Mass Effect Andromeda's lead writer, Chris Schlerf, left both the project and Bioware in September to take up a position as lead writer at Bungie. The information has only come to light today after a series of tweets confirming the situation from the man himself. He was at Bioware for just under two years, originally joining the team in November 2013 to work on the next iteration of their sci-fi franchise.
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Schlerf returned to social media after a hiatus since August to announce the move:
To confirm what some folks asked about a few months back, I am no longer working on ME:A at BioWare Montreal.— schlerf (@schlerf) February 16, 2016
His position at Bungie doesn't seem to have a game attached at present, though with a large expansion and sequel to Destiny in the works it perhaps isn't hard to guess where the sci-fi expert is putting his talents. Before Bioware he did four years at spin-off studio 343 writing Halo 4, so he does have at least tangential history with the company. He said both that he was "incredibly grateful" to have worked at Bioware and that "MEA is going to blow people away" but offered no details beyond that, even when questioned:
@Mask_I_Wear to quote the good Cap Kirk... you may ask :) not really my place to say now plus sure lots will change before release so... ?— schlerf (@schlerf) February 16, 2016
Just how much of the writing for Andromeda and its doubtless forthcoming trilogy Schlerf managed to get done isn't clear, but chances are he put together at least an outline of the major plot beats and important moments for what's to come. He oversaw an eight-person team at Bioware, including series progenitor Drew Karpyshyn, so there's plenty of folks left to take on his role, though Bioware have made no announcement of who.