Anthem Players Are Boycotting the Game to Protest Loot Changes

Anthem players are taking a week off from the game in order to voice their concerns about the game’s changes to loot.

A recent patch making multiple changes and adjustments went live two days ago on March 9. This patch changed respawn times for certain events. Other issues were fixed too, like the game crashing multiple PlayStation 4 systems as well as problems with the way the game scales weapon damage.

The other big change this patch made was the removal of common and uncommon drops from level 30 loot pools. While this sounds great in theory, in practice it’s a little more complicated. BioWare removed commons and uncommons but did not increase the rate at which rare, epic, masterwork, and legendary items drop, making Anthem’s endgame loot payout feel a lot less satisfying than before, and the playerbase is not happy.

What makes this worse is the so-called “11 Hour Bug”, which caused fantastic loot to drop in droves just prior to the most recent patch being released. Reddit user -Supp0rt- came out of a stronghold with a whopping 10 masterwork items, meanwhile players are struggling to find even one post-patch.

To combat the changes to the loot and call for more liberal payouts of cool gear, Reddit user Afinda made a post on the game’s subreddit asking players to boycott the game from March 11-March 15. “Time Invested Vs. Reward is a complete Joke at this point,” says Afinda. “You want to make a point once and for all? Well, what could hurt a game that has Real Money transactions for cosmetics (lol, yeah there are nearly none I know) or is a live service more than anything? Player Numbers.”

Afinda’s cause has quickly picked up steam, with the original post currently sitting at 11.1k upvotes. “Jokes on you. I stopped playing last week,” wrote a user who goes by Zomgrofll in the comments. They’re not alone, either. Several commenters have said they’ve already stopped playing Anthem, while others are still hoping for Anthem to improve. A number of people have said they’re switching to The Division 2, which launches this week.

Neither EA nor BioWare have issued a statement regarding the boycott, but BioWare’s head of live service Chad Roberston tweeted Saturday night acknowledging community feedback.

“We appreciate all the feedback from the community on the game. We love the passion and share it,” he tweeted. “We’re not yet fully happy with the game’s loot behavior either.”

A post on the Anthem subreddit sums up the players’ response to this perfectly. “Bioware, you don’t need to be happy with the loot. The players do.”

Apex Legends Was Leaked a Year Ago, Dismissed as Fake

Respawn’s wildly popular battle-royale Apex Legends was leaked an entire year ago, but nobody cared.

Reddit user hiticonic made a post on the Titanfall subreddit 11 months ago with an image that very closely resembles Apex Legends’s current map.

The comments were quick to express their disappointment and disbelief. “I really hope this doesn’t happen,” wrote one user. “They better not add battle royale in the next game,” wrote another. The thread only amassed 14 comments in total, and then, silence.

Nothing was heard about this supposed Titanfall battle royale until one month ago, when rumors began circulating about a Titanfall battle royale game called Apex Legends. Rumors said the game would be revealed and then launch shortly after on PS4, Xbox One, and PC. We all know how things went from there.

Now Apex Legends has recently hit 50 million players, and the leak from last year resurfaced on the game’s subreddit to much amusement. Respawn’s community manager even chimed in in the comments. “Haha I remember this!” he wrote. “It was a relief to see folks blow it off and I was thinking, ‘well, he’ll be able to say I was right when next year comes along.'”

In an interview with Eurogamer, Apex Legends Lead Producer Drew McCory spoke about the game’s surprise release. “We’re doing a free to play game, with essentially loot boxes, after we were bought by EA, and it’s not Titanfall 3. It’s the perfect recipe for a marketing plan to go awry, so why have that – let’s just ship the game and let players play.” A lot of Apex Legends’s success can be attributed to its surprise release. There was no marketing campaign, no build up, the game just dropped and people started playing it

Maybe its for the best last year’s leak never caught on.

Rumor: All Digital Xbox One launching in May

Originally reported last year, Microsoft has been working on a version of the Xbox One without a disc drive.

Now, according to a report by Windows Central, it looks like the all-digital console is nearly upon us. The “Xbox One S All-Digital Edition” is set to launch in May, with pre-orders beginning next month, and it will be the first Xbox console to launch without a disc drive. The price is currently unknown, but rumors from last November priced the console at around $200.

The console looks like it’ll focus primarily on Xbox Game Pass and the upcoming Project xCloud streaming service. Microsoft has been heavily pushing Game Pass since its launch, even going so far as to put all their first party titles, like the recent Crackdown 3, on the service as soon as they launch, and an all-digital Xbox is a perfect fit for those who use Game Pass for the bulk of their games.

Crackdown 3 was available on Game Pass the day it launched.

Microsoft is no stranger to having multiple tiers of the same console, starting with the Xbox One S and Xbox One X this generation and continuing into the next generation with Xbox Anaconda and Xbox Lockhart. Microsoft’s recent strategy has been to spread the Xbox brand to as many devices as possible in order to make Xbox less of a specific piece of hardware and more of a platform. The Xbox One family of devices continues to grow, Microsoft first party titles are becoming more and more frequent on PC, and Xbox Live is spreading to non-Xbox devices.

Project xCloud looks to broaden the Xbox platform even further, streaming Xbox games to not only consoles (like this all-digital Xbox One) and PC, but also mobile phones and tablets. For example, the xCloud trailer (which you can check out below), shows Forza Horizon 4 running on an Android phone and Halo 5 being played on a tablet with touch controls.

Choice has been the focal point of Microsoft’s recent decisions for Xbox, and multiple devices are just the beginning. The release of an all-digital Xbox One would make three Xbox One devices available to gamers, all playing the same games, just in different ways. As services like Game Pass continue to evolve, and as streaming continues to become a more and more viable way to engage with games, a multitude of options will make themselves available to gamers whether it be the device they play on or the way they get their games.


Regardless, the all-digital Xbox One rumors are still just rumors, so take them with a grain of salt. If you’re more interested in Microsoft’s next gen offerings, then check out more about Xbox Anaconda and Lockhart here.

Anthem is Causing System Wide Crashes and Bricking Consoles

BioWare’s Anthem has had a rocky launch period with numerous bugs, glitches, and crashes, and BioWare has deployed some patches to fix some things, but a particularly nasty bug seems to have slipped through the cracks: Anthem is completely turning off PlayStation 4 consoles and even preventing them from being turned back on in some cases.

“When encountering a crash or game error, sometimes I get booted to the main menu or out of the game completely to the PS4 dashboard. But twice now when trying to matchmake my PS4 has completely turned off,” wrote user forthemasters on the game’s subreddit. Other users quickly replied that they had experienced the same issue.

Some people can’t even get their consoles to turn back on after crashing. A user who goes by TheMadTitanGauntlet made a post on the Anthem subreddit warning anyone playing on PlayStation to stop playing, as their system had been “completely bricked to the point of not even turning on because of Anthem”.

Even if you do get your PS4 to turn back on after a crash, the boot up is similar to powering on your console after pulling the power cable. The system warns you against doing that, saying the system wasn’t turned off properly, and then it has to check and repair any storage devices. Shutdowns caused by Anthem are not clean shutdowns, and there is a possibility of data corruption.

Luckily, a recent workaround to the supposed bricking of consoles was discovered by Reddit user katcher12, who posted a fix on the game’s subreddit. Booting the PS4 into safe mode and rebuilding the database seems to correct the issue, so at least consoles aren’t being fully bricked by this bug.

Some players have asked Sony for refunds because of the crashes, and a handful of users have reported success, but others were turned down.

BioWare has not issued a response regarding the system shutdown bug, but they have been working on updating and fixing Anthem in a timely manner, adjusting the game’s loot system in a recent patch and laying out a roadmap for the next 90 days.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered Rated in Europe

It looks like the 2009 classic is finally getting the remaster treatment.

The Pan European Game Information board (or PEGI, the European equivalent of the ESRB) has rated Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered for PlayStation 4. A remaster of Modern Warfare 2 has been heavily rumored since the original Modern Warfare was remastered alongside 2016’s Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, but nothing has been officially confirmed by Activision.

The rating information has since vanished from PEGI’s official website, but you can see what was originally posted below.

Rumors about a Modern Warfare 2 remaster began circulating early last year, when Amazon Italy put up a listing for the game but quickly removed it. Rumors have continued to pop up since then, and they all have one thing in common: the remaster is single-player only. Kotaku’s Jason Schreier also stated on a Kinda Funny Games stream that he had heard details about the remaster and could confirm it exists.

Modern Warfare 2 is a fan favorite in the Call of Duty community, with many citing it as the peak of the franchise. Fans love it so much that it was a bestseller last August (thanks to Xbox One backwards compatibility) despite it having been released a decade ago. While you wait for the potential remaster of Modern Warfare 2, be sure to play the remaster of the original Modern Warfare, which is free with PlayStation Plus this month.

Whether Modern Warfare 2 Remastered will be a standalone title or bundled with this year’s new Call of Duty entry is unknown, but it looks like this is finally the year where it’s happening.

Anthem is Getting a Loot Overhaul

Since its release last week, players have been flying through the world of Anthem, shooting and looting to their hearts’ content. However, those playing on higher difficulties have expressed concerns about the way the game handles its loot drops and and weapon inscriptions, and now BioWare has given an official response saying that changes are coming to the loot system.

Lead Producer Ben Irvo described the upcoming tweaks in an official Reddit post. Items in Anthem have inscriptions, perks that provide small buffs to abilities and weapons, like increasing assault rifle damage by 5%. After the update, weapons won’t have inscriptions that apply to other weapon types, so players won’t get an assault rifle that increases sniper rifle ammo or anything like that. Now it’ll either have an inscription that benefits whatever weapon type it is or it’ll have a javelin wide benefit, like increased lightning damage. These changes aren’t retroactive, so they’ll only apply to newly obtained items post-patch, not everything sitting in players’ vaults.

This assault rifle increases damage for autocannons, weapons I don’t use.

Anthem is a loot based game, so progression from common white gear up to orange and yellow masterworks and legendaries is a critical part of the experience. This update is going to remove common and uncommon (white and green) loot from the drop table if players are at level 30, so now endgame players will see nothing below a blue rarity.

Crafting is also getting some much needed changes. Crafting a masterwork weapon will now only require 15 masterwork embers instead of 25. Ideally, players want their masterwork weapons to have the best possible inscriptions in order to maximize their power, so once they acquire a masterwork weapon and get the blueprint for it, they’d repeatedly craft it until they got the perfect roll. Lowering the resources required (in addition to the changes to inscriptions) should make it easier on players trying to get the best variation of a weapon.

In addition to the loot overhaul, BioWare also released patch notes for the update that went live this morning, which you can check out here. Some bugs were fixed, like being able to reopen chests in strongholds and resetting the Swarm Tyrant boss encounter by exiting to the main menu and rejoining, but the highlight of the patch is the change to the tethering system, giving players some more time to catch up to their squad before seeing a countdown timer.


For more on Anthem, check out our review of the game and take a look at the 90-day roadmap laid out for updates. Have you been playing a lot of Anthem? What are your thoughts about these changes? Be sure to let us know down below, and follow us on Twitter for quick and easy updates.

Pokemon Sword and Shield Announced for Switch

The eighth generation of Pokemon is finally upon us with Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield, announced in this morning’s Pokemon direct.

Not much was revealed about the games, but they’re mainline Pokemon RPGs, not spin-off titles like last year’s Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee. The games are set in the Galar region, which appears to be based on Britain. The starter Pokemon were shown off as well. Upon beginning their journey, trainers will be able to choose from the grass-type Pokemon Grookey, the fire-type Pokemon Scorbunny, or the water-type Pokemon Sobble.

Gameplay looks to be similar to traditional Pokemon games with tall grass, random encounters, and turn-based battles, but no extensive details were given. After the trailer (which you can check out below) debuted, The Pokemon Company teased it was working on additional Pokemon projects other than Sword and Shield, but they didn’t say anything more than that.

Pokemon Sword and Shield are slated to launch in late 2019 for Nintendo Switch.