Single Player Is the Lesser of Two
The end of the year is upon us, which means many gamers already see new titles on the horizon of 2019. Among them, we have Anthem, BioWare’s first IP with a multiplayer focus. Therefore, it’s no wonder that, according to the producer, the game will play best in the company of a squad.
In Official PlayStation Magazine’s January 2019 issue, BioWare producer Thomas Singleton singled out the fun factor behind team play. There’s a story that caters to the single-player experience, but it Anthem peaks when played with others.
“This is launching a new IP for EA, for BioWare, and we’re super proud of it,” Singleton said. “We’re excited because we’re bringing connectivity and co-op environmental gameplay to the game along with great storytelling and that’s rarely done. We’re pushing team dynamics, that’s where the game really begins to sell. Where the product shines is playing as that squad, you’re working together as a unit to go and conquer various missions. If you want to play the experience solo that’s your option, it probably won’t be as rewarding, you won’t have that team dynamic. The game will scale based on whether you’re by yourself or playing with three other people.”
Anthem is still BioWare’s first major venture into a shared world, which would explain why they’re taking lessons from other studios. Since its reveal, the IP has most commonly been compared to Bungie’s Destiny. If there’s a game the RPG studio should be taking lessons from, it’s Capcom’s Monster Hunter: World. Both include four-man teams battling huge creatures, and both promote in-depth personalization of gameplay and appearance. Sure, one’s focus is melee and the other’s is gunplay, but Capcom has clearly nailed their gameplay loop.
“The team has definitely looked out into the market and seen what’s done well and what hasn’t done well, right,” the producer continued, “and that’s why we’re doing some of the things in this product that Destiny and some others haven’t. We are trying to go into the story further, we are trying to bring in the level of customisation from a Javelin perspective, and making it a meaningful difference for players.”
Anthem launches for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One on February 22nd, 2018. In their most recent Twitch livestream, the producers discussed loot, item rarities, and crafting. Stay tuned for additional updates as we transition into 2019.