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Anthem (A)
BioWare | Official Site
CORPG | Setting:Sci-Fi | Status:Development  (est.rel Q1 2019)  | Pub:Electronic Arts
PVP:Yes | Distribution:Download,Retail | Retail Price:$59.99 | Pay Type:Buy to Play | Monthly Fee:n/a
System Req: PC Playstation 4 Xbox One | Out of date info? Let us know!

BioWare's Success with Anthem is Key to Its Future as Release Slips to 2019

Posted by Suzie Ford on Jan 24, 2018  | Comments

BioWare's Success with Anthem is Key to Its Future as Release Slips to 2019 - MMORPG.com

With Anthem already slipping to "early 2019" from a projected late 2018 release, the anxiety level of BioWare is increasing. Most of the company's developers in both Austin and Edmonton are focused on creating a multiplayer game that will revive the studio's reputation. According to an insider's anonymous statements to Kotaku, developers are worried "the company's future is inextricably tied to this game".

But Anthem, the studio’s first new franchise in eight years and EA’s first big stab at a Destiny-style persistent online world, feels different. To BioWare staff, the stakes feel higher than they ever have. As one developer told me, there’s a belief that if Anthem doesn’t live up to EA’s expectations, BioWare will look very different in the future, especially after the disappointment of Mass Effect Andromeda led to EA absorbing BioWare Montreal into the studio EA Motive.

Now, with a year left in development and a climate that’s grown more turbulent thanks to controversies over EA’s Star Wars Battlefront II and Activision’s Destiny 2, pressure is mounting for Anthem to be great. In the past few weeks I’ve spoken to more than half a dozen people close to the project, all of whom spoke anonymously because they were not authorized to talk about the game, and they’ve described feeling both optimistic and anxious—optimistic that they can make something good, but anxious at the number of forces that appear to be pushing against them.

BioWare has been rocked in the past year with the critical failure of Mass Effect: Andromeda leading to the break up of EA Montreal and the series being "iced" for the foreseeable future. Big names that have been with BioWare for years and who have been instrumental in some of the company's greatest successes have left. 

For now, BioWare is focused on Anthem, with small teams working on Star Wars: The Old Republic and on the now mostly-confirmed Dragon Age 4. As to the former, there have been discussions at BioWare about ending development, but no firm plans are in place yet.

Mark Darrah confirmed today that he's now the Executive Producer for both Anthem and Dragon Age 4:

However, the caveat to DA4 is that, while it will largely be focused on story-based content, there will be more live elements in the game, something that EA has demanded from all of its titles: "Games as a service", though it will remain to be seen how that will be implemented in Dragon Age 4.

It's a great read, so be sure to head over to Kotaku to check it out.

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Suzie Ford / Suzie is the Associate Editor and News Manager at MMORPG.com. Follow her on Twitter @MMORPGMom

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