Just a day after a producer on BioWare’s much-maligned Anthem left the studio, Fernando Melo, a senior producer working on Dragon Age 4 is leaving as well.
Melo made the announcement on social media that he’s leaving the once renowned developer after 12 years. Both departures may signal problems for BioWare which just released the Cataclysm update for Anthem. The update doesn’t seem to have galvanized the player-base and some fear BioWare may go the way of several other shuttered EA studios.
Both Melo and Ben Irving, the producer on Anthem, say that they are leaving the company on amicable terms. Melo mentions the upcoming game in his post calling it “the definitive Dragon Age experience” and that he looks forward to playing it as “a fan this time around.”
He’s not the only one hoping the next Dragon Age hits it out of the park. After the issues fans had with both Mass Effect: Andromeda and Anthem, many see Dragon Age 4 as the studios last shot at restoring the faith many used to have in the developer.
If you have been paying attention at all to gaming news, Anthem has somehow become the epitome of every failure that EA Games, Bioware, and somehow any Prussian or Austro Hungarian government has ever made. Ever.
Last week the Nets and the Twitters exploded with the news that three of the main devs for Anthem were leaving that project and moving on to Dragon Age 4. Mike Gamble, Mike Darrah, and Jonathan Warner were reported as leaving the beleaguered game. But, is this a sign that Anthem will soon join the scrap heap of history? To one day fill a landfill a la the Atari fiasco of the ET game?
I do not think so. For one thing, Mike Gamble and Mike Darrah are a part of Bioware Edmonton, the division of Bioware that typically is working on the new stuff. Whereas, Ben Irving and Chad Robertson who are listed as the lead producers of Anthem now are Bioware Austin, the division of Bioware that handles the live services of Anthem (and Star Wars: The Old Republic, another online game that was made poorly but rescued by a very dedicated team in Austin.) Perhaps this is just the change of reins that was expected and the gaming media is blowing the news out of proportion. Bioware Austin has a track record of turning a product around, though it could certainly be argued that they shouldn’t always have to be damage control… but that is not the world we live in yet.
I still play Anthem, and I constantly see people on my friends list in game as well. While Bioware and EA could have easily released a more polished game, it is my opinion that they did not release a bad one. One can only hope that Bioware and EA give the developers the time, support, and space to make Anthem and Dragon Age 4 (whatever it may be) the great games that we (and they) deserve.