October 15, 2013

Mass Effect 4, currently without an official name, will have no ties to Commander Sheppard. Apparently.

The loneliness of the long distance runner...
It would seem it has been confirmed that Commander Sheppard will not be in Mass Effect 4.

Mac Walters has been quoted as saying:

“I can't get into details, but the idea is that we have agreed to tell a story that doesn't relate necessarily to any of the Shepard events at all, whatsoever. Beyond that, that's what we've been deciding for awhile. But throughout it all, one of the key things is that it has to be Mass Effect. It can't just feel like a spin-off. It has to feel like a Mass Effect game at its heart, at its core. Just without the Shepard character or the Shepard specific companions."

From this a couple of things can be deduced:

  • It will not be a prequel featuring Sheppard. It may however still be a prequel, that cannot be ruled out by the statement. This would not please this writer
  • It would also seem possible then that the game will not feature any of Sheppard’s prior companions. 

This line is certainly interesting however, “doesn't relate necessarily to any of the Shepard events at all”. One could take that to mean that the history you've built up over the 3 games and the decisions made previously will count for nothing. That said, in Feb 2012 producer Mike Gamble said it wouldn’t be a bad idea to keep your ME3 saves so we'll see.

Gamble recently reported that the development for ME4 had made his “jaw drop”. Let’s hope he ensures ME4 has a great ending…that is well written. That’s the key, good writing.

My hope is that ME4 will be set well after the Third game so that the legacy of Sheppard and his band of merry intergalactic races can be referenced.

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