Anthem showed up as a crowd-pleasing surprise from BioWare during E3 2017, featuring scaled-down Titanfall-esque mechs and a sci-fi fantasy world akin to Destiny. While Anthem’s debut at E3 was spectacular, there will be no showing at Gamescom 2017 this August, as EA is opting to focus on games coming out this year instead.
The footage and trailer shown off for BioWare’s Anthem during E3 displayed a squad-based game that had players jumping into high-tech exo-suits like Ironman’s and venturing out into a world overrun by nature and alien creatures of all shapes, sizes, and temperaments. While some of the sci-fi elements look like they may have grown from BioWare’s background in Mass Effect, the developers have said Anthem will be more like Star Wars and Marvel – more science fantasy than hard sci-fi.
For all the dazzling Anthem did during E3 2017, BioWare still has a tarnished reputation it will need to get past for Anthem to be a real blockbuster. The Mass Effect franchise had a rocky past few years, with what many felt was a bogus ending to Mass Effect 3 and some really shoddy animations in Mass Effect Andromeda. The lack of an Anthem appearance at Gamescom this year isn’t likely to change any of that, but more compelling footage can help players forget the past and look toward the future.
The Anthem trailer and gameplay footage might look good, but early footage and the final product can turn out vastly different, and some issues don’t manifest themselves in trailers and demo footage. The worst facial animations of Mass Effect Andromeda and the disappointing ending of Mass Effect 3 certainly weren’t in any trailers. Early gameplay trailers also tend to oversell the product with promises the developer can never deliver, like has been seen with games such as Watch Dogs and No Man’s Sky.
It may not please anyone to hear that Anthem won’t be at Gamescom this year, but it isn’t necessarily a bad sign. BioWare’s recent reputation aside, there’s still a lot of time between now and the planned release of Anthem. Given that, there’s likely plenty of development still ahead for the game, and E3 2018 and Gamescom 2018 may show a lot more of the game before release to assuage all of our concerns and gripes with BioWare – except our annoyance at BioWare’s decision to promote Anthem with a corn maze.
Anthem is planned for release sometime in Fall 2018 on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.
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