Bioware’s Anthem maybe EA’s lifeline in 2018 after multiple ill-received game releases last year. Anthem has the potential to attract Destiny 2 and Overwatch players. However, EA must address the question of microtransactions to gain gamers’ support for the game. Michael Pachter, a prominent gaming analyst, believes that EA will approach Anthem’s monetary system differently to avoid its mistake with Star Wars Battlefront II.
Pachter, a gaming analyst for Wedbush Securities, sat down with Gaming Bolt to discuss Anthem—Bioware’s new IP. The upcoming sci-fi loot-shooter is said to be EA’s answer to Bungie’s Destiny 2. Before Electronic Arts can even begin to predict Anthem’s success, however, the game publisher needs to work on its monetization system.
EA has attempted to introduce a monetary system to a couple of its games, including Mass Effect: Andromeda and Need for Speed Payback, observed Forbes contributor Paul Tassi. However, gamers drew the line with the loot crates in Star War Battlefront II. The microtransactions in the Disney game title interfered too much with organic gameplay and angered players.
SWBII’s microtransaction led to low sales and awareness in the gaming industry. Gamers apparently did not like pay-to-win games. Pachter explained EA’s failed attempt to create its own in-game economy to Gaming Bolt.
“I think if you look at companies that are successful in microtransactions, you’ll see that they are either making mobile games or free to play PC games.”
Pachter believes that big game publishers, like EA, do not understand how to implement microtransactions into their triple-A console titles yet. In Anthem’s case, Pachter suggests that EA follow a different monetization model, one that is similar to mobile games like League of Legends. He also suggests that Bioware and EA only offer cosmetic upgrades in Anthem’s microtransactions–like Overwatch–to avoid SWBII’s pay-to-win system.
Pachter believes that Anthem’s success depends on gamers’ restored faith in EA.
“I think right now EA is on probation with gamers…I don’t think [EA] can afford to put an onerous microtransaction scheme in any game going forward. They need to re-earn gamers’ trust.”
The best way to regain gamers’ loyalties is to produce a good game, noted Game Rant. Bioware’s Anthem has the potential to redeem EA in the eyes of gamers if the game developer learned from its mistakes in Mass Effect: Andromeda. Tassi, from Forbes, believes that microtransactions could affect Anthem’s success. He acknowledges that monetization of the game is inevitable but suggests that EA hold off on any monetary exchanges until it proves the game’s worth.
Anthem is slated for release this fall 2018. It will be available for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.