Anthem’s GaaS Effect

Anthem has had a lot of news, stories, and hype/antihype leading up to its release. It finally came out last Friday, but also came out the Friday before that, and there were beta demos for two more weekends before that. Of course, you had to have a VIP preorder to play the first beta weekend, and you had to have some sort of VIP preorder to play it last weekend, and some VIPs could only play for 10 hours total while others could play as much as they want.

On top of that, each version of this game (all in a month’s time frame) was a different build. The beta, of course, was a build from several months before people actually played it. The VIP access build from a week ago was closer to the final version, but was missing a key “day one” patch that was scheduled to be released this past Friday on the “official” day one but ended up being put out earlier in the week after enough VIPs complained about their Anthem experience.

Are you having trouble following all this? You’re not alone. This convoluted process in the lead up to Anthem’s “official” release has left nearly a month-long stream of varying impressions from reviewers, streamers, and regular joes. It’s been hard to keep track of who’s played on what patch and what the actual current condition of the game is. And since there have been a lot of complaints – from loading times to bugged quests to confusion on how to play – knowing the state of Anthem can be it’s own puzzle, especially if you are a person who didn’t pre-order and was waiting for actual, final game version impressions before jumping in.

This is a problem for Anthem, but also a problem for the industry as a whole as Games as a Service becomes more popular.

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