How Mass Effect 3’s RPG Heritage Made Co-op Work

mass effect 3 multiplayer

Mass Effect 3’s multiplayer was a surprising success, something we’ve been going on about ever since the demo for the game dropped way back in the grey blanket of February. A horde mode experience at heart, Mass Effect 3’s co-op mode drew on the backstory set up by the single-player games and gave players the opportunity to take control of the various alien races we’ve been interacting with as Shepard ever since Mass Effect one.

It’s this sort of legacy that gives the co-op in Mass Effect 3 its longevity, at least according to Rowan Kaiser over at Joystiq. He says that, because we’ve spent so much time with Urdnot Wrex and his krogan brethren, seeing and using a krogan in multiplayer taps into the narrative investment we have in those characters.

The multiplayer mode is an extension of Commander Shepard’s mission in the main game: uniting the various alien species of the Galaxy to take the fight to the Reapers, Cerberus and the heretic geth, throwing it in together as one force. While the multiplayer mode itself is very light on story, there’s such a link between the visuals and everything that we’ve learned about the universe of the game that we create all these threads in our mind that gives the co-op such gravitas.

The article goes a bit more in depth about how the mechanics work into the equation but the part about the aesthetics creating a bigger impression of the mode is definitely true for me. Mass Effect is so well designed from a fictional standpoint that every little thing has meaning for me whether it’s a krogan Vanguard charging into a mess of Cannibals or doing a biotic combo in conjunction with another player. What do you guys think of the article? Are you hooked on ME3’s multi and is the universe a big part of that?

Source – Joystiq

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mitch@gamersushi.com Twitter: @mi7ch Gamertag: Lubeius PSN ID: Lubeius SteamID: Lube182 Origin/EA:Lube182 Currently Playing: Stardew Valley, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords, Battlefield 4, Tom Clancy Double Feature: Rainbow Six Siege and The Division

2 thoughts on “How Mass Effect 3’s RPG Heritage Made Co-op Work”

  1. Yeah, I think this article nails it. I mean, I think I’m not the only player out there who’s been wanting to see the Mass Effect universe from another race’s eyes – but at the same time, I didn’t want to sacrifice the Shepard experience of the single player.

    Part of what makes the ME3 multiplayer so fun is experimenting with the different combinations. I’m having so much fun playing as different classes and combos that I never thought I would, and the way the game is set up really encourages that kind of exploration. As much as I was kind of down on this when it was first announced, they really turned me around on it.

  2. I agree with Eddy. Also Bioware made a smart choice by not including an storyline or single player elements other than the level setting of the co-op. This let Bioware set up a great co-op game and weekend challanges without detracting from the single player story or causing any more uproar with the gaming comunity who were opposed to the multiplayer. I would still like to see a storyline based missions for co-op, but it should come with an option that lets you play it off line split screen.

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