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Default Next Mass Effect Game - Developed by Former Kingdoms of Amalur Devs

April 29th, 2013, 02:14
According to Kotaku former Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning developers have just joined the studio.
The two veterans have been unemployed since Big Huge Games and 38 Studios went bankrupt. Some of them founded the Impossible Studios venture alongside Epic Games, but that studio quickly closed its doors as well.

Following the closure of Impossible Studios, several senior staffers who were working on Infinity Blade: Dungeons have joined BioWare Montreal as leads on the next Mass Effect title. Colin Campbell, who was the lead world designer on Impossible predecessor Big Huge Games' Kingdom of Amalur, will serve as lead level designer on Mass Effect 4 Or Something. Ian Frazier, lead designer on Kingdom of Amalur, will be lead gameplay designer on Mass Effect 4 Or Something.
More information.
Last edited by Couchpotato; April 29th, 2013 at 07:24.
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April 29th, 2013, 02:14
Kind of an amusing choice, imo. You take people that basically tanked a company, and put them in charge of a series that, at best, has also tanked. I can almost smell the desperation in the air off this one. And no, I'm not a fan of KoA or ME (after the first one, which I actually enjoyed).



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April 29th, 2013, 02:23
In fairness, it was the management that tanked 38 Studios, not the development team.

That said, I wasn't impressed with KoA, and this announcement doesn't make me think ME4 is going to be better because of this.
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April 29th, 2013, 04:29
Are they seriously using "Mass Effect 4 Or Something" as the working title of the project, or is that something Kotaku made up? Because I can't imagine a better sign of creative bankruptcy than naming your game 'New Sequel Entry Or Something'. Talk about a compelling vision (not)!
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April 29th, 2013, 04:37
Originally Posted by Carnifex View Post
Kind of an amusing choice, imo. You take people that basically tanked a company, and put them in charge of a series that, at best, has also tanked.
-Carn
I seriously doubt a lead level designer, or former has the business acumen, or lack thereof that caused the demise of 38 studio's. that disaster wholly belongs to Kurt and his pipe dreams and lack of self control.
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April 29th, 2013, 04:47
Ian Frazier seems like a good guy. Very intelligent, too. Watched many interviews of his when Reckoning was in production. I'm glad he landed a new gig. Well deserved.
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April 29th, 2013, 05:44
Ian Frazier also worked on Titan Quest which was a superb ARPG.

KoA is a great game despite its flaws. Suggesting designers/programmers (lead or otherwise) causing the downfall of 38 Studios is just ludicrous. As several others have remarked, it was management and unrealistic expectations.
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April 29th, 2013, 06:11
Originally Posted by Dr. A View Post
Ian Frazier also worked on Titan Quest which was a superb ARPG.
He was also Project Director on Ultima V: Lazarus, undoubtedly one of the best RPG mods ever made, and showed how a tanked RPG series can have new life breathed into it.

http://www.u5lazarus.com/TeamLazarus.php

I have a lot of hope for the Mass Effect, and hope if he does well there, maybe EA will ask him to help dust-off the Ultima series, beyond that Tablet/Social Ultima Forever game.
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April 29th, 2013, 10:26
Seems like a good outcome. Amalur had pretty good gameplay, but the story didn't really grab me. Adding their skills to the ME universe could help ME4 be distinct in a good way.
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April 29th, 2013, 11:09
Try as I might to come up with some kind of passionate response to this, I just can't.

I'm completely neutral here.

KoA could have been a pretty good game, but ultimately it suffered from a surprisingly bland world, generic quests, generic dungeons and a poorly balanced combat system.

But all the pieces were there and I don't think it would have taken that much to make it into a very good game.

It won't take much to outdo Bioware either, so I guess it's possible for these guys to make ME4 into an interesting game.

In any case, I don't expect anything at all - so it's no big loss if it turns to shit.
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April 29th, 2013, 12:08
Seems everyone is moving to Montreal. So when I get fired…

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April 29th, 2013, 14:30
maybe they should add a top tier pledge level named "Rhode Island's governor level"
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April 29th, 2013, 15:34
Montreal isn't a bad place 'cept for the winters; having said that I didn't much care for KoA level design or game-play but I know a lot of folks liked it. I did - however - very much like titan quest game-play AND level design; though i wish it had been a bit less arpg and a bit more puzzle-ish in the mix.
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April 29th, 2013, 15:56
Titan Quest was head and shoulders above KoA. Twenty years from now, I'll still be whining about the sheer mess that KoA and ME 3 turned out to be. I would be happy if people associated with those products just went away for a few decades.



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April 30th, 2013, 11:19
Originally Posted by Carnifex View Post
Kind of an amusing choice, imo. You take people that basically tanked a company, and put them in charge of a series that, at best, has also tanked. I can almost smell the desperation in the air off this one. And no, I'm not a fan of KoA or ME (after the first one, which I actually enjoyed).
-Carn
I worked in the game development industry and every time a company tanked it was because inexperienced and/or untalented people were hired. No quality product was made or work was very slow - in comparison to this talented people work super-fast - so publishers ceased paying for crap and the whole studio filled with crappy developers closed down. This happened at least five times.

Pray that real talent was hired or else Mass Effect is done with the trilogy.
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April 30th, 2013, 16:11
KoA was probably the blandest, most uninteresting, and unfun RPG from a major publisher that I ever bothered to play. Finished the game, but almost had to force myself. If they were programmers or artists I'd say who cares, but lead designers from KoA being involved in ME is sad news.
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April 30th, 2013, 20:43
Originally Posted by mercy View Post
I worked in the game development industry and every time a company tanked it was because inexperienced and/or untalented people were hired. No quality product was made or work was very slow - in comparison to this talented people work super-fast - so publishers ceased paying for crap and the whole studio filled with crappy developers closed down. This happened at least five times.

Pray that real talent was hired or else Mass Effect is done with the trilogy.
Kind of an amusing choice, imo. You take people that basically tanked a company, and put them in charge of a series that, at best, has also tanked. I can almost smell the desperation in the air off this one. And no, I'm not a fan of KoA or ME (after the first one, which I actually enjoyed).
The available material on the failure of Studio 38 is pretty public. And from every account I've read, your comments are essentially garbage. The financial mismanagement of the company was paramount to its failure. The game according to most reviewers was generally "ok, if pretty derivative". The company hinged on getting CoD blockbuster level sales and might have failed even at that. Stingray's comment is probably the best made of the bunch. If you're worried about the direction the ME universe takes, base it on that, not the failed studio. I think it's pretty clear it rests solidly on Mr. Schilling's shoulders.
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April 30th, 2013, 23:24
Uninteresting story and endless mobrespawns.
Is it KoA? Will ME4 be the same? We'll see.

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April 30th, 2013, 23:39
Amalur was their first big game, and they were not responsible for the story or lore. They mainly led a team of artists, writers, coders, etc, to create a cohesive gameplay experience.

ME4 already has established lore, gameplay, audio-visual style, etc. Let's give the guys the benefit of the doubt, they might be able to do better than Amalur, which I'm sure was a pretty big learning experience for both.
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April 30th, 2013, 23:59
Look, I just don't want another mobrespawn grinder. In fact forget that, I'm not any factor.
Simply said if the gameplay in ME4 is discontinued and KoAdized, I won't buy it and good luck to all who love grinding. And I certainly won't buy it on sales later, I did buy KoA but still didn't care to install it as I can't be arsed to kill billions of same mobs over and over.

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