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Mass Effect 2 on PS3 in January 2011

The Normandy crash lands on PS3.

Yesterday during Electronic Arts’ conference at Gamescom (held in Cologne, Germany), BioWare announced that Mass Effect 2 will release on the Playstation 3 in January 2011.

The PS3 version will include the “full Mass Effect 2 game and hours of bonus content, ” the company said in a press release.

Mass Effect 2 released for the Xbox 360 on Jan. 25th.

The announcement trailer:

Mass Effect 2 on the 360 let players import their Sheppard character from their Mass Effect 1 save file. Storyline decisions, as well as other characters and dialogue choices, carried over to the sequel too. Mass Effect 1 isn’t available on the PS3 so this option will be missing from Sony’s version of Mass Effect 2.

Instead, PS3 users will get a beginning segment detailing the history of Mass Effect.

Dr. Ray Muzyka, CEO of BioWare, told VG247:

We’re making sure there’s a really seamless introduction to the world of Mass Effect, for players that haven’t experienced it before.

So even though it’s Mass Effect 2 specifically, we’re making sure there’s a nice introduction experience, that provides the back-story and the things that have happened up to that point in the universe, and makes it a really seamless introduction.

The full extent of this introduction is unknown at this time.

He also stated that many of the downloadble content on the 360 version will be included in the PS3 release. The Cerberus Network, BioWare’s in-game downloadable content area, will also be on the PS3. Muzyka said they “want make sure the PS3 fans get that experience in as full a way as possible.”

No word on if there will be new post-release downloadble content on the PS3.

Once exclusive to the 360, Mass Effect 2 is now multi-platform. Microsoft commented on losing one of their big exclusives. In a statement given to IGN, Microsoft said:

With both Mass Effect titles launching first on Xbox 360 combined with the wealth of available paid downloadable content on Xbox Live today, Xbox 360 remains the best place to experience the Mass Effect franchise.

An official release date for Mass Effect 2 hasn’t been set. There’s no confirmation if Mass Effect 1 will see a PS3 release.

Discussion

It’s odd to start a trilogy with the second installment. Importing your save file and bringing over your character is such a unique feature of the Mass Effect series. While you can still fully play the game without doing so, you lose an important part of the experience.

It’ll be interesting to see how they follow through with the introduction. It could be either new gameplay or just a “best of” cutscene. Either way, it won’t be as good as having a Mass Effect 1 save file.

EA published Mass Effect 1 on the PC. Microsoft published the 360 version. I don’t know the legal loop holes EA would have to jump through to bring the first game over to PS3.

The intro part for the PS3 version Muzyka mentioned doesn’t sound like this is going to happen anytime soon though. You’d have to imagine at some point the original would hit the PS3.

This announcement is terrific news for PS3 owners, although it’s another loss for console exclusivity.

Photo by BioWare

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