Despite the sprawling landscapes of Mass Effect: Andromeda, the latest title from BioWare won’t actually be an open world game. That said, it won’t be completely linear, either.
“I definitely wouldn’t call Andromeda an open-world game,” producer Michael Gamble said in an interview with Official Xbox Magazine (via GamesRadar). “We like to use the term ‘exploration-based game.’ You still have the concept of tight story deliverance and all the great things you come to expect with Mass Effect.”
That sounds an awfully like the original Mass Effect, which told the main story in linear segments but still allowed players to wander across different worlds. Exploration seems to be the key theme, as Gamble elaborated. “The layer on top of [the story] is a layer of exploration,” he said. “Sometimes that happens in open spaces, but not always. You can cruise around some of these planets in the Nomad, but it’s not the traditional sandbox-type game.”
In other words, don’t expect Grand Theft Auto-in-space antics with the Nomad. Fans of the series can, though, expect to find gameplay in line with the past iterations of the Mass Effect games we already know and love.
Mass Effect: Andromeda releases on March 21st for the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC.