BioWare was reportedly planning to completely reboot Anthem in the wake of a rocky launch that was marred by unfulfilled content promises, gameplay and balance issues, bugs and glitches, and such. The supposed “Destiny killer” was never meant to be such a disaster but a point has finally been reached where BioWare will indeed be rebooting Anthem from top to bottom.
In an open letter addressed to the community earlier today, general manager Casey Hudson admitted that Anthem requires a “substantial reinvention” to bring about a more deserving experience. He explicitly noted that such a massive overhaul will not be possible with just mere patches or expansion packs. The statement nails down a past assumption that BioWare will be bringing out a single, giant update to take Anthem to version 2.0, much like what Path of Exile will be doing or how Final Fantasy 14 Online was revamped to A Realm Reborn.
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. Over the coming months we will be focusing on a longer-term redesign of the experience, specifically working 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.
The reboot, though, will not be taking anytime soon. Hudson was pretty clear that BioWare will not be repeating the same mistake twice, meaning that the new Anthem will be properly focused and tested before going live, something that should have been done the first time around. Until the developer has more to share, Anthem will continue to cycle through past content and events with minor patches and updates. In addition, seasonal contents are ending as well.
Anthem is now a year old and has lost a major part of its player-base. The biggest risk here would be BioWare investing so many resources into rebooting Anthem and finding that no one is interested in giving the game a second chance. However, a proper reboot could perhaps do wonders. No Man’s Sky managed to turn things around. BioWare, while flaked with criticism this generation, is still an experienced and beloved name from the classic era. BioWare needs to just prove that it still has what it takes to transform Anthem into something that turns heads.