The state of Anthem's future is, as even its most ardent fans can attest, dubious at best. BioWare's last major patch saw the introduction of a new Stronghold, but came alongside the delay of the entirety of Anthem's post-launch roadmap. Weeks later and that roadmap remains undone. Yet remaining Anthem players and those interested in returning remain curious about what BioWare will do next, as the developer remains insistent that post-launch support will continue. All eyes are on E3 2019.
Electronic Arts may be heavily scaling back its plans for E3 2019 compared to previous years, but Anthem remains one of the games confirmed for the show. What, exactly, EA plans to show or discuss regarding Anthem at E3 remains to be seen. Yet given BioWare's near silence on Anthem in recent weeks and what looks to be more silence going forward, E3 seems the healthiest opportunity to discuss the game's future.
What those changes may be is anyone's guess. They could be as small as the reconfirmation of features previously shown in Anthem's roadmap, such as progression changes and story-based content. Larger changes to the game's format and structure could also be possible. One unsourced "leak" gaining traction in Anthem's subreddit is stirring talk about what's possible. But given the suspect reliability of its source, the majority of the leak is best treated with a high amount of skepticism. It does have some interesting specifics, however.
The leak claims that Anthem is planned to be offered as part of the EA Access subscription service, to launch alongside the service's release on PlayStation 4. This is a cheaper version of the Premium subscription it's already included on. It also claims there's a rework of Anthem's loot system in development, though it's "a long way off." It doesn't have any insight into EA and BioWare's plans for E3, however.
While BioWare's plans for Anthem remain mysterious, at the very least player expectations can be managed. The idea of a complete overhaul of Anthem akin to Square Enix's reboot of Final Fantasy 14 is likely out of the realm of possibility at this point. BioWare's already shifting development resources to the next Dragon Age and BioWare Austin, the studio responsible for Anthem's future, is also handling Star Wars: The Old Republic expansion content. There's only so much the studio can manage.
Still, given BioWare's insistence that post-launch support for Anthem hasn't been scaled back and its previous robust plans for the game, there's got to be content forthcoming. BioWare choosing to share information on that content in a big event like E3 rather than trickling it out through a community that's often quite toxic just seems like a marketing shift. Perhaps said content will simply be a big push for the game's "Cataclysm" event and nothing more, or perhaps BioWare will deliver promises regarding changes to progression and loot. Either way, intentionally or unintentionally, remaining expectations for Anthem's future are hinged on what's to be shown at E3 2019.
Anthem is available now on PC, PS4, and Xbox One.