Lead Anthem producer Ben Irving leaves BioWare

Earlier this year, executive producer Mark Darrah, lead producer Michael Gamble, and lead director Jonathan Warner confirmed that they’ve left Anthem (opens in new tab)‘s development team. Today, lead producer Ben Irving, who helped fill in for Gamble, announced that he’s leaving BioWare entirely to accept a position at another gaming company. 

“After eight amazing years at BioWare I have made the decision to move on and have accepted an exciting opportunity at another gaming company,” he said on Twitter (opens in new tab). “Since the first time I played Baldur’s Gate many many years ago, BioWare was the dream place I always wanted to work.

“I will forever be grateful to all the people who gave me the chance to work on great products with amazing people. I believe Anthem has a bright future – there is a great team working on it and I look forward to following its progress (and playing it!) from the sidelines.

“I have really enjoyed interacting with the Anthem community – Streams, Twitter and Reddit. Through the good times and the tough times. You all are in great hands with [EA global lead Jesse Anderson] and [EA / Bioware global community lead Andrew Johnson]. I wish nothing but the best for all of you.” 

Irving’s departure comes at a decisive moment for Anthem. After a rough launch and an even rougher follow-up plagued by delays and repeated setbacks, the most recent Anthem patch notes (opens in new tab) outlined the long-awaited Cataclysm, not to mention a suite of Javelin upgrades. It’s not without issues, and the Cataclysm itself is a bit underwhelming, but the most recent update has been met with fairly positive reception in large part thanks to Grandmaster difficulty nerfs and more plentiful high-end loot. 

Anthem isn’t dead in the water and a single departure won’t change that, but a disconcerting pattern is starting to emerge among the game’s higher-ups. With its roadmap pushed back to who-knows-when (opens in new tab) and its leadership steadily moving onto greener pastures, BioWare and EA could stand to discuss Anthem’s immediate and long-term future.  

Irving’s departure is unrelated, but internal shifts at BioWare suggest the studio is doubling down on Dragon Age 4 (opens in new tab)

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