Mass Effect 2 makes every decision count

Mass Effect 2 lead producer Casey Hudson recently sat down to chat about the highly anticipated sequel, which he says will overhaul every single aspect of the ongoing sci-fi saga. The busy developer also dropped some juicy hints about the way Mass Effect saves will (and won’t) be used in the follow-up.

Every decision that the player made in Mass Effect was documented in the game’s save files. All of these choices—from the fate of certain planets to the death of characters—will be taken into account the first time Mass Effect 2 is loaded up, with the game adapting the current campaign to reflect the hundreds of decisions made beforehand. For example, if you acted like a jerk to somebody in a ME1 conversation, your interactions with that character will be awkward in the sequel and they will be less likely to help you.

BioWare is committed to making the Mass Effect trilogy feel like one cohesive story told within a living, breathing universe, so having every decision continuously play into the unfolding events sounds like a fascinating way to get the player to feel as if they are making a difference. Hudson also mentioned that peeps who never played the original would be able to jump right into this one without issue, as the game will do its best to catch them up with a story recap and a detailed tutorial.

Unfortunately, Hudson didn’t talk about what other information would be taken from the ME1 save file, but I did speak with an EA rep at E3 who mentioned that stats and experience levels would not be carried over into Mass Effect 2. The reason that he gave was that they dramatically changed the character classes this time around, and wanted to give players the opportunity to hone different skills without being locked to the class decisions they made in the prequel. He also told me that some characters from the original game won’t show up in ME2 unless a save is used. In other words, newcomers might not get to experience the awesomeness that is Wrex unless they go buy ME1 right now. Well…what are you waiting for? GO!

Mass Effect 2 ships for the Xbox 360 and PC in Spring 2010.