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Mass Effect Developer Says Sprinting Didn't Move You Faster In The Citadel

A developer on Mass Effect says that the sprint function in the Citadel only adjusted the camera FOV to give the illusion of speed due to technical limitations.


Video games should be upfront and honest with the player, but sometimes they have to mislead you a little bit. Case in point: according to a recent social media post from designer John Ebenger, if you tried to sprint in the Citadel in Mass Effect 1, you weren't actually moving any faster: the camera field of view (FOV) simply changed to give you a sense of speed rather than the real thing.

Ebenger served as a designer at BioWare on both Dragon Age and Mass Effect, and now currently works as a cinematic director at Firewalk Studios, which is working on the recently-revealed hero shooter Concord. Ebenger says Shepherd's turtle-like gait was due to technical limitations: the game simply couldn't stream in assets fast enough on the older consoles. Given how the original Mass Effect famously used elevators to hide its load times, this makes sense. The more you know.

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PC Gamer went so far as to test this claim for themselves, and they concluded that there is indeed no speed difference between running and walking in the Citadel. According to Twitter/X user @dyingnome, an anonymous Dragon Age: Inquisition developer once told her that the mounts didn't actually move faster when they sprinted, instead using some "wind lines" to give the illusion of speed. Who knows where else BioWare used dastardly tricks like this to mislead players. All for the good of the game, of course.

In other BioWare news, the studio recently showed off 20 minutes of gameplay of the next Dragon Age game, The Veilguard.

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