The multiplayer action RPG Anthem had been undergoing a major redesign behind closed doors at BioWare since early last year, with the studio going back to the drawing board to "reinvent the core gameplay loop" following the poor reception to its latest IP. However, all plans for this overhauled version have now been canceled.
Today, BioWare Austin head Christian Dailey revealed in a blog post that the studio had made the "difficult decision" to stop the development of the redesign project - dubbed Anthem NEXT. "While we continue to make progress against all our game projects at BioWare, working from home during the pandemic has had an impact on our productivity and not everything we had planned as a studio before COVID-19 can be accomplished without putting undue stress on our teams," explained Dailey.
While Anthem's journey has come to an end, the famed RPG studio is currently working on fresh entries for its Mass Effect and Dragon Age franchises as well as a Mass Effect trilogy remaster as new projects. "Game development is hard," added Dailey. "Decisions like these are not easy. Moving forward, we need to laser focus our efforts as a studio and strengthen the next Dragon Age, and Mass Effect titles while continuing to provide quality updates to Star Wars: The Old Republic."
Anthem will still remain playable online in its current state for the time being, though as explained, no more updates will arrive for the troubled title. The studio did not say if there's a planned date for a future server shutdown.