Technology

Report says next Dragon Age will now be single-player-only due to Anthem’s fortunes, reversing EA’s original plans

Fallen Order’s success also influenced pivot.

Developer BioWare’s highly anticipated new Dragon Age game is reportedly now a strictly single-player experience, with EA having pivoted its demands for a live-service-style game following the success of Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and the failure of Anthem.

As reported by Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier, sources familiar with the matter say the next Dragon Age title was previously being designed with a heavy multiplayer component.

The project reportedly first entered development in 2015, but Bloomberg says the original vision was rebooted by EA and BioWare in 2017, in a grasp for long-term monetisation. This reboot – supposedly dismissed by some employees as “Anthem with dragons” – is said to be the reason behind the departure of creative director Mike Laidlaw that same year.

According to Bloomberg, however, those plans have shifted once more, and EA has now given BioWare the go-ahead to strip out Dragon Age’s multiplayer component and transform it into a single-player-only experience – a process that’s been ongoing over the course of recent months.

EA’s pivot is reportedly attributable to two events: the reception of BioWare’s multiplayer shooter Anthem – which flopped on release and will no longer receive its long-awaited overhaul as of yesterday – plus the success of developer Respawn Entertainment’s Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. The latter game – a strictly single-player experience – was well-received on launch and exceeded EA’s sales expectations, reaching over 10 million players.

BioWare, which is also working on a new Mass Effect title, has been steadily drip-feeding details of its upcoming Dragon Age game in recent months, sharing a brief new teaser at the end of last year, as well as location news back in January. There’s no official window for its release yet, but it’s currently expected to arrive some time after April 2022.