Electronic Arts is considering using Unreal Engine for Mass Effect 5–according to several reports–rather than its own Frostbite Engine. EA posted a job listing for a technical director for the game and it states the company is looking for candidates who have experience working with Unreal.
VentureBeat’s Jeff Grubb also confirmed through his own sources that EA is willing to explore every avenue when it comes to technology for a new Mass Effect title. The main reason for using Frostbite is simply to save money, as EA would have to license Unreal from Epic Games.
Additionally, it appears EA wants to go all out with the visual technology during this new generation. When full scale development for Mass Effect 5 reportedly starts in 2023, Frostbite could be far behind Unreal in terms of its capabilities. EA could also be looking at Unreal to see what Frostbite needs in order to achieve what it wants for Mass Effect 5.
The original Mass Effect trilogy games were built on Unreal while Mass Effect: Andromeda was built with Frostbite. Back in 2017, Andromeda released to average reviews as well as a mix of technical issues. Frostbite was reported to be difficult to work with, so the change to Unreal shouldn’t be too surprising.