Electronic Arts executive vice president Patrick Soderlund discusses video game remasters, teasing that remastered versions of the Mass Effect games are in development.
One of the most popular series of the last generation was the award-winning Mass Effect trilogy from BioWare and Electronic Arts. With Mass Effect: Andromeda not set to launch until 2017 at the earliest, fans of the franchise have been clamoring for the original games to be remastered for current-generation hardware to help tide them over. While EA has been dismissive of remasters in the past, it’s now been teased that the first three Mass Effect games are finally coming to PS4 and Xbox One.
EA executive vice president Patrick Soderlund hinted as much in an interview with Game Informer at gamescom. Soderlund said that he couldn’t make an official announcement just yet, but fans shouldn’t be too surprised to see the Mass Effect trilogy remastered at some point in the future. Soderlund said, “The honest answer is that we are absolutely actively looking at it. […] you can expect us most likely to follow our fellow partners in Activision and other companies that have done this successfully.”
Like EA, Activision has been reluctant to remaster its classic games in the past, but that appears to be changing. This year alone Activision has released remasters or ports of seventh generation games onto new-gen hardware, including High Moon’s Transformers games, Deadpool, and more.
Arguably Activision’s biggest step into the world of remasters isn’t coming until later this year, in the form of the Call of Duty 4 remaster. Activision is using fan desire for the Call of Duty 4 remaster to sell more copies of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, only making it available to those that purchase special editions of the latter. It remains to be seen if EA will look to leverage Mass Effect remasters in a similar way to help sell more copies of Andromeda when it launches next year.
Andromeda probably doesn’t need the help, and EA may find it worthwhile to sell the Mass Effect remasters as standalone products as opposed to bundling them with the latest game in the series. After all, some publishers have found remasters to be rather lucrative, with Capcom making remasters a priority in its business strategy moving forward. If the Mass Effect remasters are successful, one has to imagine that EA will be mining its vast library of classic titles to create even more remasters in the future.
It will be interesting to see how EA’s remasters will influence some of its current business practices. For example, if EA starts creating remasters for its games, it may be reluctant to allow some of its titles to be added to the Xbox One backward compatibility lineup. Furthermore, EA could add its remastered games to its EA Access program to convince more people to subscribe to the service. Based on Soderlund’s comments, it seems as though we will find out soon exactly how EA’s remasters will influence the company.
The potential Mass Effect remasters have not been officially announced.
Source: Game Informer