In Mass Effect 3, Bioware added a multiplayer mode for the first time in the series. The problem was that multiplayer actually affected the single-player campaign: a readiness rating that you could raise in multiplayer was key in determining how many of the supporting cast survived the final battle. For single-player only players, the backlash against this decision was swift and unforgiving.
With Mass Effect Andromeda, Bioware is still offering a multiplayer mode and a new Strike Team system allows the player to shift between single-player and multiplayer within the game. This time around though, multiplayer won't touch the single-player campaign.
"There's a system that we use called the Strike Team system, and fundamentally it allows you to go between singleplayer and multiplayer within the game," Bioware producer Mike Gamble told Kotaku Australia.
"And it's packaged around a meta-story of what's going on in Helios. I can tell you that there's a loading screen - it's not entirely seamless - but it won't require you to stop your game and restart in a different mode. Because narratively it's all connected, it makes a lot of sense."
An unsurprising reveal is that Mass Effect Andromeda won't have official support for mods, though Gamble won't rule mod support out completely. It's something the studios and publishers should think about, because mod support is key to lengthing a game's lifespan and improving its community. Many of the most popular games on Steam have extensive mod support.
"As we see the reaction to these things those plans can change very quickly," he said.
Mass Effect Andromeda is coming to PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 on March 21, 2017.