Mass Effect is easily one of the most successful sci-fi third person shooter video game franchises. Debuting in 2007, the latest installment titled Mass Effect: Andromeda is currently available for pre-order and will be released on March 21st of this year. It will be available of PC, Playstation 4 and Xbox One. Now Mass Effect is branching out beyond the world of video games and onto table tops.
Founding developer BioWare has announced that there will soon even be a Mass Effect expansion for the popular table top party game, Cards Against Humanity. The short video clip below offers up two sample cards: "What ended my last relationship?" and "Falling in actual love with a video game character," along with a direct link.
If fans click on the link, they are rerouted to what can only be assumed is the art for the game box. It is drawn by comic book artist Cara McGee (Over the Garden Wall) and features popular Mass Effect characters Commander Shepard, Garrus Vakarian, Tali'Zorah, Mordin Solus, Urdnot Solus and who can be assumed is Thane - although his back is turned. From the art, one assumes that they have had a rough night, which is hopefully a nod to the kinds of shenanigans written on the cards. Currently, there is no release date announced and no indication of just how big this expansion pack will be.
— BioWare (@bioware) February 22, 2017
Cards Against Humanity has had several expansion packs since its inception, in addition to getting a wide variety of fan-made expansions (that can be printed out and played with) that seem like the real deal. This official team-up with Mass Effect seems like a logical expansion of the brand, in the same way that Settlers of Catan partnering with Star Trek was. There are Geek and SciFi expansion packs currently available through the Cards Against Humanity online store and if Mass Effect is successful, a whole new world of possibility arises.
BioWare's expansion from video to table top games is also an exciting move for the developer itself. Since Mass Effect is already an action role-playing game, would there be anything to building a Dungeons & Dragons-inspired game set in the world of the video game? Mass Effect Twister? Or is BioWare looking to focus more on deck-based gaming (usually confined to building and battling engines), that are either original or based on some of their more popular properties? Knights of the Old Republic remains a favourite of the Star Wars fandom and could be a great game.
All of that aside, why would a company like BioWare suddenly be interested in more traditional gaming? Again, the exact details of the pack (size, variety, cost, release date, et cetera), remain unreleased and may reveal the exact scope of what this expansion is. It is an interesting move for BioWare in the same year the next installment in the Mass Effect franchise drops and, essentially, allows them to start up the marketing machines months in advance of when they ordinarily would have. The partnership seems to be more beneficial for Cards Against Humanity, which continues its upward trajectory in the world of gaming. It should make for interesting watching to see if other companies like Blizzard or Bungee jump on this unique bandwagon.
We will keep you posted about when The Mass Effect Pack will be made available.