EA executive Patrick Soderlund had some interesting things to say about the now troubled Mass Effect franchise in the wake of BioWare’s announcement that Mass Effect Andromeda’s single player content is officially done. When asked about Andromeda itself, Soderlund said that he feels the game was judged too harshly by critics upon release. He said he doesn’t normally say that sort of thing, but felt the need to as a personal fan of the game. He notes that Andromeda, as it is after the wave of updates BioWare provided post-launch, is a much better game and worth playing.
He also spoke to the future of the franchise, after conceding that some things didn’t go so well with Andromeda. Mass Effect is not dead, it’s very far from dead, although when it does come back, BioWare and EA will need to find a new approach. The more of the same (this is me speaking) approach with Andromeda didn’t work out for a few reasons. Soderlund said that whatever the next try will be, it will need to be relevant and fresh. He also said it’s his and Casey Hudson’s job to figure out what that ultimately means.
It’s an interesting and refreshing slice of candidness from a publisher, especially an executive. There’s a lot of hurt going on in the Mass Effect fandom space right now, and considering how big of a deal Mass Effect was last generation, EA has to be feeling it. But it’s a healthy mindset to have, to try again, and make sure when they do, it needs to be a renewed effort. We’ll see what happens.