There was nothing 'VIP' about Anthem's demo weekend, will BioWare recover? - Dexerto

There was nothing ‘VIP’ about Anthem’s demo weekend, will BioWare recover?

Published: 28/Jan/2019 15:32 Updated: 28/Jan/2019 15:40

by David Purcell


Anthem is BioWare’s largest priority at the moment and it’s fair to say that the game didn’t get off to the smoothest of starts with the VIP demo, but they do claim to be solving the problems found in testing. Will that be enough to keep people on board?

It’s always difficult for new games that get off on the wrong foot, as the developer has been building towards its release for quite some time – offering a number of gameplay livestreams and solid interaction with potential fanbase.  


However, with so many issues springing up in Anthem’s VIP demo weekend causing frustration for people wanting to try it out, BioWare have responded promptly to reassure players that they will be resolved. 

BioWareAnthem, the futuristic multiplayer developed by BioWare and published by Electronic Arts.

While rumors had started to circulate that perhaps the server wasn’t prepared for the amount of players who wanted to play the VIP demo, they have since been dismissed. 


“I want to dispel one comment we’ve seen: that we under-planned for server capacity. To ensure stability, we intended to manage our servers to match the player population as it grew” Chad Robertson, BioWare’s Head of Live Service, said in a blog post to the community. 

He says that the developer has since resolved three unexpected issues with the game, which includes an investigation into platform connection problems, account flags preventing VIP players from accessing the demo and ‘Infinite loads’ – which was an issue they also spotted in internal testing. 

While there is a chance that some unsatisfied players might not return to the game, or no longer think too highly of Anthem after playing the demo like popular streamer Shroud, BioWare is still working to resolve issues and make the full game’s experience better. 


“We appreciate everyone’s patience and sincerely apologize for those who have had issues getting into the game” the blog post also states. “As a token of appreciation for your enthusiasm and any issues you encountered, we’re giving everyone who participated in the VIP demo weekend an additional new vinyl at launch.”

Moving forward, Robertson also revealed that their top priorities will be to investigate further login or entitlement problems, implement fixes to prevent ‘infinite loads’ from occurring in the future and improve server performance ahead of the game’s release in February.

This is a period of testing for the game and while the demo might not have passed with flying colors, fans will be expecting a lot more from the final version of Anthem. The developer will hope that not too many fans heads have turned after the troubled first glimpse of their newest title. 


Jeff Kaplan reveals his ideal competitive Overwatch meta

Published: 8/Oct/2020 3:13

by Theo Salaun


Blizzard Entertainment’s Vice President and Overwatch’s beloved Game Director Jeff Kaplan has revealed what he thinks is the ideal competitive meta for the expansive title.

Overwatch exists in many forms, from its highest ranks to its lowest, but the game’s competitive meta at the professional level has also varied greatly since the original release back in May 2016. 


In the olden days, teams prioritized dive compositions led by Winston’s jumps and Tracer’s blinks. Then, in 2019, fans around the world either groaned or cheered as the divisive GOATS meta took center-stage, featuring a hefty squad built entirely with tanks and supports. 

Now, Kaplan is explaining his perspective on the game’s ideal state, following criticisms he levied back in July against the game’s double-shield reliance. Examining the game’s departure from a static, Orisa and Sigma-dependent environment, he dissects his compository ideology. 

Brigitte stuns Junkrat on Volskaya
Blizzard Entertainment
Barriers have held an uncomfortably powerful role in Overwatch for a long time.

As discussed in an interview with the Loadout, Kaplan is both aware of the professional scene’s interests and the casual base’s tendencies. Coupling those factors, he believes the game is at its best when there is some blend of high skill caps and diverse team compositions.

“The most ideal, healthiest state of the game is when the meta is somewhat fluid, when the meta is more map dependent or team match up dependent than it is static. We’ve all seen those moments when the meta has been completely static and all six players will just play the same six heroes every time. I think that’s fun from a mastery standpoint, but I think it’s a lot more exciting for viewers when creativity and curiosity come into play,” he said.

When Kaplan refers to a “static” meta, the simplest example is 2019’s GOATS, where three healers (Brigitte, Lucio, and Moira) were coupled with three tanks (D.Va, Reinhardt, and Zarya) and would barrel into opponents.


It took tremendous teamwork to be pulled off successfully against other professional teams, but many fans considered it more tedious than entertaining after months of gameplay.

In its current state, Overwatch is not completely balanced, but there is a degree of variety to it. That diversity seen in the Overwatch League spans downward into the casual ranks. Kaplan indicates that this is in line with his department’s hopes.

“I think most of our players would say in the ideal meta, all our heroes would be viable in some way competitively. I think as a competitive goal from a game designing and game balancing perspective that is extremely challenging, but it’s obviously what we strive to achieve.”


While he assures that Overwatch would be completely balanced in an ideal world, in the meantime, his team would at least like to push toward a game that varies to some extent based on coaching, player preference, and map.

It remains to be seen if current and upcoming patches can accomplish that, but Kaplan’s emphasis on “fluidity” is a welcome driving force.