogy’s PS3 release date to consider, in addition a few questions about the technology powering the games. Simply stated, the Mass Effect games have gotten a lot better looking over the years. Will Mass Effect be updated in any way to more closely approximate the visuals in Mass Effect 3? Remember, the PlayStation 3 version of Mass Effect 2 actually runs on the Mass Effect 3 engine. Presumably, the same will be true of Mass Effect 1, which suggests that the game should look at least a little better on PlayStation 3 than it did in its original Xbox 360 incarnation. And, if PS3 owners get upgraded visuals, shouldn’t Xbox 360 owners get them, too? What do you think?
The Mass Effect Trilogy releases November 6, 2012, for Xbox 360 and PC, and at a later date for PS3.
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