Last week, BioWare talked about the gameplay changes it’s implementing in the Mass Effect: Legendary Edition, with the promise that it would be back sometime this week with a look at how the graphics are changing. The big day is apparently today, with BioWare publishing a new trailer that shows off the differences between the original games and the remasters included in the Legendary Edition.
As you might imagine, the differences are pretty dramatic, which isn’t much of a surprise since the original Mass Effect is nearly 15 years old and Mass Effect 3 – the most recent game included in this compilation – is nearly 10. With that much time between us and the original versions of these games, we’d expect that any graphics updates would be significant.
In many cases, we get to see the original graphics and the new graphics side-by-side, which helps show how much they’ve changed in some cases. Lighting and particle effects are two areas where the updates are particularly noticeable, and there are more details on clothing and armor as well. Additionally, updates BioWare has made to eye shaders seem to be small changes in the grand scheme that have has a big effect on how character models look.
As with last week’s announcement on gameplay updates, BioWare has also published a lengthy blog post that takes a deep dive into the process of updating the graphics in Mass Effect. In that post, the company says that it aimed to improve every single texture present across all three games, which meant that it had to remaster “well over thirty thousand individual textures” in making the Legendary Edition.
That article includes a number of images that feature a slider to change the screenshot between original and remastered graphics, and those images might be the best way to see the breadth of these changes. Between the graphics changes and the gameplay changes that are on tap, it seems that Mass Effect: Legendary Edition might just be worthy of that title, but of course, we won’t know for sure until the compilation releases next month. Mass Effect: Legendary Edition is out on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC on May 14th.