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Mass Effect 3 Wii U developer "very conscious of not wanting to mess up"

Working on another "big name franchise" for Wii U next year.

Mass Effect 3 Wii U developer Straight Right has an unenviable task. The Australian studio is BioWare's go-to team for relaunching the critically-acclaimed Mass Effect 3 on new hardware, with all-new controls and all for an as-yet untested market.

So what was the mood within the developer, as the team embark on Mass Effect 3 Wii U's home stretch?

"We're very conscious of not wanting to mess up," Straight Right boss Tom Crago explained to Eurogamer, "given the level of expectation and the fact that we're taking something which, on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 and PC, was exceptionally good."

"You look at the game and think 'how could I possibly make this better?' The Wii U gives you that opportunity with the GamePad. But first and foremost you say, 'well, I don't want to screw this up'.

"You want to replicate the experience on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 as sympathetically as possible. But then you say, 'how can I enhance this experience?'. We tried to get the game looking great and singing on Wii U, and then use the GamePad to complement this."

The space-opera's new touch-screen controls allow players to see a map of their immediate surroundings, with squadmates and enemies highlighted. Players can also quickly select powers to use in battle, or play the entire game on the GamePad tablet.

With a last layer of polish to add, Crago expects Mass Effect 3 to be ready for the Wii U launch - whenever that will be.

Mass Effect 3 on Wii U.

"It's going to be a launch title, but of course we don't know quite yet when the hardware will launch. We intend to be there that same day."

It's far from a rushed project, either. Straight Right has had over a year to get used to the Wii U's hardware and touch-screen controller - work began months before Mass Effect 3 ever saw light of day on other platforms.

"It's challenging", Crago said of meeting the unannounced Wii U release date, but added the team was used to working to such challenges with unreleased hardware.

"First and foremost you say, 'well, I don't want to screw this up'."

Tom Crago, Straight Right CEO

While Straight Right is a fairly new company, it benefits from working alongside sister outfit Tantalus, a veteran of the Australian game development scene. Established in 1994, it has worked on 30 games with names such as Sega Japan, Psygnosis and Midway.

That isn't to reduce the scale of the Wii U Mass Effect 3 project, Crago explained.

"This is the biggest title we've worked on in a long time. There's a significant technical challenge bringing the game from its original format to the Wii U. It's a new, different and sophisticated piece of hardware, so there's a good deal of technical energy that's been expended making that happen."

Its looks are "just as good" as the other console versions, he added.

Straight Right has no bad words for the hardware - something which isn't too surprising when Crago mentions the company is already at work on two other Wii U projects.

"We've made a number of bets on the Wii U, so we're certainly hoping that the platform comes strongly out of the gate. We've got two other titles in development.

"One of them is original, our own IP, and another is based on another big franchise that will come out in 2013. It's a big title and you will have heard of it," he teased.

Mass Effect 3.

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Mass Effect 3

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Tom Phillips


Tom is Eurogamer's Editor-in-Chief. He writes lots of news, some of the puns and makes sure we put the accent on Pokémon. Tom joined Eurogamer in 2010 following a stint running a Nintendo fansite, and still owns two GameCubes. He also still plays Pokémon Go every day.