Although Anthem was originally set to receive a major update on March 12th, it appears developer BioWare is launching a number of fixes early. Today, March 9th, Anthem players will download a title update that includes improvements and bug fixes that should make the experience smoother and better.

Key among the changes is the addition of a respawn timer for all missions. In main story missions, agent missions, and non-end game missions, players will only have to wait 10 seconds until they can respawn, whereas in all end game missions, Strongholds, and Legendary Contracts, the respawn timer is set at 30 seconds. This should alleviate those instances where players were stuck staring at a red screen while waiting for a revive, and usually left waiting for a while.

The update will also finally remove common (white) and uncommon (green) items from the loot pool for level 30 players. Originally this fix was supposed to go live with the loot system update over a week ago, but BioWare needed some extra time to ensure it worked correctly and didn’t cause any problems.

On the gameplay experience side, this update has a number of fixes for game crashes, mission objectives, and Quickplay matchmaking that should make it so players can jump into and complete missions without any problems. The patch notes do not specifically call out the PS4 shutdown problem by name, but less crashes is a good thing regardless.

High level fixes and changes

  • Respawn restrictions have been removed – Respawn timers are now based on the activity a player is in. Crit-Path, Agent Missions and other non-end game missions now have a respawn timer of 10 seconds. Strongholds, Legendary Contracts, and other end game missions now have a respawn timer of 30 seconds. The respawn timer Freeplay remains unchanged.
  • Loot Changes – Common (white) and Uncommon (green) drops will no longer appear for players that are level 30.
  • Improved stability for all platforms – this includes fixes for a number of issues that were causing crashes or connection problems
  • Audio Improvements – Fixed a number of issues that could cause audio to drop out

General Fixes and Improvements

  • Fixed a number of issues that were blocking players from accessing the Forge
  • All missions should now properly end when all conditions have been met
  • The inbox now properly displays information on PC (the inbox is found in the newsfeed)
  • Fixed an issue that would cause players to be unable to interact with NPCs in Fort Tarsis
  • The vault is no longer accessible from the Forge. This change was made to improve performance
  • Fixed an issue that would cause the game to hang when entering menus while on an expedition
  • Titans will no longer respawn on missions after they are defeated. Example: if players defeat 2 out of 3 titans and then wipe on the third, the first two will not reappear when players respawn during a mission
  • Server shutdown messages should now appear less often
  • The ability to Quickplay into a Stronghold has been added back to the game
  • Mouse button 4 is no longer bound to the back button for PC players
  • Crashes that occurred while selecting certain conversation options when interacting with an NPC have been fixed
  • Players should no longer get stuck at the end of the “Tomb of General Tarsis” mission
  • Players should now run into less issues during Quickplay missions. Additional improvements to Quickplay will be coming in future updates
  • Players should no longer get stuck behind fogwalls on missions or in strongholds as often
  • Players should now receive credit for the “There Be Giants” challenge when they are downed and when the event is active
  • Improved the audio when defeating creatures to provide better feedback
  • Changed wording for server shutdown messaging to better indicate that it is just the players server shutting down, not the entire game server
  • Players may now launch an expedition from anywhere within the launch bay and Fort Tarsis.
  • PS4 led lights will now change based on the javelin being used
  • It should now be harder for players to get stun locked by certain enemy compositions
  • The values on max flight time inscriptions have been increased
  • The appearance of the N7 vinyl on Legion of Dawn armor has been improved
  • Haluk will now properly face players during certain dialogue scenes
  • The message “Open the Cortex to track the legionnaire Challenges” will no longer pop up after completing the appropriate challenges

Strongholds

  • Fixed an issue that would cause players to get stuck at the entrance to the sewers in the Temple of the Scar Stronghold

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Creature Updates

  • Titans: We have made several balance changes to all variations of Titans
    • Reduced overall damage mitigation from 100% to between 70% and 75% depending on the damage type.
    • Increased the time that weakpoints are exposed.
    • Fixed an issue that prevented effects from applying and thus preventing combos.
    • Increased the damage the Titan takes from weakpoint hits.
    • Lesser Titan’s weakpoint’s have been changed to always be active.
    • Improved the collision on the ring and seeking projectile attacks. This should make them easier to dodge.
    • Decreased the radius of the seeking projectile attack.
    • Decreased the damage done by the self-destruct ability.
  • Frozen Scar Enforcers and Scrappers can no longer move or attack while frozen.
  • The Monitor’s health has been greatly reduced in the Heart of Rage Stronghold.
  • Force
    • Players will be less likely to be repeatedly staggered by heavy attacks.
    • Adjusted the force applied by some creature attacks down which will lower the frequency of players being staggered.

Damage and Item Scaling Changes

  • Adjusted the damage scaling of secondary damage sources. These now scale with Average Item Power. This will allow these damage sources to better scale in the Grandmaster Difficulties. This will increase the scaling of the following:
    • Melee Damage
    • Combo Damage
    • Ultimate Damage
    • Status Effects
    • Item Procs (e.g. Proc from Yvenia’s Thunder)
  • Item Power scaling has changed to better reflect the actual power of the item based on its rarity. This is applied to all items retroactively. Players will see the Power of their items go up.

Gameplay Bug Fixes

  • The Ultimate ability bar will no longer appear full at the start of a mission when it isn’t actually full
  • Weapon recoil will now stop once an exo is looking straight up
  • Fixed a number of animation issues that could occur when the Colossus was using its shield
  • It should no longer be possible for the Interceptor to become Frozen while starting up their ultimate
  • Interceptor Aura damage will now deal the correct type of damage based on the active aura
  • Players can no longer equip abilities from one javelin to another
  • The Colossus can now use gear faster after being attacked by a heavy hit from enemies
  • The Colossus can now shield charge through destructible objects such as explosive canisters or harvest nodes
  • The Colossus now recovers faster after crashing into walls

Item Balance Updates

  • Increased the base health of Wind Wall and Bulwark Point to provide better scaling in higher difficulties. The duration of these has been reduced to 20 seconds, down from 60 seconds
  • Burst Mortar’s damage has been increased to 300, up from 145 and its cooldown has been reduced to 6 seconds, down from 10 seconds. Its description has also been fixed
  • Flak Cannon’s damage has been increased to 42, up from 30
  • Battle Cry’s description has been updated to explain that it also reduces the resistances of affected targets
  • Wraith Strike’s damage has been increased to 250, up from 200 and it will now apply elemental effect to targets based on the active aura
    • Note: Description text for Wraith Strike will be updated in 1.0.4.

Item Bug Fixes

  • Wind Wall should no longer block or interfere with other player abilities
  • Ranger Grenadier Component will now correctly lower the cooldown of grenade abilities
  • Fixed an issue where certain weapons were not firing where the crosshairs were aimed
  • The Ice Blast ability for the Storm javelin now has the primer icon correctly displayed

Inscription Bug Fixes

  • The Thruster Delay Recovery inscription is now correctly applying a bonus
  • The Overheat Delay Recovery inscription is now correctly applying a bonus
  • The Weapon Reload Bonus inscription is now correctly applying a bonus
    • Note: These will have non-updated text values until the next patch (1.0.4)

Masterwork Item Balance Updates

  • Increased the base damage of the following Masterwork Weapons.
    • Ralner’s Blaze
    • Rolling Carnage
    • Cycle of Pain
    • The Last Stand
    • Glorious Result
    • Insult and Injury
    • Sentinel Vengeance
    • Gnosta’s Balm
    • Vassa’s Surprise
    • Soothing Touch
    • Renewed Courage
    • Artinia’s Gambit

Masterwork Item Bug Fixes

  • Ralner’s Blaze – Will no longer roll with incorrect inscriptions
  • Ablative Shielding now provides the proper boost in shield and armor
  • Badge of Devastation will now generate more ultimate charge when triggered
  • It should no longer be possible to stack the effect from Gunslinger’s Mark more than once

Other highlights from the patch notes include a number of debuffs for Titans that should make them easier to kill and susceptible to elemental effects. Titans are easily one of the most time-consuming Anthem enemy types to face but now they should be much easier to kill.

BioWare is also buffing a number of weapons and abilities in Anthem in an effort to make everything stronger for the player. To that end, many items will have their power level increased in order to give players more damage.

The title update for Anthem seems fairly comprehensive and covers a lot of what BioWare promised in its recent livestream. There are still a number of issues on the developer’s radar, notably the health bug, but fixes for those will need to wait until a later update.

Anthem is available now for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

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