E3 2018: BioWare’s Anthem has soloable co-op open world, no lockboxes, a sweet trailer, and a February 22 launch

At this afternoon’s EA Play, EA and BioWare have revealed Anthem’s brand-new trailer. The game is now slated to launch on February 22nd, 2019.

During the developer discussion, BioWare said it recognized the problems inherent in storytelling in a multiplayer shared world (reiterating Casey Hudson’s dev blog from not that long ago), but it thinks it’s found a way to reconcile driving the story without sacrificing multiplayer gameplay.

Characters will play as “freelancers” piloting Javelin exosuits, trying to survive in a hostile environment, and fighting the bad guys trying to exploit the power. There are four Javelins, each with a different way to play the game: Ranger, Colossus, Interceptor, Storm. “You are not your suit,” BioWare cautions; you can flip between them depending on the gameplay you want to take part in from moment to moment.

Customization and personalization of weapons – paint jobs and suit geometry changes – are all on the table.

Soloing the game is possible, just difficult – the game really being built for co-op. PvP will not be in at launch, and the game will not feature BioWare’s patented romance options.

As for monetization, there will be “cosmetic and vanity items” for sale in the ongoing service. “There are no lootboxes and no ability to pay for power,” BioWare says.

The game was first revealed at E3 last year as what we characterized as a shared-world multiplayer action-RPG – basically, a Destiny clone in a more organic setting, with a story penned by famed Star Wars author Drew Karpyshyn. Last year, EA was plugging it as part of its 10-year plan. But then the game’s gameplay designer, Corey Gaspur, passed away suddenly, and at the beginning of 2018, EA announced that Anthem had been moved to 2019 (the company resisted the word “delay,” but that’s what it was). A few months later, we learned that multiple developers had left BioWare and Anthem, including Karpyshyn, and that BioWare had shifted some SWTOR development to the new game.

The company’s last financial report pegged the game for March 2019. The press conference today now says February 22, 2019.

Massively Overpowered is on the ground in Los Angeles, California, for E3 2018, bringing you expert MMO coverage on Anthem, The Division 2, Skull & Bones, and everything else on display at this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo!
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Necromonger

I bet its almost a copy paste from Desteny.

And knowing EA / Biofail……nah…..it will drop like a turd in the toilet.

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Kickstarter Donor
Peregrine Falcon

I’m not buying it. I’m not buying ANY of it. Remember all of the lies… I mean hype about SWTOR before launch? Remember that? EA and BioFail have proven that they are completely ok with just flat out lying to you about their games.

Don’t pre-order anything. And don’t buy anything from EA until a few weeks after launch. Give them time to fix the bugs and for the reviews to come out. Stop rewarding them for launching garbage games!

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Dug From The Earth

Nothing against Anthem or the devs that are making it… but I cant help but feel like the devs have been locked away in an under ground bunker as they work on this game, completely shut off from the rest of the gaming world.

The way they talked about this games features as if they were new and ground breaking… as if they were the first ones ever to do this sorta thing before, just left me kinda baffled.

Anthem isnt really anything new. All the stuff they hyped we have had before, in other games. Perhaps Anthem will do it better… but its nothing new. I think this simple fact really just kinda makes the game itself very low on the hype scale.

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Sray

If it wasn’t for Unravel Two, I’d say EA completely pooped the bed on this one; as it is, they definitely still have to clean the sheets.

Regardless of what games you were interested in, the presentations were awful. They trotted out one black hole of charisma after another to talk about a game, and then showed the game play footage/trailer; so that they bored you, then created hype with no follow up to sustain it. Additionally, someone needs to tell Andrew Wilson that he needs to stay the hell away from marketing events like E3 because players hate him: his very presence undercuts the hype they’re trying to create.

xpsync
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xpsync

I thought this was to be unlike anything I’ve ever played before?
Looks exactly like everything I’ve ever played before, like MEA and Warframe had a baby. Wait and see i guess, i still hope it rocks, but… it’s far from “unlike anything I’ve ever played before” starting off with such a massive lie, not a great start EA.

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bobfish

I’m not sure about Anthem, gameplay looks a bit weak, like they’ve taken MEA and just pushed even further towards a shooter.

But, I like the idea of the IP, and the possible flexibility of the different exo suits. The thing I don’t really understand though is the mutliplayer, if it is drop in/drop out like Ubisoft’s game or if its always on like Destiny. What is the actual game?

ernost
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ernost

During the developer discussion, BioWare said it recognized the problems inherent in storytelling in a multiplayer shared world (reiterating Casey Hudson’s dev blog from not that long ago), but it thinks it’s found a way to reconcile driving the story without sacrificing multiplayer gameplay.

Characters will play as “freelancers” piloting Javelin exosuits, trying to survive in a hostile environment, and fighting the bad guys trying to exploit the power. There are four Javelins, each with a different way to play the game: Ranger, Colossus, Interceptor, Storm. “You are not your suit,” BioWare cautions; you can flip between them depending on the gameplay you want to take part in from moment to moment.

Customization and personalization of weapons – paint jobs and suit geometry changes – are all on the table.

All of that sounds very similar to Warframe.

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Eamil

A bit. It’s how I’d imagine Warframe would play if the frames were Iron Man suits. From the gameplay footage it seems like there’s definitely weight to them and for the most part they won’t be zipping around super-nimbly even when they’re flying, except for maybe the lightest one.

Andrew Ross
Staff
Andrew Ross

Not an MMO, but I liked Sea of Solitude’s premise. I just played Solo and while it’s not perfect, I appreciated the effort.

Funny thing was, I liked the Anthem presentation without commentary. Last year I didn’t care, this year I was kind of excited. However, the hands-off demo, where they kept talking about the game being dynamic felt more than highly scripted, but pre-recorded, despite the fact that we were told Bioware/EA employees on the stage were playing. It looked almost identical to the press conference demo, except with less cuts. I was bored part of the time, and that’s not a good sign for a “dynamic” world just getting a second viewing.

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Tobasco da Gama

Sea of Solitude was the only thing from EA’s presser that looked remotely interesting to me, yeah.

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Dread Quixadhal

EA is in charge. Nothing more needs to be said. Pass.

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rafael12104

A few observations of the EA presser. (is it even a press conference anymore?)

-No lootboxes emphasized twice: Battle Field V and Anthem.

-FIFA, king of the Wilson lootbox, promoted vigorously, however. Lol.

-Big BF V presentation and footage saved for Microsoft presser. LOL!

-Unraveled 2 stole the show!

-Subjects were often covered more than once as if they were stretching for time.

-Anthem sitdown was weird. Couldn’t they just present the game and talk about it?

-EA Play is a thing, apparently.

-Origin Premium Access: Double the price of the current Origin Access but includes new games? Huh. Not clear on what that means. So, no more 60 dollar price tag for new games? OR are they defeaturing the old access to not include early access to new games anymore? Sounds like a load of EA BS to me.

Am I excited about Anthem? Nah. Been down that road before. I don’t care if Casey Hudson is leading the effort. Bioware has been tainted by EA so much that I no longer make any distinction between the two.