Key Anthem producers are now working on Dragon Age.
BioWare has stated that it remains “100% committed to Anthem”, despite speculation that the studio is reducing support for the game and moving resources into development of Dragon Age 4.
There’s been a lot of (incorrect) speculation on this. The studio’s support and commitment to anthem HAS. NOT. CHANGED. https://t.co/uxwY3ADPRO
— Michael Gamble (@GambleMike) May 3, 2019
Lead producer on Anthem, Michael Gamble, retweeted Chad Robertson, BioWare’s head of live service, who emphasised the studio’s complete commitment to Anthem. Gamble notes that speculation around Bioware’s support for the sci-fi looter shooter is “incorrect”, and the commitment to the project remains strong.
Speculation over BioWare’s support for Anthem comes in the wake of reports claiming that major players in the game’s development team have been moved off the project and onto the upcoming Dragon Age title.
GamesRadar reports that executive producer Mark Darrah, lead director Jonathan Warner, and Michael Gamble have all stopped work on Anthem, although Warner is set to return after a sabbatical. Chad Robertson and lead producer Ben Irving are now the people to talk to regarding the future of Anthem, according to a tweet from Gamble.
Mark Darrah recently tweeted a tease that suggests he is working on Dragon Age 4, adding further fuel to the speculation around Anthem’s future.
We aren’t working on Dragon Age 3 We aren’t working on Dragon Age 5 … I guess that’s that.
— Mark Darrah (@BioMarkDarrah) May 1, 2019
It is not unusual for key creative staff to move onto new projects after the launch of a game, with the post-release maintenance and development left to a smaller team. However, even if this is a standard industry manoeuvre, it is understandable why Anthem fans would be disappointed in the news due to the rocky state of the game. Having lead producers leave the project can appear like abandonment, especially considering updates have been delayed.
Dragon Age 4 appears to be a long way off, but we already know that it is influenced by a previous Dragon Age project that was once cancelled. It was teased at The Game Awards 2018, and has been described by BioWare’s Casey Hudson as a live game. Quite if that live structure remains after BioWare’s difficulties with Anthem and the backlash from traditional RPG fans remains to be seen.
Matt Purslow is IGN UK’s News and Entertainment Writer, who remains hopeful for the future of Anthem and Dragon Age. You can follow him on Twitter.