‘Anthem’ demo servers are facing technical issues and players aren’t happy

Updated to reflect problems are related to technical issues and not overloaded servers.

If you pre-ordered Anthem or you’re a member of one of Electronic Arts’ subscription services, you should have access to the special VIP demo of the game right now. However, technical issues are already keeping excited fans from getting their hands on the game. (And by the way, you can check out our hands-on preview of Anthem here.)

Users logging into Anthem are finding themselves hit by a “connection problem” message, leaving them without access to the always-online game. Digital Trends’ Computing Editor Matt Smith saw the message this morning, with the servers being too full to join, though he did eventually manage to load into the game.

Other players took issue with the state of the servers as well, speculating that it might have been because so many free codes were given away online that many players who hadn’t pre-ordered or subscribed to a membership were still given access.

Electronic Arts global community manager Jesse Anderson explained that the team would be scaling back the servers from the Anthem VIP demo in an effort to gradually let people into the game.

According to BioWare GM Casey Hudson, however, the issues aren’t actually related to server capacity at all, but a problem that didn’t appear in earlier internet tests. The issue seems to extend to other EA games aside from Anthem, as well.

Massive online games almost always experience some sort of hiccup during their infancy, and in the case of Anthem, the game isn’t even fully released yet. If something similar happens on February 22 as players are trying to get into the game they just spent $60 on, it might be a greater cause for concern, but Electronic Arts’ experience with online multiplayer should help it avoid disaster. That being said, it’s hard to forget the SimCity fiasco of 2013, which forced players looking to enjoy a single-player game without access to it because of a forced online connection.

Anthem will be facing some very stiff competition when it launches next month. Metro Exodus, Trials RisingJump ForceFar Cry New Dawn, and Crackdown 3 all launch the week before, and Devil May Cry 5 arrives in early March. Should BioWare succeed in its take on the Destiny formula, however, it’s still likely to attract a substantial audience.

Anthem will be available for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC on February 22. An open period for the demo will be held on February 1.

Updated on January 25, 2019: Added statement from Casey Hudson on nature of technical issues.


Get over here! All the details on next week’s Mortal Kombat 11 closed beta

Mortal Kombat 11 will hold its closed beta period from March 28 through March 31, giving those who pre-ordered the game the chance to check it out prior to its official launch in April.

Upcoming zombiefest Days Gone boasts 30-plus hours of story-driven content

Days Gone, the first PlayStation 4 title from Sony's Bend Studio, looks to offer a different type of zombie game. Here's everything we know about the forthcoming title, from the setting to its gameplay.

Here's what we know about the Dark Souls developer's next game

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice is the latest game from Dark Souls and Bloodborne developer From Software. Here is everything we know about the new game, including its setting and combat changes.
Social Media

Yep, it’s not just you. Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp are down for many

Facebook's family of apps has been suffering issues for much of the day. Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Facebook itself have been out of action for users around the world, with the company scrambling to sort it out.

Need to perform a factory reset on your Xbox One console? Here's how to do it

Whether you're upgrading to a One X and giving your old console to a friend, or troubleshooting a technical issue, sometimes your Xbox One needs a clean slate. Here's our quick guide on how to factory reset an Xbox One.

New character Octane makes an entrance with the first Apex Legends Battle Pass

Apex Legends' first season kicks off March 19 on PS4, Xbox One, and PC. The Battle Pass comes in two versions, with the base version costing around 10 bucks. Seasonal rewards include a bevy of new loot such as legendary skins.

Is Google launching a game-streaming service? Watch our GDC livestream to see

Google is presenting its 2019 GDC keynote on March 19. Here is how you can tune in to watch the event, as well as what could be shown during the presentation. Google's Project Stream service could be on the agenda.

The Unevn One is a portable desk that brings PC gaming on the road

Bringing a gaming PC outside your usual setup can be a challenge, but the Unevn One is the first all-in-one, portable gaming desk complete with a computer chassis and integrated monitor mount.

How to get the most out of agent builds and specializations in The Division 2

The Division 2 has an intricate loot system to let you fine tune your agent to fit your play style. In our builds and specializations guide, we'll walk you through all of the stats you should pay attention to when tinkering with gear.

Transport your Nintendo Switch in style with these nifty cases

The Nintendo Switch, which boasts both wired and handheld modes, needs a good case to ensure it doesn't get beat up while you're on the go. We scoured through dozens of Switch cases to bring you the best ones.

Here's how you can control your PS4 right from your phone

Sony built the PlayStation 4 with smartphone and mobile integration in mind. Take a look at our guide for connecting your smartphone or tablet to a PS4, so you can get the most out of the system while on the go.

Here's our guide on how to progress through The Division 2 endgame

Your mission as an agent doesn't end after taking out the three main factions in The Division 2. The endgame brings the Black Tusks, a dangerous new faction, to D.C. Our endgame guide will help you on your quest for the best loot.

Angry Birds AR: Isle of Pigs brings 3D demolition into your living room

Angry Birds is releasing its next entry in the spring of 2019 - with a new spin. Bringing 3D environments and destruction, Angry Birds AR: Isle of Pigs uses augmented reality to add a new dimension to a classic series.

Blackout to go? Call of Duty: Mobile is coming this summer

Activision and Tencent have partnered to create Call of Duty: Mobile, a free-to-play version of the popular shooter franchise that will be available on iOS and Android devices this summer.