The demo for BioWare’s latest game, Anthem, was far from a success. Despite the hype leading up to the release of the VIP Demo on the 25 January, a quick glimpse at social media platforms like YouTube, Twitter or Reddit, reveals the numerous complaints and general discontent that many have towards Anthem.
While the gameplay itself boasts a significant draw in the free-roam flight mechanics amongst other features, the build released for the VIP Demo made it almost impossible for some to enjoy this, as many reported issues with low framerates, bad key-bindings, multiple game-breaking bugs and the abundant loading screens that hinder the fast-paced gameplay.
For the PC release in particular, popular Twitch streamer Brandon ‘Seagull’ Larned opined on stream that “[the flight controls] feel very much like a joystick or a controller almost, like it was not meant for mouse”, highlighting the lack of optimisation for PC gaming.
Many reported issues with low framerates, bad key-bindings, multiple game-breaking bugs and the abundant loading screens that hinder the fast-paced gameplay.
All this culminated in a blog post by Chad Robertson, BioWare’s Head of Live Service, which detailed the more significant bugs and flaws within Anthem and what they plan to do to address these problems in future builds. There was also a separate post on Reddit by Anthem’s Lead Producer, Ben Irvo, which addressed more PC-related issues noted by both Reddit users and Irvo himself.
Although the demo was “rocky”, as Robertson describes, there is still hope for Anthem. With how prompt the apology was issued, it is clear that the developers are listening to their community, which is a key part of what it takes to sustain both long-term interest in a game and a satisfied player base. Moreover, the data collected from these demos will go a long way in improving the game its actual release.