A new Mass Effect is rumored to be in 'very early development'

(Image credit: Electronic Arts)

A recent Kotaku report on a potential major overhaul of Anthem concluded on a very interesting and surprisingly understated note about a completely different game. Sources told the site that BioWare is still at work on Dragon Age 4, which we knew, and also that a new Mass Effect game is "in very early development" under the direction of Mike Gamble.

Gamble is a longtime BioWare producer who has previously worked on Mass Effect 2, 3, and Andromeda, and was a lead producer on Anthem. Mass Effect: Andromeda bombed badly, to the point that the entire series was reportedly put "on hiatus" in 2017. But BioWare has previously insisted that the series hasn't been abandoned: Gamble said in 2018 that "Mass Effect is certainly not dead," and earlier this year producer Mark Darrah said, "We're definitely not done with Mass Effect," a sentiment echoed by studio general manager Casey Hudson.

"Very early development" could mean a lot of things. It possible that BioWare has a team putting out some early concept sketches and storyboards; it's possible that Gamble ran into Hudson at the coffee machine and said, "Dude, we should do a new Mass Effect." One very oblique suggestion that Gamble could be leading a new Mass Effect team (or is at least available to take the job) came earlier this year: Rumors surfaced in May that he and Mark Darrah had moved to Dragon Age 4 but Gamble said on Twitter that the report was "incorrect," a point he repeated in June.

Whatever the situation, it's inevitable that we'll get a new Mass Effect sooner or later. It's a blockbuster series, and one stumble—even a big one—doesn't diminish the value of its name. But even if it's years off (and it is), it's kind of exciting to actually read that somebody, somewhere, is probably doing something to make it happen.

I've reached out to an EA rep about the report and will update if I receive any further information, which I clearly will not.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.