What Happened with Anthem?

How BioWare's Anthem Went Wrong on Kotaku attempts to figure out how BioWare's latest effort went awry, leading to the lowest review score on Metacritic since the company's formation in 1995. This is based on interviews with 19 individuals involved in or connected to the development of the action/RPG. They say this paints a picture of a "studio in crisis," and talking about the departure of dozens of developers over the past couple of years, which one of their interviewees calls "stress casualties." There is also a response to this on the BioWare Blog that explains why they did not directly respond to Kotaku's request for comment on the article. They explain they accept the validity of such criticism, but did not want to participate in singling out individuals for blame. They also address the concerns raised about crunch: "We put a great emphasis on our workplace culture in our studios. The health and well-being of our team members is something we take very seriously. We have built a new leadership team over the last couple of years, starting with Casey Hudson as our GM in 2017, which has helped us make big steps to improve studio culture and our creative focus. We hear the criticisms that were raised by the people in the piece today, and we’re looking at that alongside feedback that we receive in our internal team surveys. We put a lot of focus on better planning to avoid 'crunch time,' and it was not a major topic of feedback in our internal postmortems. Making games, especially new IP, will always be one of the hardest entertainment challenges. We do everything we can to try and make it healthy and stress-free, but we also know there is always room to improve." Here's a bit from Kotaku on how rushing a few weeks old build into Early Access turned out to be a mistake:
“I don’t think we knew what Anthem was going to be when it shipped,” said one developer. “If we had known the shipped game would have that many problems, then that’s a completely different take than, ‘Oh, it’s okay to get this out now because we can improve it later.’ That wasn’t the case. Nobody did believe it was this flawed or this broken. Everyone actually thought, ‘We have something here, and we think it’s pretty good.’”

While talking to me, a number of former BioWare developers brought up specific complaints that were voiced by players and critics, then shared anecdotes of how they had made those same gripes to the leadership team throughout 2017 and 2018 only to be brushed off. It’s easy for developers to say that with hindsight, of course, but this was a common theme. “Reading the reviews is like reading a laundry list of concerns that developers brought up with senior leadership,” said one person who worked on the game. In some cases, perhaps they just didn’t have time to address the issues, but these former BioWare developers said they brought up bigger-picture concerns years before the game shipped.
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Re: What Happened with Anthem?
Apr 3, 2019, 09:59
24.
Re: What Happened with Anthem? Apr 3, 2019, 09:59
Apr 3, 2019, 09:59
 
Isn't it strange how the dumbest people in the world end up in charge of things?
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