In that it'll offer up a number of different dialogue choices without the good versus evil headers of Paragon and Renegade. Now, when we think about the choices made in the first three Mass Effect titles we immediately remember the blue and red system and how in a way it felt like a descendant of the good side and dark side meter from BioWare's earlier RPG-classic, Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic. It made sense in the universe and story, so it'll be interesting to see how Mass Effect fares without it.
The reasoning behind the absence makes sense, and in speaking with Official Xbox Magazine creative director Mac Walters explained the new dialogue direction.
So, Paragon and Renegade is gone. The reason they’re gone is because they felt very Shepard – they were very tied to the Shepard character, so they didn’t really make sense if we weren’t going to have Shepard as our protagonist. What we have now is based more around agreeing and disagreeing. The reason I like that is because in the trilogy it’s like, 'I’m gonna play Paragon,' and then you know which way you’re moving the stick on every conversation. You don’t have to think about it, because you’re just going to hit Paragon every time.
Which is a fair point to make, but not entirely accurate. My original play-through of Mass Effect was made-up of a mixture of Paragon and Renegade decisions. So the choices were always in the hands of the player. Now, at its core this system was very binary, and in that sense limited. If the new system is along the lines of what Obsidian has managed to pull off with its recent RPGs, then we're all for it. Being unable to predict the outcome, or even trying to do the good thing but still being tough, is something that would suit the Mass Effect universe perfectly.