Anthem, the next game from the BioWare team behind the original Mass Effect trilogy, will launch in early 2019 instead of this fall as initially planned, according to a Kotaku report citing multiple sources familiar with the project.
According to one source, the “fall 2018” release date mentioned during the E3 2017 announcement was “never realistic.”
While exact dates remain to be set, Anthem must plan a beta release, an EA Access launch, and an ongoing schedule of patches and updates, but it does not appear that Electronic Arts will let BioWare delay Anthem past March 2019.
Kotaku spoke to more than half a dozen people close to the project, all of whom described feeling both optimistic they can make something good, but anxious at the number of forces that appear to be pushing against them.
Anthem has been in development since 2012 and remained in pre-production for “a very long time.” Rumors in 2014 and 2015 suggested development was not going well due to issues with the Frostbite Engine. Since 2017, however, development has been ramping up, and one source described game development over time as going from “this game is screwed” to simply “game development is really hard.”
In addition to Anthem, BioWare is working on a reboot of the Dragon Age series, which sources say will implement more “live” elements, but still heavily focus on characters and story. However, BioWare’s focus will remain solely on Anthem until it is released. Dragon Age series executive producer Mark Darrah also publicly confirmed that he is working on both Anthem and Dragon Age.