Sources: Mass Effect: Andromeda Will Not Get Single-Player DLC

Sources: Mass Effect: Andromeda Will Not Get Single-Player DLC
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Yesterday, a widely shared Facebook post claimed that BioWare had canceled Mass Effect: Andromeda‘s downloadable content. The good news: That Facebook post was a hoax. The bad news: They guessed correctly. Mass Effect: Andromeda will indeed not be receiving any single-player DLC, three people familiar with BioWare’s plans have told me.

This will be a drastic departure for the long-running sci-fi series. All three Mass Effect games received single-player content after launch, with expansions such as Mass Effect 2‘s Lair of the Shadow Broker and Mass Effect 3‘s Citadel earning praise for their stories and character development. Fans had expected a similar approach for Mass Effect: Andromeda, but mediocre reviews and animation memes have steered the series in an unfortunate new direction.

In April, as we reported, BioWare scaled down its Montreal studio, whose staff had developed Mass Effect: Andromeda with help from BioWare’s other studios in Edmonton and Austin. The chilly reception to Andromeda led the company to transfer BioWare Montreal’s employees to other projects, including Star Wars Battlefront 2, Anthem, and the next Dragon Age. Although a small team remains in place to work on Mass Effect: Andromeda‘s multiplayer and patch support (which isn’t done yet), most of BioWare Montreal has moved on.

BioWare also shelved plans for a sequel to Mass Effect: Andromeda, sources said.

While reporting that news, I had been pretty sure that Mass Effect: Andromeda wouldn’t be getting single-player DLC. There are few people left at BioWare Montreal who could even work on it. But I wanted to be more confident, so over the past few weeks I’ve confirmed the news with three sources familiar with the company’s plans, all of whom spoke anonymously so as not to jeopardise their careers. Unless BioWare decides to make some sort of drastic pivot (plans can always change!), Mass Effect: Andromeda will not be getting single-player DLC.

It’s unclear why BioWare has not yet talked about these plans publicly — and the company did not respond to multiple requests for comment over the past two weeks — but this will no doubt come as sad news to Mass Effect fans. BioWare has traditionally released meaty, excellent downloadable content for all of its games, and Andromeda left several loose narrative threads that still need to be tied up.

Yesterday, a widely circulated Facebook post from a group claiming to be called Sinclair Networks said that it had been working on Andromeda‘s DLC until BioWare cancelled it. But Sinclair Networks appears to be fraudulent. Several BioWare employees later wrote on Twitter that they had never heard of this company. “While we can’t talk about future yet, I can def say we build our own dlc/patches for our games and don’t hire fake companies to do so,” wrote producer Fernando Melo.

The future for Mass Effect, however, looks dismal.

For more on the turbulent development of Mass Effect: Andromeda, read our in-depth report:

The Story Behind Mass Effect: Andromeda's Troubled Five-Year Development

In 2012, as work on Mass Effect 3 came to a close, a small group of top BioWare employees huddled to talk about the next entry in their epic sci-fi franchise. Their goal, they decided, was to make a game about exploration -- one that would dig into the untapped potential of the first three games. Instead of visiting just a few planets, they said, what if you could explore hundreds?

Read more


  • As i said when i first played it. It’s dragon age in space pants. Not mass effect.

  • This comes as no surprise considering the game was dead after a month. Thats what happens when you shit out an unfinished, unnecessary game using an inferior development team. Such a shame……

    • I think it’s a bit unfair to call the dev team inferior. I only played the demo but from what I saw, and what I’ve read, the dev team weren’t the problem with the game it was the design decisions that came at least partly from the rest of Bioware and designers who were replaced. That made the dev team rush and the game come out in an unfinished state.

      Where it worked, it was a real purty game that had fantastic gameplay, so I think the developers deserve some credit.

      • The bottom line is, this was the B-team they had working on it. The scope changed so much over the dev cycle, from thousands of worlds using generated landscapes to a couple of dozen, then down to the 7. This was in no small part to being exceedingly ambitious in what they set out to achieve. Their vision exceeded their abilities, and it was because of that the help was brought in from outside of the team, to bring them back down to earth. Unfortunately, this meant they had to scrap parts of what they had done, and rush other parts to allow them to compensate for that.

        • But the programmers and artists who worked hard on the game didn’t have anything to do with the decisions that made the ambitious goals in the first place. A lot of people keep saying it was the team’s fault, that they are the “B-team” or “C-team” and the developers should be ashamed (let alone the threatened animators), but it’s seems likely that the game’s issues stemmed from absurdly unrealistic design decisions and that the vast majority of the people working on the game are being blamed because people need someone to blame. Not because of what they did.

          • When a team fails or succeeds, it fails or succeeds as a whole. Individuals within that team may have contributed more or less to the outcome, but that doesn’t change the outcome. The creative designers, the project directors, the programming team, all are part of the Montreal team, and they collectively failed to perform as expected/hoped. I call it the B-Team not because of their performance (personally I consider the game to have been a fairly decent, if slightly buggy and incomplete in places, game that didn’t quite live up to the pre-release hype) but because prior to ME:A, Bioware Montreal was exclusively a support studio, performing supporting duties for the Edmonton studio and creating DLC products. This was Montreal’s first attempt at a large-scale project in their own right, and the team didn’t perform as well as they could have, first committing to an overambitious project, then failing to recognise the limitations the technology and experience they had available imposed on them in sufficient time to meet the committed deadline with a polished product. Instead they first chose and then continued to pursue objectives that were, from the start, largely incompatible with the engine they were using and reliant on not only the creation of a robust and diverse planetary procedural generation engine, but the ability to then implement a strong storyline into that environment, a feat that to date has never been pulled off well. An ambitious goal, to say the least, and one that should have been left to a more experienced team rather than as the first major attempt of a relatively inexperienced studio. I do not blame any one part of the team for the failure of the final product. If anything, I would probably lay the blame at EA’s feet for their ongoing failure to adopt the “it’s done when it’s fucking done” approach that the likes of CD Projekt RED have taken up. But that doesn’t change the fact that Bioware Montreal were a relatively inexperienced team that were thrown in the deep end and collectively failed to swim back to the edge.

        • No one in any line of professional work would like to be considered as part of the “B-team” and the comment pointing out that label as being unfair holds merit imo. Yes, they’re a team that isn’t as experienced with the franchise but as CoD has shown, alternating developing teams can add innovations.

          That said, I will agree that the initial scope of the game was absolutely stupid and I completely blame the producer/director for not reigning it in way early in the cycle. Seriously, thousands of worlds that are generated? Please no. There’s a reason I had no hope and expectations for Star Citizen when it was first announced and have refused to back it. Because I understand that with current technology and programming standards (I’m not even versed in the field) such a feat would require divine intervention to have working and enjoyably playable.

          I don’t need thousands of worlds. Give me a handful of expertly crafted ones entwined with good writing and you’re good to go. ME1 had what? 4 explorable worlds and 1 large hub world (citadel) for a grand total of 5, plus the countless dead planets (scientifically speaking but pun intended though I quite liked exploring those empty rocks on the Mako lol). Yet for many, it is considered the best of what the series could have been.

          I think Andromeda a good example of what happens when a team doesn’t truly understand their product, not sticking to the vision and instead try to incorporate all sorts of industry trends and what they think consumers like.

          • Whilst I understand the negative connotations involved in the term “B-team”, the truth of the matter remains that the more experienced and accomplished team that was largely responsible for the success of the brand was moved to the new Anthem IP, whilst the team that until then had been a support/DLC team was expanded and given the existing Mass Effect IP to work on. There are few concise terms that could accurately describe such a situation, hence my defaulting to that, although perhaps a more fair term would be the “backup team”. Please note I did not actually state nor imply that they should be ashamed of their final product, but rather, if you’ll read one of my earlier responses, simply stated it was a decent product that needed to undergo more polish prior to release.

        • All this ‘b-team’ shit is just a lazy buzzword gamers use en masse to deride a game for whatever reason.

  • I only just finished the game this week after leaving it and coming back to it – I enjoyed the end and was hoping DLC would answer the many questions that made the game feel unfinished. A sad end to a great game series if this is indeed the end – ME should go with a big bang and not a pathetic whimper.

    • It already went out with a pathetic whimper with the end of ME3. Oh wait, that wasn’t a pathetic whimper, that was a giant middle finger to all the fans of the series as the responsible individuals took a giant dump on the lore, tone and consistency of the series.

  • This is disappointing… Alas not surprising. I was hoping that the DLC would redeem the otherwise boring/grindy single player…

    My multiplayer experience is still largely unplayable; ie rubber-banding and lag issues… and won’t be revisiting any multiplayer focused DLC.

    Goodnight sweet prince. I can only hope and dream for a Jade Empire sequel that doesn’t suck…

    • Grindy single player is fine, as long as it is building up to something that lasts a while and allows you to make use of all the grinding. The trouble with ME:A was that the grindy part WAS the game. There was a few brief missions where you could put to use all the stuff you’d grinded for, then it was back to the grind for NG+. There was no real payoff. In ME2, ME3 and DA:I, the finale missions and DLC gave the game enough payoff for the grind to be worthwhile. You did the grind, then you got to kick ass. And not only that, each game provided some closure to each of the stories. ME:A feels like grinding your ass off for 50h or so, getting to the end, being given a lollypop and being told to do it all over again whilst you wait for DLC or a sequel to finish off and/or explain everything outside the main storyline. And now they are pulling that rug out from under us too.

  • I put 50 hours into that piece of shit only in the hope the DLC or the sequel would be better.
    I’m gonna approach entitled gamer levels of mad if theyve cancelled everything.

    • if it truly was a piece of shit you wouldnt have played 50 hours. why is it so hard for people these days to just say they arent enjoying something, instead it has to be the games fault, not their tastes or expectations?

        • I read it just not convinced. Playing through a five hour game waiting for it or further DLC to make it better, that’s one thing. But slogging through 50 odd and then calling it that, is another.

          • mate, not too long ago I was working two jobs for 50 hours of shithouse work a week to feed myself and pay rent, I’m well practiced at putting up with shit in the hope of getting something good at the end.

      • Exactly. So many gamers resort to stupid hyperbole when talking about titles. When something isn’t the greatest piece of software it’s instantly ‘garbage’. As a community we need to stop with this juvenile crap.

      • Its the new gamers creed. Play 2000 hours at a game… give a negative steam review.

  • one of those times I am glad I didnt listen to critics, with over 100 hours already the game has more than paid for itself. Is it buggy and a bit flawed, yes, that doesnt mean it is impossible to see the good it has as well.

    yet another example of gamers becoming like a hammer horror style lynch mob just because the game doesnt do what they think it should do.

    • Yet again. Blakeavon likes a game, So therefore any negative opinions of it are invalid because he likes it!

      • nope, once you jump to a conclusion. (quite clearly I said it was buggy and a bit flawed, IE not perfect, while as others call it complete shit. I know which approach I find more valuable and constructive)

        Once again I fail to pay attention to peer-group ridiculousness and refuse jump a gamer-hate train but find ways of getting value for my money with the game we got and not waste time pining for a game that will never exist.

        This game has a lot of flaws but it also a lot of positives, the hate-train derailed this game at every turn, meaning the haters got their revenge on the devs not making a game they like by also destroying any hope for people who actually liked what they got no chance of a continuation. Roll Eyes. Thats like a kid who refuses to share a toy with his brother, who appreciates it more, then destroying it so they both dont have it. How is that a good thing?

        • I’m with you. I actually enjoyed it a lot despite the flaws. The gameplay/combat is hands down the best in the ME series for me.. However I am really disappointed with this news of no single player DLC.. This is like the first Bioware game that has scrapped it’s DLC where previously their DLC efforts were some of the best in the business (Citadel from ME3 is still my favourite ever). So yeh I think it’s warranted for gamers to express their disappointment for what Bioware has done here, but agree it should be more constructive instead of blind hatred.

    • My feelings exactly. It was a little rough around the edges but it mostly gave me a fun and often heartwarming experience.

  • Honestly? Given the money it’s made over the years – and the disappointing elements of this instalment – I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s another one in four years that bears 100% of the hallmarks of Mass Effect 2.

    The game was fun, but the experiment clearly failed, and I would dearly like to see that universe in another, indisputably AAA title.

  • I think it’s a mistake. A great single player DLC could save everything. There have been a few games where everyone says you must get the DLC to make it enjoyable, and this could also allow them to sell an Ultimate Edition with DLC included to people who skipped it because of the reviews.

      • Is me:a better or worse than da2? I’m just not sure. I finished da2 though. I don’t even want to keep playing me:a.

          • You mean Copy-Paste Age 2? Dunno how they can justify having done DLC for that piece of… and then bin ME:A completely. Only so many times you could run down the same corridor or clear out the same house with crates blocking different doors before you started to develop nervous tics and the irresistible urge to haul off and do unpleasant things to the environmental designers. The final straw for me was when they reused outdoor maps. It’s theoretically feasible that houses or hallways may have been based off a pre-set design in every case, but there’s no way in hell I should be able to travel halfway across the city and suddenly find myself in exactly the same cul-de-sac I was just in except with different doors disabled, or come out of a cave on the coast and find it’s exactly the same map as a supposedly different part of the coast except with certain paths blocked. At least ME:A has some variety to the environments you play through. If anything, ME:A would benefit significantly more from DLC at this point than DA2 did, because it would introduce some point to the extended grind of the rest of the game by giving you new mission content in which to use everything you spent time grinding up, whereas DA2 DLC seemed to be more about giving you something other than the same 3 houses/hallways to do something in.

  • i loved the previous games and absolutely hated andromeda when i played it but around the 20 hour mark it grew on me and by the end i loved it and the new crew. im sad to see there wont be a conclusion to the story and no closure.

    its not a masterpiece by any means but it is a solid 7-8 level game, which in this day and age is the same as saying its 0 out of 10 to most gamers.

    i eventually discovered my hate initially for the game was a combination of having a slow and rocky start as well as my own expectations.. it wasnt MY crew and MY shepard.. it was this pretender, but once i got over that and saw it for its own merits, it got better

    • Hahaha yeah that score means “throw it on the fire” to the knee jerk whiny gamers obsessed with scores more than actually playing a game.
      Everyone thinks they are a critic. Look at the mindless juvenile musings on metacritic or any game board these days. It’s like reading a short story by a 5 year old most of the time. Modern gamers are entitled cry babies who have no moderate thought patterns.

      • you arent wrong.. its been weird seeing the development of this nasty streak in gamers where anything less than a 9 or 10 is not just the worst thing on earth but somehow means their entire existence is threatened.. oh you gave a game i liked 7 out of 10.. its just like you have murdered their kitten

  • While not perfect, overall I enjoyed playing through ME:A. It felt like an (average) superhero origin movie but I think it does its job well enough in setting everything up for the sequels.

    What I didn’t enjoy was the story/writing felt a tad weak and I found some of the crew members absolutely intolerable. (Liam, sorry – just hated him). I also didn’t realise how much I’d miss the binary nature of the paragon/renegade decisions (because they opened up other potential conversation options). Maybe they were going for more nuanced in ME:A but it didn’t feel like it made much of a difference.

    Got to 98% completion and I’ll wait another couple of months before starting up another playthrough with the other sibling. I think I’ll still enjoy it again and while a serviceable entry in the ME universe, it’s not on the level of the original trilogy.

    Credit where it’s due, with so many apparent scope/design issues through the development process I feel like they still did a reasonable job of getting it out the door – in my opinion.

    As others have said, DLC could have really helped to flesh it out and I’m disappointed the ME series has not only been shelved, but DLC plans seeming scrapped as well.

  • I only just bought the game a few days ago and have been enjoying it. Yes, there are definitely flaws in the game but I’m still having a good time with it.
    It’s a shame there won’t be any DLCs, but I doubt the series is dead. Maybe in another few years they’ll try again and follow up the original series.

  • Another series screwed over, most of all, by the Publisher. This is Deus Ex all over again.

    The shitty publishers blamed low sales on fans and not themselves, resulting in a hold for both series, if not the end.

    For publishers to piss away that fan base, lore, history and uniqueness, is a crime.
    But that’s what they did. Exploited that fan base to sell games that were broken and not close to finished.

    • I think most due to the gaming public who, like always these days, went to town on the hate. Sure it wasnt perfect but the mass hate for the game, was out of odds with its crimes. Even though so many gamers, like myself, didnt believe the reviews and mass hate by finding the good amid the mess, the noisy whiners always win. they made the game seem unbankable.

      I think the devs tried to do something different, too different for the unimaginative purists.Then stupid publishers pushed a date too early and the haters did the rest.

  • #BoycottBioware.

    Since they don’t care about continuing this amazing story, I will definitely not be buying anything from them again.

  • Yeah, nah… Don’t remedy bad reviews and reception by putting out rocking single player dlc. Shrug and move on without learning from the mistakes and making ME: A2 bigger and better.

    I mean, look at the difference between ME1 and ME2: ME1 ambitious and ponderous. ME2 streamlined and sleek edginess. Arguably better than ME1.

    Also see Watchdogs 1 and 2.

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