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After Mass Effect: Andromeda launched to somewhat mixed reception, fans have been in doubt over the future of the beloved sci-fi video game franchise. According to anonymous sources, the lukewarm reaction to Andromeda has been followed by some serious scaling down at Bioware Montreal, and the shelving of the Mass Effect franchise for the foreseeable future.

Last month, Montreal, the studio responsible for , had a number of employees transferred to the studio EA Motive, also based in Montreal, to work on . What remained of BioWare Montreal's staff were repurposed as a support studio for BioWare's other games.

From the looks of it the franchise has been put on ice, with staff being distributed to other projects rather than working on a follow-up to Andromeda.

BioWare Montreal Shrunk, Mass Effect On Hiatus

'Mass Effect: Andromeda' [Credit: EA]
'Mass Effect: Andromeda' [Credit: EA]

Fans of BioWare's alien-boning space opera games shouldn't give up all hope, however. Mass Effect remains massively popular, and it's unlikely that the franchise will be shelved for good.

Reception to Andromeda was pretty mixed, especially compared to the previous Mass Effect sequels. BioWare Montreal's debut effort was mocked for its wonky facial animations and awkward writing. As it stands, while not a terrible game, it had some glaring flaws that prevented it from living up to the legacy of its predecessors.

BioWare Montreal is now significantly smaller than it was just a few months ago, but will continue to patch and support Andromeda’s multiplayer in addition to assisting with BioWare's upcoming new IP. This isn't a case of heads rolling, merely a redistribution of resources.

Mass Effect publisher Electronic Arts released the following statement on the restructuring, attributed to BioWare Montreal studio director Yanick Roy:

Our teams at BioWare and across EA put in tremendous effort bringing Mass Effect Andromeda to players around the world. Even as BioWare continues to focus on the Mass Effect Andromeda community and live service, we are constantly looking at how we’re prepared for the next experiences we will create.

The teams in EA Worldwide Studios are packed with talent, and more than ever, we are driving collaboration between studios on key projects.

With our BioWare and Motive teams sharing studio space in Montreal, we have BioWare team members joining Motive projects that are underway. We’re also ramping up teams on other BioWare projects in development.

There will be much more to come from BioWare in the years ahead.

So BioWare is going to continue with updates and support for Andromeda, but we shouldn't hold out for sequels set in the Andromeda galaxy anytime soon. But it's easy to see why the team behind one spacefaring third-person shooter could lend their talents to similar title set in a galaxy far, far away.

Check out the reveal trailer for Star Wars Battlefront 2:

No word on whether the BioWare Montreal team will inject the Mass Effect series' signature interspecies romances into Star Wars Battlefront 2, however. I know some of you are getting your hopes up though.

Are there any elements from Andromeda that you'd like to see in Star Wars Battlefront 2?

(Source: Kotaku)

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