Old News: BioWare does not want you to refer to the next Mass Effect game as Mass Effect 4. Doing so would imply it was a sequel to Commander Shepard's story.
But that doesn't mean it will be a prequel, either.
"To call the next game Mass Effect 4 or ME4 is doing it a disservice and seems to cause a lot of confusion here," BioWare community manager Chris Priestly wrote on the company's forums.
"Thinking of the next Mass Effect game as Mass Effect 4 would imply a certain linearity, a straight evolution of the gameplay and story of the first three games," he wrote. "That doesn't mean that events of the first three games and the choices you made won't get recognised, but they likely won't be what this new story will focus on.
Questioned as to whether the next Mass Effect game could still feature the same galaxy, the same alien races, and honour the series' existing lore and history, Roy suggested it would. - "What makes it Mass Effect is indeed the alien races, the technology, the lore, history, etc. You can safely expect those in the next Mass Effect."
Mass Effect 4 & Dragon Age 3: Similarities Ensue
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