BioWare considering environmental HUD, new enemy designs for Mass Effect 3

Commander Shepard may be taking a page from Isaac Clarke’s book. BioWare Senior Designer Brenon Holmes told Mass Effect fans this weekend the studio is tinkering with the addition of an environmental HUD system for Mass Effect 3, much like the one last seenworn bythe delusionalengineer of notein Dead Space 2.

“That’s one of the things that I love about Dead Space; the interface… it feels really immersive. I just want to touch the hell out of those buttons. So we are still investigating ways of putting some of our HUD elements into the environment… we’ll see what we end up with,”wrote Holmes (opens in new tab)in a back and forth chat with BioWare’s Mass Effect community.

Holmes said BioWare had played around with different prototypes for a health and shield indicator on Commander Shepard’s armor during the early phases of ME2, but weren’t able to find a way to do so without having it obscured when playerstook cover in the middle of the action.

In a later response to criticism over ME2’s use of a fuzzy red screen-‘o -death to indicate low health, Holmesconfirmed this was something the studio was “actively iterating on.” Healso noted (opens in new tab)the sequel would feature more varietyon the battlefield, explaining, “One of the things we’re trying for ME3 is to make it a lot easier to identify the various types of enemies. Silhouette of the character is a huge component of that, and our character art/animator guys have done a pretty awesome job. I’m pretty excited for when we get to start showing off some of the really cool creatures we’ve been working on.”

Holmes avoided discussing specific examples, but emphasized any character design changes would be done to suit an actual purpose – gameplay, plot or otherwise – and not just for the sake of mixing things up.

Over and above demonstrating BioWare’s open relationship with fans, Holmes’ chat over the last few days on BioWare’s forum hints at promising improvements in the way of gameplay and design. Small improvements, sure, but ones that could makea difference when the intergalactic crap hits the fan.

[Source:BioWare forums (opens in new tab)viaScrawl (opens in new tab)]

Mar 28, 2011

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