This week, Microsoft has started a closed preview for its forthcoming Xbox 360 dashboard update. The "Fall Preview" which went live on November 5, had a surprised, those who were participating as they also found a "Mass Effect 3" beta lurking inside.
Furthermore, it also contains unannounced elements such as support for EA's Origin service, the return of old characters such as Liara, Wrex, Ashley, Captain Anderson and Mordin and Action Mode/Story Mode/RPG Mode options.
"Action Mode: For those who want to emphasize action and combat and minimize story management.
Story Mode: For those who want to emphasize story immersion and minimize combat pressure. Story mode will set manually-selectable replies in conversation and a minimal combat difficulty.
RPG Mode: For those who want to explore both realms of story and combat. RPG mode will set manually-selectable replies in conversation and a normal combat difficulty," reports Play Mag.
BioWare quickly released a statement, as well as pulling the game stating:
As most of you know by now, this evening an accidental leak occurred of some early Mass Effect 3 beta code. Microsoft has advised us that through human error at their end, content which was meant for internal beta testing was flagged incorrectly and released to individuals who had signed up for the beta of the Xbox Live dashboard update. It has since been taken down and deactivated.
We'd like to stress that the leaked code is in a rough, unfinished state and was not meant for public release. The content is not final, and is not reflective of the quality of the finished, polished game due for release on March 6, 2012 (March 9 in Europe).
One feature that was present in this early build is a set of game play modes that are in development. In the beta code they are referred to as "action mode", "story mode" and "RPG mode". We want to stress that these features are still in the early stages of development and will receive considerable iteration and refinement. These modes are designed to give players an even finer degree of control over their game experience than ever before. Whether it be someone who finds the combat difficult but wants to experience the amazing story, someone who wants to focus on the action and combat game play, or fans who want the rich, story-driven RPG Mass Effect experience they've come to love - Mass Effect 3 will support all of these options. We'll have more info in the days ahead!"
The multiplayer mode contains two maps called 'White' and 'Ghost' and has the different races of the Mass Effect universe to be leveled up and the gameplay is that of a standard horde mode. Those who've played multiplayer in this leaked beta haven't been particularly impressed with it.
Here is the full fourteen minutes of Mass Effect 3 - 14 Minutes of gameplay video: