Asked if his new sci-fi game is "more Mass Effect or Severance," 19-year BioWare vet says you can "split the difference"

Mass Effect 5
(Image credit: BioWare)

Former BioWare writer and project lead Mac Walters recently gave some insights on the new game from Worlds Untold. While details are scarce, we know it'll be a sci-fi action-adventure game, and not at all an RPG like Mass Effect.

During an interview with the MinnMax gaming podcast, the studio head of Worlds Untold talked about his career at BioWare and what's next for him at his new venture. According to him, this next project will be a mix of elements from Mass Effect and, surprisingly, Apple TV's grounded sci-fi show Severance.

When asked about the next game, Walters took some time to break down his experience working at BioWare and how that informed his work on what's coming next.

"Certainly, our first endeavor [is a sci-fi game]," Walters says in response to working in the genre. "I want to be cautious with that; you're building a studio; you don't know where the future goes. I don't think we're exclusively sci-fi, but I certainly think in our first offering, why wouldn't we lean into that? I would say that a broader term for that is 'speculative fiction.' I like that term; it's like speculating about the future and what could be."

During the interview, Walters clearly stated that the debut game for Worlds Untold would be a sci-fi action/adventure game and not a role-playing game in the vein of BioWare titles. Previously, Walters was the lead writer on the original Mass Effect trilogy and was project director on Mass Effect Andromeda and the Legendary Edition. After work was complete on the Legendary Edition, which remastered the original trilogy, Walters departed BioWare and formed the studio Worlds Untold.

When asked about the style of the game, the Worlds Untold studio head brought up the recent drama Severance, a sci-fi series set in a mysterious office where workers contend with a surrealist bureaucracy inside the halls of the building. Another game with a similar style to Severance is Remedy Entertainment's Control, which many made comparisons with when the show debuted. To Walters, this conceit that dabbles in a more grounded sci-fi world is what the new game from World Untold will focus on.

"I think I'm on record saying, 'This isn't going to be another space opera.' That isn't what I'm trying to make. I think there are a lot of really interesting things that are happening, especially in the streaming space that are exploring speculative fiction. Look at a show like Severance -- Is it sci-fi, or is it not? But I am also a sucker for the futuristic, for sure. So it's about finding that sweet spot, which I hope we've done with the IP."

When asked if the new IP will be closer to Mass Effect or Severance, Walters responded; "Is that fair to say? You know, split the difference, maybe."

Mac Walters had a lot more to say on the MinnMax podcast. Along with sharing some background on why leaving BioWare after the release of the Legendary Edition was the right move, he also talked about whether he would ever consider working on another Mass Effect game.

It'll be some time before we see what's to come with the new game from Worlds Untold, but for now, you can find out everything you need to know about BioWare's Mass Effect 5 with our handy guide.

Alessandro Fillari

Alessandro is a freelance writer and editor based in the San Francisco Bay Area who has covered the games, tech, and entertainment industries for more than 13 years. Having previously worked at GameSpot, CNET, and various other outlets writing features and coordinating event coverage, Alessandro enjoys playing games on PC, but also gives plenty of time to his Nintendo Switch. You can find him on various socials at @afillari.