DIS­CUSS

Phil and Sam tell BioWare what to make next.

PC GAMER (UK) - - Contents -

Sa­muel: Things we know about BioWare: Mass Ef­fect is out in March, they’ve been work­ing on a new se­ries in some ca­pac­ity since Mass Ef­fect 3 came out, and the last, suc­cess­ful

Dragon Age was re­leased three years ago this year. The Old Repub­lic trun­dles along, too. What would you like to see from BioWare, Phil?

Phil: If they had any sense, it would fi­nally be time for a Dragon Age visual novel in which you play some young, lithe In­qui­si­tion ini­ti­ate try­ing to score a date with Cullen. You know, the thing Tum­blr has been cry­ing out for. Per­son­ally, though, I’m ex­cited by the idea of some­thing new. I’d be in­ter­ested to see how BioWare’s writ­ing works in a real world set­ting – the stu­dio’s strength has al­ways been in char­ac­ters, and so mov­ing away from fan­tasy or sci-fi wouldn’t nec­es­sar­ily be detri­men­tal. Plus the real world has bears, so that’s the sid­e­quests sorted.

Sa­muel: It’s weird, when I think of some­thing set in the real world my mind im­me­di­ately goes to ‘mil­i­tary’ and the likes of Al­pha Pro­to­col, but they’re bound to do some­thing more in­ter­est­ing and high-con­cept than that – EA is al­ready pretty flush with guns and such.

Phil: You caught me. I mostly just want Al­phaPro­to­col, but with­out the late-2000s Ob­sid­ian jank.

Sa­muel: Some­thing we may hear about be­tween full Dragon Age se­quels is the pro­posed Dragon Age Tac­tics game in the vein of XCOM or

Fire Em­blem, which pro­ducer Mark Dar­rah polled the com­mu­nity on in early 2016. 22% of peo­ple said ‘no’ to that! The in­ter­net is just the worst. Do you think they’ll make that be­fore an­other full Dragon Age, Phil? Or was that just hy­po­thet­i­cal?

Phil: It’s pos­si­ble some­body got over-ex­cited af­ter XCOM’s suc­cess, but I def­i­nitely ticked the ‘yes’ box on that poll. Dragon Age is a weird se­ries, be­cause it doesn’t feel like it has a strong iden­tity out­side of its set­ting. Each of the main games has felt com­pletely dif­fer­ent, and I’m not sure whether that makes it a nat­u­ral play­ground for spin-offs, or if it’s al­ready too con­fus­ing to di­lute fur­ther. Any­way, in­ter­est­ing di­ver­sions are all well and good, Sam, but we love BioWare for the char­ac­ters and sce­nar­ios. Where would you like to see them go for a full, post- An­dromeda RPG?

Sa­muel: They’ve done sci-fi, they’ve done fan­tasy. Both Dragon Age and

Mass Ef­fect are pas­tiches – they’re fa­mil­iar-look­ing and broad ver­sions of pop­u­lar gen­res. What other genre re­ally fits them? What else have they made? Sonic Chron­i­cles? Jade Em­pire! That’s it. Some­thing more his­tor­i­cal­based with a step into fan­tasy, too. I sup­pose I would love to see what BioWare’s ver­sion of a su­per­hero game might be, as well, a lit­tle like a mod­ern Free­dom Force. Assem­bling your own Justice League or Avengers – that’s fer­tile ground for char­ac­ter cre­ation, height­ened sto­ry­telling and moral quan­daries. I don’t think that’s the game they’ll make next, by any means, but it would be a good fit. I would hope that at some point they’ll make a mod­ern Star Wars RPG, too – The Old Repub­lic con­tin­ues to grow in that sin­gle­player di­rec­tion, but it’s not quite the same as hav­ing a KotOR

III in Frost­bite with gi­gan­tic open worlds. What do you think?

Phil: You have un­cov­ered my dark se­cret, Sam. I have not played ei­ther

KotOR. I wasn’t that into Star Wars when they were re­leased. But you raise a good point about BioWare’s touch­stones – all of them (ex­cept maybe Sonic Chron­i­cles) are com­fort­able, well-trod­den RPG set­tings. That’s fine, be­cause I think what I want from BioWare is for them to re­turn to their most dis­tinct, in­ter­est­ing RPG idea. To un­lock the po­ten­tial of a great idea im­per­fectly re­alised. I think you know what game I’m talk­ing about, Sam.

Sa­muel: Dragon Age II. But in­stead of a Dragon Age set in a sin­gle city, it’s set in a sin­gle room. Done.

All Phil re­ally wants to do is have it off with this guy.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.