ResoluteRock

Anthem Open Beta Thoughts?

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From the portion I have played today, I thought it was meh.

 

I didn't have any problems server-wise from the what I played today and I do agree that the cooldowns for the abilities are balanced. On the down side, I don't know what it is about the combat but it felt sluggish and unsatisfying for me. The graphics and the explosions/ability effects look cool and all but I didn't find it massively satisfying to kill enemies. I had more fun flying around than shooting things. I do think the speed at which your flight overheats is a little too quick. I found myself constantly flying, landing, than flying again to get from point A to point B. I find it something tolerable but annoying.

 

I did also encounter enemies de-spawning while I was shooting at them. Another weird thing happened where my whole squad died and when I respawned, the screen had this bright yellow light over everything. I basically wasn't able to see shit on my screen for like 15 seconds which at that point everything seemed to fix itself and run normally from that point on.

 

I won't say much on the story and lore because the game isn't out yet, but after I had that initial conversation you can have with the bartender upon booting up the game, I already found him annoying and know I will not like him when the full game comes out.

 

I was on the fence about this game and I still am after trying the demo. The game has potential but, you know, EA lol.

 

I'll try some more of it tomorrow and Sunday to see if my opinion of it changes in anyway, but so far i'm not massively impressed.

Edited by Shinobi
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3 minutes ago, Shinobi said:

From the portion I have played today, I thought it was meh.

 

I didn't have any problems server-wise from the what I played today and I do agree that the cooldowns for the abilities are balanced. On the down side, I don't know what it is about the combat but it felt sluggish and unsatisfying for me. The graphics and the explosions/ability effects look cool and all but I didn't find it massively satisfying to kill enemies. I had more fun flying around than shooting things. I do think the speed at which your flight overheats is a little too quick. I found myself constantly flying, landing, than flying again to get from point A to point B. I find it something tolerable but annoying.

 

I did also encounter enemies de-spawning while I was shooting at them. Another weird thing happened where my whole squad died and when I respawned, the screen had this bright yellow light over everything. I basically wasn't able to see shit on my screen for like 15 seconds which at that point everything seemed to fix itself and run normally from that point on.

 

I won't say much on the story and lore because the game isn't out yet, but after I had that initial conversation you can have with the bartender upon booting up the game, I already found him annoying and know I will not like him when the full game comes out.

 

I was on the fence about this game and I still am after trying the demo. The game has potential but, you know, EA lol.

 

I'll try some more of it tomorrow and Sunday to see if my opinion of it changes in anyway, but so far i'm not massively impressed.

I had the problem with enemies despawning too! My squad was shooting at a pack of (something?) and all of a sudden they all disappeared lol, not sure what happened. Maybe we scared them into non-existence :P

 

Also, what's up with the "decrypt the thing by holding the area" objectives? All you have to do is stand there for ~30 seconds with your squad and just wait, there aren't even enemies to fight to defend the area. I don't think that's a glitch either, I think they genuinely just want you to stand there and wait for the decryption meter to fill for absolutely no reason.

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The game has a narrative, story missions, and interesting characters. They are mostly turned off for the demo and keep in mind that the demo starts at level 10 with access to 1 mission.  

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Just now, ResoluteRock said:

I had the problem with enemies despawning too! My squad was shooting at a pack of (something?) and all of a sudden they all disappeared lol, not sure what happened. Maybe we scared them into non-existence :P

 

Also, what's up with the "decrypt the thing by holding the area" objectives? All you have to do is stand there for ~30 seconds with your squad and just wait, there aren't even enemies to fight to defend the area. I don't think that's a glitch either, I think they genuinely just want you to stand there and wait for the decryption meter to fill for absolutely no reason.

 

Yeah I was like "wait, wtf just happened?"

 

I know right! They probably just want people to take those 30 seconds or so to spam emotes and act like idiots with each other. At least, that's what my squad did lol.

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The demo was surprisingly fun for me. I also had no expectation going in that it was going to be good cause ya know EA. However it was fun and something I could play with my friends for hours on end. The pros for me was on missions it seems to really rely and push the teammate aspect which I like (this could also be dependent on who you have in your group, I had randoms). The combat was fun to switch from air to ground, blowing up the Wyverns with homing grenades was something to watch. A few cons for me was the map took awhile to generate, some of the loading screens took to long, and the environment was still loading upon being in the game (environment took a bit to be textured), the jetpack overheated rather quickly and finally I feel like the speed of flying should either be manual adjustment or a bit faster. I also forgot, the voice acting was meh too.

Edited by kdogg_gamer_
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Pros:

I like the world itself, compared to Destiny 2 it is much more alive and it provides a lot more background information. It is a BioWare game after all, so there is a codex and you will find a lot of stuff about the world and the characters and much more. And there is a story that you can at least shape a bit, not like D2 where everything is predetermined. Not sure how big all the choices will be but it gives you at least a more personal experience. But even if it is just small talk with all the different NPCs It still feels a more like an RPG then "just" a shooter. And it will be nice to find all the secrets and see how this world will evolve over time.

 

But the thing that looks very promising to me is the progression and all the different builds you can try out. Most of this is due to the interesting item system. It comes down to the rarity and the inscriptions, or prefixes if you will. Each item has a few of these depending on the rarity and a main "function" With luck you find enough items to accommodate your playstyle. This is something that I find rather boring in Destiny. There are a lot of these inscriptions, over one hundred if I am not mistaken, this gives you much more option when it comes to building a class. And you can save these builds and swap them out if necessary, not like Destiny where you carry around all your stuff and you need to manually swap your gear. It is just not very comfortable. Another thing is that your pilot has it's own skill system and you are not restricted to one javelin/class. This saves you a lot of grinding if you want to do anything with every class.

 

The combat is also something I like, mostly because I prefer third person games. But the ability to fly around and assault enemies from the air adds a nice touch to the combat. It's also rather visceral and the gunplay feels satisfying, although the scale of the enemies seems a bit small. But it makes the combat a bit more challenging. It certainly has a lot of potential and it feels rather unique at times.

 

Cons:

Clearly the performance! The game is very sluggish, especially in the Fort. But even the combat outside the walls isn't very smooth. Even using the map is terrible. I am aware that this might be due the older build of the game and that the final version performs much better.

 

The combat has a few problems, one being that the enemies doesn't act very smart. They usually come at you in groups or stand around waiting to be killed. They also don't know how to flank you. Sometimes they don't even notice you or are busy killing some wildlife. I guess this is something that might already be fixed or it is at least the main priority for BioWare, or so I hope. Right now this is the biggest plus for Destiny 2, the shooter part of that game is truly excellent!

 

It's an online game and there is always the potential for connection issues, especially for a new game. It might be that they will handle the launch very well, but for the time being I consider this as a potential negative.

 

Another thing is that you can't just go somewhere and start exploring or fighting enemies. You always have to create an instance by joining a public group, which can take a long time. But the game is clearly build around co-op. So joining a clan/guild is probably the best thing to avoid all this waiting. Overall it is a much slower pace then Destiny 2. Even exploring Fort Taris is rather unpleasant because of the slow pace of your character. It would be nice to have a fast travel system because walking to all the different POIs is terribly boring. I also find it odd that you walk around in first person view when visiting the Fort.

 

Conclusion

The game certainly has a lot of potential and I don't base this one just on the demo, I didn't really play it long enough for that. But I watched over three hours of streams from the devs, mostly about progression and gameplay but also a good chunk about the customization of your javelin. There is a lot of things you can do to make your javelin look unique. But I am not really sure if I want to jump into the game right from the get go. I actually planned to do this but after playing the demo I will at least reconsider this. Maybe I wait a few weeks or even month before I buy it. It certainly seems to be interesting enough to play it for a while. Although knowing me I will probably buy it anyway. :D

 

A word about the demo version. They used an older version for this so there is a lot of stuff that will be changed/fixed according to BioWare. They claim that they have already patched/added over 1000 things for the release version. Hopefully they will add even more things to this list from all the things they will learn during the open demo weekend.

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I personally have yet to enjoy the demo so far. What troubles me are the controls and combat system.. They have a tutorials tab on the menu page, but even then the descriptions i find quite vague and having to figure out everything on your own. Having never played a game like this (such as Destiny or whatever else) jumping right into combat without any tutorial is meh. 

 

Then when you get into the mission available in the demo, you have an objective but not much saying as to what you should be doing. It seems like go to point A, kill enemies, then go to point B, rinse and repeat. 

 

Dont forget respawning! Oh my goodness.. Ive read articles about the respawn, and peoples conclusion is to not die. Well that's great for the experienced players, but if you find yourselves like me (and 2 players that were in my lobby), when you "die" (go down), a red circle mechanism comes up that says cannot be revived, followed by "Respawning..." just to never respawn. It took about 5 minutes for our 4th player to revive everyone. After my second death, which happened randomly as a huge beam of blue light tagged me and lit me up as my full health bar was drained in about 3 seconds, I waited another 3 minutes for a revive and didnt get one. Which inevitably had me turn the damn game off, because who wants to sit and watch a game rather than play it? 

 

Again, great for those that dont die, thus not needing to be revived. But when youre new and trying to figure the game out, it seems a bit impossible if you cant do anything, eagerly waiting for someone to revive you, and they simply dont.

 

Had high hopes for this game, but will probably not care for it as much as i thought.

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By far my favorite part was making Javelin look like Ironman. I doubt i'm buying this anytime soon.

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Addendum:

This demo sucks! Or to put it a bit less negative it has a lot of severe problems in addition to the ones I mentioned in my original post. I played a few strongholds now, which took 3 hours or so in total. First of all the every enemy is an expert marksman, especially the snipers. They are in fact so good they can shoot you through a solid rock formations. And it takes two shots from a sniper to kill you. And the map is littered with snipers. Of course this isn't limited to just the snipers! Plus the game tends to drop enemies everywhere at any time, out of thin air mind you. Which means you are surrounded most of the times, even if you have cleared an area before. So you are constantly under fire and half of the time you don't even know where the enemies is because of this ridiculous respawn system.In one particular area the game dropped two very tough enemies two or three times in a row, in the same exact spot even and not just during one stronghold. It happened in each and every one! I am not sure if that's just a bug or intended. And of course there are turrets too, and they are even worse then the snipers. Sadly the indicators for enemy fire doesn't really help much to pinpoint the shooter. The areas are quite large and the scale seems to be smaller then usual, I guess that's because you can fly around. Which means you will have a hard time even seeing an enemy most of the time. All in all doing a stronghold seems to be more of a punishment then a rewarding experience.

 

Even if a stronghold is intended to be a very challenging place it is still nothing but unfair in it's current state. This might be partially due to the items in this demo, you start at level 10 with nothing but common gear, and even if you play a couple of hours you hardly get anything worthwhile. And of course doing a stronghold with 3 random players isn't the best way either. But since the game is all about scaling and matchmaking I had hoped it would be less frustrating to do a stronghold.

 

It wasn't all bad though, even with all the above the combat does shine from time to time. It is just very badly balanced. But even if you just go outside and do something on your own the game still feels unfair or poorly balanced. All what I mentioned above still applies, just not as drastic. Destiny 2 does a much better job. First of all the combat is never unfair even if you are sometimes surrounded you still have a much easier time to locate and eliminate the enemies. And the games does a great job scaling the enemies to your power level.

 

I really hope BioWare will fix this before the game launches or even better yet, they postpone the release a few more months. But I simply have my doubts that the release version will be much different as far as the combat is concerned.

 

One last thing that I found rather irritating. I played an interceptor for a few hours. It is a fun class, very agile and kinda deadly when you attack enemies with your melee weapons. But it feels very underwhelming because the sound just sucks when you attack with melee weapons. It sounds like you are cutting paper with a razor blade if you hear anything at all. That's another big problem, the sounds sometimes doesn't play or cuts off. Which means it is even more frustrating when you are under fire.

 

Anyway that's it! I spent enough time with the crappy demo.

 

Cheers! :)

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I am having fun playing the demo so far. I like the customization, I am liking the combat and the little bit of the story is getting my attention. The movement mechanism is something I enjoy as well, took me a while to get the hang of it but now I like flying here and there a lot.

I did have some issues with performance and lagging. Not to mention the loading screens take way too long. But I am hopeful this will be improved.

I will not pre-order it cause I personally have a rule against pre ordering games, SPECIALLY EA games. I hope they dont screw this too much with micro transctions and I also want to see more history and content wise before buying.

But taking all things into consideration, I am content with the demo so far.

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I played the demo for a bit out of curiosity, as I'm pretty sure I won't be playing the full game. I just don't have time for another service/grind game right now.

 

To me, the combat felt like an improved version of Mass Effect: Andromeda. You have the L1 and R1 powers with fast recharge, jetpack dashing, and the gunplay also feels very similar. Overall, I felt like the unstable framerate (playing on a pro) was the biggest issue with the game. And I don't normally even care about framerate that much, but a game like this feels like it relies massively on the overall smoothness and feel of moment to moment gameplay, and the performance is definitely detrimental to this.

 

I imagine Anthem will be a similar experience as The Division. People will play it and enjoy it. It's not going to make billions upon billions for EA, but if the publisher is fine with a product that people can just enjoy, even if it does not create growth for the company, it's going to be a fine game to play in the long run, at least if there is a worthwhile loop to the endgame.

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Thought it was boring, laggy, and took shit WAY too long to load.

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I like the Diablo game loop, and I could feel it activating and making me want to play more, kill more stuff, find more loot. The suits are gorgeous. The flying is great. Combat is... adequate. But it's still fun in the context of trying to improve your character. The game feels addictive. High potential.

 

But the list of things that get in the way is just incredible. There is stuff wrong I don't know if I've ever seen a game get wrong before. As though a bunch of people who literally don't play games were the ones making this. Just baffling decisions were made at times.

 

My guess is, Anthem will become good later in its lifecycle.

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