On N7 Day, Bioware released a single teaser image for the next Mass Effect, and we went over it and the ensuing fan theories with a fine-tooth comb. Today saw the release of BioWare: Stories and Secrets from 25 Years of Game Development, a massive coffee table book published by Dark Horse, and it includes another small teaser for the next game in the series. A Tumblr user already got their hands on it and posted pictures of the three new pieces of artwork in the book, plus the already available 'mud-skipper' teaser image.
The first image shows a mass relay, or what looks to be like a mass relay in construction. The 'MR 7' printed on the side also corroborates that. In Andromeda, you 'only' got to visit the Helius cluster, so a new mass relay could mean new Andromeda clusters to explore. Some fans speculate the mass relay could also offer a way back to the Milky Way.
"The Initiative's mission statement is to bridge Andromeda and the Milky Way, create a sustainable, inclusive civilization, and push scientific development forward by centuries," Redditor link2twenty points out. As someone who isn't all-too-fond of Andromeda, I think a return of sorts to the Milky Way would be nice, but Bioware sounds confident that we haven't seen the end of the Andromeda galaxy yet, and Andromeda's ending left things pretty open. Also there's the minor fact that the journey to Andromeda took 600 years, and only a few of the Normandy's crew would even remain.
The second image has the vibe of Remnant architecture found in the vaults, but the clouds and lighting in the image, fuzzy as it is, makes it seem like whatever you see could be bearing down onto a planet, or a large body of water. Remnant terraforming technology is disabled at the end of Andromeda, but maybe they got around a lot—I want to believe this is something entirely different, because I don't think the next Mass Effect game would go for the same story beats again as its much-maligned predecessor.
The final new image features the mud-skipper on the left-hand side and something that looks like a crash site. The silhouettes are difficult to make out and could be meant as placeholders only like in the first teaser, anyway, but they seem to be wearing armor, or spacesuits, or more likely both, seeing as this is how gear in Mass Effect tends to work anyway. Judging by the sun, or orb in the sky, this is outside, but I'm curious about the trees surrounded by what looks like a lot of cables. That's something more interesting than Andromeda's previous planets made of rocks and sand and more rocks right there—cable trees.
The book provides no text for this imagery, other than a quote by Bioware boss Casey Hudson, which he also tweeted during N7 day.
If you want to stop ruining your eyes squinting at photos of an art book, or join in on the fun you can order your own copy of BioWare: Stories and Secrets from 25 Years of Game Development for roughly $50. It includes behind the scenes info for every BioWare game, plus fun stories from the early days of the company, such as one about 'scream rooms' at the Bioware offices of 1996, about ventilation during hot summers. In short, this is really a book about all things Bioware.
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