The Mass Effect trilogy is regarded as one of the best video game series ever made. Even today - over six years since it was released - Mass Effect 2 is often voted the greatest game of all time. So it’s understandable how the next entry in franchise, Andromeda, has a lot of people excited. Now, we finally get to see its first gameplay video, all in glorious 4K.
Electronic Arts and Bioware showed off the footage at Sony’s PlayStation meeting yesterday. The game's still in a pre-alpha stage, but it’s already looking very good. We don’t learn a great deal from the clip, though the long-rumored jetpack makes an appearance. And thanks to PC Gamer, it's now been confirmed that the male and female protagonists are siblings.
The event was Sony’s way of unveiling its two new consoles – the slimline PlayStation 4 and the 4K-enabled PlayStation 4 Pro. The Andromeda footage comes from the latter machine (it's still being referred to as the Neo in the video), meaning it can be viewed at a resolution of up to 3840 X 2160.
Not all new titles for the PlayStation 4 Pro will support true 4K rendering the way Andromeda does. As reported by Engadget, the Polaris-powered machine gives developers two options: a “Resolution mode” that locks games into a resolution beyond 1080p, and a “Quality mode,” which dynamically scales the resolution depending on how the game is performing.
It's expected that the PS4 Pro’s main draw won’t be true 4K games, but its ability to run titles in resolutions higher than 1080p combined with its use of high-dynamic range lighting. HDR, incidentally, is coming to all PS4 models in a future firmware update.
One surprising absence from both consoles is the ability to play Blu-ray discs, something Microsoft has already picked up on. The Windows maker sent a note to the press following Sony’s event pointing out that the Xbox One S is the only console with a built-in 4K Blu-ray player.
The full trailer for Mass Effect: Andromeda arrives on November 7. The slim PlayStation 4 goes on sale September 15 priced at $299, while the PlayStation 4 Pro launches November 10 for $399.