Does Mass Effect have a future on PS3?

  • Posted November 3rd, 2007 at 08:12 EDT by

This month will garnish what is widely regarded as a 2007 Game of the Year candidate. Developed by Bioware, Mass Effect is said to be a spectacular new vision of the future set in a bright universe, with a dark secret. What made this game truly special, at-least to Microsoft is that Bioware had plans to develop this title as an exclusive trilogy with all three games spanning the life span of the Xbox 360 console.

To Microsoft, Mass Effect was, and still possibly is, the bread and butter for the Xbox 360, especially since the Halo trilogy has came to a successful end. However, recent industry transactions have created clouds of doubt over Mass Effect and it’s future of the IP still staying 100% exclusive to the Xbox 360. This could lead to the possibility of Mass Effect and Mass Effect 3 coming to the PlayStation 3 console in the future.

The day was October 11th, 2007 when it all went down. Videogames giant, Electronic Arts, purchased the holding company that owns Bioware and Pandemic for USD 800 million.

"We are truly excited by John Riccitiello's new vision for EA," said Ray Muzyka, Co-founder and CEO of BioWare Corp. in a news release Thursday. "This vision is consistent with BioWare's focus on crafting the highest quality story-driven games in the world. It will enable us to further the careers of the passionate, creative and hard working teams at BioWare Edmonton and BioWare Austin."
Now, let us back up for a moment here and comprehend what is going on. Everyone who has followed the gaming industry for at-least the past five years or so would tell you that Electronic Arts is not akin to console specific games. Indeed, they even came out and publicly stated that they are for one universal gaming console, eliminating the three-way or sometimes two-way console wars t hat we are all used to today.

"We want an open, standard platform which is much easier than having five which are not compatible," EA's Gerhard Florin said to BBC News.

This means that they like to share their creations and not have it confined to just one demographic. Just take a look at their track record as most, if not all, of the Electronic Arts games from 2001 to present was multiplatform. The last time Electronic Arts decided not to release a major game on a specific platform was in 1999 with the Sega Dreamcast. Electronic Arts did not believe that the lifespan of the Dreamcast would last that long and was not worth putting time and effort into; hence, they withheld Madden 2000 from the console. Since then, EA has made it their best efforts to have their games developed on as many platforms as possible, from PS3, to PC, to Mobile phones. Let us not forget now, Electronic Arts is an industry giant that is constantly seeking profit.

Now with that out of the way, it is pretty apparent that given the opportunity, Electronic Arts will not withhold any game back from any console unless there is a clear definitive reason. Back to Bioware and Mass Effect, which is where the real meat is. As previously stated, Mass Effect was planned as an exclusive trilogy for the Xbox 360, but now given the fact that EA now owns Bioware, Electronic Arts, not Microsoft will publish and distribute Mass Effect 2 and Mass Effect 3.
Also as previously stated, Electronic Arts does not play nice to console exclusives and if there is a profit to be made, best believe EA will capitalize on it. Enter the PlayStation 3 console with its powerful Cell technology and Blu-ray format, which you may remember was actually the original platform to base the series on, until BioWare opted to move the project over to Microsoft’s console due to lack of development kits from Sony.

When asked if Mass Effect will continue to be an Xbox 360 exclusive after the EA buyout, Greg Zeschuk CEO and Co-Owner of Bioware, had this to say:

”We can't predict the future. We'll see what happens. The key thing is we're making a trilogy of Mass ... (continued on next page)
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