Is ‘Anthem’ getting shut down? Read EA’s plans for the game
Well, the time has come for Anthem to finally kick the bucket. The online action role-playing game developed by BioWare and produced by Electric Arts in 2019 was met with many disgruntled reviews from the get-go, so its expiry was all-too imminent.
What tipped the scales, making producers realize Anthem’s utter lack of potential? Will the online game still be playable without further development? Here’s a look inside the latest announcement digging the game’s grave.
Redesign plans trashed
A year after Anthem’s release with the negative reviews stacking up, BioWare reported they were looking to introduce seasonal updates to account for issues players have had with the game. However, last year BioWare & EA made plans to implement a huge overhaul, focusing their efforts on “longer-term redesign” instead of these short-term updates.
An “incubation team” of about thirty people were all set on rectifying Anthem’s shortcomings by revisioning it entirely, calling it Anthem Next or Anthem 2.0. The prior BioWare general manager Casey Hudson stated the goal was to “reinvent the core gameplay loop”, add “meaningful rewards”, and preserve “fun of flying and fighting in a vast science-fantasy setting.”
A shaky start upon release is tremendously common for games – especially online games – but many have rectified poor beginnings with frequent updates such as Final Fantasy XIV and No Man’s Sky. For Anthem, however, this second chance is no longer in the cards. Per an announcement by BioWare, plans for the revamp have been completely scrapped.
“In the spirit of transparency and closure we wanted to share that we’ve made the difficult decision to stop our new development work on Anthem (aka Anthem NEXT),” BioWare executive producer Christian Dailey said in a recent blog post.
2020 seems to have done a number on the Anthem team, as Dailey pointed to the COVID-19 pandemic and work-from-home orders which “had an impact on our productivity.”
“I know this will be disappointing to the community of Anthem players who have been excited to see the improvements we’ve been working on,” Dailey continued. “It’s also disappointing for the team who were doing brilliant work. And for me personally, Anthem is what brought me to BioWare, and the last two years have been some of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my career.
What’s next for Anthem?
While the future of Anthem is in the gutter due to its lack of integral advancement, the live service won’t be gone. “We will, however, continue to keep the Anthem live service running as it exists today,” Dailey assured.
Will anyone actually still stay on the sinking ship? We’re pretty sure that’s not very likely. With so many fun new games cropping up, it’s hard to justify sticking around to occupy the Anthem online community.
Luckily, BioWare is simply sidestepping in order to advance titles treasurable to a much wider audience than Anthem ever could aspire to. Dailey expressed the company’s intentions to redirect their focus:
“Game development is hard. Decisions like these are not easy. Moving forward, we need to laser focus our efforts as a studio and strengthen the next Dragon Age, and Mass Effect titles while continuing to provide quality updates to Star Wars: The Old Republic.”
I mean 😗 from AnthemTheGame
Nobody likes Anthem anyway
Fans of Anthem (the few out there) are likely sad to hear news of Anthem’s halt on updates & progression, but most knew the game was dead long before this big new announcement.
Criticism for the game was plenty but most focused on the game’s lack of content, lukewarm storytelling, and monotonous gameplay. Other complaints included extensive bugs, awful loot drops, and poor mission design.
Deterred by so many drawbacks to a large portion of Anthem’s gameplay, most gamers moved on in the early stages. Those looking for games to move onto now that Anthem is officially stuck in its on failure, can follow suit and check out rebound games like Division 2, Destiny, or Warframe.