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EA and BioWare pull plug on Anthem Next

EA and Bioware has announced it has cancelled further development of its troubled 2019 loot shooter Anthem, citing the desire to move on to other projects.

The so-called Anthem NEXT game, which has been billed as a “fundamental restructure” of the original title, will no longer happen. In an announcement, executive producer Christian Dailey said that the Covid-19 pandemic meant BioWare had to make some sacrifices as a studio. As a result, Anthem Next won’t be completed or released.

“2020 was a year unlike any other… and while we continue to make progress against all our game projects at BioWare, working from home during the pandemic has had an impact on our productivity and not everything we had planned as a studio before COVID-19 can be accomplished without putting undue stress on our teams,” he wrote in the blog post.

BioWare will continue to keep the Anthem live service running, but further development has been ceased. Instead, BioWare plans to pour its resources into the next Dragon Age and Mass Effect games, as well as continuing to bolster Star Wars: The Old Republic.

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“I know this will be disappointing to the community of Anthem players who have been excited to see the improvements we’ve been working on,” he added. “It’s also disappointing for the team who were doing brilliant work.”

It’s fair to say the reaction hasn’t been overwhelmingly positive, but it’s seems clear this decision has come from above – BioWare’s parent company Electronic Arts. Some gamers remarked that Mass Effect Andromeda was abandoned to focus on Anthem, but that too has fallen by the wayside. Others blame the parent company, EA.