Now that BioWare's new IP is out for all enjoy, there are a few things about Anthem that you should know about before jumping into that Javelin. Once you pick out which Javelin suits your play style, there are factors about only your gear but also the world around you that will help you make the most out of your time as a Freelancer.
Talking to characters within Fort Tarsis will seem like a no-brainer to those that are familiar with how BioWare games work, though the amount of people I've talked to that said they didn't realise it was that big of a deal was astonishing. If you didn't continuously keep that dialogue going in games like Mass Effect, your companions could actually pay the price for that - including death. While the consequences don't see quite that high in Anthem (at least that we've seen), the same rule applies to the newest IP.
Don't just rely on your map either. Usually a dialogue icon will pop up when you pull up your map in Fort Tarsis that will show you where you need to go to unlock new dialogue options, quests, and just overall get to know the crew but sometimes - there are hidden options.
Many times I'd just go up to where Sentinel Brin could be found to listen to her hilarious radio shows, only to find that a conversation prompt is there despite it being missing on the map. This gave me an addition quest, while also improving my alliance that she's associated with.
Improving those alliances is key to the game, both with improving the world and yourself.
So take the cardinal BioWare rule to heart: TALK TO EVERYONE.
It's tempting at first to craft to your heart's content when those resources start pouring in (and become purchaseable with in-game currency at Tarsis vendors), but try to hold off at first if you can. Anthem's progression naturally offers some pretty sweet gear starting out, so really my recommendation is to hold off on big crafting until you've reached the endgame portion of the program.
The same goes with consumables. Before you start a mission, a menu will pop up to the right giving players the option to equip a slot for a consumable. This could increase damage, fortify shields - whathaveyou. Much like crafting, it's not really needed right out of the game so instead you should stock up and wait until you start talking on endgame World Events and strongholds.
Fellow BioWare Dragon Age fans will laughably groan at this, but harvesting materials is key. You'll find plants and parts hidden all through the map, and while there is no Elfroot to be found, there are tons of usable materials to be gathered that will help make your crafting side job much easier!
Though a lot of players liken it to games like Destiny, I would advise playing Anthem as if it were not a shooter. In no way am I knocking Destiny, there's just a little bit more to the BioWare IP than that.
Each Javelin has their own unique set of abilities that make combat without firing a single gun easily doable. Obviously combo-ing the effort is recommended, don't lean too heavy on weaponry when you can instead also focus on some of the abilities. Storm, Interceptor, Colossus, and Rangers all have a very unique skill set, all of which should definitely be given special care.
In that same vein, you're going to want to get real comfy with both your Ultimate attacks and how the combo chains work. Though there isn't really a tutorial for that, they are super easy to learn if you pay attention to combat. Alternating between melee and firepower is amazing, alternating different elemental attacks and special abilities is even better.
Though avoiding cooldown forever when flying around in your Javelin is impossible, there are ways to stave it. When I first got into the game, I got carried away with feeling like Iron Man, so I always flew high and fast. That, turns out, was not the way to do it. I quickly learned that the cooldown time could be a heck of a thing, but weather can positively impact that as well as sticking close to water sources.
Fly low to skim water (without submerging) to reset that heat-meter, and flip through waterfalls for the same affect. Need an instant reset? Plunge into water to come right back up for a water coating that will not only put you back at zero, but will delay the heat affect as well.
Want to earn XP fast while getting some nifty dialogue instances? Then do your challenges and don't ignore Freeplay. For Challenges, the rewards can be incredible and offers unique blueprints that will give you something worthwhile to craft.
There are also a few points in the story that require challenge completion, so taking them on early will mean less of a halt between progression in story missions as a whole.
Same thing with Freeplay. The free-to-roam portion of the game is necessary for some parts of the story, but it's also rife with World Events and various quests that players can take on for new rewards, XP, and alliance rankings.
Ranking up your alliance systems with the different factions in the game (such as Arcanists and Freelancers) is key. It unlocks parts of Fort Tarsis, it improves the quality of life in the Fort, and it unlocks special features. Level up the Freelancer alliance to gain access to "clean" Javelin suits, is a good example as to how it impacts even the cosmetic side of the game.
That, and this progression allots coins which is something needed to buy things in the game's cosmetics shop without having to pay IRL cash.
As for the game itself, it is now live for all on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. You can check out our full review right here, with a small snippet below:0comments
"Anthem really seems to honor its promise of feeling entirely new, but with BioWare fans in mind. At first, my impression was that it didn't particularly feel like a BioWare game, but as time went on, I realized that wasn't quite true. It both feels similar to a BioWare game in terms of interaction, but mechanically, it feels very new. As a hardcore BioWare franchise fan myself, that isn’t a bad thing. It’s new, and a little buggy, but it works."
What do you think of Anthem so far and potential new lobbies? Sound off in the comment section below, or hit me up over on Twitter @DirtyEffinHippy!