Why Mass Effect 2 Won’t Be Coming To The PS3

By William Usher 2009-03-17 12:17:02 discussion comments
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With the news surfacing about BioWare -- who is now wholly owned by Electronic Arts -- formally announcing Mass Effect 2 for the Xbox 360 and PC, it has become rather obvious that this wasn’t heading to the PS3 and here’s a few possible reasons why.

First of all, back when BioWare wasn’t owned by Electronic Arts, Microsoft had already published the first game for the Xbox 360 with intentions (much like Gears of War) to maintain a new franchised trilogy for the Xbox brand. People can argue semantics, publishing and trademark rights all they want, but consider Col. Sheppard the tertiary mascot next to Master Chief and Marcus Fenix.

It was reiterated time-over and again that Mass Effect was going to be an Xbox 360 trilogy. And even while Casey Hudson denied plans for a PC rendition of Mass Effect in an interview with Gamer 2.0, it was obvious the big bad MS wasn’t going to let gold slip through their fingers…especially considering that the Games for Windows platform is utter crap and needed something good in its library.

The fact that Hudson lied about the PC version could prompt some gamers to believe that Mass Effect 2 could still be heading to the PS3. However, the difference is that the game was already designed from the ground-up for the Xbox 360. Realistically, PS3 owners wouldn’t get their copy of the game until 2012. By that time BioWare would be starting (or finishing) alpha code for the third game. Would it really be sensible to port over a game that old to a system that’s already selling less third-party software outside of Japan, than the 360?

You can call it PS3-bashing but it’s just reality, folks; sales for Turok, Blacksite Area 51, Grand Theft Auto IV and Smackdown Vs. Raw prove this. Heck, anyone who follows NPD data (which is due out soon for the month of February) knows this.

The reality is that there’s just not enough incentive for BioWare to port over a game that wasn’t designed for the other console in the first place. EA is obviously aware of this; it's no different than Sega keeping Yakuza 3 on the PS3, since that was the system it was designed for, originally. It would take too much money, time and resources to port over a game that already has a niche install-base on a specific platform (i.e., Square’s wasteful efforts to get Final Fantasy XIII on the 360).

Now it would be shocking if EA decided to have BioWare release Mass Effect 2 for the PS3 a few years later. At this stage in development, though, it’s highly unlikely.

For more insight, news, updates and info on the latest gaming happenings, be sure to stay tuned in with Blend Games.


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