Apex Legends – Brand new Battle Royale game, 25 million players hit
Apex Legends arrived out of nowhere. Within a week of release, this new Battle Royale game had reached 25 million players. It was boosted into the public consciousness by Twitch streamers like Shroud and DrDisrespect. Apex Legends is good. There are some groundbreaking features in the game. Despite everyone’s distrust of villainous EA the magic has really come from the development team at Respawn. EA just threw some money at it, thankfully.
So far EA has announced they will look into a mobile version of the hit game and also introduce cross-platform play between PC, Xbox and PlayStation. Check back regularly for when the game is released to download it as an APK here. Right now we have the download link for the PC version of the game, although you also need to download Origin. This is EA’s game launcher, never well-received by gamers.
We have some doubts about the success of Apex Legends on mobile. Tencent have worked wonders with the PUBG Mobile app (also downloadable as an APK) with the introduction of an intuitive control system and surprising stability. Something similar will have to be invested in by EA to get Apex Legends to be as playable as it deserves to be.
What is Apex Legends?
Apex Legends (no verification) is a first person shooter (FPS) Battle Royale game developed by Respawn Entertainment. A studio which includes members of the original Infinity Ward team who were responsible for Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, one of the most iconic FPS games of all time. Respawn is the team behind Titanfall and Titanfall 2, two unique games that the universe and characters of Apex Legends are drawn from.
Currently, Apex Legends features 1 map, 8 different playable legends and a range of unique abilities. The weapons and ultimates are reminiscent of other class-based Multiplayer games, like Overwatch. The movement in the game is fluid and smooth, smoother even than Call of Duty’s: Blackout BR. Each gun has versatile characteristics and feel significantly different from each other – there are no bad guns in the game, except the poor Mozambique.
It’s expected that the competitive scene for Apex Legends will be one of the greatest to emerge from the Battle Royale genre. With a much higher skill cap than its main competitors PUBG and Fortnite, there has already been a great Twitch Rivals stream that highlighted some of the best players in the world, including 18-year-old Dizzy, an ex-Counter Strike pro who has been grinding out the game since day one.
Main features of Apex Legends – why is it so good?
Apex introduces some fantastic features that we haven’t seen before. Each squad is a trio and there are 20 teams in the game. This team-based combat inspires the use and introduction of a meta game, where different character’s abilities work well together. The most common combination right now is between Bangalore and Bloodhood. Dropping Bangalore’s Q (a smoke screen) and activating Bloodhound’s Z (his ultimate allows him to see through smoke) can be a devastating combo.
In terms of gameplay, everything about the game feels well polished. Its ping system is outstanding. Never with a BR game have we felt that a microphone is not an essential part of playing the game. You can ping the enemy, ping the ammo you need for your gun, and ping items on the ground you see that your team mates might want, to name just a few functions.
Gun mechanics and movement
The movement and gun mechanics promote high-level play, although the system is not too complicated and can be easily picked up over the course of your first 20 games or so. Each ability is unique to their Legend and can be used to great effect. There are a variety of different scopes, levels of rarity that affect the item or the weapon, and the map design is very clever.
The map, King’s Canyon
Each area of King’s Canyon, the only map in the game so far, is divided into an ‘arena’ of sorts, This method of map design is very familiar within the Source engine and it promotes competitive gameplay. No more getting sniped from halfway across the map by someone you can’t see. The fights in Apex are prolonged, intense and a lot of fun. Having the map segmented like this also helps to promote third-partying (when you die to another squad who has heard your gunfight) but that will always be a key factor in BR games, no matter the map design.
The Legends of Apex Legends
There are 8 legends, all with different abilities, personalities, and a range of different skins and banners you can use to customize your in-game image and flex your competence.
The best Legends
- Bloodhound. This is our favorite Legend in the game. A creepy-looking hunter, we love the fact that you can trace your enemies movements and follow their tracks. This passive ability helps you assess areas you move into and you can inform your squad if someone has been nearby. His Q is great for finding enemies through walls and his Z (ultimate) is a lot of fun, especially in the final circles. Grab an Ultimate Accelerant for total devastation.
- Wraith. The chosen Legend of the pro players, Wraith is the fastest moving in the game and can really cause chaos in the enemy team. Her passive is a voice that tells you whether someone is nearby or targeting you. Her Q is probably her most useful ability and it allows you to cloak for some time and increases movement speed. Lastly, the game-winning Rift portal creates a jump between two chosen spots and increases movement speed. Your teammates can jump through the gate…but so too can the enemy!
- Mirage. Mirage is a lot of fun to play. Use the decoy Q, it’s brilliant at flushing out enemies and generally confusing them. His Ultimate is the true bamboozle, as multiple Mirage’s pop out of thin air and you cloak to escape a tricky situation or cause chaos in the middle of an enemy team. However, his passive is quite weak – he spawns a decoy when he dies and you cloak, allowing you to crawl out of danger…maybe.
In the middle
- Bangalore. A standard pick for many new Apex players, Bangalore has a cool passive where her movement speed increases when shot, her Q smoke screen can totally confuse the enemy, and her Ultimate is a powerful Area of Effect missile strike. Both teammates and enemy players feel the bombs! She works well with Bloodhound.
- Lifeline is the main support character of the game so far. Her most useful ability is her passive, which throws up a defensive shield when reviving a friend. She also revives and heals faster than the other Legends. Her Q is the adorable D.O.C drone that heals nearby players and her Ultimate calls in a supply crate, which are faster than those that drop on the map, but contains worse loot.
- Pathfinder. One of the most fun Legends to play, Pathfinder has awesome maneuverability with his Q grappling hook, Ultimate extended grappling line for the whole team and his ability to scan ahead for the location of the next ring. We’ve seen some pretty impressive swinging kills – give it a go. He’s also the most iconic character in the game so far with some great voice acting and quips.
On the weaker side of things
- Gibraltar. Perhaps one of the least used Legends in the game. Because of the the FOV, Gibraltar feels sluggish. However, the developers have confirmed that movement speed is the same for all Legends. Gibraltar has a decent shield passive to block incoming shots, his Q throws down a shield similar to a Halo bubble shield, and his Ultimate is a targeted mortar strike.
- Caustic. The toxic trapper, Caustic is a fun Legend to play who has the ability to lay poison traps with his Q. However, these traps are destructible. Lay a clever ambush in an enclosed space and ruin the enemy. We recommended landing Bunker whenever you get a chance. His Ultimate blankets an area in thick and poisonous Caustic gas, and his passive allows you to see through the gas. Nasty combination. However, the traps are difficult to use and easy to destroy. Caustic is therefore quite a situational Legend.
The future of Apex Legends
EA is relying on Apex providing a long-term investment through micro-transactions. As such, we hope that Respawn can keep up the production of content to rival Fortnite. Lots of new Legends, new maps, a battle pass in March and hopefully plenty of other fun content. Amazingly, for an EA game, there is no pay-to-win elements (so far) but there are a couple of scummy pricing tactics. But whatever. The game is free. You don’t need to spend a penny.
And of course, the mobile version. To truly stand as a contender, playing Apex Legends has to become flexible. An app for Android, iOs and other formats is basically necessary at this point in time. Keep checking back for when you can download the APK format of Apex Legends and play on the go. For the time being, here’s the PC download.
Updates to Apex Legends (1/3/2019)
Now the game has been out for a couple of weeks, the meta game has emerged loud and clear. The Wingman destroys people. Two tap will break most armor with just body shots – if you land headshots with the Skullpiercer, then it’s GG. We hope to see this gun nerfed. Until then, keep using it so the developers can collect data on this OP gun.
Lifeline, Bangalore and Wraith have all emerged as some of the top picks. Lifeline’s immense healing (25% faster) is so clutch in tricky situations and Bangalore’s Double Time lets you get out of most difficult spots. Wraith is just Wraith.
Thanks to the excellent work of some community members on Reddit, there’s been a lot of discussion about hitboxes. Wraith has by far the smallest hitbox and Gibraltar has the largest. Gibraltar is a staggering 140% bigger. This presents obvious problems. Considering Wraith is already a top-pick, the fact that she is simply harder to hit by default really poses a question about Champion balance. Plus, have you seen the Pathfinder hitbox? It’s a joke.
Hopefully we can see this updated and fixed in a coming patch, although it’s a difficult factor to just ‘fix.’
Upcoming Battle Pass
Respawn has previously announced that the Battle Pass will be released in March, so we hope to see something impressive coming our way. Lots of people have discussed what they’d like to see in the Pass, including exclusive loot, Apex Packs and a reasonable price tag that matches other popular BR titles. Check back for updates!
Updates to Apex Legends (1/15/2019)
We’re still waiting on the Apex Legends Battle Pass to hit. After a suspected release date of March 12th, the opening of the BP was delayed once again. Rumors and speculation is rife. Some say that is EA’s doing. There was a glitch that would’ve allowed Origin Access Members the ability to buy the Battle Pass for around 5 dollars. Not great for Respawn or the game in general.
There was a big mix up on Origin where the release banner for the BP was actually shown on the launcher!
We’re looking forward to getting our hands on the new hero – supposedly ‘Octane’ – and to start completing more challenges.
Nerfs and Buffs
In the last week there have been some modifications to the Wingman, Peacekeeper and to some of the legends. Wingman has had its DPS reduced by a small amount and the increased the spread of its hipfire range. We’ll likely see more changes to guns and champions in the future, although Respawn has stated they are loathe to make any HUGE changes! Small and steady.
Apex Legends Current State 4/24/2019
Apex Legends is in a strange state as of late April, 2019. The Battlepass has now been out for almost a month with little content added in between its release and the current date. There are many conflicting opinions on why Respawn have seemingly ‘abandoned’ the game, whereas others are quite keen to keep supporting Respawn’s decisions. A recent expose has suggested that the content devs behind Fortnite have been forced to work 100 hours a week to keep up the updates with such ferocity…
Twitch viewership has dropped dramatically, and the last Twitch Rivals wasn’t even posted on Reddit by the devs. Many people worry about the future of Apex, especially due to Respawn’s poor post-launch support of Titanfall 2.