Anthem had its largest coming out party yet during E3 2018, but the omission of romantic relationships from the game ruffled the collective feathers of the BioWare’s fan base. The ability to navigate the romantic minefield and build love connections between characters has long been a BioWare staple, so when it was revealed that Anthem wouldn’t include a romance system, fans were quick to express their disappointment.
Despite the developer’s decision, those dejected feelings haven’t fallen on deaf ears. In an interview with GamesBeat, BioWare General Manager Casey Hudson offered a glimmer of hope for those who long to make Anthem’s Javelin pilots woo one another. “I think the expectations from a BioWare game—Mass Effect and Dragon Age, they’re quite mature-rated storylines … That was one framework for what romances were in a BioWare game. So then the question is, are there going to be romances in Anthem? We’ve been saying no, but—the nuance is, of course we do want relationships. It’s just more in an action genre of storytelling,” said Hudson.
Hudson’s statement isn’t a solid guarantee that the game will implement a romance system, but it does leave the option on the table as BioWare continues to explore content updates that will support Anthem past its Feb. 22, 2019 release date.
The fan response could have a direct effect on whether such a system is integrated, as Hudson cited fan response to a certain Mass Effect character that influenced changes to the series’s romantic choices. “You might remember, with Mass Effect, Garrus was an alien that, as we developed the story … we didn’t know what he would really be like and what the reaction would be. It turned out that people loved Garrus so much that they wanted romances with him, so we built that into Mass Effect 2 and people loved it. That same opportunity exists here. If people really like a character and they want to spend more time with them, want a relationship with them, that’s definitely in the cards for the future,” said Hudson.