Applications are now being taken for a new, intergalactic exploration program called the Andromeda Initiative. Orientation (a trailer) is set to begin on November 7, but you can get an idea of what it's all about—which, in case there's any question, would be BioWare's next Mass Effect game—by way of the new, brief, and thoroughly stirring trailer that promises great things for those bold enough to seize the moment.
The most noteworthy detail is that Mass Effect: Andromeda apparently takes place around 600 years after Mass Effect 3. Some uncertain time after the events of the original trilogy drove humanity back to their home circling boring old Sol, the Andromeda Initiative is recruiting brave adventurers to seek out "a future beyond the Milky Way." If we're understanding it correctly, we'll pick up the story 600 years later in Mass Effect: Andromeda.
Applying for this unprecedented program of exploration beyond the limits of the Milky Way will in fact get you on the Mass Effect Insider mailing list, which isn't exactly a "where no-one has gone before" kind of thing. It's still awfully handy for fans of the series, though, and the important thing is that this means we're finally going to start getting a real look at what's coming in the Mass Effect: Andromeda, one of the most anticipated RPGs to come along in years. And not a moment too soon: It's currently scheduled for release in early 2017.
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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.