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The aftermath of Volume 5 and the missing Character.
So I have been digging through any and all information I can find in regards to RWBY leading up to Volume 5 and whilst it was underway and I have recently had an idea continually popping into my head.
Now I'll admit it's pretty out there but at the same time, it's kind of how I see it becoming a possibility at least in a roundabout fashion.
Now it was never stated anywhere from a legitimate source, in this case, the only legitimate source is Rooster Teeth on whether or not we will be seeing Neo again in Volume 5. But we do have confirmation (for the most part) that she is still alive.
In an interview, Kerry says unless we see a character die on screen they are not truly dead, basic anime trope 101.
I can assume she is alive so my theory becomes slightly stronger, only a tiny amount but still stronger.
Now my theory is basically this, Cinder is still alive, the maiden power inside her would have some visual if she was actually dead so I'm expecting, well honestly a couple different scenes that could happen in the finale.
The most likely one in my head isn't so much of her but of whatever Grimm thing inside of her slinking away into the darkness or the Skype/facetime Grimm from earlier in the volume finding her twisted remains. In both instances there will be a cutaway to Salem's stronghold, maybe even a small time skip if you want to have the remainder of WTCH being present. The that was inside Cinder is present and Salem is having a speech of some kind of power and responsibility. Clearly mocking the dead Cinder, once the speech is over she would say something very cryptic and Neo would enter the room.
The diminutive assassin would look much the same as always though her costume would be altered in a small but meaningful way to mark her actually caring about the loss of Roman.
The Volume and episode would end with a fade to black with Neo's face and eye's being prominent, as the episode is about to cut out, a pink and brown eye ignite on the screen for only a second before the volume ends.
Now I personally don't actually see this happening, but I wish it would.
Cinder is currently a very uninspired Villian, of the four member's or WTCH she is the only one who feels that way, at least to me, sure they are all villainous tropes but so far they feel so much better done than Cinder ever was or will be.
But who am I kidding, my money is still on Cinder climbing out of the infinity pit and backstabbing Raven while she's distracted and attempting the still her maiden power's, but due to some heartfelt, mother-daughter time right before said backstab the power goes the Yang, cause that make's for intriguing writing.
submitted by Blackwal
Full Transcript of: "Answering Anthem's Lingering Questions" Podcast
Source audio: Answering Anthem's Lingering Questions
| Direct link to Video
Ben Hanson (BH): Interviewer
Jon Warner (JW): Anthem Game Director
Thanks to u/nightshadetb01
, aka TheAssyrian in the Discord server for helping me out on transcribing a part of this podcast. Sent in questions are numbered off and there is a total of 36. Ctrl+f them specially with Q[Number]. Wiki page link to read both posts combined.
Transcript: BH: Hello and welcome to a special addition to the Game Informer show. I'm Ben Hanson, if you’re a new viewer or listener thank you for stopping by we hope you like this show. We do this with every cover story that we do which is every single month here at Game Informer Magazine, and what this is is we’re wrapping up our month of coverage on Anthem from BioWare by actually Skyping in the game’s director from BioWare himself, Jon Warner. So we pulled dozens, and dozens of questions from the community that have not been answered yet. We’ve been doing a whole month of so throughout the cover story – which is also online – and everything else, we’ve covered a lot of questions, little things with microtransactions, they’ve answered. So we’ve pulled stuff that in theory they haven’t answered yet, and that at this point they’re willing to answer, hopefully. So we’ve pulled stuff from the community and we’re going to Skype in Jon Warner the game’s director and ask him, so without further ado here’s Mr. Warner. Jon Warner welcome to the Game Informer show sir.
JW: Thank you sir.
BH: Oh my God it’s an honor to have you we’ve been rolling out a whole month of Anthem coverage now we’ve got the man, the game director himself. I'm excited to have you in on this podcast because you have seen the full spectrum of Anthem which is something that even Casey Hudson, GM of the studio, has not seen, like everybody we’ve talk to were like producers that came on relatively late in the project but what’s your history with BioWare? When did you get up there?
JW: Well first of all hey thanks for having me on I love it, I'm glad to be here so I started with BioWare about 6 1/2 years ago I came here from the Walt Disney Company, Disney Interactive since coming to BioWare I’ve worked on Mass Effect 3 multiplayer Mass Effect 3 The Citadel and then right onto Anthem.
BH: Congratulations on The Citadel by the way, that was a hell of a piece of DLC.
JW: Thanks man.
BH: It’s so funny like what’s memorable about that game, talking about it with people where it’s like, “Yeah remember that whole time where they cloned Shepard?” It’s like, “What? No! That was just the DLC where you got drunk with your party?” It’s like, “No, no no! There’s a whole storyline in there! It was effin weird too!”
BH: It wasn’t just good times goofball crew.
JW: [Laughs]. No, no, no, it was just good times, there was adventure! There was danger!
BH: It had it all man, how did you work your way up to becoming game director on Anthem then, because – were you there for like the starting days of that project?
JW: I was, I was, I was there with this one team we were pitching ideas for what Anthem could be, and at that point we were calling it project Dylan, and yeah so I was lucky enough to be here from the very start. I was Casey’s senior producer at the time and so when Casey transitioned to take that opportunity with Microsoft they asked me to step in and just continue to run the show.
BH: That’s wild. Has it been the most interesting project of your career? The hardest project? How would you compare it to the rest of your work here?
JW: Absolutely, [Laughs] I say absolutely a lot people are trolling me on Twitter for that [Laughs].
BH: It’s a classic response.
JW: So yeah, yeah, this is a definitely the most complex game that ever worked on, but on the other hand it's definitely been some of the most for fulfilling stuff and it's a game, honestly, I've been waiting to make my whole career. I really love this game and I love the subject matter that were dealing with and the setting and the characters yeah, I'm in love.
BH: Plus you have a great co-op experience from your work on Dragon Ball Z Sagas back in the day.
JW: [Laughs] That’s right! That’s right, cutting my teeth on the co-op brawling experience.
BH: [Laughs] And so much of that carries over directly into Anthem I’m sure. What was the, what was the E3 like for you I’m curious about the team’s reaction to the reaction. Was there anything, did you guys pivot in any way based on any reactions that you experienced at E3.
JW: No, to tell you the truth not really. We were just really gratified to see how people loved it and watching strangers, people who had never put their hands on it before, be able to fly and do a bunch of super heroic stuff within minutes of picking it up was really gratifying and we loved it and it was very validating for us as well.
BH: Yeah I think in interviews people might be spinning too much out of it, but I think some people – Casey kind left it a little more open ended in terms of like, maybe we’ll add romances down the road. So there weren’t any pivots like that where you guys realized like we should put that back on a whiteboard somewhere.
JW: Well, no not really, I think that what came out of that was about how we talk about it because at BioWare when you say romance it means a very very specific thing and if you’ll think – remember back to playing Knights of the Old Republic on the original Xbox – you had great relationships there and there was some flirtatious stuff and you really felt like you got to know that crew, got to know Bastilia, and that's the kind of a flavor and feeling we feel suits Anthem the best. Again we're not going to rule anything out necessarily but we want to let this thing go out and see what it’s like, and see how it does.
BH: Yeah gotta be brazing for the reaction, and just knowing that you have to be flexible when this thing comes out the door and you got to do a 180, a 360, a 720, I mean you guys [Laughs] It’s gonna be fascinating to see how you guys respond to that stuff.
JW: Do it goofy style! I did work on an FPS, uh yeah you know I think that when you, when make a game like Anthem you have to realize that you create the basic experience, and then once we start sharing it with the community it's our game together and responding to what the community wants to see is an important part of that.
BH: Okay, the community has a lot of questions about this game. They have a lot of demands, they have a lot of thoughts, a lot of opinions, a lot of feelings. I'm sure you guys are still the center of that maelstrom up there but we have some questions that we’ve pulled, that hopefully you can answer here. Calvin Coscalla is just wondering:
JW: Hey, so I think it's going to be – how do you quantify deep, it is a deep story it’s an interesting story, right? It’s a story that has classic adventure elements. I think that if what you're asking by deep is, is it branching like a Dragon Age or Mass Effect 2 where you could take it into all sorts of different areas. It's not as complex as that because we’re making, you know, we’re making some trades here with shared world, we’re all in together, so we're going to little more shallow on that, but a lot deeper on other aspects.
- Q1: [6:00] How deep can we expect the story to be?
BH: Yeah, I think from the Community’s perspective, and at least from our perspective as well, it’s challenging because in interview you guys have conveyed, “Hey, this is a BioWare story, it’s big, it’s epic, it’s got this Gods, this unfinished world.” and stuff, but basically all the details are in the shadows for us. You know, you say like there’s gonna be good characters, but we don’t really know any of the characters. You say there’s going to be interesting decisions, we don’t know any of the decisions. Is there any light you can shed on like, your character’s role in this world? How he interacts, or she interacts, with the world around them? Anything of the meat there?
JW: Yeah, sure, and you know we're going to be talking a lot about the story and the characters so you're going to be with uh, hear in the next few months, but in the interim let me say this you play the role of a type of hero that is known as a Freelancer. Freelancers have a history, they go way back. In this world you can't just stroll outside and take a walk and be in complete safety. It is such a dangerous and volatile world that you can't, like, pave it over and make roads even. You know, it requires you to have this Javelin armor to go out there just to get around and do things, right? So the Freelancers have a big history and they have kind of fallen into disrepute, or disrepair really, and you're a part, you’re now a Freelancer, and you’re kind of trying to bring back the glory days of what it meant to be a Freelancer.
JW: And you're going to have a crew with you that are also kind of invested in that and go on this journey with you.
BH: I, are there going to be debates amongst your crew? Can you give any insight like, is your character spunky, are they going to be voiced, anything of that microscope? That’s what we’re looking for.
JW: Yeah I mean, so your character will be voiced. A lot of the personality that you bring to that story as far as the actions you take, of course, are going come from you.
JW: But you’re a brash hero, right? It's kind of one of those situations where sometimes you don't you uh, you don't know that something’s impossible so you do it anyway. Right? That's the type of hero's journey that you're going to be on, and yeah you have a crew around you and you're not always in agreement with your crew there’s to be some conflict there and that's good because that gives you the player the ability to make some interesting and good choices.
BH: Is it going to get personal for the player? Will like, NPCs be talking to you about your sister back home and all that stuff?
JW: [Laughs] Well I think that you're new to the scene and that's kind of the trick about telling a good story like this is we need to put you, the player, and you, the character that you’re inhabiting, kind of in the same shoes, right? You're kind of new to this and you're new to this area and this region, and so yeah, a lot of people don't know your backstory. A lot of people don't have a history with you and it’s that – that’s what you're going to create throughout the course of the game are these connections in that history.
BH: Okay gotcha, back to community questions. We got a lot to get through here, I’m sorry. Darren Donnaho wants to know:
JW: So Drew and I, Drew had a good impact on the project, of course, Drew is actually a part time in our Austin studio. He had been working on Star Wars the Old Republic and he came over and did some great work for us. Drew was never our lead writer, but of course, you know, with his talents and his ability, he had a good impact on the game.
- Q2: [9:40] Was Drew Karpyshyn initially brought on to write the overall narrative? Like, how much of an impact has Drew had?
BH: Okay, fans really love him, I’m sure you guys know that up there.
JW: Absolutely, we do too.
BH: Good, okay, uh, HabibiGaming wants to know:
JW: [Laughs]. So, earlier talk about you know branching dialogue and how we're not trying to go as deep in taking the story in different directions as we have in previous games perhaps. But a simplified interface – what we’re always trying to do with all of our games is we’re trying to get things to be more elegant, a little more user-friendly, and sometimes less is more. Even our own dialogue wheel that we’ve used so well was an evolution of what we started with in Knights of the Old Republic, so, again it’s just evolving that mechanic and evolving that interface.
- Q3: [10:20] What do you guys mean when you say simplified dialogue tree? Like what does that actually look like on the screen? Is it just, two options? What does this mean?
BH: Will players be shocked when they see it for the first time?
JW: I don’t think so.
BH: Okay, alright, pretty standard. Uhm, hey, by the way since you’re there for the full thing, is there a good story about like the history of Anthem as a name itself? How did that come about?
JW: Oh man, [Laughs].
BH: How did it come about? Is it just focus tested to all hell? Where does that come from?
JW: Yeah so uh, naming something in today's – today's environment is really challenging if you think back like last time we had to really sit down and name something was when the Dragon Age and Mass Effect era and at that time there was no App Store, there was no Steam Early Access, right? There was no Google Play, and so right now there are a bazillion names that’ve been copyrighted and we went through an exhaustive search to find Anthem uhm, yeah it was horrifying.
JW: I never want to do that again, if I have a child I might outsource their name, who knows.
BH: I think it’s a good name. To find something so simple that isn’t really claimed by anything else huge, like it’s pretty unique.
JW: Yeah. It is, it is, and we love it, but it was a long road to find that name.
BH: What was second place?
JW: Let’s see here, I think we actually had a list of uh, alternates. Javelin was actually one of them.
BH: Oh, that’s pretty good. Yeah, and get it in the game, that totally works, and you have some many things to name in the game too and I imagine that’s a massive, okay what hasn’t Destiny named. What won't be overlapping with them. We have the Ghost but it’s a different kind of Ghost! I don’t know.
JW: Well yeah a lot of times, you know, just, once you get into it you just kind of have to left your muse be your muse, you know, you name it what it needs to be named and you sort the rest out later.
BH: Yeah. Gotcha, Shane Firth wants to know:
JW: So uh, because you're – when you're out of your suit you are in first person, right? Because we wanted to tell a more intimate story. So seeing your face is going to be something that is more in line with when you look at your pilot in the interface itself, in the GUI, but we don't go to a classic, you know, third person storytelling camera. We don’t take the camera controls away from you, this is going to be a more intimate experience than maybe you’ve had with us in the past.
- Q4. [12:54] How often will we see our Freelancers face in cutscenes, or just in the game in general.
BH: Gotcha, since you guys are working in Frostbite, and then it’ll – early on when you’re probably started working on this project, third person wasn’t huge. Because it was like even before Dragon Age Inquisition, right, it wasn't a huge component of that engine as far as I understand from the layman’s world. Like was there ever a time and place where this was an entirely first person game?
JW: You know we played with making it entirely first person, but it, when you’re doing all these great heroic moves and flying around the world you really want to see your character doing that. So we opted for third person when you’re in your Javelin as the absolute best experience, and we played with it a lot.
BH: Yeah, I can’t imagine. Uh, Duncan Van Watingan, gotcha, he says:
BH: Yeah I think this is a big mystery, like from our perspective you guys keep saying that and we’ve seen a storm, but outside of that I don’t really understand what that means.
- Q5. [14:12] Can you explain more about the changing world and how everytime you play the game the world changes? Is it randomly generated or is it updated every now and then? I really like the idea of an ever changing world which makes playing the game fresh and unique.
JW: Right, so let’s break it that down a little bit.
JW: When we say it’s an ever changing world, I’m not talking about changing the actual geometry of the world itself. It’s just that, you know, some games every time you come up over a rise or go to a certain area, there’s always the same three guys sitting there waiting for you, right? And it’s always daytime, and it’s always sunny, or it’s always rainy, and it’s just super predictable. So, what we’re trying to do with the world of Anthem is add these elements of dynamism to it where there’s going to be different things that appear at the same location when it’s based off of different factors, whether it’s day or night, or whether it’s rainy or sunny. Uhm, and so there’s always an element of surprise that comes to it, and it’s all about how you experience that, not changing the geometry itself because we want you to be able to something that is like, you traverse it, you retraverse it, and then you master that terrain. Uhh, and, it plays a role in the tactile choices that you’re making, it plays different roles so we want you to get comfortable with the terrain itself, but we always want to have something fresh and surprising there for you.
BH: So like in our interview with Casey Hudson he mentioned that like, ideally he wants people texting your buddies and saying, “Hey you guys! Check out Anthem today, it’s crazy!” What is he talking about? Is it like, “Hey the spider boss is in another cave.” or it’s like, “This half of the world is in a crazy thunderstorm.” or what exactly would that text say.
JW: Right, well because we – because we host all of our games on dedicated server it allows us to play with different variables in the world. So we might be triggering a big migration of creatures across the world, and so you're going to see a ton more of the world – where you’re going to see more of the Ursiks, which are those gigantic – I don’t know if we’ve actually shown those guys yet [Laughs]. Gigantic ape like insect creatures, and they're terrifying so it might be something like that. It could be a gigantic weather event like a storm, right? We have a bunch of variables that we play with, and when we trigger them you can be there with your friends and you know it’s like, “Hey! This is happening! You gotta log in!”
BH: And in theory is it like Shaper tech as well like there's some crazy mountain construction weirdo thing that suddenly turns on for everybody in the shared world.
JW: Yeah, and we’ll talk more about as we go along, but yeah it could definitely be something like that.
BH: Interesting, player controlled? I mean can they trigger any of those weird things?
JW: [Laughs]. Uh no, no, we control that right now.
BH: Okay, gotcha. Uh, Original Gamer here is asking:
JW: That is the – that is the spirit of it, right? And that's what we mean specifically when we say our world, my story. We need to find – we need to have those places like Fort Tarsis and your Strider where we can display the consequence of your actions. We’re still really working and building around exactly what that's going to be, and all the different events that are going to happen inside of Tarsis for you, so I'm not going to talk about that in great detail, but that is the spirit of what we’re after.
- Q6. [17:10] Will the outcome of our missions in the shared world affect the look and activity of Fort Tarsis in any way? Like eliminating a threat will cause the town folks in Fort Tarsis to be more active? One day we may fly home to work on our Javelins and see a large celebration happening because of our successful mission. Basically, how much will Fort Tarsis change over time for you?
BH: Okay, gotcha. Now this guy, from the BSN forums. He knows his stuff here, he’s asking:
JW: Ooh, like in, like in uhh, The Old Republic.
- Q7. [18:04] Will Anthem have any downtime, non-combat mini-games in Fort Tarsis?
JW: Uhm, so TBD I guess is the short answer there. There’s going to be a lot of activities for you to do in Tarsis you know exploring and talking to characters and things like that. Mini-games though TB.
BH: Okay, also he’s wondering:
JW: Uh, you know what I'm trying to think if we have – I think we have an all brand new cast here.
- Q8. [18:28] Are any of BioWare’s past cast of voice actors are going to be coming back for Anthem?
BH: Really? Oh, that’s interesting. Cool. Logan Ryan is wondering:
JW: That’d be wonderful! He says, [Hanson laughs]. So the short answer, it was Logan right? The short answer Logan is yes, we have those things.
- Q9. [18:41] What is the mission structure like? Are there side quests? Daily missions? Things you can only do with other players, or events? If you can discuss the questing at all that’d be wonderful, he says.
BH: So dailies are in there? Everything like that?
JW: Yeah so, you’re going to have reasons to come back and there’ll be challenges that’ll crop up on a regular basis, daily and weekly. Uhm, missions that are the main mission quests you've got side quests, of course, repeatable activities you've got.
BH: Okay, gotcha. I think that’s also my biggest question with this game is just like, what the flow feels like, when you’re playing with friends especially. It’s still – I’m wrapping my brain trying to think about what’s it gonna be like when I’m playing with my buddies, and we’re flying back to Fort Tarsis, and doing our story content in there. Are we just gonna like mute our mics, are we just gonna have to like sit around and listen to your buddy make some dialogue choices for a while? Like, have you guys, is it at a point where you can test that out to know, like, how that overall flow with the different loops feels?
JW: Yeah sure, so the idea is tha – I don't – we don't want to social engineer this experience for you too much, right? We want to leave this up to you and your group to a degree so that if, you know, you’re like, “Hey I need to go back to the Fort and let’s just resupply really quickly and get back out.” That's certainly something that you can do. Get, you know, go talk to an NPC, get a quest, out you go, easy. Now, if we're playing and we're kind of two different types of players though, and I really want to get in there and I want to noodle around for a while and do some exploring, there are other activities that you couldn't go out there and we can still be on voice chat if we’ve done a first party group, right? And so you're out in the world exploring and just kind of experiencing the world events and and things like this. I'm inside of Fort Tarsis talking and i’m talking with NPCs and I'm kind of really nerding out on the lore inside of there. Absolutely that’s something that you can do, and that's really up to you and your group.
BH: Gotcha, uhm, Jab Shack here is asking:
JW: Ooo, say that again I don’t know if I followed that.
- Q10. [20:50] If two teammates are at different progression levels, will the lower leveled player be forced to fight against higher leveled enemies and be outmatched?
BH: Okay, so if you were playing co-op with your buddy and you’re really high level and he’s really low leveled, can he still play with you? Will he just get crushed out there? How’s that gonna work?
JW: No, no, we’ll uh, we’re gonna scale it. You can definitely play together and that's part of the – part of the draw related to the experience is you can group up with different levels and you know one of the ways that you could do it is even if I'm a high-level pilot I can start – Let’s say I haven't collected my Interceptor yet so I can pick up my Interceptor. My Interceptor is gonna have a pretty low gear score even though my pilot level is high. And so you’re a level one pilot and you’ve got a brand new exo. I'm a high-level pilot and have a brand-new exo, we can still go out and play. Yup I'm going to have a little bit of an edge because I’ve played more, and we’re going to scale some damage and difficulty for you so that’s it’s a rewarding experience for both. But there are lots of different ways to approach this issue and this problem.
BH: Okay, gotcha. Uhm, Preggian is wondering:
JW: Yeah it is.
- Q11. [21:58] How big is the open world of Anthem? And that’s another one I imagine is very tough here to answer.
BH: What can you say?
JW: I would say this to everybody. Because everybody kind of wants to know, “Hey! How big is the world? Is it going to be big enough for me to really explore and enjoy and love it?” and the answer to that is yes, but I want you to start thinking about the world of Anthem less as a flat plane with some bumps on it, right? And more like it's a volume so you take a big open world map and now you open up the verticality of it. Up into the sky, down into the water, and just think about how that multiplies the area that you can traverse and the places you can discover, it's a big world.
BH: How soon in the game’s development do you guys lock down the scale of the world?
JW: It took us a long time, we really pushed the ability of Frostbite to handle it our, uh, and we just kind of found – what we wanted to do is make sure that we can render everything out in beautiful detail and make it a world that is beautiful and realistic and some place you want to be and then put awesomely detailed characters and enemies in that, and then we factor in, “Okay that feels about right for world sense”.
BH: Gotcha, uh Sylvia Roberto says:
JW: In the game, no it's not. In the IP itself and in the world lore, sure you could do that it would be extremely dangerous and probably lead to a short lifespan.
- Q12: [23:13] Is it possible to walk on foot without the armor in Anthem’s world, like outside of Fort Tarsis?
BH: So there’s never people like, running back into Fort Tarsis as they close the King Kong gates just as they get through? Anything like that?
JW: [Laughs]. We’ll there’s going to be some of that, right? But naw, that’s not something that factors into the game.
BH: Okay, Phillip Talang is wondering:
JW: Oh, okay. So, two answers to that question. From a personalization standpoint there are different pieces that you can attach to it and that kind of all factors into the customization and personalization of each suit. As far as the armor capabilities of the suit itself, like its armor score or armor value, that is pretty much governed by the suit itself and by different perks you select as a pilot.
- Q13: [23:43] Is there going to be RPG armor? Like head, shoulders, hands, etc. Or is it just standard Javelin with attachments. Like how broken down is it?
BH: So you aren’t like attaching different hands, different helmets? Anything like that?
JW: You’re attaching different uh, different pieces to your suit for sure.
JW: But they perform a cosmetic function not a statistical function.
BH: Raiden Prime says:
JW: Yeah, you’ll see some uh, you'll see when you're taking damage on your suit. It's not something that we persist as, you know, you pick up health packs, and repair packs.That will repair itself so there’s no like physical damage that happens to your suit over time.
- Q14: [24:34] If you get hit badly are there going to be cosmetic damage on your Javelins?
BH: Okay, so you don’t have to go back over to Fort Tarsis and like, repair your suit or anything like that?
BH: Okay, you know nerds are going to like that though, it’s like a good mechanic thing, you guys ever want to have that option I think people would be into that. Taking every bullet out of your suit when you get back home.
JW: [Laughs]. We tried something like that, but it got really tedious so we’ll see.
BH: Django23 says:
JW: Oh Django of course there is!
- Q15: [25:15] What happens when your teammates go down? Is there a revive system for helping them get back up?
BH: [Laughs] Oh little Django!
JW: [Laughs] Of course there is!
BH: Dylan, oh, Dylan himself here the project was named after him:
JW: Ah, bullet sponge enemies. So, I think what we’re trying to do is really present the players with tactical choice, right? So it’s not about just pumping a certain amount of bullets into a character to make them die. It’s about selecting the most dangerous targets on the battlefield and eliminating them first, and then you have a variety of means to accomplish that, right? Because we attach all this crazy super heroic gear to your suit, it’s not just about your firearm, as we’ve shown in the demos that we’ve done, right?
- Q16: [25:24] What types of systems are in place to avoid bullet sponge enemies?
JW: Right now there are.
- Q17: [26:07] “Are there sniper rifles in the game?” is what Tavaris wants to know.
BH: There are...why right now?
JW: There are. [Laughs].
BH: Is it tricky to balance with those?
JW: Yeah, yeah it is, it’s tricky any time you put a really high damage, long distance weapon into the game. You really have to pay attention to it and balance it correctly.
BH: Yeah, and Aquawolf wants to know the opposite:
JW: Each uh, each Javelin has a melee strike, it’s not really bound to a weapon, it’s bound to a suit.
- Q18: [26:30] Are there going to be melee weapons that you can pick up and use?
- Q19: [26:41] What’s your favorite Javelin?
BH: Why’s that?
JW: Uh, it really fits my playstyle really well. I always, I kind of gravitate more towards agile, lighter suits that do a whole ton of damage, so, I like it.
BH: There we go –
JW: I like its personality too.
BH: Each suit has its own personality? Like in the aesthetic of it?
JW: I think so.
BH: Okay, they don’t talk, do they?
JW: You look at it on the screen and yeah you’ll like it. Yeah not personality like in AI personality.
JW: Personality like a car has personality.
BH: Okay. AZ’s wondering:
JW: Ooh, hey, way to pay attention there. Yes, that’s true, when you do dive it does bring your heat meter down, and then as far as cooling it off, besides flying through or into water, I believe if you get hit with ice damage that will also cool you down, but it is also damaging.
- Q20: [27:15] Is it true that when you’re flying downwards, the heat meter goes down? Also, is there any other ways to keep the meter from heating when you’re flying besides going underwater?
BH: That’s cool. Uh, Kyle Domini has a couple questions:
JW: Uh, no not right now, but uh, we’ll see what happens in the future.
- Q21: [27:45] Number 1: Is our forward operating base something that we upgrade over time to achieve certain benefits from?
BH: Okay, it’d be cool to put some attachments on that big thing, yeah.
JW: Yeah, right.
BH: Also, they’re wondering:
JW: Ah, uh, so I mean chasing after weapons there’ll be always levels to the weapon itself, uh so I guess the answer to your question is no. No, when a weapon becomes obsolete you’re gonna have to go out and find uh, find a new version of it.
- Q22: [28:00] If I find a weapon I really like, but it becomes obsolete because of a higher quality level drop, is there a way for us to bring it to our level so we can still use it effectively?
BH: There we go. Joseph wants to know, another tough question:
JW: Yeah so I don’t really have a good definitive answer for that because we’re still in development. We’re still playing with what feels right. I would just say that let’s remember that this is a different experience from a single-player RPG, so it requires different activities. You won’t necessarily want a super lengthy campaign. I would say that the campaign is going to be just long enough.
- *Q23: [28:32] How long will a playthrough of the campaign be? Can you compare the length of the main path to, like, any other BioWare games? Have you tested at this point to see how long it is? * * ---
BH: Hm, okay there we go. SiriMatt000 Of course, says:
JW: Okay, so good questions. So, Anthem isn’t a kit based game like Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer was, right? So really instead of thinking about it in terms of a kit, or a character kit, you’re really, uh, have many, many more options with the type of gear that you put on your Javelin, and that gear’s rarity, and the properties that you’re able to infuse it with. Uh, so you can really build your own kits, and it’s more about unlocking gear and loot rather than unlocking kits.
- Q24: [29:18] Hey, one of my favorite aspects of Mass Effect’s multiplayer was unlocking a new character who had a unique set of powers, punches, movement abilities. For example, various characters, an engineer class allowed for a lot of different playstyles and strategies. I’m sure you remember that Jon, and then they’re wondering: What will we be unlocking while playing Anthem? And will those unlocks give any given type of Javelin as many unique play styles as it did in the Mass Effect multiplayer?
BH: There we go. Lionheart says:
JW: Ooo, boy, there’s a lot of really good specific questions in there.
- Q25: [30:13] You recently stated that the long-term goal for players in Anthem would be to upgrade your gear to the point of being legendary. As a former Destiny 2 player that eventually questioned why I needed to watch a number go up one more tick if it did not really affect my play experience, how do you plan to avoid longevity issues plaguing the endgame and what will make Anthem’s loop different in this regard?
JW: And uh, I’m – I’m not going to address all of those right now. But what will say is that we are paying very close attention to that and part of – I think part of what can make a game really kind of bogged down there at the end is, “I have acquired the best version of the weapon and I've upgraded it to, uh, you know, its best form, and now all I have is kind of an overarching meta-number that I'm trying to edge up to min-max my scores. Uh, really in Anthem what we’re really talking about is once you get a build that you’re feeling really good about and you’ve equipped it with all sorts of legendary gear; you’ve got a great uh, you got a great suit there, but it's not a static system. There are always different things that you can bring to bear to infuse different properties into the, those gear items, and the situations are constantly changing. We want you to be constantly tinkering with your suit to deal with different challenges and different situations, so there's always a reason to go in and hunt for something that is going to give you that specific edge. I think that if you look at looters like Diablo III that's probably something that is, resonates a little more strongly.
BH: Okay, it’s, I cannot imagine the challenge of sustaining an endgame in a game like this. Like, you look around the industry so many people are making it, from Division to Destiny, we have literally thousands of developers that have been banging their head against a wall for years and years trying to satisfy fans, and then you guys are going marching into that room.
BH: What the hell do you do? What do you study? How do you brace for that impact?
JW: It’s crazy, it’s crazy, uh you know, you study a lot. We have a staff of really talented designers that are passionate about that, and have really studied the matter a lot and played a lot of games that have tried to crack this nut. Are we going to be able to crack it perfectly? Geeze, I don’t think so. We’ll uh, we’re going to deliver something that is compelling, and it’s going to keep you engaged for a long, long time. And then we’ll see, we’ll see how we do.
BH: Okay, you’re not like trying to cushion fans for like, “You know, you’ll have a good time, you’ll play it for a long time, but you probably won’t be able to play it forever.” Is there any expectation setting you want to get out of the way here for what the endgame will be like?
JW: Oh yeah, so, look, I mean really this comes down to the type of player that you are, right? Are you an explorer, and what really makes you happy is finding all the nooks and crannies in a map? That is a finite experience that will eventually run out, right? Are you a story player, and all you really want to do is consume the narrative then that is also a finite experience that will eventually run out. But if you’re the type of player who just really digs that super heroic type of experience where you can put on this great Javelin suit, fly around, fight enemies continually become more combat efficient, try new challenges, try to go for that higher level of loot, this is going to keep you engaged for a long time.
BH: Okay, and you’re using Diablo as the best reference point for that?
JW: Uh, yeah I am, I have logged a shameful number of hours into Diablo III.
BH: Okay, that’s probably good research, it was all worth it man. SonicTheRestaurant has a similar question just saying:
JW: Oh, yeah, right. So, this is where I think that one of the strengths of Anthem – where Anthem really lies – is the ability to have a legitimate argument about my build vs your build. Whether it’s my pilot, where my pilot skills affect all of the Javelins that I own, or the specific build of my Javelin itself. Is there a correct way to play the game? Is there an uber build? I think that people will have different uber builds, and they will have passionate arguments about it, and they will both be right.
- Q26: [34:07] Where’s your approach to anticipating a meta where there seems to be a correct way to play the game?
BH: Okay, the Anthem reddit won’t just be like “Go for this build you idiots, move on.”
JW: Well, I’m sure that there’ll be those people, and then there’ll be people that who come back to that saying, “Oh, you’re clearly out of your mind.”
BH: Okay good, look forward to arguments on the internet everybody.
JW: [Laughs]. Yes.
BH: Jacque Walker is asking:
JW: So we’re going to talk about our end game activities later, but I think that you’ll be happy with what we talk about.
- Q27. [35:01] Are there gonna be raids?
BH: And that’s different from Strongholds?
JW: Yes, that is different from Strongholds.
BH: Interesting. Ryan Wagner:
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