Today, to much fan fanfare, BioWare released the first in a series of videos that gives us a look at the combat through gameplay videos. It’s linked below so you can scroll right down to it, but here is the run-down of what it has to say about Weapons, Tech and Biotic skills in Mass Effect Andromeda and my thoughts on the matter.
First of all the new dynamic cover system in ME:A will allow you to use anything for cover. Simply press against it and you’re in cover. We’ve heard last year that the cover system wouldn’t be
sticky the way we know it from previous Mass Effect games. The upshot of which is that we won’t need to hit a key to gain a cover effect, the pop-out-and shoot will be less of a game of wack-a-mole and the cover won’t turn into a deathtrap when it won’t let go fast enough. Or so I’ve heard, this never happened to me of course.
We’re also seeing tech shield emplacements similar to what Cerberus employed in ME2 and 3 though it looks like the Pathfinder is using it too. does that mean we will finally be dropping our own tech covers SWTOR-style or no? No idea yet but it’s a thought.
It sounds like the Pathfinder is issued with a Jumpjet as standard deployment gear. Which is awesome as it will let us fight Boba Fett style in Andromeda, with hover-shooting, jumps, and charges. You can even use it defensively to evade enemy fire. I just know my Sarah will be painting her armor green and red!
Ranged weapons mix is one we are familiar with: include pistols, shotguns, sniper rifles and assault rifles. Sniper Rifle fans will be happy to know that the Widow is back. Of note is that there are no class restrictions on weapons, hurrah! SMGs are still in the game according to Lead Designer Ian Frazier. Not a big fan myself, but worth knowing. Apparently, the spray’n’prays are sorted under pistols now.
The guns are arranged by where they originate from, so weapons brought along from the Milky Way are types that we recognize such as the Carnifex, the M-23 Katana V, and the M-96 Mattock for example. Milky Way weapons are predominantly projectile weapons that run out of ammo!
Remnant (I and my consortium of Twitter helpers at least think the narrator said Remnant anyways) are beam weapons who use the overheat system from Mass Effect 1(!). No ammo issues but you do have to either pace your firing or wait out the cooldown period.
Helius weapons use technology created by sentient species living in the Helios cluster of Andromeda. They are plasma based, slower speed but high damage and they have heat-seeking technology!
MEA also offers an assortment of melee weapons which includes fast swords and heavy-hitting hammers.
Besides the armament, there are, as usual, biotic and tech skills and abilities. There are also no restrictions on which these you choose.
Combat skills are your soldier abilities. They focus on improving weapon damage and accuracy and give you access to flak cannons, grenades, trip mines and more.
Tech Skills – may or may not win you friends and influence.
Tech skills give you access to more experimental weaponry and focus on strategic and support abilities. Bio Beam (heh, Bio Beam!) and Flamethrower are offensive examples of this.
Invasion and Energy Drain are debuffs. There is also Cryo beam, which I presume does more or less what it says on the chilly tin, Overload, and Tactical Cloak. The latter two seem to perform pretty much like they did in ME2 and 3. Overload can now be held and chained to multiple enemies though rather than just getting that effect from upgrading it, presumably.
The deployable turret, however, is too cute for its offensive capability. Just look at the camo-Roomba! I need one!
Among the biotic skills are some returning skill names, though Pull never allowed us to hold an enemy up as a shield in front of us before! How cool is that? You can even use your impromptu meat shield as a weapon with Throw. I do suspect that holding up a container of flammable (or inflammable?) contents like this Pathfinder is doing might bite you in the ass in multiplayer.
Singularity and the new Annihilation Shield are AOE’s. Looks like the one is placed like we know it and other is targeted on an enemy. Each skill can be upgraded to become more effective and the individual skills also have customization choices to make when upgrading. You select three powers to use in a given combat situation and these can be changed.
The yellow health bar that denotes armor and the blue one that denotes shielding are included in this game. No idea if the annoying purple one is too.
You’ll note that Sarah is looking cute AF in the beginning of this trailer. I had to pause and rewind that smile three times before I was able to pick my floored self up enough to look at the toys!
We get a glimpse of three different planets which I will refer as Notooine, Nomund Kaas and Noth for wildly obscure reasons being they are respectively a desert, jungle and ice planet.
There is no doubt that the environments are looking spectacular and sharp as glass and the color pallets are bright and crisp.
And while we are on the topic of pretty new looks in Mass Effect Andromeda did you notice these cool habitats on Notooine?
We also, given the nature of the video, got to see a range of different mobs we’ll be encountering in Andromeda including these rock fellows here:
Of the humanoid encounters, there were some interesting looking Chosen fellows, some raider anarchists (always good for target practice) and something called Roekaars.
And last but not least we have spotted some mechs in the wild in Andromeda:
Fully automated I believe like the YMIR mechs were in ME2 but it is possible they’re manned. They certainly seem to be big enough.
And finally, we also know that the next combat video, the drop date of which is yet to be shared will cover Combat Profiles, Favorites, and Squad Commands.
Here is the video itself, please enjoy!