While there has been a mixed reception to the side-quest filled action role-playing game, there’s no arguing that Mass Effect: Andromeda is a large game. The space exploration game is so large, in fact, that some may wonder if BioWare may have taken notes from No Man’s Sky‘s procedurally generated planets. According to an interview with BioWare’s Fabrice Condominas (producer for the new game), the development team did, in fact, toy with the idea of using an open universe system inspired by the failed space simulator.
During the interview, Condominas spoke of Hello Games’ revolutionary, though ultimately disappointing, space exploration game. BioWare was so impressed with No Man’s Sky‘s ambition, that the developers actually spent a year exploring the idea of making non-story planets procedurally generated, playable areas with the idea of letting players land on any planet they find and discovering what it has to offer.
BioWare eventually scrapped that idea, and Condominas gave his reasons why:
Yes, obviously we are looking at what else is happening in the industry overall. In the specific case of No Man’s Sky, at the time it was released, we were already deep in development. But we noticed that it was very focused on procedural worlds and we tried that, actually, over a year. Our conclusion at the time was that it wasn’t for us in the sense that it wasn’t for the type of game we were doing. Because all the content we build we try and make to a high quality, but when we tried procedurally generated content we never reached the level of quality we wanted.
Ultimately, BioWare decided to go with quality over quantity, a decision that could have helped Hello Games make a more worthwhile game. And with as large as Mass Effect: Andromeda already is, its doubtful anyone’s complaining that not every single planet can be landed on. They’re too busy complaining about the animations and technical issues to care about that.