Rumor: Mass Effect Put on Hiatus, BioWare Montreal Assigned to Support Role

A new rumor has pointed to an uncertain fate for the Mass Effect franchise, following the highly polarizing release of BioWare’s Mass Effect: Andromeda earlier this year.

Four sources close to the studio (via Kotaku) are reportedly saying the franchise has been put on ice, with Mass Effect: Andromeda studio BioWare Montreal being re-assigned to doing grunt work supporting other games within Electronic Arts.

When reached for comment, Electronic Arts shared the following message – via BioWare Montreal studio director Yanick Roy:

Our teams at BioWare and across EA put in tremendous effort bringing Mass Effect Andromeda to players around the world. Even as BioWare continues to focus on the Mass Effect Andromeda community and live service, we are constantly looking at how we’re prepared for the next experiences we will create.

The teams in EA Worldwide Studios are packed with talent, and more than ever, we are driving collaboration between studios on key projects.

With our BioWare and Motive teams sharing studio space in Montreal, we have BioWare team members joining Motive projects that are underway. We’re also ramping up teams on other BioWare projects in development.

There will be much more to come from BioWare in the years ahead.

It’s worth pointing out the sources note BioWare Montreal will still support Andromeda and its multiplayer, via patches and updates. Sources have also pointed towards BioWare Montreal being noticeably smaller than just a few months ago, with a number of employees being transferred to EA Motive to work on Star Wars Battlefront II. 

BioWare’s codenamed ‘Dylan’ game, which has yet to be revealed, is reportedly being supported by BioWare Montreal. The main BioWare Edmonton studio is developing the game, with BioWare Austin supporting it as well.

Despite the lukewarm reception of Mass Effect: AndromedaElectronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson told investors that the publisher is “very happy with how BioWare is doing, how BioWare is treating Mass Effect. And our expectations for Mass Effect are still strong for the future and the franchise overall” in an earnings call.

We’re expecting to see BioWare’s new ‘Dylan” game revealed at this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo. Until then, we’ll keep you guys posted.

Brandon Orselli

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Big Papa Overlord at Niche Gamer. Italian. Dad. Outlaw fighting for a better game industry. I also write about music, food, & beer. Also an IT guy.

  • Mr0303

    “tremendous effort” – the effort was so enormous that it tired their faces.

  • sanic

    Any sales data? Did it do worse than prior ME titles over the same time frame?

  • Jumanji Joe

    Please kill off bioware, please.

  • Madbrainbox

    Make Jade Empire 2 already.

  • Offendatron_5000

    That happened as soon as EA bought the company. The value in these game companies isn’t the IPs, its in the talent and people creating them.

    It’s something the corporate mindset cannot understand in relation to media nowadays. These gaming companies are closer to a law firm or a doctor in structure. You can buy the practice to get the name and the current customer base, but if you can’t keep the same talent in house, it will die off and you will have spent all that money on goodwill for nothing.

  • Uncle Ocelot

    LOOOOOOOOOOOL

  • Malcolm_Ecks

    BTFOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

  • Malcolm_Ecks

    So tremendous they hired a 3rd party to do the animations. Clearly too epic a task to take for such tireless workers.

  • OldPalpy

    I just wanted a critical mission failure video but fuck if this isn’t a brilliant metaphor of what happened to this series.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6KcY7DNDBC8

  • Maria Maasaa
  • Richard

    Didn’t Gearbox say the same thing with Aliens: Colonial Marines, that it was their passion, that they were huge fans of the franchise, that they want it done right. Yet, they still shopped it out to, was it three or four other studios.

  • Uncle Ocelot

    You are 100% correct.

  • LostGryphon

    They’re being moved to Battlefront 2, eh?

    Killed what little hope I had for it.

  • 2501

    This is what happens when you use the Tumblr team to create an AAA game.

  • Alex Drake

    good riddance to a shitty game

  • Guest

    No matter how shitty the actual situation was, the PR people will never say anything negative because investors will bail on them and their stocks will take a hit

    Better to just sweep this shit under the rug with a smile while they ride on the Star Wars gravy train

  • Audie Bakerson

    Bioware was never good.

  • Pilebunker

    I would love that if the old Bioware team were there. But modern Jade Empire would be garbage.

  • Fenrir007

    Please, don’t. Modern day Bioware would just ruin it.

  • Feniks

    Pretty sad to see a once great franchise go down the drain.

    But then again as someone who has been playing games since 1998 I’ve seen it happen many times. Enjoy your favourite games kids! It won’t last.

  • Fenrir007

    Did Andromeda tank or something?

  • TheOnceAndFutureKing

    This is what happens once again when EA absorbs and destroys a once great company like Bioware, the same way they did to Origin or Criterion. Now its even worse since they replaced the old staff with trendy SJWs who have to rely on outsourcing the programming and blaming the “gamergate” boogeyman when their shitty product fails.

    I can’t wait until EA dies off.

  • Neojames82

    Yes

  • Neojames82

    I believe it is not only the lowest selling of the four game but also the lowest rated with both critics and gamers alike.

  • Neojames82

    And looks like the beginning of the end for Bioware proper. Good god that woman is still one of the ugliest I’ve ever seen in gaming…

    As for the series being put on ice, well, it needed to be put out to pasture.

  • Neojames82

    You had hope for it in the first place?! XD

  • Oh yeah.

  • Goodbye and good riddance Bioware.

  • LostGryphon

    The campaign looked neat. D:

  • Zanard Bell

    Thanks for killing another franchise, EA.

  • porkbun

    Should I be happy the SJW central is gone or sad because EA just sucked another studio dry?

  • tccboss

    Both

  • Kiryu

    Holy shit,that face will give me nightmares.

  • Madbrainbox

    It would be half good-half bad.I’d take that over no JE2.

  • InfectedAI

    Still not sure it has an actual campaign. I’m picturing matches with bots with some cinematics thrown in.

  • Scruffy, the Janitor

    NWN, KOTOR (though Obsidian did 2 better), and Jade Empire for great games. First Dragon Age and Mass Effect were decent too. The last 10 years though have been a definite decline.

  • OldPalpy

    BIoware has been permafucked for so many years it’s hard to sad about it really.

  • DrearierSpider

    Put down this company like Old Yeller, it’s no longer serving its intended purpose.

  • RichardGristle

    Plus Baldur’s Gate and Icewind Dale.

    Arguably the best studio in gaming until getting raped by EA.

  • Audie Bakerson

    NWN was a good creation kit. The original campaigns were terrible.

    KotOR was boring and shit. Slogs through countless generic enemies that can’t hurt you and don’t care you’ve sliced up 2 dozen before them followed by dialog you barely have any choices that do anything in. The points the game isn’t on auto-pilot are few and far between.

    JE was… OK I guess.

  • RandomDev

    Good bioware was tainted with feminism and needs to die already.

  • Nalferd

    Ughh that awful headline image.

  • AnarKreig

    “Once great”

    Let’s not take it that far. They made a few good games and some expansions for them, other than that, they only made garbage. And even their good games all were very flawed.

  • TheOnceAndFutureKing

    Ill be honest, I dont care at all for them, I was just trying to be objective since Baldur’s Gate, KOTOR, and Mass Effect were well liked.

  • AnarKreig

    I happen to like quite a few of their games. Baldur’s Gate 2, Mass Effect 1, Dragon Age: Origins and Awakening are the ones I favor the most.

    But with their expansive library of games, they’re really just a developer that’s down there, right in the middle when it comes to quality. For they’re weighed down by utterly trash games like Neverwinter, Jade Empire, Throne of Bhaal to name a few old ones. And since the release of Dragon Age 2, the first in their current line of ‘bad-game spree’, they’ve been shelling out some of the worst AA/AAA games ever.

    That makes Awakening their last good product put out, and that was in March of 2010. Seven years ago. This was 3 years after the acquisition by EA.

  • BaronKrause

    “MASS EFFECT PUT ON HIATUS”

    Meh.

  • SevTheBear

    Nothing like a load of PR BS from EA

  • Anonymoose
  • bladestorm91

    Next stop, DICE.

  • Lordlundar

    Just have to point out 3 glaring points here before it goes rabid:
    1. It’s a rumour which is suspect enough
    2. The source is Kotaku who hasn’t been honest in years
    3. It’s 4 “sources close to the studio” which, for all we know could be 4 twats who walk by the offices on their way to their own jobs.

    So yeah, not really anything there to make me accept the story until confirmed.

  • GuyGuysonEsquire

    “Diversity is our strength”

  • alterku
  • Donwel

    1998? Cute. I’ve been gaming since 1988….
    I’ve seen some shit m8. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/b3ab581c0e509db285bbf434420ca79ca3ed38202bd9d8774e90e79cf1420a31.jpg

  • UnpluggedBeta

    Relevant to what you pointed out:
    http://i.imgur.com/7nfh2SX.png

  • UnpluggedBeta

    Jade Empire… trash?
    Oh come on; it wasn’t some god-tier game, but it was at least competent.

  • UnpluggedBeta

    When did this meme that kotor 2 was a good game come about?
    Kotor was better than Kotor 2 in every way, especially story. This is even leaving aside the fact that Kotor 2 was an unfinished, bug-ridden, mess. Much like Fallout: New Vegas actually…. oh hey, was that the same developer?

  • TheOnceAndFutureKing

    Westwood…man well never see another good Red Alert again…

  • Cubed Grapes

    Dude, that’s literally every star wars game.

  • UnpluggedBeta

    That one hit me especially hard too.

  • UnpluggedBeta

    Oh thank God, there is justice in this world.

  • Ace

    Kotaku is not a valid news source which makes this article invalid unfortunately…

  • Scruffy, the Janitor

    Patch that completed 2 was great. Not to mention Obsidian had like, 8 months to make the game. Most people are oblivious to the fact Obsidian gets the shittiest of time constraints. Nar’Shadaa was better than any other setting in Kotor 1.

    As for the potshot at NV, it was better than 3 and 4. Im not going to white knight for Obsidian as Alpha Protocol was shit. But Kotor 2 is a shitty metric to use because they were forced to squeeze out a game in under a year. But with the patch, it was a better game than 1

  • UnpluggedBeta

    No you’re right; it was a potshot and NV was an objectively better game than Fallout 3.
    On KOTOR2, I can’t imagine any patch fixing that mess, but I played at release and for all I know the completed game was goty material. Even so, I have a hard time believing it was better than 1; leaving aside unfinishedness, a lot of the plot elements fully explained felt terrible and completely invalidate everything that happened in kotor1.

  • Clayton Weaver

    “Our teams at BioWare and across EA put in tremendous effort bringing Mass Effect Andromeda to players around the world.”

    Can’t wait to see how they screw that up.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AfLAh_OrTGc

  • GrimFate

    They won’t die off until someone can wrestle their sports exclusivity away from them. Then they will probably wither and die.

  • Fenrir007

    Thank god!

  • Fenrir007

    The saddest thing is that I could see Mass Effect as one of the great series of the CURRENT YEAR if only it kept improving instead of getting worse after the first game. It had so much potential… damn.

  • le master trole

    b-but if I tick all those boxes, surely it will be a great game?

    t. CEO

  • SiliconNooB

    Jade Empire is their best game.