Mass Effect Remaster on Switch: Why Nintendo’s Console Failed?



There’s a remaster of the Mass Effect trilogy going on – but not, it seems, for Nintendo Switch.

News of a remaster was announced over the weekend, with confirmation that the first three Mass Effect games will be remastered in the Legendary Edition collection, and are expected to arrive on consoles and PC in Spring 2021 (around March-May). . And yes, that includes backwards compatibility for Xbox Series X and PS5.

It’s curious, however, that the Switch was not included in this announcement. There have been several high-profile examples of AAA games landing on the Switch, such as with The Witcher 3, Doom, and XCOM 2 – so it’s surprising that the Mass Effect remaster doesn’t make its way to the Switch or Switch Lite as is.

That’s not to say that a Switch version is excluded by this announcement. There have been plenty of examples of games landing on other platforms first, before seeing huge success on the handheld-home console hybrid, such as with the indie platformer Hollow Knight. But with the Switch having been such a pioneering console over the past few years, being left out isn’t the best sign.

Space opera

There is a question of space to consider. No, not outer space, but the space that the in-game files for Mass Effect Legendary will occupy. Nintendo Switch only has 32GB of on-board storage, compared to the hundreds of gigabytes found on the average console, and the collection might be too large to comfortably fit on a Switch SD card.

These are three really big, storytelling RPGs, and the sheer number of audio files alone for all those branching dialogue trees will certainly take up a lot of space.

Mass Effect

(Image credit: EA / Bioware)

Mass Effect 3, for its part, occupied 14.6 GB on Xbox 360, and that number can double on PC with full DLC and additional texture packs added. By comparison, the massive The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild takes up 13.4 GB (over half of on-board storage) on Switch. It’s clear that three remastered Mass Effect games might then require a micro SD card for them alone.

There should be ways around this, however. The Master Chief Collection on Xbox and PC lets you download specific collection titles at the expense of others, and for people who want to play ME1, then ME2, then ME3 – you know, in consecutive order – they don’t. would hypothetically need to have one game installed at a time.

That’s not to say that the Switch already offers a lot of huge games, and these days you don’t have to put everything on one cartridge – the game card often acts as a “key” to access downloadable files. , rather than containing an entire game.

More soon?

Mass Effect Andromeda

(Image credit: Bioware)

Of course, porting to Switch isn’t as straightforward as flipping a, uh, switch – and resources can be a factor here. Maybe EA and BioWare just picked the formats that make the most sense to their audience.

With rumors that a 4K-ready Nintendo Switch Pro or Switch 2 is heating up, it would be a shame for BioWare to ignore the console altogether. With the trilogy being “remastered and optimized for 4K Ultra HD,” that would make a nice showcase for Nintendo’s supposed hardware.

We hope there’s more to the announcement than BioWare hints at – the Switch has turned out to be an amazing home for so many of our favorite console games, and it would be a treat to see the Mass Effect Trilogy on them. to rejoin.

This writer missed the boat from the original trilogy and has been waiting for years for a bundled remastered trilogy – but if it doesn’t land on the Switch, it might still elude him.

For now, at least, we have promises of a brand new Mass Effect game to keep us happy.


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