Doug Jones’ Saru took center stage in Star Trek: Discovery’s latest episode, “The Sound of Thunder,” as the Kelpien first office returned to his homeworld to face his peoples’ long legacy of oppression under the heel of the scary predators known as the Ba’aul.
The story followed on recent developments for Saru which saw him lose his “threat ganglia” as he evolved beyond what he, and his fellow Kelpiens, believed what was possible for their species. I spoke to Jones this week about these latest developments for Saru, and what they might mean for the character moving forward. And also about whether or not he might finally become captain of the Discovery next season. Read on for highlights from our chat (and read our review of “The Sound of Thunder”)!
There are a lot of mechanics that Anthem doesn’t make abundantly clear. For instance, combos are a damage-dealing mechanic that’s essential in combat. But the game only lightly touches on their execution and importance, and there are several tidbits like this that are likely to go right over your head.
To help you transform into the best freelancer you can be, we’ve highlighted several tips that’ll enhance your abilities both in and out of combat. We’ve also included further insight and clarification on ancillary aspects of the game you might have questions about.
For more Anthem tips, take a look at our combo guide. We’ll be posting more guides in the coming days, so be sure to check back often. Though, if you’re more interested in guns, we’ve created a feature showcasing every Masterwork and Legendary weapon we’ve found so far.
GameSpot gave Anthem a 6/10 with Reviews Editor Kallie Plagge saying, “Anthem has good ideas, but it struggles significantly with the execution. It’s a co-op game that works best with no one talking; it buries genuinely interesting character moments and puts its most incomprehensible story bits at the forefront; its combat is exciting until you get to the boss fights and find your wings have been clipped. Even the simple, exhilarating act of flying is frequently interrupted by the limitations of your javelin, and you never quite shake that feeling of disappointment–of knowing, throughout the good parts of Anthem, that you’ll inevitably come crashing back down.”
Got any useful tips you didn’t see here? Share them with us and the community in the comments below.
BioWare’s shared-world shooter Anthem is officially out for everyone today, and with it, BioWare has announced the events and changes you can expect over the next three months.
In a post on the BioWare blog, Chad Robertson, Head of Live Service on Anthem, shared his short-term vision for the game with a look at the first 90-day roadmap of what the live-service team has planned.
You can find a list of the activities below, broken out by the month they’ll be deployed. It’s important to note that none of these activities have concrete deployment dates, or weeks, assigned to them just yet, so we’ll have to keep an ear to the ground for when we can expect them to roll out during the calendar month.
Anthem‘s multiplayer focus represents a fairly massive change of pace for BioWare, which is best known for its choice-driven, single-player role-playing games. The developer’s newest game even reminds you that it’s best played with other people whenever you switch from Public play to Private. That said, you’re still probably going to get a better experience playing by yourself–at least initially.
In Anthem, you’ll experience the story via a repetitive cycle. You’ll talk to some NPCs in Fort Tarsis, get your story mission, head out in your javelin, hear some more narrative details over your radio, complete the quest, and be forced back to Tarsis to talk to some more people and get your next story mission. It’s actually not all that different from how you complete the story in Mass Effect: Andromeda or Dragon Age: Inquisition, aside from being forced back to your hub area upon completing a quest. In theory, experiencing Anthem’s story piece by piece with your friends is a cool idea, but in practice it usually results with you missing crucial details.
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If you decide to play Anthem with others, you’re going to find yourself regularly shushing your companions or muting them entirely lest they speak over an important conversation. You’re probably also going to be yelling at them to wait for you. If your allies get too far ahead of you, the game informs you that you’re being left behind and will teleport you so that you can catch up. Getting teleported throws you into one of Anthem’s many loading screens, during which you can miss out on a portion of an important in-game conversation or cutscene. This means it’s not in your best interest to explore Anthem’s world while playing the story if you’re with others. Journeying into a mysterious cave or reading a text log typically results in being left behind and missing out on story beats as a consequence.
As said before, you also can’t start your next story mission until you return to Fort Tarsis and speak to the NPC who has your next quest. However, plenty of other minor characters populate Fort Tarsis–some carry side quests, while others are just fun to talk to. Some of the stories you hear from the NPCs in Fort Tarsis represent the best bits of narrative in Anthem. But again, it’s hard to hear them when you have friends chatting in your ear–especially if they’re egging you on to hurry up and just unlock the next mission so you can all get back to taking down enemy hordes and soaring through the skies. Every part of Anthem’s story just becomes so rushed when you’re with others.
Where playing with friends does help, though, is when you’re ready to tackle the endgame content. Destroying a titan with devastating combos composed of various primers and detonators set up by a team of Ranger, Colossus, Interceptor, and Storm javelins or tackling one of the more lengthy Stronghold missions are some of Anthem’s best instances of gameplay. Although there are moments of idle radio chatter between your freelancer and some NPCs during the endgame missions, none of them have any major impact on understanding or appreciating Anthem’s story. By the time you’ve completed the story and unlocked most of Anthem’s endgame content, you should be close to level 30 as well, which allows you to tackle the more challenging Grandmaster difficulties where you can find the best loot and weapons in the game.
So if you’re set on jumping into Anthem, consider playing through the campaign the first time on your own. Playing the game on Easy or Normal makes combat a breeze–even Hard isn’t all that difficult solo, but you’ll have to be more strategic with how you play. Once you’ve gotten through the story at your own pace, then invite your friends to join you in tackling any leftover side missions you haven’t completed, or jump into the Grandmaster difficulties and start grinding freeplay world events and Strongholds for loot with your fellow freelancers. It’s not the way BioWare wants you to play Anthem, but, for now, it’s the best way.
If you’re still on the fence about picking up the game, check out our Anthem review. Kallie Plagge gave the game a 6/10, writing “Anthem has good ideas, but it struggles significantly with the execution” and remarking how it’s “a co-op game that works best with no one talking.”