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Mass Effect 5 developer BioWare highlights crack team of trilogy veterans

Reviving the beloved Mass Effect series – again! – may be a tough mission, but the veteran crew behind the upcoming Mass Effect 5 know a little something about assembling a squad to take on impossible odds.

Writing on social media platform X this week, Mass Effect 5 executive producer Mike Gamble highlighted some of the upcoming project’s experienced leadership when responding to a fan who questioned whether anyone on the game had worked on the original Mass Effect trilogy.

“EP, Art Director, Creative Director, Game Director are all trilogy vets,” was Gamble’s response.

An official teaser for Mass Effect 5 shows the return of Liara.

So, who are those veterans at the helm? Well, a quick scan of LinkedIn coupled with a look back at some of Gamble’s past social media posts offers a good explanation.

First up is the EP, or executive producer, who is Gamble himself. Gamble began work on BioWare’s sci-fi franchise with Mass Effect 2, stepping up to become associate producer on the game’s DLC. Gamble held the same position for Mass Effect 3, before stepping up again to producer for that game’s DLC and work on Andromeda. Gamble worked as lead producer for the well-received trilogy Legendary Edition, and has led the pitching and team building of Mass Effect 5 since work began in March 2019.

Mass Effect 5’s art director looks to be Derek Watts, who Gamble previously confirmed was the original art director on Mass Effect 1. Watts is listed with the same position still currently on LinkedIn.

The game’s creative director looks to be Parrish Ley, who Gamble previously confirmed had rejoined BioWare to work on Mass Effect 5. That confirmation didn’t include a specific job title as such, but LinkedIn has Ley listed as a creative director for an unspecified project, beginning January 2020.

Lastly, sat in the game director’s chair, is Preston Watmaniuk. He served as lead designer on all three games in the original Mass Effect trilogy, and now lists his role as game director on LinkedIn and other social media.

Back in 2020, Gamble also confirmed one other returning name for Mass Effect 5: that of Dusty Everman, a senior level designer who Gamble said was “one of the key people responsible for bringing the original Normandy to life” that had “decided to rejoin BioWare to work on the next Mass Effect”. On LinkedIn, Everman is now listed as principal narrative designer.

Mass Effect 5 is still several years away, with the bulk of BioWare busy getting Dragon Age: Dreadwolf done and out the door in the relatively near future. In the meantime, however, the developer has been keeping the franchise ticking over with a series of teases for what’s next, beginning in 2020 with confirmation of the project’s existence and the reveal that it will see the return of fan-favourite character Liara. The expectation is that Mass Effect 5’s story will be set hundreds of years after the events of the original Mass Effect trilogy, and weave in plotlines from Andromeda.

2021 gave us a highly-detailed piece of Mass Effect 5 artwork with a ton of hidden details, not least the return of the geth. 2022 brought further concept art and a snippet of fresh dialogue from Liara. 2023 then surfaced a glimpse of what is presumably the Mass Effect 5 protagonist in a snazzy coat, along with a list of possible titles for the game.

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