Things are not looking good for ANTHEM right now. To be fair, things haven't looked good for months, but this latest tidal wave of disappointment could well be the final nail in the coffin for BioWare's looter shooter.
At this point ANTHEM's downfall is incredibly well documented, but if you're somehow late to the party, allow us to quickly get you up to speed. ANTHEM launched back in February and it was met with lukewarm critic reviews. Over the next few weeks it would essentially be picked to bits by much of its playerbase thanks to a severe lack of endgame content. What's more, BioWare stumbled at just about every turn when it came to patching and updating the release, introducing bugs and some significant gameplay issues -- most of which would go on to steal headlines and sink the game's already ragged reputation even deeper.
Months passed and players still weren't happy with ANTHEM's half-baked loot system or the gameplay loop surrounding it, and so the game's update roadmap was dropped as BioWare scrambled to fix things on a fundamental level. Most notably, its oft-touted 'Cataclysm' live event was pushed back. For many, the Cataclysm was set to be ANTHEM's last chance at some kind of redemption.
Sadly, it doesn't look like the Cataclysm will live up to any expectations. Based on footage shown during the developer's most recent livestream and impressions from those who have dabbled in the event via the game's public test server, this is not the chaotic, devastating storm that engulfed the world of ANTHEM all the way back in its original E3 presentation. Needless to say, players are not impressed.
Already spawning its own range of dumb jokes and memes, the Cataclysm is, in reality, a timed activity that sees you complete a bunch of repetitive tasks before fighting a boss, all while a blue filter is applied to your screen. For an event months in the making -- an event that was talked about well before the title even hit store shelves -- it's all very, very underwhelming.
As we've come to expect of moments like this, the negativity is spreading like wildfire across YouTube, Reddit, Twitter, Facebook -- all the usual suspects. This time, though, it does feel different. ANTHEM is no stranger to disillusioned fans but this is on another level. The Cataclysm was pretty much the only glimmer of hope left on the horizon, and it's been snuffed out before it's even made it into the game proper.
It would have taken a miracle to get ANTHEM back on track after its first few weeks, but now? We just don't see how it comes back from this one.