Mass Effect Legendary Edition: release date and pre-order details for the remastered game coming to PS5 and Xbox
One of the most revered trilogies in gaming is getting a makeover, with revamped versions of BioWare’s mainline Mass Effect RPGs releasing later this year
Mass Effect Legendary Edition sees the critically acclaimed epic sci-fi video games given a lick of paint to bring them kicking and screaming into the current generation of gaming.
4K graphics and 60 frames per second gameplay will be available on next-gen consoles like the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5, and the games will also be playable with enhanced visual capabilities on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 consoles.
“It’s been an incredible journey revisiting the stories, characters and iconic moments of the Mass Effect trilogy, enhancing the experience for modern platforms while staying true to the spirit of the original,” said Mac Walters, Project Director on the Mass Effect Legendary Edition and lead writer of the original trilogy at BioWare.
Here is everything you need to know about it.
What is Mass Effect?
The Mass Effect saga comprises games developed by BioWare, a studio known for the creation of acclaimed RPGs (role-playing games) that take place in beautifully realised settings and take players on complex, branching narratives.
The first three games in the series are regarded as some of the best games of all time, space-faring sci-fi epics with the kind of interwoven storylines that would put most long running TV series to shame.
And each can take hundreds of hours to complete fully.
Set within the Milky Way during the 22nd century, players take on the role of Commander Shepard, an elite soldier who must unite the galaxy against the Reapers, an advanced machine race of synthetic-organic starships that are believed to eradicate all organic civilization every 50,000 years.
During each game, players are presented with morality challenging choices that not only impact the story in surprising ways, but persist throughout the series.
That means that actions you take in the first game could come back to haunt you as you near the climactic finale of the third, despite vast spans of playtime separating the two moments.
“Remastering a game, let alone three, is a huge undertaking as there’s over 100 hours of gameplay included," added Walters, “but we wanted to do this for our fans as well as a new generation of gamers looking to jump into the iconic story of Shepard.”
What is Mass Effect Legendary Edition?
First and foremost, Mass Effect Legendary Edition brings the trilogy of games – first released in 2007, 2010 and 2012 respectively – in line with the expectations of modern day gamers.
Those original games have hardly aged a day, so players will be looking forward to experiencing those already forward-thinking titles with enhanced visual features.
Remastered character models, high-resolution textures and improved lighting and shadow effects are just some of the enhanced visual features bringing a new level of immersion to the space faring series.
But aside from the technical improvements, the older games in the trilogy are being modernised with quality of life improvements, like the improved controls and combat mechanics of later titles being brought forward to the first Mass Effect.
And yes, that means the Mako – the bouncy planetary rover that handled awfully and let down an otherwise spectacular game – is getting a makeover to bring it in line with current-day expectations.
Character creation features are also being unified across all three games, allowing you to play as either a male or female Commander Shepherd across the series for the first time.
Alongside the three base games, Mass Effect Legendary Edition features over 40 downloadable content story, weapon and armour packs.
Where is the best place to pre-order it?
Mass Effect Legendary Edition is available to pre-order on the Microsoft Store for £59.99; all EA Play and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate members can get a 10 per cent discount.
Mass Effect Legendary Edition is available to pre-order on the PlayStation Store for £59.99.
The game can be pre-purchased for PC through Steam for £54.99,
When can I play it?
Mass Effect Legendary Edition will be released on Friday 14 May.
It will be available on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 consoles, with ‘forward compatibility’ meaning newer consoles like the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 will be able to utilise their improved technological heft to improve the experience even further.
The game will also be available to players on PC.
As to whether the game will come to Nintendo’s Switch, Walters has said he would personally “love” to see Mass Effect on the console, but said, “ultimately, I think we had a path set and it was like, let's finish that, then let's see sort of where we're at."