Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer is a Lot Like Gears of War's 'Horde Mode'

Mass Effect 3  - 870758

Hands-on previews of Mass Effect 3's brand multiplayer mode confirm earlier speculation that the new mode is similar to the Gears of War series Horde Mode.  Given the popularity of Horde Mode, this isn't necessarily a bad thing. 

Mass Effect 3: Galaxy at War system is a new way for players to manage and experience the galactic war from multiple fronts. The key to saving the galaxy is the "Galactic Readiness" level, measured by Commander Shepard's ability to apply every possible asset -- people, weapons, resources, armies, fleets -- in the final battle against the Reapers. Players can impact their game's Galactic Readiness level in multiple ways via the Mass Effect 3: Galaxy at War system, including multiplayer.  But more importantly, it's entirely optional so those of you not fond of the idea of playing with others don't have to.  And BioWare has confirmed it is still possible to achieve the optimal, complete ending of the game in Mass Effect 3 through single-player alone.

According to various previews, Mass Effect 3's four-player co-op pits your team against waves of increasingly difficult enemies.  While the enemies will vary based on map, you can expect to fight your way through many of the game's iconic enemies, like the Cerberus and the Collectors.  Combat will be broken up with team objectives you must accomplish, like defending an area or disabling enemy hardware.

It's already been detailed that players will create custome characters for multiplayer, choosing from any of the game's humanoid races - Asari, Turian, Krogan, Salarian, Drell, and human.  The race selected is purely cosmetic.  The real customization comes from your class, which affects your special abilities and firearm proficiencies.  As you advance, you'll earn experience points and money that let you level your character's abilities and buy and upgrade weapons.

Mass Effect 3 is scheduled to release for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC on March 6 in North American and March 9 in Europe.  Will you be participating in Mass Effect 3's multiplayer?


Matt Liebl You can follow Senior News Editor Matt Liebl on Twitter @Matt_GZ. He likes games, sports, musicals, and his adorable dog, Wrigley, and his wife.
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