In the far future, when humanity expands beyond the borders of our solar system and begins colonising new worlds, you can be certain of one prime fact regarding our species: We’re still going to be damn good at killing anything that gets in our way. Humanity’s greatest trait is cruelty, a drive to create that which destroys. Our brains have evolved to become particularly adept at fashioning tools and using them for purposes other than what they were intended for, much like people claiming that their internet usage is for education.
In Anthem, that appetite for destruction (There you go, your daily reference to Guns ‘n Roses is now complete) has manifested itself in the form of Javelin suits. War machines for a new frontier, Javelins come in a quartet of flavours: The Jack of all trades Ranger, the hulking Colossus, glass cannon that is the Storm and the agile Interceptor.
Over on the Bioware website, the developer has begun sharing more details on these mechanised survival systems, and how each suit ties into a particular RPG archetype. Here’s a look at what makes each Javelin special, according to their profiles:
The Ranger Javelin
The Ranger is the first javelin exosuit you’ll receive as you begin in Anthem. It’s precise, versatile, and an all-around master of combat. All Freelancers train on the Ranger first in Anthem. Not because it’s the easiest, but because it’s the most versatile. In the hands of a master pilot, the Ranger can achieve feats of combat prowess that no other javelin can touch.
The Ranger has a deep bag of tricks to draw from, and there is no combat situation it can’t take on effectively. With access to every weapon type, the Ranger is a true wild card that can complement any team and any mission.
The Colossus Javelin
The largest of the four, the Colossus trades mobility for defense, carrying a deployable shield as well as a devastating Siege Cannon.
Meet Anthem’s Colossus, a hulking war machine designed to clear out entire hives of vicious predatory fauna with mounted artillery, heavy arms, or even, yes, a flamethrower. It’s got reinforced armor plating. It’s got jet propulsion. It’s got a cannon. I’m pretty sure it’s even got a cupholder (it doesn’t). If you’re looking to trample through the wilderness in comfort with heavy artillery strapped to your back, the Colossus is for you.
The Storm Javelin
Mysterious and devastating, the Storm javelin uses powerful seal technology to blast enemies with the raw fury of the Anthem.
Developed by the Dominion in their Northern home of Stralheim, the Storm uses seal technology to boost the latent kinesis powers of its pilot. The result is a javelin that can float effortlessly above the ground and unleash the raw energy of the Anthem itself. Only through painstaking arcanist research has anyone outside the Dominion had a chance to wield the Storm’s awesome potential. And while the Storm can channel unbelievable amounts of energy, it has little in the way of defensive capabilities and requires an expert pilot to stay above the fight and dish out damage from a safe distance.
The Interceptor Javelin
The Interceptor javelin might not have the imposing silhouette of the Colossus, but it still knows how to pack a punch. The Interceptor excels at getting up next to enemies to deal damage and then dashing away before they can strike back. With powerful blades and a full suite of devastating abilities, the Interceptor is both incredibly self-reliant and an excellent supporting squadmate.
Sounds like a solid mix of the usual RPG character ideas right there! Much like Destiny’s trinity of classes (Hunter and two Hunter punching bags in the Crucible), Anthem isn’t straying too far away from established ideas. There’s nothing wrong with sticking to the familiar, but it’s going to be interesting to see how Bioware injects a certain spark of creativity into the mix that fans expect from the studio.
Which class are you going to go for? I’m reading through those descriptions, and while I know that players will be able to choose from one of the four Javelins for any mission once they’ve earned them, they’re always going to have their default favourite. For me, that might just be the Interceptor, because I like the idea of weaponised sneakiness.
Last Updated: October 5, 2018