In an interview, key members of the development team behind BioWare's Mass Effect divulged some new details on the Xbox 360 RPG. The game marks the first next generation effort from the developer behind critically lauded Xbox games Jade Empire and Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, and producer Casey Hudson, as well as co-executive producers Ray Muzyka and Greg Zeschuk, shared information on its graphics, battles, story, and the potential for sequels.
Mass Effect will, like previous BioWare offerings, be an action RPG. In the game, players will control not only the main character, but also a squad of his allies for three characters in all. While the members of the hero's squad will fight automatically alongside the main character, the player will also have the option of switching direct control over to either of the two squad members, or issuing them commands that will determine how they fight while under AI control.
As to the main character, the player will have access to a custom character creation system. The developers promise strong control over the character's body and facial appearance, clothing, and armor. The player will also be able to choose different character classes and control the allocation of stats and special skills for his characters.
BioWare is looking to ensure that Mass Effect is very advanced graphically, with an immersive, realistic appearance. The team promises that its "focus on advanced digital actors" will allow for realistic-looking characters with a wide range of facial expressions.
The team is looking beyond just the one Mass Effect title, and is plotting out an arcing story line that will carry the adventure of the first game through two more titles. The goal is to see the entire trilogy released within the next generation of hardware.
Mass Effect currently has no release date, price, or ESRB rating. RPGamer will continue to provide the latest news on this title as it emerges.