BioWare continues to update, support, and evolve Anthem, the 2019 online looter-shooter published by EA. BioWare Austin studio director Christian Dailey posted a new blog post today that covers the changes coming to Anthem’s loot and equipment systems–and they sound quite significant.
For loot, Dailey acknowledged that BioWare “fell short” in creating a loot system for Anthem that was deep and engaging enough. In response, BioWare recognized it needed to basically start over and build a new system “from the ground up.”
The new loot system in Anthem aims to “respect your time,” “embrace choice,” “create a rewarding loot experience,” and “keep it accessible and immediate,” among others.
In the future, Anthem players can expect a higher frequency of loot drops that contain items that are better across the board. Additionally, BioWare is planing to give players the ability to seek out specific loot instead of relying on randomness. There will be specific quests and specialized vendors that players can engage with to find the loot they want.
Additionally, BioWare is shaping the new Anthem loot experience to make the drops feel more exciting and notable, while the developer is adding “rare enemies” that drop a lot of rare loot at once. The new loot system is also aiming to give players the ability to see and equip the loot right away. Additionally, a new “equipment sheet” will be added that shows what you have equipped.
BioWare is also planning for the new Anthem loot system to “scale for the future.” The revised loot system will scale when the power cap rises, BioWare said.
All of these changes are a work in progress and they are subject to change as development continues. BioWare said it’s still “early days,” and the studio plans to continue to test these changes and experiment with them “over the coming months.”
BioWare is also making changes to Anthem’s gunplay. The changes will make the game feel “more responsive,” BioWare said, adding that enemies will react to hits “near instantly” thanks to advancements made to the client side.
“We are looking into the role of melee items and builds, and of course, being able to spend skill points to unlock new types of equipment and synergies,” Dailey said. “One of the things I am most excited about is seeing all the awesome new weaponry concepts based on our factions.”
Finally, Dailey reminded players that these are substantial changes that won’t be rolled out immediately. “I want to set expectations that there is a lot of work behind each of these and in some cases a rather large tech undertaking–this is not an ‘easy fix’ and will take time,” Dailey said.
This new update from Dailey follows and earlier blog post from May where the developer set expectations about how Anthem’s overhaul will take a long time to unfold.
Here’s a more detailed breakdown of what’s to come, as written by BioWare:
Anthem Loot Changes
- Respect Your Time
- Increase the frequency of Loot Drops
- Loot is viable more often; All items are better and more competitive, but there’s still a chance of getting something exceptional
- All loot rarities have strategic value throughout progression
- Embrace Choice
- You can pursue specific loot without relying on randomness alone; Quests; Specialized Vendors; Unique Loot Tables
- Modify your loot, including rerolling inscriptions and leveling up items
- Create a Rewarding Loot Experience
- Loot feels exciting and more noticeable when it drops, and is celebrated when collected
- Rare enemies (aka “walking treasure chests”) create exciting moments to get a burst of loot all at once
- Keep it Accessible and Immediate
- Reveal and equip loot right away
- Complete revamp of the equipment sheet – including a detailed stat sheet (not shown)
- The equipment sheet can be accessed from anywhere, allows you to easily see what you have equipped in each slot
- Reliability of Equipment and Rewards
- Each item has an inscription “budget”, based on its Power and Rarity
- No more useless items because they were missing must-have inscriptions (see “Increased weapon dmg by +225%”)
- Exceptional items are about getting the exact types of bonuses you want, instead of maxing values on every bonus
- Scale for the Future
- Your power cap can be easily increased, and the loot system scales accordingly
- Advanced telemetry data allows us to identify trends and make meaningful balance changes
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