Game

How Mass Effect: Andromeda gets multiplayer right

mm
Written by Kamil Arli

The Forbes reported an article about five things BioWare should fix in ‘Mass Effect: Andromeda’ moving forward .

Last night, BioWare posted a bit of a MEA culpa in regard to the challenges of Mass Effect: Andromeda (I’m sorry, I’m sorry, everyone has been waiting to make that joke for months). They wrote a message on Twitter that was both a thank you to fans, but also an acknowledgement of their critical feedback and concerns.

The message states that BioWare will continue to “improve and build on” Andromeda, with more specific details on what that means coming April 4th. Here’s the full text of the statement:

“It’s been a week since we officially launched Mass Effect: Andromeda worldwide, and we couldn’t be more excited that our fans are finally experiencing everything we’ve worked so hard to create.

We’ve received quite a bit of feedback, some of it positive and some of it critical. That feedback is an important part of our ongoing support of the game, and we can’t wait to share more of our immediate plans with you on Tuesday, April 4th.

In the meantime, keep your feedback coming. Our team is listening, working around the clock to gather information and plan out solutions to improve and build on Mass Effect: Andromeda.

Thanks for you continued support and for joining us on this journey.”

That all sounds a bit No Man’s Sky-ish to me, though I don’t think reception to MEA has been nearly as brutal as that game overall. Still, the tone is clear, we understand there are a lot of complaints, and we’re working to fix/improve the game.

SEE ALSO:   The newest Switch defect scare? Warped tablets

Well, using my higher-than-normal profile platform here, I thought I’d throw my hat in the ring in terms of giving direct feedback of what I’d like to see improved in Mass Effect: Andromeda moving forward. You may have different ideas, but here’s what I’m thinking.

Mass Effect: Andromeda

BioWare

Mass Effect: Andromeda

1. What Animation Fixes They Can Manage

Look, Bioware is not going to be able to go back and re-do every human/asari face in the game. It’s just not going to happen. I think the best we can hope for in this regard is that BioWare hunts down and fixes perhaps the worst animation bugs they can find. Stuff where faces contort in bizarre ways, or someone is suddenly crab-walking across the floor. Things like that.

SEE ALSO:   Google Maps lets you play Ms. Pac-Man for April Fools

As much as I do agree that their human and humanoid modeling needs a lot more work, that is almost certainly not something that can be fixed in a patch. With that said, the worst bugged-out moments of animation are definitely something that should be able to be addressed in future updates, and really hope they make this a priority focus for the sequel.

Mass Effect: Andromeda

BioWare

Mass Effect: Andromeda

2. The Streamlining Of Crafting

I said this in my initial review, and I stand by it. The crafting system in this game is a total nightmare. I understand the desire to split Research and Development into two sections, but the result where players are trying to craft ten different levels of items over the course of the game using these overlapping and convoluted systems is a total nightmare.

SEE ALSO:   This bizarre ransomware locks your device until you complete this weird task

Just make one system where an item costs X research points and X materials. Once you have that item, create a system where you can upgrade the same weapon or piece of armor to III, IV, VI, IX, X etc. levels through an additional X research points and X materials. The end. It does not need to be any more complicated than that.

Also, it wouldn’t hurt the game to be much, much more generous with both research materials and minerals. I have put 80 hours in to the game I still barely have enough to get even close to max level items in more than four or five categories out of dozens available. This needs a total overhaul.

Mass Effect: Andromeda

BioWare

Mass Effect: Andromeda

3. The Worst Bugs

This is not the sexiest item on the list, but it’s certainly the most important. I don’t have an exact list of every bug in the game, but my playthrough was pretty damn buggy when I was on my review copy. I’m told that big bugs like my Movie Night mission disappearing have been fixed, yet somehow I still can’t get it to trigger. Now, in multiplayer, I just spent 10 hours getting enough points in my Angaran Insurgent to get the Cryo Turret, and the thing is totally broken, firing literal blanks at enemies in probably 4/5 matches.

There are way more bugs than these lurking in the game, and to improve the play experience all around, they have to be addressed. Sure, the funny animation bugs are not great, but it’s these bugs, where missions or triggers or skills are flat-out broken that should honestly be the priority over everything else listed here.

Mass Effect: Andromeda

BioWare

Mass Effect: Andromeda

4. Quest List/Navigation Overhaul

I’m cheating here because technically these are two separate items, but they both have to do with UI so I’m grouping them together.

I think the current quest list in the game is terribly unintuitive, listing missions in nonsensical categories, often detached from where they started, or where they need to be finished. I get that in a game with so many quests, it can be hard to segregate them, but this is honestly one of the worst systems I’ve ever seen and it needs to be re-done from the ground up.

Downright mind-numbing the 500th time

Similarly, while the animation to go to and from stars and planets is neat and pretty, it’s dull after the fifth time you see it, and downright mind-numbing the 500th time. I think someone did some calculations and you can spend something like three full hours throughout the course of the game zooming between systems and planets in addition to planetary take-off and touchdown loading screens.

Some stuff I understand, like you need some kind of screen to load a planet or your ship. But it should not take me eight full minutes to explore a system as I slowly coast to each and every planet to find a grand total of 73 iron and some scrap parts. There’s no reason this shouldn’t be reworked to be instantaneous, even if it destroys a bit of “realism” in the process.

Mass Effect: Andromeda

BioWare

Mass Effect: Andromeda

5. A Cleaner Endgame

I’ve tried to go back and play the campaign some more after I’ve beaten the main story and all the major sidquests, but I’m finding it pretty much impossible to keep making progress with the lingering quests I have left.

Almost all of them are in “additional tasks” and all contain very nebulous assignments like tracking down datapads or relics. The problem is that literally none of these come with actual objective markers, so the game wants you to either A) just coast around planets attacking random, cloned bases until you find X object magically or B) consult YouTube walkthroughs. 95% of the other quests in the game have marked locations for objectives, but for some reason, these don’t. This isn’t Zelda, give us some damn markers for these last 8-10 quests.

I wish there was just more of a PvE campaign endgame than there is

Also, more generally, I wish there was just more of a PvE campaign endgame than there is. If you’ve played the game, you will probably have run into one or all four of the Remnant Leviathans which are the toughest enemies in the game, yet I beat them all twenty levels ago, and nothing has posed a challenge since. It’s weird because Andromeda seems designed for an endgame with its endless leveling and loads of max level armor and weapons you’re supposed to craft, but there’s really nothing to do at all after level 55-60. Just re-killing the same easy enemies that respawn infinitely on the map. Like build a Raider arena or a Remnant puzzle fortress or something with actual replay value, because right now, the only real option is New Game+, and I really have no desire to do that.

Those are my suggestions for now, and I’m curious to hear your own. How should BioWare fix Mass Effect: Andromeda moving forward?

About the author

mm

Kamil Arli

Editor of DigitalReview.co. Digital Media Consultant

Leave a Comment