Mass Effect 3 cooperative multiplayer confirmed

[UPDATE] BioWare promises joint missions in upcoming sci-fi role-playing shooter are indeed coming; details four-player Galaxy at War mode.

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The Mass Effect franchise has traditionally been a single-player affair, but rumors that BioWare has plans to introduce a multiplayer component have swirled since November. Those rumblings became fact today, as BioWare has confirmed that the latest flagship installment in the franchise, Mass Effect 3, will have cooperative missions.

BioWare has yet to say whether the cooperative missions will feature Mass Effect's hallmark romance component.

"There will be a multiplayer component for #ME3," BioWare said through its official Twitter feed. "Full details soon, so wait until then before making your decision. We think you'll like it!"

Mass Effect 3 will mark the first entry in the series to offer multiplayer of any kind. The exact nature of these co-op missions is still unknown. However, BioWare executive producer Casey Hudson also took to his Twitter account to confirm the mode, cryptically stating that "it's nothing of what you've feared."

Set for release on the PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 on March 6, Mass Effect 3 sees planet Earth under siege. The attackers are the Reapers, a race of heavily armed sentient spacecraft that were central to the plot of the first Mass Effect. The return of the Reapers to the series was concretely revealed in Arrival, the last installment of downloadable content for Mass Effect 2.

[UPDATE] It hasn't taken long for BioWare to clarify what, exactly, gamers can expect from the promised cooperative multiplayer component in Mass Effect 3. In a post to its official forums, the Canadian company revealed details on the new mode called Galaxy at War.

Largely separate from the Mass Effect 3 single-player campaign, the new Galaxy at War mode will support up to four players. Multiplayer progress will alter the "galactic readiness" level of the final battle against the Reapers in the campaign, but BioWare emphasized that an "optimal, complete ending" is attainable through single-player alone.

In a short Q&A, Bioware filled in a few details surrounding the new mode and clarified that players will take custom characters into the Galaxy at War mode, with Commander Shepard and team relegated to the single-player campaign. Character progression, along with weapon upgrading and leveling, will be built into the Galaxy at War mode.

For more on the game, check out GameSpot's previous coverage of Mass Effect 3.

Discussion

215 comments
DukeBriggs
DukeBriggs

@nmargot you should consider reading the article entirely before deciding you're unhappy with the inclusion of multiplayer in the ME series. personally, i find that the mode that they're including adds TONS of replayability to a game that may be played 2-3 times at most. and they CLEARLY state that it's not going to alter the game to the point where the optimal ending can't be reached. sure, it's basically a copy of Horde mode in GoW, but who didn't enjoy that mode? I'll tell you who. Nazis. Are you a Nazi?

nmargot
nmargot

I am NOT happy with the intrusion of multiplayer into my Mass Effect experience. If this multiplayer business ruins the single-player experience in ME3, and maybe especially after the mess Bioware made of Dragon Age 2 (totally ruined the series in my opinion), I will never preorder or even order another Bioware game until I see a smoking review.

isshiah
isshiah

a huge waste of time an money.

opinions2
opinions2

I was really looking forward to ME3 and now this... I have joked with a few friends of how you could make the other 2 squad members you take on missions PC characters and go through like that but not a full mode held on with sticky tape like this. If I am prevented from getting the choices I want because I didn't play online enough, Bioware can have my copy back. I play this for the engrossing story and fantastic characters, not to grind through MP maps!

CONV1KT
CONV1KT

i think multiplayer is mainly for making custom non-human characters, because it would be stupid to have 2 shepards in the same game, i think they shouldve made a co-op storyline where the second player makes a new character which could be introduced at the start of the game (like a new recruit or something) but the second player would have very little influence to the storyline outcome. that way the people who dont play online could still have co-op but dont necessarily have to use it.

steviegthekop
steviegthekop

yet another franchise choosing to bolt on a multi player mode when its completely unnecessary. The majority of mass effect fans do not buy this game for multi player options. its such a shame, I was really looking forward to this game. why cant they release this type of thing as DLC? that way the people who want it can do so, and the people who don't want it will be happy also, the multi player having a bearing on the outcome of the game is an absolute joke of a decision #fuming

xxxxTRISTAMxxxx
xxxxTRISTAMxxxx

Perfect! Mass Effect 2 is my favorite game on the xbox 350....this will not disappoint!!!! Can't wait!

andy188
andy188

Lets just hope that it is put on a separate disc altogether, so not to waste any of that vital disc space for the immensity of the single player campaign! Actually looking forward to it though. Also very glad its co-op... there are not enough good co-op games.

thenephariouson
thenephariouson

Great 'Option', although im mainly going to be focused on the SP campaign, i will definately be giving the MP a blast.

reyno174
reyno174

The only thing better than playing an amazing game is playing an amazing game with a friend. Can't. Wait.

SUBZERO99999
SUBZERO99999

Aaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh no you get to have a choice whether to play solo or with a friend noooo.

starduke
starduke

Resources they are devoting to multiplayer are resources they are taking away from the single player. Bioware was always at their best when they focused on just one thing, the single player.

MarcJL31
MarcJL31

I guess this is ok. I would rather them put all resources into finishing the great single player story they have developed though. I am more focused on finishing the storyline to really care about this multiplayer but I guess good for those who want it.

Arranik
Arranik

uh guys..you dont have to play with the mulitiplayer you know...

kiopta1
kiopta1

Fans of the series I recommend you try to get your info from the mouths of Bioware and read carefully as I have seen many people making statements that are either blatantly wrong or ridiculous RUMINT.

BloodMist
BloodMist

Full four player, doesn't impact the main story in any real way, hey, there's no reason to complain here, especially since you'd have to be crazy not to play it.When they start charging for extra co-op maps, then you can complain.Ahh, but of course there are plenty of nonsensical complaints already.What a shocker.

wwlettsome
wwlettsome

So all your epic decisions that were supposed to have all this bearing on how the game ends will now also be affected by whether or not you complete the co-op missions? This is nothing more than a blatant cash grab attempt by Bioware. Got nothing against multiplayer in general but it doesn't belong here.

anthonycg
anthonycg

Confirmed: Multiplayer will be an integral component to singleplayer success: http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=448102

Zombies has been stolen from COD and any RPG aspects to this addon are nonexistant. Well folks it was fun but this game is dead. Oh and if you do buy this gears clone play all you can because once the servers do go down for next gen you'll never be able to complete the story mode again. I'm going to go play some super nintendo now.

VintAge68
VintAge68

Imho it's not only Shepard representing humanity-within-universe who is a character interesting enough to massively attract online players here. Besides, one cannot ignore the fact that a video game of sorts has to provide multiplayer now to be judged worthy, and one cannot judge negatively the fact that a producer does not wish to ignore market expectations...

DCUltrapro
DCUltrapro

@ nyran125, while I agree in general, I think if you can co-op with a good friend who respects the game and wants to enjoy it as much as you then you might have a better experience. i've been playing co-op campaigns with the same guy for about 5 years, GOW, Halo etc, and he and I know each other from before xbox live anyway so we were friends then. Just don't invite anyone else in lol. Anyway its not a co-op campaign just some missions you can do together

nyran125
nyran125

i would NEVER play this game multiplayer. I wouldnt even think about it. I dont really care its in there, as long as the single player is untouched i dont care. I actually prefer games like Dead island /borderlands and left 4 daed single player too. More challenging and you get to stop and smell the roses nto RUSH around because one of the people your playing with just wants to run around and level up. I like RPG's and most games to have a personal experience, NOT a co-op experience. sometimes i like to stop and read the signs and just enjoy the atmosphere the game has, in Co-op its kind of impossible to do that, to fully take everything in.

Quadraskill
Quadraskill

I don't understand why it took BioWare until the third game to think of this. I was saying implement co-op since the first game. You don't even need to add all this Galaxy at War side content. All it needs to be is just allowing another player to take control of a secondary party member. It would have been that simple.

EctoSpartan
EctoSpartan

@vader501st - Multiplayer doesn't fit the Mass Effect series? I guess you're right because Shepard fought husks, collectors, geth, and reapers all by himself with no help. They are not taking anything away from the single player. It's not even apart of it. This is an extra feature made by a separate team.

primalwanderer
primalwanderer

This will be awesome! the immersion will only increase if you can play with a friend! Although i do hope it will atleast have 2 player split screen for the co-op playing with people in the same room is WAY better than playing with someone online when it comes to co-op!

WarHead2011
WarHead2011

@ Sepewrath: That was Duh for me lol...thanks for the info though about the date....on the other hand I started playing the first one getting to the 2nd ME and I love the game. I get what you mean and it is pretty lame I do agree....I don't think having MP would be good idea since you would have to everyone on point and make sure everyone is online so that you wont miss out on anything....

tubaballoonz
tubaballoonz

I don't really see a problem with this. I think it sounds incredibly enjoyable, and I doubt it will detract from the single player experience. ... Then again, I kinda wanna see if I can be a Krogan.

Bowserpwns
Bowserpwns

With the ME series being mt favorite game franchise of basically all time, im happy they are adding in co-op. If it was competitive MP then i would be disappointed. The MP is only an added feature, guys, and you can still play the game solely in SP. (which is what i will be doing at least on my first playthrough). Plus maybe i can get my shallow minded, MP game friends to finally get ME and enjoy it! :D

Psycho_Hands
Psycho_Hands

Just more proof that Bioware are just a bunch of sellouts.

LinkLuigi
LinkLuigi

I don't have any heavy opinionss on this either which way. The thing is, so long as the single player campaign mode is awesome, I couldn't care less if there is multiplayer. In most games that is single player focused but has the option of playing multiplayer, it's entirely hit or miss. Either its' a great, alternative mode to play with, or isn't worth a second look. But I don't really fear this news, and it hasn't affected my opinion of this game as of yet.

Shantmaster_K
Shantmaster_K

awesome! cant wait for this! this is my favorite series of games. multiplayer will only make it better =]

vader501st
vader501st

@AncientDozer "Magically" destroyed? No, not so much. DEFINITELY nerfed? Oh, hell yes. You didn't get the point when I said that the course of the game is defined by the player's decisions alone. Shepard has buddies all over the course of the trilogy, and it's up to the player to decide who lives, dies, who'll be the favorites and heck, some of your buddies may even turn to the other side, depending on the *player*'s reaction to a situation. Also bear in mind that the novels ( I read them!) are there to expand and give more background to the game's universe and characters, while pretty good on their own, they are not decision-based, or even interactive, unlike the ME trilogy. Last but not least, I for one love co-op gaming, and when a game's mood and structure favor this kind of experience, I'm all for it. Army of Two, Halo, Gears and many others are best enjoyed with buddies along for the ride. But that does not mean that every single game out there *should* have a multiplayer, as EA's lattest efforts are for players to believe otherwise. Not only it may look silly, but it's a waste of resourses as well. It simply doesn't fit with games such as Dead Space 2 or the Mass Effect series. And the reason is simple: these games' campaigns speak for themselves, relying heavily on the story, the universe, and incredibly well developed and well written characters. Problem is, people are trying to fix something that wasn't broken in the first place.

Spahettificator
Spahettificator

@anthonycg Personally I'm happy playing as Shepard in single player but thanks for the info and links anyway :) I was just commenting that in a co-op situation it would be better to have people controlling the different members of Shepards squad than having multiple Shepards (though that would explain how he/she has so many favourite stores on the Citadel) or a random human soldier with no character. If they did it right you could have one player choosing which comments Shepard makes whilst the other chooses what (insert team member here) says, with both choices affecting the level in some way (ie good cop/bad cop interrogation of a prisoner or something like that). That would be pretty sweet.

superapo
superapo

What if the co-op put you in the shoes of Cerberus members? I think it would be pretty sweet way to see the events of ME3 in a different perspective.

Icehearted
Icehearted

So I be looking forward to this?! Smarter thing would have been to tack this on as DLC rather than poison the game itself with what I'm sure will be a hell of screeching tween derision and some form of grinding. We've got enough of this in other games, Mass Effect was one of the last truly good single player experiences. Shoehorning multiplayer into everything these days... what a shame.

majinstrings
majinstrings

A lot of people want to see a Mass Effect multiplayer game...at least, eventually... I think this is a good way to test those waters... When ME3 comes out and people start giving Bioware feedback on the multiplayer, they can learn what works and what doesn't; what needs to change, what needs to stay the same and what should be removed altogether. They can take the lessons they learn from this venture into multiplayer and use it to better implement multiplayer in future Mass Effect games... I'm all for it...just make sure the single player campaign is the best and longest of the series, so far, Bioware!

Outer_Raven
Outer_Raven

I'm gonna wait till the game comes ou to see how it will be before I start ranting. Who knows? It might be actually something great! Maybe I'll finally be able to be a turian...

Ronnie_Rim
Ronnie_Rim

Sure, Co-op is cool and all, but if, and ONLY if it does not take away resources and development time from the single player.

WafflePrime
WafflePrime

They should have waited and made this into a full spin-off game, on the other hand I wonder if i can finally make a turian

Pyrosa
Pyrosa

Skeptical... After 2+ play-throughs of the first two (Normal-Renegade and Insane-Paragon), I'm *NOT* looking for anyone else to join in the experience in any fashion. There are plenty of multiplayer games out there; why screw with a near-perfect formula? [Addendum -- leave the cheevos out of MP, Bioware... Don't penalize folks who don't want MP!]

ziproy
ziproy

Huh sounds intriguing. I'm assuming that if you complete that mode or whatever there will just be more AI bots at the last battle or something useless like that but multiplayer that affects the single player is still pretty cool

WIGASInDaHouse
WIGASInDaHouse

damn i was hoping the campaign was gonna be coop

Nemesis958
Nemesis958

At least it's not competitive multiplayer.

Master_Hav0c
Master_Hav0c

Also, I just don't get why people are calling Dragon Age 2 terrible. Sure, they made the gameplay more like Fable than World of Warcraft, but you could disable that, and the extra-angsty story was just an escalation of the first one's!

Master_Hav0c
Master_Hav0c

I've had just about enough with good single-player games having multiplayer added for little-to-no reason. Bioshock didn't need multiplayer and an immersive, story-based game like Mass Effect sure as saccharine doesn't need it!

Joeshmo93
Joeshmo93

FINALLY MASS EFFECT WITH FRIENDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

siarhei
siarhei

This (ME3 MP) better has split screen or AI companions. Otherwise a huge number of people who have no XBL Gold / do not play MP will be very upset