Today at EA Play, Electronic Arts and BioWare offered a few more details on Anthem, the major title from the veteran studio. While Anthem has shades of Bungie's Destiny, BioWare is looking to differentiate Anthem by having an even stronger focus on story. When the player is in hub areas like Ft. Tarsus, Anthem is a completely single-player experience; there will be no other players wandering around and talking to the same characters you are.
While the combat and open world part of Anthem is in third-person, the hub area sections looked to be first-person at the EA Play press event. USgamer spoke to Anthem lead producer Mike Gamble, who confirmed that the story-based, single-player sections of Anthem are always presented from a first-person perspective.
"When you're in Tarsus, it's in first-person," says Gamble. "We want to immerse the player, so when you're talking to people and you see their faces, we don't want a third-person look. We want immersion, right in the face of players. But you will have opportunities to see your pilot that you customize in other areas of the world. You've seen the mask come down a number of times. You'll see your pilot, but in Tarsus: first-person."
There are multiple hub areas like Tarsus, including the Strider, which is the walking mobile base shown in the EA Play demo. The hub areas of Anthem remain single-player even when you're partied up, so even if you wanted to see your friends, that's not an option.
"You also won't be seeing anybody else in Tarsus," explains Gamble. "You can still be a part of an Xbox Live or [PlayStation Network] party. We don't want you in Tarsus talking to a [non-player character], and your buddy who you're connected with going 'Come on, we've got to go!' What we want is for you to be able to take your time. Explore the hub, talk to the people, build relationships with them, customize your gear. And then when you're ready and you want to go out on a mission, then you party up.
"Alternatively, you open up your map and go, 'Oh this person is playing this mission. I'm jumping into that.' So there's a bit of a social contract. We want to give you the ability to control it yourself," says Gamble.
It'll be interesting to see if the single-player experience alleviates some of the problems that players have with massive online titles. BioWare's Anthem will be launching on February 22, 2019 on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. For more details check out our E3 2018 guide for the latest news and annoucements.