The original pitch for the ever popular Mass Effect was recently rediscovered and has been making the rounds online. The game was released on November 16, 2007 to widespread critical acclaim apart from a few qualms about the overall design and some of the systems.
The news was first broken by the fan group known as Mass Effect News on Twitter. “Following the success of Knights of the Old Republic, Casey Hudson first pitched his idea for a new sci-fi intellectual property in September, 2003. Here are some early concept and plot outlines for the project which was to be centered around story progression, planetary exploration, and online trading,” the account posted to the social media platform along with a series of documents.
The pitch for the game was all about making use of the new online capabilities of the Xbox 360 within the framework of an “epic BioWare story" that promised to be "powerful and character driven." The team behind the breakout success Knights of the Old Republic was apparently interested in "making a bigger and better franchise." The game which ultimately turned into Mass Effect was described as a "spectacular new sci-fi roleplaying game" with "online capabilities and gameplay features that redefine the genre.”
The documents describe how the game would take place in a “thrilling futuristic setting with a combination of familiar locations and exotic worlds.” These go on to explain how "it is the dawn of the interstellar age with only a few explored worlds and many more accessible via exploration.”
"Sleek vehicles and spectacular vistas create a unique identifiable look to the universe whilst special rendering techniques depict the player's experience with a stylish ultra realism,” the pitch remarks. Players would engage in "dazzling combat choreography and intense ranged combat.”
Mass Effect went on to become something of a landmark in the roleplaying genre, influencing countless games released over the course of the last couple of decades. Mass Effect still has a large community of players, the developer behind the game, BioWare, having released a remastered version called the Legendary Edition on April 30, 2021.
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