Throughout The Sport Awards, a Mass Impact trailer was shone that appeared to say so much and little or no on the similar time. A whole lot of keen-eyed followers have supplied their very own theories, so I wished to contribute my very own – together with how Andromeda and the Trilogy may collide. As somebody that has over 30 playthroughs of the unique trilogy, 7 playthroughs of Andromeda (regardless of its flaws), and has learn all the comics and novels a number of instances over, I wished to place a few of that have to good use with a superb ‘ol customary deep dive. So right here we go!
As a disclaimer, a disclaimer I placed on any piece I write about Dragon Age or Mass Impact: I am extremely clear with my love for this recreation. Does that imply I am unable to be vital of it or the studio tradition across the BioWare title? Completely not, that is my job (and is clear by my very heavy critics of Andromeda and Dragon Age 2 previously, regardless of my private enjoyment), however I wish to be trustworthy by letting readers know that I do have a private connection to those tales for 100% transparency.
Shifting on, let’s break the trailer seen on the high of the article down.
Within the opening sequence of the trailer (at which level we did not even know this was tied to Mass Impact), we see the 2 galaxies which have dominated this franchise’s lore: the Milky Means, which is seen within the entrance, and Andromeda, which is seen within the background. Whereas many did not appear to take pleasure in Andromeda as a result of its very totally different taste and all kinds of launch points (faces had been drained, you already know the drill), others did relish within the youthful and far dorkier Ryder story. Very similar to the Geth weren’t the true enemy within the first recreation of the trilogy, the Kett weren’t the true enemy in Andromeda, a complexity that held a lot potential for the anticipated sequel. Then launch occurred and DLC plans had been canceled, successfully killing any hope that the Quarians would make it safely and we might get a decision to the most important epiphany revealed at Andromeda’s finish. That hope was killed till now, as a result of the parallels seen to start with of the trailer paired with the implications of the ending scene may imply a crossover of epic proportions.
The trailer then continues into the Milky Means that begins a journey by means of time itself with a voice from the Apollo 11 moon touchdown saying “Eagle, Houston. You are a go for touchdown, over.” Being a journey, the trailer continues by means of time into an space the place a cylindric construction will be seen. Some have speculated that it may very well be remnants of the Collector Base that was shot to hell in Mass Impact 2 (which I do not suppose so given the following sequence of occasions), whereas others suppose that this may very well be a structural graveyard seen within the wake of Reaper destruction from cycles previous. It is also the remnants of the battle with the Quarians on their approach to Andromeda, which shall be explored somewhat additional down. Regardless, it’s related to the Omega Nebula, which has its personal connection by way of a Mass Relay inside the Mass Impact world.
The following sequence seen is what makes me suppose it is not the Collector Base as a result of the following shot instantly references the First Contact Battle when humanity stumbled upon the Mass Relays and joined the broader galaxy solely to leap right into a vicious conflict in opposition to Turians that begun in 2157. This connection was pretty clear-cut with the voice that claims “Arcturus Station, unknown vessel approaching, we want first contact protocols.” For these that won’t know, Arcturus is the headquarters for humanity’s System Alliance that was established in 2156, a navy and political energy construction that’s closely prevalent within the trilogy and related printed media.
In Andromeda, followers had been shocked to see that almost all races had been represented within the transfer between galaxies, however some had been lacking. The Hanar, Elcor, Drell, and Quarians had been essentially the most notable, with the ending of the fourth Mass Impact recreation revealing that the Quarians’ ark by no means made it safely, revealing an ominous misery name that was later explored by means of a spin-off novel (not DLC, as was reportedly deliberate). The trailer’s sequence continues, saying “Ark 6 is away, godspeed,” which is the Quarian ark Keelah Si’yah. The above damaged cylindric construction may very well be associated to the failed ark arrival, which may very well be the loophole wanted with the time sequence given the passage of time that it takes to make it from the Milky Strategy to Andromeda (roughly 600 years). The explanation that I feel this may very well be associated to the earlier trailer sequence is that the ark launched from the Hephaestus Station, which is related to the Omega Nebula inside the Caleston Rift.
Throughout this subsequent sequence is the place I acquired chills as a result of that is the primary time we hear the Reaper’s conflict name as soon as extra, the haunting growth that plagued the trilogy’s third entry. Because the video progresses into an plentiful quantity of wreckage inside a damaged Mass Relay, a misery name will be heard – solely to be lower off by the Reaper’s telltale sound – saying “Received to take down the dreadnought. Going vital. Abandon ship!”
This wreckage was the fact for thousands and thousands of lives. With each fleet desperately attempting to beat again Reaper forces, a power to date superior it appeared hopeless, numerous lives had been misplaced. Many battles had been seemingly for nothing, and full races had been fully obliterated in earlier cycles. We realized fairly a bit about how different cycles labored with the “harvest” because of Mass Impact 3’s inclusion of the final surviving Prothean: Javik.
This hopelessness carried into the following sequence the place a voice will be heard saying “Is anybody receiving this? We have misplaced contact.” This half may happen at any time throughout Mass Impact Three as a result of many stations had been misplaced with Mass Impact manipulation and Reaper obstruction, but when all contact was misplaced it is potential that this may very well be a post-ME3 second when all the Mass Relays had been destroyed after Shepard’s sacrifice. Whereas the Management and Synthesis endings did ultimately restore that injury, all endings resulted in that preliminary destruction. After the preliminary blast and Mass Relays shut down, the complete Milky Means was thrust into its personal Darkish Age pre-technologically-driven journey.
The trailer is not finished but, the following step takes us into territory that I feel may very well be simply dismissed as nothing, however keen-eyed followers know that BioWare is the king of hiding a few of its most necessary particulars in plain sight. “Humanity is all that now we have left” will be heard with a hybrid mashup of voices. Damaged communication continues nevertheless it sounds like “the explanation” will be heard on the very finish. What that portends to is anybody’s guess, however when taking a look at what occurs subsequent, it may very well be a a lot greater clue than we notice.
The video continues with the ship that we noticed throughout N7 day with idea artwork make its touchdown on a planet rife with ice set with a tone of bleakness (it is not the earth, a number of moons will be seen). It is there that we see a shrouded determine make their method up an incline – a determine later revealed to be Liara (we’re getting there, be affected person). Many suppose it is a mountain, which positively appears to be that method however to me? To me, I feel this may very well be a derelict Reaper that she’s scaling. An enormous cause for that’s the earlier body instantly references the Reaper’s destruction and since it is a journey by means of time, the connection that the Reapers had been as soon as the place this ship lands is certainly there. The truth that she bends down to choose up an N7 helmet, probably Shepard’s helmet, actually lends to my considering it is a fallen Reaper given the character of the Commander’s personal fall (we’re ignoring the breath of life seen on the finish with the patched within the prolonged lower, you may @ me on Twitter if you wish to know why, I’ve a really particular cause for doing so).
Up till this level, we do not know who the shrouded determine is, however ultimately, she appears up and in the direction of the horizon and it is there that we are able to clearly see it’s an Asari. The freckles, face form, and that little smirk is clearly Liara (although some shops reported that it was a Quarian of their preliminary protection, I will go forward and chalk that as much as them being rushed to get the information out in the course of the Awards, which was a rapid-fire of latest bulletins that it was fairly exhausting to maintain up). That is Liara. Do not consider me? I confirmed it with two BioWare devs; that is Liara.
The trailer then ends together with her wanting off into the gap the place the ship that landed will be seen with the shapes of three figures within the background (would you have a look at that, the identical variety of companions you may convey with you into battle in the course of the video games!). One is clearly a Krogan with the far left being a Salarian. The center particular person appears like a human, however may additionally simply be a Drell. My intestine says human and since that is an opinion piece, I will be frank and say that is the place I am personally leaning.
However wait, does this imply Shepard is coming again?
Clearly, I am unable to eschew something formally as a result of all of us noticed the identical trailer, however I will say no for just a few causes. The primary being that Shepard was all the time canonically meant to be a trilogy. They had been meant to be the martyr. Except Miranda was again with one other go on the Lazarus Mission, I feel it is best to start out re-saying these goodbyes as soon as extra if that is what you are hoping for.
The second cause is that it takes centuries to make it from the Milky Strategy to Andromeda. So how does that designate Liara? Simple! Asari have extremely lengthy lifespans. Within the third recreation, Liara was simply over 100 years outdated, which is principally thought-about an adolescent in Asari tradition. Asari can dwell to be over one thousand, so a 600-year leap would not be a life-time cycle for her. The truth that her face will be seen with positive traces of a extra mature Matriarch, the years lend themselves to my concept that we’re going again to Andromeda however it will likely be extra built-in with the trilogy than beforehand deliberate.
TLDR: Andromeda hasn’t deserted the trilogy and the trilogy nonetheless has long-standing penalties to future life that now we have but to expertise. I feel the following step within the Mass Impact franchise will clearly happen tons of of years post-ME3. I additionally suppose that this can make the Destroy ending canon, the ending that was extremely wanted and incentivized all through the development of the third recreation. Since there isn’t any proof that Liara has been synthesized with that ending and there are not any dwelling Reapers seen, it appears just like the Destroy ending shall be paramount for the way forward for the video games. Might Mass Impact pull a Dragon Age Hold the place you may enter your individual decisions of video games previous to dictate how the premise is ready up for the brand new journey? Completely a risk, however that is not one thing we’ll study till we’re a lot nearer to launch.
On the finish of the day, I am excited. I touched on this with my earlier piece speaking about potential expansions of the Mass Impact universe, however there are such a lot of unexplored tales left to inform. From the First Contact Battle to every little thing that occurred in between the Trilogy and Andromeda, the narrative grounds are past fertile.
When you’re thinking about studying extra concerning the lore past the video games, I am unable to advocate the books and comics sufficient. Even the film Paragon’s Misplaced, which dives into what occurred to Vega pre-Shepard, affords distinctive views into the video games. From in between the primary Mass Impact and Mass Impact 2, to how Liara acquired ahold of Shepard’s physique to start with; there’s a lot extra to discover on the market and each little bit of it affords small items to a a lot bigger puzzle that’s the way forward for Mass Impact.