Mass Effect’s Pinnacle Station DLC is still available through a modding project

Although the Mass Effect Legendary Edition doesn’t include the original Pinnacle Station DLLC, a team of modders from ME3Tweaks has restored the add-on after BioWare acknowledged that they no longer had the source code from developer Demiurge Studios.

BioWare explained why it had to remove the Pinnacle Station DLC in the lead-up to the Mass Effect trilogies’ remastered release. Director Mac Walters explained to Game Informer that the only backups they had contained corrupted information and that it would take “another six months” for the experience to be rebuilt. The development team behind the mod did not have access to these files. However, they rebuilt the training facility using the Legendary Explorer toolkit. It sounds like this may have simplified their experience.

BioWare is not in it. The NexusMods team claims it was easier to port Pinnacle station and modify it using their modding tools. Walters’ time estimate doesn’t seem to have been accurate. The project took Mgamerz’s team “months to complete” and they detailed their experience to PC Gamer. They explained how the entire process was more than just a port, and gave a glimpse of the enormity of the task of fixing the DLC.

The Pinnacle station’s official release story is thousands of words over at ME3Tweaks. This is the abbreviated version. Mgamerz breaks down what the team was unable to bring over and how the cobbled-together versions you can now play in the modified Legendary edition were created. This is a fascinating read for anyone interested in modding your game. The biggest lesson from this whole ordeal is that it teaches us how badly the industry preserves our work and how difficult it is to retrieve those pieces.

Although the mod has been released just in time to N7 day, there is still much work to do on this project. Due to lighting issues, developers recommend that you use a faster-end GPU right now. While they are working on solutions, the problems caused by Mass Effect’s cursed downloadable content (DLC) still exist. Mgamerz has footage from their remastered work.

You can only revisit the Pinnacle Station in an official capacity through either the Xbox 360 version Mass Effect, or the original PC release. I’d never played the final encounter, even though I played all three of the games numerous times. It was a slog, so I watched another person play it. Although I knew more about why it shouldn’t be missed, there was something that made me sad that the source code situation had occurred. It’s quite amazing to see it live on in some way.

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