Does Anthem need PvP?

Anthem Articles

It is one of the hottest games coming out of E3, and that is the new Bioware IP, Anthem! If you are new to Anthem here is the basic run down: Anthem is going to be a shared world, 3rd person view, Action RPG. The actions and things you do in the game will affect how the rest of the world is shaped, along with an ever changing environment due to the Shaper storms within the game.

The game will give us a focused single-player story line with NPCs you can interact with. Those interactions and choices will then determine how those NPCs will interact with you. For those of you who have played other Bioware games, this is all very familiar ground.

But, on top of this we are also getting multiplayer. This means you can go about the game solo or with your friends and, as Bioware Developers have mentioned before, they have been working on a seamless multiplayer party system. This is in hopes of making the LFG (looking for group) done all in-game and as easy on us as possible.

Player vs Player in Anthem?

Since Bioware is venturing into a multiplayer focused game, this has brought up the question: Does Anthem need to have PvP in their game? The short answer. No Anthem does not need PvP to be successful. Not every game needs to have a player vs player or a Battle Royale mode. And, in all honesty, gamers have been bombarded by so many new Battle Royale modes it will eventually backfire, driving gamers away from those games.

So, what if they did add a PvP mode at a later date? If Bioware decides to take this route, I hope it is more of a PvE (player versus environment) focused mode rather than a true player vs player mode. Examples of this are Gears of War’s Horde mode and the Mass Effect 3 multiplayer mode, where you set out on a task as a team and face waves of enemy forces rather than real live players on the other team.

Don’t Rock the Boat

Many games that have PvE and PvP modes struggle to balance the two. One example of that is Destiny 1 and 2. If we had both of these modes in Anthem, we would then be stuck in a perpetual circle of constant balancing and hot fixes. HARD PASS.

If Bioware does add PvP, it would have be something similar to how Halo does theirs, which means set weapons and weapon perks. This would provide balance on the PvP side of things, however, it would make the base game of Anthem very vanilla. This also might erode the customization options and crafting options players would have in the PvE side of the game. The only way it would maintain balance is if the javelins in the PvP mode were strictly for PvP, but who wants to play a watered down Freelancer? With that stated, I am firmly against introducing a true PvP mode in Anthem, but I wouldn’t mind having something similar to a Mass Effect 3 multiplayer mode.

Anthem is going to be a live service game. Bioware GM, Casey Husdon has alluded that the story and game will be produced like a TV series with constant updates, never mind the Shaper storms that change the landscape. I really see no reason to have PvP in this particular game.

 What are your thoughts on the subject? Do you think Anthem needs PvP in their game? Leave us a comment below.

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Co-founder of MHG, Podcast Host for Analog Assault Podcast and The Bendu Podcast

1 Comment

  1. Uhh, sorry to break it to you guys but Horde Mode is not PvP. A player has to compete against another player for it to be Player Versus Player. It’s kind of all there. In the name. There’s no real wiggle room.

    As to whether or not Anthem NEEDS PvP, I can’t say that it does NEED it. But, I do want it. I would also think the best way to handle it would be to balance it separately from the main game.
    The idea that you would HAVE to “play a watered down Freelancer” via cutting down and restricting the options available to balance PvP is an incorrect assumption. Furthermore the idea that A) anyone wants a battle royal mode in Anthem or B) that battle royal is in any way relevant is also making a huge leap in logic. I don’t think that many people either want that or is talking about it.
    So setting aside that irrelevant tangent we can go in and focus on the more traditional PvP experience (that you have compared to Halo but obviously is shared by games like Team Fortress 2, counter-strike, Overwatch, Titantfall, Battlefield, Call of Duty). Competitive and (usually) objective based gameplay where one team is pitted against another.
    In this aspect I would agree that the best way to handle things would be to balance PvP separately from PvE. However this does not necessarily require any sort of features or functionality to be removed. You could have two semi-separate clients (Sort of like how Fornite separates its own PvE and PvP modes. Now mind you, I am only making this comparison for how it handles its clients, not for anything to do with its gameplay – that is critical to keep in mind) in the PvP client weapons, armour and abilities could be modified and balanced separately. To cut down on confusion a disclaimer could be displayed when the player accesses said client (with the option not to show it again, naturally). Your inventory of weapons, javelins and items would be synched up between the two clients, the PvP one checking what you have in your PvE inventory and then displaying the modified PvP version of the item in your PvP menu for you to select before entering a match.
    One might say that this would be too difficult to manage but if you look at games like Starcraft 2 they have single player and PvE modes where the balancing and units are kept separate from the PvP offering of the game, and they have a dedicated PvP team to manage that end of things. With a studio that has a backing of a company the size of EA, this is easily something they could imitate.
    So the only thing would be the potential confusion of the players, but in all honesty I truly believe that most players would be able to adapt reasonably well to such a system, though it might be disorienting or jarring at first. This is just one of a variety of potential solutions to a problem like this one, not the only one.
    Personally I think the style of gameplay shown thus far would be a blast to try out in a competitive PvP setting. However, if it never materializes, (and the core game is as good as I think it will be) then I would still be quite happy with the game! It doesn’t NEED PvP by any means. But I think it could certainly benefit from it, somewhere down the line.


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