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Anthem's Launch Bay is a full-fledged multiplayer social hub

Electronic Arts is ramping up details on Anthem, its upcoming shared-world role-playing shooter headed to Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Windows PCs. While cooperative multiplayer remains fundamental to its class-based gameplay, its narrative takes a single-player spin within the walls of "Fort Tarsis."

Anthem developer, BioWare, has framed Fort Tarsis has an exclusively single-player hub, home to curated story content. However, as newly-unveiled by Lead Producer on Anthem, Michael Gamble, the studio still plans to serve social experiences.

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A true multiplayer social space is now headed to Anthem, dubbed the "Launch Bay." This space facilitates players spending time with friends, customizing loadouts, and preparing new missions. Supporting up to 16 players per session, think an environment similar to Destiny's own connected "Tower." However, this space remains disabled for the demo.

Although details on the Launch Bay remain thin, Gamble promises future details "soon." With Anthem's demo set for January 25, and its launch one month later, expect more in the coming weeks.

In the meantime, preorders for Anthem are now live ahead of its February 22 release, starting at $60 (opens in new tab).

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Matt Brown
Matt Brown

Matt Brown is Windows Central's Senior Games Editor, Xbox & PC, at Future. Following over seven years of professional consumer technology and gaming coverage, he’s focused on the world of Microsoft's gaming efforts. You can follow him on Twitter @mattjbrown.

  • I think this game won't be successful.
  • @sd4f you a soothsayer? no? then get lost...
  • It'll get good ratings, as PC Gamer reported that Anthem's difficulty and economy is drastically different between the demo version being used for reviews and the consumer version, like how the reviewer's version of Call of Duty did not have microtransactions enabled at that time, meaning reviewers, using this demo for review, are getting a different SKU of the game than everyone else will be playing. After getting the good reviews, leading to consumers to buy the game, the microtransactions for emotes, javelin color pallets, and possibly DLC suits noted by GameRant, will make the game a lot of money, that is, more money than the cost of development. However, will it be profitable enough to meet investor expectations? As a game that makes profit in sales, may lead to the company loosing money, in the long run, if investors sell their stocks as a response to the game not making as much money as promised. From what we've seen with Destiny, which Anthem is influenced by, I'm thinking history will repeat itself.
  • Son if a reviewer is using a *demo* to do the full game review then maybe just maybe they're ****** at doing the job they've chosen to do.
  • Grandson, given the kind of previews and reviews we got from Cuphead (Gamesbeat), Doom 2016 (Polygon), and Ace Combat 7 (IGN), that argument has merit to some circles, but for different reasons. I would not be surprised if some reviewers used the demo in order to get their reviews out faster, before other outlets. Either way, I'm fully expecting lots of praising reviews. Everything that makes a game functional and great is in here, and I have been tempted to pick this up myself. We'll just have to see how much money the game is expected to make, and how much it actually makes before EA will determine if this is a success or not. The most I'm able to find is an investor meeting where EA states that they raised their expectations of Anthem, raised due to hype, but lower than usual due to being a new intellectual property, but did not provide any hard numbers that we can use to track.
  • This can't be legal, can it? Wouldn't it violate trade description\truth in advertising legislation to send reviewers a version that is deliberately created to be different to the version that the general public receive? That would be like sending an SUV to a reviewer with a larger engine than the retail model, or a shirt with a higher thread count. It's one thing to send them a beta version of an unfinished product, but to send them a version that's been tailored specifically to the reviewer in order to get a favourable review?
  • I can't say, for I am not a lawyer or have legal knowledge in this field. The gut feeling is that it is not illegal if an outlet uses demo footage for their review. After all, it is still the the full game that people are playing, and with Sea of Thieves and No Man's Sky have shown us, what is often the full product at launch can be an entirely different kind of game 1 year from now. So vastly different, it could warrant a second review.
  • I think that there's a difference between an unfinished product that changes over time, and purposefully submitting an altered version in order to solicite favorable reviews. It would be akin to getting the reviewer to play the PC version of a game with the graphics turned right up, and then selling the public a version from a previous console generation. The deception isn't that one version is different from the other, it's that one version has been deliberately modified.
  • I like that argument. Thumbs up to you Zombies!
  • This is going to suck
  • Good argument you've got there. I mean, I don't have high hopes for the game based on what I've seen, but I'm still not 100% either way on how it's going to go.
  • Yet another thing they copied from Destiny. This game is going to be a flop.
  • Personally, I'm not going to pre-order this. I'm going to wait and see what's missing at launch, and what gets added afterwards. I'd only consider buying this once I was sure that I knew what I was getting.
  • At least 6 months after release is usually a decent time to start thinking about jumping in. It gives them time to fix bugs and add or pull anything that should or shouldn't be in the game. I'm there will be a ton of class balancing issues to deal with as well. The game will probably be on sale as well.