Howdy Freelancers! So the Sunken Cell is the brand new Stronghold in Anthem, and for this particular livestream Bioware decided they were going to talk about it a little. The livestream was pushed from the Thursday before due to technical issues, but now that it’s here I’m going to go through and pull out all the tidbits of information you may have missed the first time around.

Outside of this livestream Bioware mentioned that they’e delaying the new content coming to Anthem for the foreseeable future. However, I believe the focus of this livestream was to discuss content that is coming to the game, which is always a positive thing. I’ll have more on future content releases as and when information is shared.

I couldn’t find a YouTube VOD of the stream, and I didn’t want to link the Twitch one because those guys have a funny thing about old videos. Here is a link to the Anthem Game YouTube channel, the VOD should pop up there at some point.

The Sunken Cell Stronghold

I won’t go into too many details about the new Stronghold, if you want to know more I recommend watching the livestream VOD yourself. A brief overview of the story behind it is that Corvus have found Dr. Harkin’s facility, and now The Dominion are trying to find something there. It’s our duty as Freelancers to stop them, but also find out what the hell is down there.

Balance

Something that Bioware worked hard on with Sunken Cell is balance. Specifically this is the balance between combat and everything else, which the community has said has been weighted heavily towards one or the other. This Stronghold is an example of what we can expect in terms of the new level of balance in activities moving forwards. So far things look good, there’s a lot of new stuff going on and it all looks fun to play to me. Let me know in the comments how you feel about it.

Forge on the Fly

We knew this from the patch note drop, but it’s now possible to access the Forge at any time. This is something that’s been hugely requested by the community, and I’m glad to see that it’s finally been implemented. For all of you who were hoping to be able to pick up more than your inventory allows, this should alleviate the pressure on your storage because you can get rid of the stuff you don’t want on the go.

Ongoing Story

Sunken Cell is an example of content to come in that it contains bits and pieces of story that both lead on from the main game of Anthem, and set stuff up for new content that’s coming. This is good because it avoids the Destiny 1 issue of new content being self-contained and having no story whatsoever. Hopefully we’ll be able to discover things that are mysterious and become relevant later on in this Stronghold.

Lightning Strikes

Some Freelancers, including me, would be immediately struck by lightning after jumping into Freeplay. this was endlessly annoying, but it has been fixed so that it probably won’t happen anymore. I bet we still get struck all the time after the initial start though.

Design Mantra

While discussing the room with crazy lasers, you’ll see what I mean, Ben Scott, the guy who primarily works on Strongholds, talked about the design mantra for the Strongholds in Anthem. He said that their focus is on one Freelancer being the hero, as opposed to what other MMOs have which is activities with really hard areas that one person can’t get through. As a result everyone hates the person who can’t progress because they hold the entire team up. I really think that this is the best way to look at Stronghold-like activities, and I wish that more developers would take this attitude.

The Water Wall

This isn’t something that will affect us in-game, but the final fight for this Stronghold was said to once have a very different end-boss fight. The water wall around the end area used to play a much bigger wall, and it sounds as if at one point Freelancers could fly into it and do lots of different things as part of the fight. I’m not bothered that this feature was too technically challenging for the final version, but I do think it’s important to remember that Bioware have a process to try to make the best experience possible, and going into the water here wasn’t it.

Revive When Stronghold Boss Dies

If you were ever playing a Stronghold and died just before the boss did, you’d need to wait for the team to revive you. Now you’ll be instantly revived when a Stronghold boss dies, which is unbelievably useful, thank you Bioware.

Conclusion

This stream was very different to all of the others Bioware have done, and felt quite sedated. I think the team are excited about Anthem, but they’re getting to the point of being pissed off with all the negativity towards it. I think they could do better in terms of presentation in the future, but their overall aim with this stream was to show off the new Stronghold, and they achieved that.

I’ll have a post up in the near future exploring all the new patch notes and bugs too, so keep an eye out for that. Let me know what you thought of the stream, and think of the new Stronghold, in the comments.

Image Source: Variety

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