An upcoming series of novels from publisher Titan Books link the story between video game developer BioWare’s Mass Effect 3 and Mass Effect: Andromeda.
This August, those gaming fans anticipating Mass Effect: Andromeda‘s early 2017 release date can whet their appetite with Titan Books’ forthcoming novel series that is set to tell the story in between the new game and its predecessor, Mass Effect 3. The first offering in the run of books is entitled Mass Effect: Andromeda Initiation, which is written by fantasy author N.K. Jemisin, and according to the publisher’s Fiction Rights Guide description, it will be treated as a canonical text and “become part of the overarching Mass Effect saga.”
While it’s unclear as to exactly what kind of tale Jemisin’s Mass Effect: Andromeda novel will tell, Titan Books has stated that each of the texts in the series will focus on key characters, “answering the many questions fans have been asking.” Plus, as far as all of the books are concerned, the publisher has said that they will function as prequel and sequels to the franchise’s in-game events.
Mass Effect: Andromeda Initiation is going to release sometime in August 2016 as a paperback, with the second entry set for availability in March of 2017, while the third comes out in September 2017, and the fourth is slated for March 2018. Books one and two have yet to find authors, but the fourth will be written by Mass Effect creative director Mac Walters, who recently divulged that the Andromeda game will move away from the Paragon and Renegade system in favor of a more nuanced approach to morality.
This is far from the first time that a popular science fiction video game franchise has received the novelization treatment. As it happens, one of the most popular sets of books for a gaming IP have been Halo‘s novels, which helped give the Xbox and PC releases a deeper lore and filled in any potential gaps in the story that the games simply couldn’t cover due to a number of production constraints.
As far as the plot for Mass Effect: Andromeda on gaming platforms is concerned, though, story leaks have intimated that it is primed to take fans beyond the Milky Way and put them in the Andromeda galaxy where players fight for a new home in hostile territory, while being opposed by a deadly indigenous race. However, with BioWare developers yet to officially confirm Andromeda‘s key narrative points other than the details that the protagonist’s name is Ryder, and that the game will essentially ignore the controversial endings found within Mass Effect 3, it’s best to take any leak with a grain of salt.
Of course, with Mass Effect: Andromeda releasing next year, BioWare has plenty of time left in 2016 to give fans more information as to what they can expect from the story. However, gamers shouldn’t expect developers to share every tidbit from the script. After all, it’s best to save some surprises for when the title finally releases.
Mass Effect: Andromeda is set to release sometime in March 2017 for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.