BioWare’s Anthem launched to poor reception from both critics and players, and after a flurry of early updates, the extensive content additions promised in the game’s roadmap continued to get delayed – and the eventual releases didn’t improve Anthem’s reception. After reports that BioWare was planning a full reboot for the game, studio general manager Casey Hudson has confirmed exactly that.
Hudson says the studio has “heard your feedback that Anthem needs a more satisfying loot experience, better long-term progression and a more fulfilling end game. So we recognize that there’s still more fundamental work to be done to bring out the full potential of the experience, and it will require a more substantial reinvention than an update or expansion.”
Seasonal content updates will end, though events and previous content will continue to cycle through as BioWare works on the next iteration of Anthem. Hudson says BioWare aims to “reinvent the core gameplay loop with clear goals, motivating challenges and progression with meaningful rewards – while preserving the fun of flying and fighting in a vast science-fantasy setting.
“To do that properly we’ll be doing something we’d like to have done more of the first time around – giving a focused team the time to test and iterate, focusing on gameplay first.”
A few months ago, Kotaku reported that BioWare planned a full reboot of Anthem – called names like Anthem 2.0 or Anthem Next internally. At the time, it was unclear whether this would be a single, massive update or a series of patches – but Hudson’s comments certainly make it seem like the former.
Games like Final Fantasy XIV and No Man’s Sky show that it’s possible for a lackluster game to get itself turned around, though BioWare – the venerable developer of so many classic RPG games – will have a difficult time breaking out from the shadows of its own legacy.