The "Mass Effect" series of games was always planned as a trilogy, telling the story of Commander Sheppard and his battle against the nefarious Reapers. One of the cooler hooks is that the games allow you to carry your character and decisions from one sequel to the next, but if your Commander Sheppard didn't make it out of "Mass Effect 2" alive, the story ends there. For the rest of us (specifically those who know how to save and reload diligently), "Mass Effect 3" will continue his story, hopefully ending with his rescue of the entire universe. That culmination was originally planned for this fall, but a bit more patience will be required as the game has been delayed until the first three months of 2012.
On the "Mass Effect 2" Facebook page, the following statement was posted by Casey Hudson, the executive producer of the "Mass Effect" series:
"'Mass Effect 3' will be released in the first three months of 2012. The development team is laser focused on making sure 'Mass Effect 3' is the biggest, boldest and best game in the series, ensuring that it exceeds everyone’s expectations."
It's a bummer, to be sure, but a part of me is a little glad about the delay. First of all, BioWare, take your time. There's some feeling that "Dragon Age 2" was a little rushed, what with the constantly recycled map assets, and it'd be a shame to see that sort of thing with "Mass Effect 3." The other thing to consider is that this holiday season is already a minefield of really promising games. "Skyrim," "Batman: Arkham City," "Gears of War 3" and "Resistance 3," with plenty more sure to be revealed at E3. I'd much rather see "Mass Effect 3" drop in January, the same time "Mass Effect 2" released, when there's basically nothing else out.