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[Bloomberg] Electronic Arts Removes Multiplayer Mode From Dragon Age Game in Big Pivot

Astorian

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Video game publisher Electronic Arts Inc. has made a major pivot on the next game in the popular Dragon Age series, allowing the developers to remove all planned multiplayer components from the game, according to people familiar with the matter.
Dragon Age is a series of fantasy games from the EA-owned developer BioWare. The next Dragon Age, which doesn’t yet have an official title or release date, had previously been designed with a heavy multiplayer component
The diverging trajectories of two recent games changed the minds of Wilson and other executives at EA, according to the people. One was Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, a single-player game released in November 2019 that won critical acclaim and outperformed EA’s sales expectations, reaching more than 10 million players in its first four months. The second was BioWare’s Anthem, a multiplayer game that was widely panned when it launched. The games showed that single-player games could still be lucrative and that BioWare, traditionally known for its single-player, role-playing games, might be better off returning to its roots. A spokesman for EA declined to comment.
The next Dragon Age first entered development in 2015. But in the fall of 2017, EA and BioWare rebooted the game to push for long-term monetization. The change led to the departure of creative director Mike Laidlaw and caused some employees to dismiss the game as “Anthem with dragons.”
During development, some members of BioWare’s leadership team fought to pivot the next Dragon Age back to a single-player-only game, according to the people familiar with the discussions.
 
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"Anthem with Dragons". lol. Just as I thought. But cant blame execs too much. If gamers werent gobbling up mtx like candy, games wouldn't have it so much.

 
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I didn't quite like the Inquisition coop mode, but ME3? Fuck yes I played the everliving shit out of that.
I didn't play ME3 MP a lot. Bu I remember playing with my cousin and it wasnt bad. It seemed hard as hell trying to push forward as it seemed the enemies kept respawning(?) if you didn't keep going.
 

kretos

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So they rebooted the game 2-3 years ago to add gaas multiplayer bullshit and now they are removing it? EA scum will ruin this too
 

Bitmap Frogs

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I didn't play ME3 MP a lot. Bu I remember playing with my cousin and it wasnt bad. It seemed hard as hell trying to push forward as it seemed the enemies kept respawning(?) if you didn't keep going.

It has some really cool classes and weapons so gameplay was fun and varied. It's been like 7 or 8 years so I don't remember the details but I think you had certain goals per wave and so on.

It does appear that the new dragon age was a full fledged live tittle, going by that "anthem with dragons" moniker, so personally between a kickass solo campaign + a kickass multi mode, a solo campaign, and a live game, for the next Dragon Age I'll take the solo campaign over the live game any day of the week but I would lie if I didn't say I'd prefer the ME3 killer combo of solo campaign + multi.
 
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Andodalf

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I didn't play ME3 MP a lot. Bu I remember playing with my cousin and it wasnt bad. It seemed hard as hell trying to push forward as it seemed the enemies kept respawning(?) if you didn't keep going.

It wasn't hard as long as you didnt't try the harder missions without the right upgrades. But the game did a very poor job explaining itself.

I really loved ME3 MP, it was a gem. I went back a played some a few years back and actually found matches. Bummed it's not in the remaster.


Shoutout to Batman Arkham Origins MP btw, super neat idea. I miss the old days of everygame having a weird MP lol.

EA may be wising up. Those Fallen Order sales must’ve lit a fire under them...

It's literally in the article/ OP
 
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Shai-Tan

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So they rebooted the game 2-3 years ago to add gaas multiplayer bullshit and now they are removing it? EA scum will ruin this too

I think the reasoning at the time was every game has to have a multiplayer component to stop resell to GameStop but that’s not as much of an issue anymore and/or it’s silly to think some mid or low tier multiplayer isn’t just gonna be dead. I think Mass Effect multiplayer was mildly popular as a variation of Gears of War or whatever but the market has moved on from that. They can barely get uptake on Battlefield at the moment so
 
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It has some really cool classes and weapons so gameplay was fun and varied. It's been like 7 or 8 years so I don't remember the details but I think you had certain goals per wave and so on.

It does appear that the new dragon age was a full fledged live tittle, going by that "anthem with dragons" moniker, so personally between a kickass solo campaign + a kickass multi mode, a solo campaign, and a live game, for the next Dragon Age I'll take the solo campaign over the live game any day of the week but I would lie if I didn't say I'd prefer the ME3 killer combo of solo campaign + multi.
Yup.

Every gamer is different, and a best of both worlds is an awesome SP and MP.

But for some genres like RPG, I'd rather have a great SP/zero MP, then avg SP/avg MP. But then for shooters, I want great MP at all costs. I havent played a shooter SP campaign in COD since Black Ops1. At a certain point I just went straight to MP and never touched SP.
 
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General Lee

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If only they had figured this one out before they wasted years on Anthem. Even with ME3 mp I would've much more preferred they had used the resources for the single player. EA really seemed to push the time tables back then, giving very minimal development time with games like DA2, ME2 and 3.
 

Bitmap Frogs

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How the might have fallen, it's such a surprise to me (well not really) that it's been 11+ years since Dragon Age Origins came out back in 2009, what a game.

Modern Bioware is just..... Sad.

That's the problem when you get swallowed by big company. If their current leadership is the meddlesome type, you start being told what games to make, what tools to use, what your goals are. And suddenly group cohesion is gone and it's no longer bioware, just 400 guys working for ea.

After several disasters seems EA is deciding to switch gears and let their studios some leeway, let's see where it goes.
 
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Oct 2, 2019
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That's the problem when you get swallowed by big company. If their current leadership is the meddlesome type, you start being told what games to make, what tools to use, what your goals are. And suddenly group cohesion is gone and it's no longer bioware, just 400 guys working for ea.

After several disasters seems EA is deciding to switch gears and let their studios some leeway, let's see where it goes.
That's why i always say that this recent obsession with studios acquisition is not healthy for the industry or game enthusiast at all, yeah sure the argument can be made in the case of Next Level Games and Insomniac, but IO Interactive and Eidos being bought by Square Enix was not something i ever thought was good, while i LOVE the new Deus Ex games and liked Hitman Absolution and the new Tomb Raider Trilogy, the last two were certainly not the right direction for these studios nor was wasting the talents of Crystal Dynamics with The Avengers game.
 
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Oct 26, 2018
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That's the problem when you get swallowed by big company. If their current leadership is the meddlesome type, you start being told what games to make, what tools to use, what your goals are. And suddenly group cohesion is gone and it's no longer bioware, just 400 guys working for ea.

After several disasters seems EA is deciding to switch gears and let their studios some leeway, let's see where it goes.
Big companies have the benefit of tons of money and products. So if something fails, they can hide it among the weeds. I see shitty employees hired at my companies i've worked at all the time (both management and subordinates). And the worst ones are people who come from different sectors who have zero clue what the hell is going on. Somehow they are hired and always struggle.

I don't know EA's management. But if they are video game industry vets, they should be embarrassed.
 
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SinDelta

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So EA made the decision to turn Dragon Age into a GaaS and are now reversing said decision which wasted 5 damn years?

Brilliant.
 
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Bitmap Frogs

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That's why i always say that this recent obsession with studios acquisition is not health for the industry or game enthusiast at all, yeah sure the argument can be made in the case of Next Level Games and Insomniac, but IO Interactive and Eidos being bought by Square Enix was not something i ever thought was good, while i LOVE the new Deus Ex games and liked Hitman Absolution and the new Tomb Raider Trilogy, the last two were certainly not the right direction for these studios nor was wasting the talents of Crystal Dynamics with The Avengers game.

The avengers in particular was something I did not understand: here's a dev studio built around single player, cinematic experiences - ok, let's make them develop a live gaming service! It's baffling.

Big companies have the benefit of tons of money and products. So if something fails, they can hide it among the weeds. I see shitty employees hired at my companies i've worked at all the time (both management and subordinates). And the worst ones are people who come from different sectors who have zero clue what the hell is going on. Somehow they are hired and always struggle.

I don't know EA's management. But if they are video game industry vets, they should be embarrassed.

They own a license to print money through the microtransactions on their sports titles. It feels like they went through a phase during which they wanted to force that business model through all their studios and IPs.
 
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Termite

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I mean, it sounds good on the surface, but when you read this:

"But in the fall of 2017, EA and BioWare rebooted the game to push for long-term monetization. The change led to the departure of creative director Mike Laidlaw and caused some employees to dismiss the game as “Anthem with dragons.”"

It's hard not to think the game was fucked from the start and is possibly beyond fixing.
 
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SinDelta

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they haven't wasted anything. you are severely overestimating the amount of work that has been done
5 years is 5 years. We could have have a new Dragon Age game in the time EA decided they wanted to turn a iconic RPG franchise into a GaaS (Again.)

Still the very fact EA is actually changing their decision gives me some hope.
 
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Hari Seldon

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The last two EA games I have purchased were Fallen Order and Squadrons, and I liked both a lot. So maybe whatever changes EA has made in leadership or thinking is finally working out.
 
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The avengers in particular was something I did not understand: here's a dev studio built around single player, cinematic experiences - ok, let's make them develop a live gaming service! It's baffling.
Square Enix desperately wants to compete with western giants like Ubisoft, Take2 and EA while having no idea how hard it is, also judging by how they handled the initial sales Tomb Raider 2013 they don't spend as much as these giants spend on thier big franchises and wanted the game to sell 10 million +!

Hopefully like Capcom before them they'd grow out of it ASAP and relize what made them popular in the first place.
 
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AlteredForms

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I'm one of those people who believes not all games require a multiplayer component, but damn when was the last time we've had a fantasy RPG with this game mode?
 

SinDelta

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The last two EA games I have purchased were Fallen Order and Squadrons, and I liked both a lot. So maybe whatever changes EA has made in leadership or thinking is finally working out.
If Fallen Order, Squadrons, the news about Dragon Age 4 indicate a new trend (ie good single player games), sign me the fuck up.

Dragon Age 4, Fallen Order 2, Mass Effect, Command and Conquer Remaster 2 (it should happen given the success of the first) all just got more appealing.
 
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Bitmap Frogs

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I'm one of those people who believes not all games require a multiplayer component, but damn when was the last time we've had a fantasy RPG with this game mode?

I would like some fantasy rpg coop action, but I'd rather not sacrifice dragon age for it.

Too bad deep down was vaporware... :pie_dfws:
 
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wipeout364

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I really think in most cases this is a very flawed model. These modes should be pursued on a free to play model and released alongside the major release. Activision has shown this is a much better model with warzone.

I think EA would be much better off releasing a mass effect or dragon age free to play mode shortly after the release of the main game. Give purchasers of the game a couple of legendary skins and the first battle pass.
 

SinDelta

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I would like some fantasy rpg coop action, but I'd rather not sacrifice dragon age for it.

Too bad deep down was vaporware... :pie_dfws:
Final Fantasy XVI, Edit - Breath of the Wild 2 and the rumored Dragon's Dogma 2 might take some of the sting away regarding fantasy games (not sure about the coop action).

Heck Dragon Age 4 without being forced to incorporate multiplayer elements could be good (won't get my hopes up but still).
 
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CharlieTuna

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Wait, what the fuck were they doing then? How do you go from a traditional RPG game to a "Anthem with dragons"? How was this even a option boggles my mind, specially coming out of Inquisition which burned the IP for a big part of the fan base.

BioWare is so dead.
 

SinDelta

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Wait, what the fuck were they doing then? How do you go from a traditional RPG game to a "Anthem with dragons"? How was this even a option boggles my mind, specially coming out of Inquisition which burned the IP for a big part of the fan base.

BioWare is so dead.
Dragon Age 2 - Dud
Dragon Age Inquisition - Flawed at best, the waiting for the war table, best war table missions taking place off-screen and MMO quests and bloat ruin all pacing, magic is a shell of what it was in Origins
Knights of the Old Republic - Flawed at best, still a MMO and not Kotor 3
Mass Effect 3 - IP destroying ending
Mass Effect Andromeda - Dud, more known for the memes it generated then any actual quality
Anthem - One of the biggest fuck ups in the history of gaming

Studios have probably been canned for less.
 
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GreenAlien

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Wait.. DA4 had a "heavy multiplayer component" and was quasi "Anthem with dragons."
Now.. they remove that "heavy" component?

Basically, they are rebooting development again.
Don't expect it this year.. or next.. and if it doesn't release 2023 it will probably be rebooted again.
This game will never be finished.
 
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Gunslinger

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Best decision! Not everything has to have micro tansaction mp fest. DA is a single player rpg leave it at that.
 
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fart town usa

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ITT I learned that EA was considering multiplayer in a dragon age game.
Check It Out Tim And Eric GIF
 

balls of snow

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Uhh, you know they own them right? Do you just normally not do what your boss says?
Pretty sure Respawn has carte blanch for everything they doing. Also big long time creative leads in bioware left because of how GaaS dragon age was getting. You bleed talent, thats how you get Andromeda
 
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In Your Vase

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Genuinely surprised EA did this - "must have multiplayer and microtransactions" seemed the norm for them (except for Fallen Order, I guess).
 

KungFucius

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Good. Hope the game is good. I liked all of the Dragon Age games, including the one where everything occurred in the same cave / hallway. I just want a 40 hour RPG with a good story. No Multiplayer / loot box bullshit.
 

BusierDonkey

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Once the game is finished, sucks and receives a mediocre reception EA might just remove the corpse that they still call Bioware.