BioWare Interview

A new Q&A with BioWare's Greg Zeschuk is available on The A.V. Club, during which the co-founder discusses Baldur's Gate, Dragon Age: Origins, Mass Effect, and biosexual elves:
AVC: Starting with your Dungeons & Dragons games, you've always had an alignment system that would rate all the choices a character made as good and evil, or lawful and chaotic. Dragon Age broke from that by ditching the moral scale, and Mass Effect also has a different system. Do you feel you've outgrown the good vs. evil scale?

GZ: When the Dragon Age team came up with a system which. For so many years, it's been (Okay, you got +1 this, but -1 that.) On a very specific scale, that was a metagame itself. Playing the morality game was a metagame. We sort of further prompted that by giving you prizes if you get the maximum, right?

I think at the extreme level, it's non-productive. It's really transparent, and gamers are smart. They see right through it. Actually, with Dragon Age, I really liked the system the team came up with. It reflects what was important about the game, and that was the character relationships. It didn't really matter what the world thought of you, but it mattered what the person standing next to you thought of you. And I thought that was a very meaningful thing that fit the game very well, because it was a lot about those relationships and taking them to a more realistic level. You had to carefully decide who you're hanging out with, carefully determine which actions you want to take, who's going to be pissed off as a result, and who's going to be happy with you.

In Mass Effect's case, that's not exactly what it's about. It is about Shepard, and it is about what the world and the universe and the galaxy think of Shepard. The Paragon and Renegade [scale] really fit the Mass Effect franchise. At a very high level, Mass is a different experience. Mass isn't meant to be quite as gray and complicated. It's meant to be more like, you're the action star. You're a thinking man's action star, or thinking woman's action star, but you're an action star, and it's a big, big, bold production. And so it has a different sensibility. I wouldn't want it to be overly complex. You almost want the bold, dramatic actions.