Of course, Wii U is only going to be getting Mass Effect 3, the last game in the trilogy, but fear not if you haven’t played the other two games, as there’ll be an interactive comic at the start of the game to help bring you up to speed with all the events of the previous games. A lot of originally post-release DLC will also make an appearance, including the alternate ending BioWare implemented after the famous outcry from its fanbase.
Mass Effect 3 for Wii U will also make modest but welcome use of the GamePad, which will act as a mini-map and hotkey hub. These maps have been completely re-drawn for the Wii U port, as opposed to merely recycled, and it will also be playable right on the GamePad– which looks even better than what the big screen offers. BioWare is still mum on other possible uses for Wii U’s defining piece of hardware (cleaner inventories, perhaps, or hacking minigames?), but one thing we do now is that the Wii U version will have an exclusive gun available in the single player campaign: the Ladon (pictured below). Around BioWare, this thing is called “the problem solver”– and I think we can all see why…
It’s also important to look at the bigger picture when weighing up the importance of this port. We’re not just talking about Mass Effect on Wii U. We’re talking about BioWare getting in bed with Nintendo. To an undoubtedly rich stream of Japanese RPGs for Wii U, BioWare is adding one (and hopefully more) of its fantastic franchises.
But before we come to the end of this Wii U 101, I want to tell you a story. It involves a very minor spoiler, so do skip these next two paragraphs (and video) if you want to keep yourself spoiler-free. Late in the game, there’s a moment between Commander Shepard and Garrus, a Turian marksman you’ve so often fought beside. Before facing the Reapers (and before the shit hits the fan for what might be the last time), Garrus wants to settle the score. He wants to know who’s the better shot. As you two sit in the relative safety of the Citadel, he tosses a bottle far ahead.
It’s up to you: nail it, or fail intentionally? Since it’s strictly your choice (no actual in-game shooting or anything), we can kind of assume here that Shepard is the better marksman. But for one of many different reasons that might be racing through your mind– pity for Garrus, or the reasoned knowledge (though it can only ever be a belief) that he needs this one small victory to stay his confidence– you can choose to miss. What repercussions did my own choice, or will yours, have? I don’t know.
For moments like those, for others completely unlike it, and for what I hope it means regarding Wii U’s third party lineup, Mass Effect 3‘s advent is a huge win for Nintendo’s next system.
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