Bioware’s next new game is Anthem, a shared world massively multiplayer online shooter in the vein of Destiny and The Division, that seeks to marry that style of shared loot driven gameplay with Bioware’s traditional strengths in world building and storytelling.
Of course, the problem is that the kind of game design espoused by something like Destiny is in many cases fundamentally antithetical to what Bioware traditionally excels at- and so, there have been many long time Bioware fans who have voiced concerns about how Anthem may fail to deliver what players look for in a Bioware game.
“I talked last time about Anthem being “a story you can experience with friends.” There were, understandably, some questions and concerns about story in multiplayer,” Hudson said in a new blog post. “Specifically, “what if I don’t want to play with randos?” “What if I don’t have friends that I play games with?” And, “I like to be the one making choices in my story—if it’s multiplayer, won’t the story get watered down?”
“As a player, I worry about these things too—which brings us to the last line of our mission: become the hero of your story. In a BioWare game, you should feel like the story is about you. You create your own character, you decide what happens next, and you become the hero. I think the reason people are concerned about whether these things are possible in a multiplayer game is because it just hasn’t been solved well before.
“With Anthem we’re taking this problem head-on and structuring the entire game design to provide a specific solution for this. We’ll be sharing details on how it works very soon. We think it creates a unique experience where you have control over your own story, but your story is set in an ever-changing multiplayer world. And yes, even though Anthem is meant to bring out the best parts of playing as part of an online community, you can choose to play through the story with only your friends, or even on your own.”
The big news here is that Hudson has also teased that a new Dragon Age game is in at least early conception stages at Bioware right now.”Anthem represents one way to deliver innovation and new experiences in the spirit of our mission. We also have teams envisioning future BioWare games, and they’re designing approaches that are different from Anthem—including one that’s very Dragon Age,” he said.
So it sounds like Bioware legitimately is trying to make a game like Destiny, with all the strengths of Mass Effect. It also sounds like they are trying to provide players with new experiences in beloved IP such as Dragon Age, too. It sounds, on the whole, like they are trying to mend bridges with fans, a lot of whom maybe feel burned by Bioware in recent years. Hopefully they achieve all that, and more- the gaming world needs Bioware.