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Take a Look at How Mass Effect’s Graphics Have Changed Through the Years

Mass Effect Andromeda

Mass Effect’s graphical evolution.

Mass Effect: Andromeda is the first game in the series to benefit from EA’s Frostbite engine, which has been used been used to superb effect in recent games such as Star Wars Battlefront. Its ability to render dazzling explosions, razor-sharp textures and vibrant lighting effects should mark a generational leap in quality, despite the much-discussed controversy over Andromeda’s facial animations.

In light of these supposed shortcomings, we’ve compiled images spanning different in-game scenarios across the entire Mass Effect series to showcase the improvements over the years. What is evident is that while Andromeda might fall short in some areas, in most others, the Frostbite engine absolutely delivers. Andromeda now represents the visual pinnacle in the series, balancing stunning detail with jaw-droppingly large vistas.

This image showcases the subtle but noticeable improvements Mass Effect 2 (bottom) made over the original with regards to lighting. The sequel’s more vibrant color palette and better use of lighting are slightly superior to its predecessor’s washed out aesthetic. Facial detail also shows some improvement.

Here, we see that Mass Effect 3 really doesn’t seem to have pushed on hugely from the second game. The textures are still fairly bland, despite a decent amount of detail present in Shepard’s face. Andromeda, on the other hand, has upped the ante in a big way, with a whole new level of detail. Check out nuances such as weathering effects on the environment. Not to mention, the avatar’s color is much more vivid and generally looks sharper due to an increased resolution.

With lasers whizzing past, explosions flying, and multiple characters on the screen, the heat of battle puts a strain on performance. Here, we really do see a big improvement over the original (top) as Mass Effect 2 again adds depth to color, improves textures and lighting, and its detail generally looks sharper across the board.

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