February 9, 2023

Tor Go Devil

No game no life

Looks like the next Mass Effect will be made in Unreal

While the first three Mass Effect games were all made with versions of Unreal Engine 3, BioWare began using EA’s in-house Frostbite engine for all its games after that. The transition wasn’t easy—the first two Dragon Age games had been made with versions of the studio’s own Eclipse Engine, and according to Mike Laidlaw that change was why Dragon Age 2’s expansion Exalted March had to be cancelled. It’s also been blamed for some of Mass Effect: Andromeda’s problems, due to both the extra work switching engines created and specific areas where Frostbite was lacking related to animations, map sizes, save systems, and so on.

That’s why it’s significant a producer at BioWare signal-boosted a job listing for an associate technical director by saying, “BioWare is hiring talented programmers with UE4/5 experience! Come, join our team and work with us on the next Mass Effect game!” A job listing for a franchise director (now taken down), described as “the most senior engineering lead on the next instalment in BioWare’s acclaimed Mass Effect franchise”, also included a note that “Experience with UnrealEngine4+ is an asset” even though the EA boilerplate at the top of the listing said, “Our teams drive innovation using cutting-edge tech and tools such as the Frostbite engine”. 

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