Rumor: BioWare's New Mass Effect Is A Multiplayer Spin-off

The BioWare project teased earlier today by Spike TV's Video Game Awards is not an early look at Mass Effect 3, according to a development source, but the multiplayer-focused Mass Effect spin-off currently in the works at BioWare Montreal.

That Mass Effect game is not a massively multiplayer online version of BioWare's sci-fi RPG series, but a game that's designed to appeal more to the Call of Duty market, according to that source. We're told to expect player progression in the vein of Activision's wildly popular online shooter along with some sort of single-player component that does not feature Mass Effect's Commander Shepard in a leading role.

None of that should really be too surprising, given hints BioWare and EA have dropped in the past.

BioWare Montreal, which has aided in Mass Effect 2 development, was seeking multiplayer programmers earlier this year to "take existing single player user experiences and make them multiplayer safe." BioWare co-founder Greg Zeschuk has also said that there will be more games set in the Mass Effect universe outside of the series' main trilogy.

EA's John Schappert has promised "something far-reaching coming from Mass Effect" in the new year, something a December-timed reveal could drum up new enthusiasm for.

We've reached out to EA to seek comment on the details provided by our source and will update if they respond.


Comments

    God damn it.. i was hoping Mass Effect would be one of the few games to remain unappealing to the brain-dead COD fan base... So over "military shooters"

    I seriously hope it is just a spin-off.. If ME3 has any sort of multiplayer i will be severely disappointed!

      The fact this is a "spin off" would indicate that theres no plans to put MP in ME3, not to mention the mechanics of the game would not fit multiplayer in any way shape or form.

      As for the sound of this, doesnt exactly excite me but the ME series is very very pretty and fleshed out so theres plenty of fodder for weapons, abilities, and especially locations.

      If we get lucky maybe we'll see something more like MAG or TF2 but the "appeal to CoD market" does sorta dampen this hope.

      I am slightly offended by that actually.
      It is possible to enjoy both competitive online shooters and in depth RPGs and strategy games.
      The hundreds of hours I have poured into the likes of DA:O, Elder Scrolls, Fallout, Starcraft etc are only eclipsed by the thousands of games of Halo, CoD and B:BC2 I have played. And I was one of the first to mourn the stripped out ME2.
      But I will admit that the maturity of many online players is.... lacking and that a mass effect shooter is largely unnecessary.

        No, no it doesn't, segregation makes everyone (who matters) happy.

        Seriously though its waaaaay to early to pass any sort of judgement, this could be a really good addition to whats all ready a pretty excellent universe. Dibs playing as a Krogan.

        I remember the same spitting when Halo Wars was announceded and that turned out to be a pretty great game and a good addition to the Halo universe.

    Just waiting for the day that a publisher pours a fortune into one of these, only to find the market has had it's fill of that gameplay...
    I thought the release of the new MoH might have been that day, but Codblops later proved me wrong...

    It doesn't make much business sense to add another FPS multiplayer focused game into the mix when there are already plenty of well established franchises on every console and for the PC. Using an IP that is known for it's SP quality doesn't help sell a MP game. Those who want to play ME are there to play it for it's SP focus. If they were after MP experiences the gamers will go back to there CoD, Halo, Team Fortress etc. MP focused gamers already have there IP's they rely on and it will be hard to market an existing universe to them.

      I get what you're saying but "Using an IP that is known for it’s SP quality doesn’t help sell a MP game"? I have to disagree.

      Quality is quality, and when it comes to studios like Bioware there's a whole messload of people out there that would buy anything with their tag on it.

      No longer replying to Marathon just general response to thread:

      I don't understand why people get so up in arms about this sort of thing, there's people actually saying they don't want any multiplayer at all in Mass Effect? How narrow-minded can you be? Multiplayer comes in many forms, not just your knee-jerk reactionary fears that first come to mind.

      You want it to stay unappealing to the CoD players out there? Put your hands up if you play more than one genre. I've finished ME1 and ME2 about a dozen times, and I still play a whole crapload of CoD. Just because you sit there and fiddle only with RPGS doesn't make you any more worthy of enjoying the ME universe.

      I love the idea of a FPS set in the Mass Effect universe, just as I like the idea of an RTS set in it and just about anything else they can think of to expand it. They've created a wonderful, massive gamespace that is begging to be enjoyed and I can't wait to do it.

    So an FPS set in the ME universe is now probable - I wonder if that also validates the rumour that it will be set in an earlier time period - like the First Contact War with the Turians.

    I'm actually excited about BioWare doing an FPS, if only because the story and characters should be top notch. For my part, I inhale everything ME, so I will be keen to explore tr universe from a different perspective. I do agree that at the moment there is oversaturation in the twitch shooter department - let's hope they try to switch it up!

    PS don't forget to 'Like' Kotaku Au on Facebook ... Let's shoe those Gizmodo wannabes how much we love this site!!!!!

    I think spin offs are good. particularly when they change the game play etc. Think of how all the star wars books, novels and games have added to the universe.

    As long as ME3 is along the same line/quality of 1 and 2. Then anything else they do is a bonus. I wonder if all the characters in the FPS can carry 4 guns at once?

    A ME spin off shooter? So unnecessary. Your fans and forum lurkers deserve so much more than a half-baked spin off. We want more promising DLC like Lair of the Shadow Broker and the much anticipated ME 3.

    Ok, could be cool. Set it during the Human-Turian war and you have my utmost devotion for this game!

    Blergh. I'm not usually prone to judging before we have a lot of info, but at the outset a military shooter Mass Effect spin off doesn't sound that (personally) appealing. I'm sure it'll be a great quality game, but I'm not so fond of multiplayer-focused military shooters, on the whole. Honestly can't see why they're going down this path.

    Just note that no where does it say this will be FPS, it will probably more like Gears of War stop and pop third person like the combat in ME is now.

    The call for people “take existing single player user experiences and make them multiplayer safe.” seems to indicate the combat will look more like ME than a shooter.

      Heh I was also like "buh?" at the comments all talking about them creating an FPS. It seems bizarre they'd make it first person when the third person in Mass Effect works so well.

      Personally I'm intrigued. Not nearly as intrigued as seeing news of ME3 but still it could be a cool game. I'm a big Sci-fi fan and aren't really that interested in all these "Modern Warfare" type games so having another multiplayer option in addition to Halo would be nice (I'm hoping it supports 4 players on the 1 console, boo-urns to games that don't)

    Um... Not sure. I'll have to reserve judgement until I see more or play it but so far, it sounds unappealing to me. Maybe because ME is just one of those very personal stories, and everyone feels like THEIR Shepard and THEIR timeline is the one true one.

    I'm open-minded to the Mass Effect universe moving into another genre, but my main problem is that of all the genres they could have moved to, they pick FPS: The one with the most aggressive, immature, offensive and obnoxious fans (of course not all FPS gamers are like this). If it was like an RTS spin-off (Halo Wars), it'll attract a completely different demographic.

    I don't mean to stereotype, but that's usually how it is. When the HD/Husky Starcraft 2 commentary channels merged with Cod/Halo... it was perhaps the worst thing to happen. You got foul-mouthed 13 year olds raging in Starcraft strategy threads.

    For some reason micheal madsen was the first thing that came to mind when i saw that image.

    Multiplaaaaaaaaayer?
    Awwwwwwwww, I'm a strictly single-player type of guy these days. Never have enough time to spend on this sort of thing.

    Was hoping for a new single player RPG, that's what Bioware do best.

    If you assume the developer source is either wrong or slightly wrong, the rest of the information could easily point towards ME3 with additional Multiplayer.

    Either way I care a lot more about ME3 than multiplayer but honestly I'm surprised this didn't happen earlier. They have the potential to cash in on Halo and COD fans.

    Personally I'd like to see a more in-depth version of ME2's armor customization make it into multiplayer, small bonuses assigned to custom pieces of armor. Customization is king.

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