If you’re a games publisher looking for a sure thing, then nothing beats a next-gen remix. The formula for repeat success is really rather straightforward: just take one critically acclaimed, high selling title, and upscale the hell out of it. Polish up those graphics, widen out that display, and rework the animation – et voila: job done.
Of course, the cushiest part of all is the fact that most fans will actively demand an unaltered gameplay experience. Translation: a faster turnaround for the studio, and much more money for the publisher. Everybody wins. The latest brand to take advantage of this ‘training wheels’-type approach to 8th-gen development is Canadian studio BioWare. According to Chilean retailer Zmart, the Dragon Age and KOTOR veteran is now preparing to unleash its much-loved Mass Effect trilogy on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4.
As per the store’s website – which features box art for each of the titles — both ports will sport the same grayed-out casing as the game’s earlier collections on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360. Zmart lists both new editions as unpriced pre-orders, with no release dates yet available.
While this may just turn out to be a misunderstanding on the part of Zmart, or perhaps a hoax designed to attract attention to the site, it’s important to remember that this isn’t the first we’ve heard of a prospective 8th-gen upgrade. Back in March, BioWare company manager Aaryn Flynn confirmed developer interest in the project, telling a Twitter follower: “We have discussed that internally. If we can put solid plans together we’ll share.”
Re-skinning Commander Shepherd and co. would certainly help maintain interest in the franchise following a less-than-stellar finale — one that saw legions of fans demand an overhauled ending. The first game in the trilogy could also do with a number of tweaks and balances in order to bring it into line with later high standards — though far-reaching gameplay adjustments are likely to prove cost-prohibitive.
Does the prevalence of 8th-gen upgrades suggest business savvy or creative drought? What would it take to convince you to return to the Mass Effect universe: improved graphics, re-tweaked gameplay, a better ending? What other series might benefit from a fresh lick of paint? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to check in with all of the latest EA news, right here on Game Rant.
The Mass Effect Trilogy will allegedly appear on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 platforms. No release date has yet been issued. The title is still to be confirmed by developer BioWare and/or Electronic Arts.
The title is already available for Xbox 360, PC and PlayStation 3 systems.
Follow Sam on Twitter @GamingGoo.