Home Gaming In pure sunk cost fallacy news, EA and Bioware still refuse to give up on Anthem

In pure sunk cost fallacy news, EA and Bioware still refuse to give up on Anthem

4 min read
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Remember Anthem? For those of you who do, you probably don’t and you’re really wishing that you didn’t drop a fair amount of coin on this generation’s equivalent of Duke Nukem Forever. For those of you who don’t remember the infamous February of 2019, here’s the lowdown for you and please don’t go running off to the Men in Black in an attempt to get these memories erased.

An alien world. Bioware. Iron Man suits with various flavours. What could possibly go wrong? A lot it turns out, as Bioware’s massive project failed to stick its landing and turned in a game that was busted, boring and bloated with bugs. To be fair, things have gotten better for Anthem, but that’s the equivalent of saying that you’re really glad that the spikes in an iron maiden have had their rust cleaned off of them so that you don’t have to worry about getting tetanous when you’re being slowly tortured inside of one.

Anthem in its current state, exists as a dream that’s beautifully to look at painfully dull to experience. With few updates since launch, a back to basics approach that has left the most hardcore fans aggravated with the lack of communication from Bioware or EA and a world that has since been eclipsed by newer and older live service titles, you’d think that EA would pull the plug on Anthem and move on.

That’s not happening.

After three months of silence, Bioware finally provided an update as to what its future plans are for Anthem, detailing how the grand redesign will kick off with a dedicated team comprised of around 30 people who’ll be tasked with the unenviable task of resurrecting Anthem. “The Anthem incubation team has kicked off and we are starting to validate our design hypotheses,” wrote BioWare Austin studio director, Christian Dailey.

Incubation is a term we use internally—it essentially means we are going back and experimenting/prototyping to improve on the areas where we believe we fell short and to leverage everything that you love currently about Anthem.

We are a small team – about 30-ish, earning our way forward as we set out to hit our first major milestone goals. Spoiler – this is going to be a longer process. And yes, the team is small but the whole point of this is to take our time and go back to the drawing board. And a small team gives us the agility a larger one can’t afford.

We really want this experience to be different for the team and our players, but we know we have some tough challenges to tackle. We want to include you as we go and be open and honest with where we are at and what the expectations are with where we are going. The reality is you will see things that look awesome but end up on the cutting room floor or things that you might think suck that you feel we are spending too much time on – but in the spirit of experimentation this is all OK. We really want to provide you all the transparency we can because of your passion and interest in Anthem.

But, with that comes seeing how the sausage is made – which is not always pretty by the way.

I don’t think anyone wants to see a video game fail. There are countless hours upon hours poured into any project, passionate creations whose developers dreamed would be the next big thing in the industry. If Bioware can fix Anthem and make it the adventure that it already promised their fans that they would play, then all the power to them.

At the same time, it’s hard not to feel burned out by Anthem and live service gaming in general. There are only so many hours in the day to dedicate to any single game, let alone several. Having such a hobby game thrown into the mix whose primary features consist of horribly long loading screens, legacy bugs and a story more forgettable than discarded toilet paper, was never going to win any fans.

We’ve seen redemption stories in video games before, and a part of me genuinely wants to see Anthem step back into the light as an example of a game bouncing back. There’s hope that Bioware’s task team can do just that, that they can find the magic that has been missing from that studio for far too many years and games now.

Last Updated: May 18, 2020

16 Comments

  1. With all the faults, they should just implement all the changes they want in Anthem 2.

    Reply

  2. Llama In The Rift

    May 18, 2020 at 11:41

    Add a single player mode and new story and i’ll surely give it a try just for the mech’s and world.

    Otherwise move on and give as a new Mass Effect or KOTOR.

    Reply

    • Sid Werner

      May 20, 2020 at 04:06

      What? You can play the entire game by yourself you know….. though complaining about a storyline that takes easily 40 hours to get through never made much sense to me.

      Reply

  3. Iskape

    May 18, 2020 at 07:56

    I also hope they can resurrect the game. I buried a few hours into it, and found it enjoyable, but there is of course plenty of room for improvement. I always use No Man’s Sky as an example of a game that picked itself up and made something great out of it failures. It’s still not a perfect game, but it is much improved!

    Reply

    • The D

      May 18, 2020 at 08:24

      Glad one of us has hope for Anthem 2.0!

      Reply

    • Hammersteyn

      May 18, 2020 at 08:24

      NMS was made by people who flew too close to the sun. They then went radio silent for months and released a ton of content because they’re passionate about their game. EA will find a way to squeeze more money out of Anthem 2.0. They’ll charge for more DLC or season passes because AAA profits.

      Reply

    • Hammersteyn

      May 18, 2020 at 08:24

      NMS was made by people who flew too close to the sun. They then went radio silent for months and released a ton of content because they’re passionate about their game. EA will find a way to squeeze more money out of Anthem 2.0. They’ll charge for more DLC or season passes because AAA profits.

      Reply

      • HairyEwok

        May 18, 2020 at 08:38

        This is true, and because the game is like a hemorrhage wound with development and no real income, we all know EA will make sure to get that money back within the game, or from a game down the line.

        Reply

  4. CrAiGiSh

    May 18, 2020 at 09:20

    I’ve said it for years, ever since BioWare signed up with EA … everything has just gone downhill.

    Reply

  5. Pofadder

    May 18, 2020 at 09:41

    I for one am happy to see this crash and burn. It’s because of this dumpster fire that they destroyed Mass effect.

    Reply

    • Sid Werner

      May 20, 2020 at 04:06

      No, EA giving up on Andromeda is what killed off Mass Effect, actually. Pay better attention.

      Reply

  6. MechMachine

    May 18, 2020 at 11:41

    I played this game with optimism, But the friend I was playing with was less than optimistic. Pair that with the rather weak story, the repetitive nature, bugs galore, the MT and the stink of EA and even my undying love anything Mech related eventually was whittled down to meh.

    The terrible comments made by EA around Battlefield, a game I bought and played which was ultimately sunk by mediocrity and a lackluster BR with no local servers and even the more recent news of their time limited Next Gen Enhanced feature which actually gives you a very small window in which to actually get that free upgrade…

    What the actual fuck ( excuse the french, but it’s warranted ).

    Reply

    • Sid Werner

      May 20, 2020 at 04:06

      LOL BF has become an excellent game and you probably skipped all the optional character interaction in Anthem.

      Reply

      • MechMachine

        May 20, 2020 at 10:59

        How astute of you to know my gaming habits.

        Reply

  7. Sid Werner

    May 20, 2020 at 03:54

    The game is underrated. Under, rated. Period. If you don’t agree, fine. Go play some absolutely overrated by the numbers drivel like Borderlands 3 or something. Because your typical gamer really has no idea what decent gameplay actually is. 🙂

    Reply

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