After BioWare showed its longform gameplay demo for Anthem, gamers had a lot of questions. There is still plenty of time between now and when the game releases in February but there was a lot about the game that BioWare chose not to show or talk about.
Luckily, it seems that BioWare is aware of that and is trying to answer every fan question possible. Some of those responses are more casual, like on Twitter, while others have come via more formal interactions, like the Twitch Q&A with Anthem producer Mark Darrah that was held on this week.
During the session, Darrah answered a number of questions and confirmed a lot of details about Anthem. There was a lot to digest but one of the main takeaways was that the demo seen during E3 and later released online did not feature an accurate representation of player’s damage. In fact, the demo significantly nerfed the players’ damage to give the developers an opportunity to talk about certain features and show off specific abilities.
Talk of Javelin nerfs was brought up during a sequence in the demo where the Colossus uses its Ultimate ability. While the Ult is supposed to be a massive nuclear explosion many were surprised to see it didn’t look to do all that much damage. As Darrah explains, that was by design.
It makes sense that BioWare would want to scale back the damage of the characters for the purposes of the demo. Watching the group mow down enemies quickly wouldn’t highlight the different weapon types available or the general feel of Anthem. Lessening the damage allowed the developers to show things like the combo system, which lets players use abilities in tandem for big damage.
So while some may say that Anthem looks “slow,” it’s hard to evaluate the true pace of the game based on the demo. During our hands-on time with Anthem, it definitely felt like the enemies were a little sponge-y, but not enough for combat encounters to feel like a chore. The best comparison is The Division, which tries to balance the cannon fodder enemies with the more tank-y ones.
Hopefully, as we have suggested, BioWare gives gamers a chance to play Anthem sooner rather than later because going hands-on helps give some perspective on what the developer is going for.
Anthem releases February 22, 2019 for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.