As you may or may not have seen, some of the Mass Effect: Andromeda animations leave a lot to be desired. With pretty bad lip sync and eyes that dart from side to side during discussions. That kind of animation appears to have spurred a movement to lay the blame on one person.
The initial accusation originated by Ethan Ralph on The Ralph Retort claims that the duty of Lead Facial Animator for the game was given to Allie Rose-Marie Leost although she lacked the previous history of holding that position. This in itself is a valid assertion, although we are not aware of the circumstances of Leost’s appointment to the role especially as BioWare has said it wasn’t the case.
BioWare has stepped up and released a message decrying the movement of blaming one person and trying to single them out. They also suggest that Leost never held the position of a Lead, something which has apparently been updated in Leost’s own social networks.
— BioWare (@bioware) March 18, 2017
With many companies, it is common to have a job title and a working title. The first being your actual job and the latter covering the duties you are expected to deliver on. This method of giving more responsibility to people on lower pay grades is relatively common, especially in the games industry.
Having been at Electronic Arts since February 2016, it is unlikely that Leost was in the role for the entirety of Mass Effect: Andromeda project. Rather the problems with animations are likely tied to that of Andromeda switching to using Frostbite 3, a new engine for the franchise, one which the development team weren’t used to.
While Ralph placing the blame at the feet of one person isn’t a classy thing to do as it takes teams of people to make video games, the resulting fallout online has been worse. Social channels have filled with hateful and abusive comments for her apparent involvement including those of requesting sexual acts to be carried out.
BioWare officially launches on the 21st March in North America and the 23rd March in Europe. EA Access on Xbox One and Origin Access on PC have started their early access trial which runs for 10 hours. When the game releases fully, they will be able to continue their search for Golden Worlds.