Mass Effect 3 is coming to an iPad near you in the form of Mass Effect Infiltrator, an iOS game aimed at expanding the game’s narrative and give players some mobile combat.
Infiltrator isn’t a direct port of the latest Mass Effect game. Unlike its big brother, a sci-fi role-playing game known for its first-person shooter gameplay and massive, branching story-lines, Infiltrator is all about fighting. Mashable got a demo of the game played on an iPad and hooked up to a television at an EA showcase.
The story follows a soldier called Randall Ezno as he travels the universe tracking down alien species. Infilitrator will start overlapping with the main campaign of Mass Effect 3 as Ezno begins feeding information and items to Commander Shepard, the protagonist of Mass Effect 3.
That overlap isn’t just window-dressing. Items and information collected in Infiltrator will also appear in-game for Shepard to use. These items aren’t crucial to completing the console game, but they will make the going a little easier and encourage mobile players to keep powering through Infiltrator‘s missions.
Those missions are large run-and-gun affairs. The demo we saw had Ezno taking cover behind various objects and popping out to take down enemies with a variety of familiar, Mass Effect weapons. The game will have a unique narrative that ties into the series’ mythos but the game’s emphasis is clearly on short bursts of action. It also looks like Infiltrator will hook up to Origin, EA’s recently launched online gaming service.
The graphics on Infiltrator look incredible and surprisingly on par with the console version. Part of this is due to some clever game design — smaller areas and fewer enemies allow for greater fidelity — but Infiltrator is still one of the best looking mobile games we’ve seen. You control Ezno by using touch-based analog-sticks (like a standard first-person shooter control). Shooting controls work by tapping on enemies for aiming.
Infiltrator will also be available on iPhone and iPod — though given the scope, scale and graphics quality, it seems made to be played on an iPad. No word on an exact release date or price, but EA reps said the game would launch around the same time as Mass Effect 3.