Anthem is BioWare's next big game, and it's a brand new venture and IP for the developer. In this guide to everything we know about Anthem so far, we'll be walking you through the final Anthem release date, all the Anthem gameplay we've seen so far, the full range of Anthem pre-order bonuses, and much more.
If you instead need a full story primer on BioWare's upcoming game, you'll want to head over to our Anthem guides hub. Here you can not only find all the story details we have so far on the new game, but also a breakdown of every Javelin exosuit class available for your pilot.
Anthem Release Date
Back at E3 2018 in June, EA announced that Anthem would be releasing on February 22, in 2019. This puts it up against some pretty tough competition, including the likes of The Division 2, Crackdown 3, and Metro Exodus, although the latter game recently moved its release date to a week earlier.
Just below, you can check out a special Anthem panel from PAX West earlier in 2018. The panel includes Nick Tarabay, voice of Anthem's Haluk, Executive Producer Mark Darrah, Lead Producer Michael Gamble, Level Designer Sabine Rosgren, Co-lead Writer Cathleen Rootsaert, and Creative Director Victor Krengel.
Anthem Demo Dates
Back in December 2018, there was a very limited closed alpha for Anthem. Heading into early 2019, there'll be two limited opportunities to play a demo of Anthem. For all the information you need on how to access either of these demos, head over to our Anthem demo guide.
The video below is from our friends at Digital Foundry. The video game tech analysis site looked at the 20-minute E3 2018 demo and found it to be very impressive indeed. While the game was confirmed by EA to be running on PC, it seems the visual settings might have been tweaked to be more inline with what console players will experience. Even so, the demo is praised for its lavish attention to detail, with suggestions that Anthem might look even better on strong PC hardware.
Anthem Pre-Order Bonuses
In addition to the reveal of the final release date for Anthem at E3 2018, EA also announced several pre-order bonuses for the sci-fi game. Those who pre-order the game will "receive VIP demo access and a unique in-game Founders banner" according to EA. If you pre-order the Legion of Dawn edition of Anthem, you'll receive the "the full set of Legion of Dawn Armor Packs (including the Ranger Javelin Legion of Dawn Armor Pack), and a Ranger Javelin gear attachment", and you'll bag yourself the Ranger Javelin gear if you pre-order the standard version of Anthem
A comment from Bioware Head Casey Hudson has given fans some belief that Anthem won't repeat the same mistakes as Mass Effect Andromeda. According to Hudson, Bioware has learnt from the failures of Andromeda, and that Anthem will be " unlike anything you've played." Bold statement, indeed.
As the Anthem gameplay demo began, we found ourselves in a futuristic market setting. The futuristic nature of Anthem was largely revealed during a brief teaser in EA's presentation on June 10, but this was the first time we actually got a proper look at the world in which Anthem would be taking place.
The gameplay demo began in first person mode (although the game is played from a third-person perspective), as the player was approached by another character, requesting their help with a matter outside The Wall, which is said to shield all of humanity from the dangers of the vast, open world.
Accepting the mission, our character got into an Exosuit, which was revealed to be the more all-round version named Ranger, while our partner got into an Exosuit type named Colossus, this latter model being the tank class of the game.
The Exosuits, or Javelins, as the commentary called them, allow for humans to gain superhuman abilities, for example being able to fly or propel themselves underwater, as well as special abilities like missile barrages, and a shockwave that at one point the Colossus class sent out.
It looks like there'll be a loot angle for Anthem, as at one point the main character picked up a new, better weapon off the corpse of a fallen enemy, and both her and the character in the Colossus Javelin remarked at how much nicer this weapon was. Perhaps the character of Anthem are in on the whole 'farming' items joke.
The weather, while out in the wide open world, can also have a dramatic affect on each of your missions. We saw a severe storm interrupt the gameplay in this demo of Anthem, as all plans went completely out of the window, and all the main human characters were forced to beat a hasty retreat and shelter from the storm.
An extremely varied set of wildlife can also be found throughout the open world, as while some are friendly, others will attack you on sight. We saw several smaller, horse-like creatures galloping past the two characters at one point, only for a few of them to be lifted up into the air and killed by a far larger monster, which the humans then had to make a quick retreat from.
There was some speculation that the Anthem gameplay demo shown during Microsoft's E3 2017 conference was in fact running on PC. This has now been debunked, with EA's Patrick Soderlund telling Digital Foundry that the demo was in fact a real-time demo running on Xbox One X.
In terms of what kind of tone Anthem is going to be, BioWare's Aaryn Flynn (studio general manager and vice president) has stated (via Eurogamer) that the game is going to be more "science fantasy" rather than the "hardcore science fiction" of Mass Effect.
"It's in a genre we call science fantasy, very much like Star Wars, very much like the Marvel Universe. You see a lot of amazing things happening but we don't worry too much about why they are happening or how they are happening; the science of it."
"Mass Effect is more a real hard core science fiction IP," Flynn added. "[Anthem] is much more about just having fun in a game world that is really lush and exotic and really sucks you in."
This might be all the information we have to go for now with Anthem, but make sure to keep this page in mind, as we'll be updating it with all future info that we obtain on the game.
For a look at all of the other confirmed games for 2019, be sure to head over to our 2019 Game Releases Guide. You'll find a regularly updated list of 2019 games, sorted by release date, and by platform.