You kill me, you’re better. I kill you, I’m better. This sentence got stuck in my mind after seeing the opening cutscene from Apex Legends, the battle royale game from Titanfall developer Respawn. Sure this is yet another Battle Royale game on Xbox One, but you immediately see and experience that the Titanfall developer made something special. While you never know how thing turn out, I’m 100% sure that Apex Legends will lure and keep the
- Ping (communication system): RB is your main non-verbal communication option and it works like a knife going through butter. It might read a little silly but having such a perfect mechanic to communicate with strangers or friends is really important. Showing where you are going, telling that someone has been to a specific location, confirming that you saw an enemy, tagging a rare weapon or armor, everything is done by a simple RB-button press.
- Respawn mechanic: Healing your teammates isn’t something new in the genre but even after they die you can still let them respawn if you managed to collect their dog tag. An example: I was the only one left and my two squad members were down in action, the opposite squad knew I was going to return so they guarded the bodies. You have only a limited time to collect the dog tag so I was pretty nervous and running out of time, by sheer luck another squad started attacking the squad that killed my squad members so I ran in like a ninja, collected everything needed and escaped while being shot by others and killing two other players towards the closest respawn center. This shit was crazy INTENSE, some of the craziest gameplay I ever had online, and needlessly to say fun.
- Squad-based class system: At launch Apex Legends has 8 completely different characters with unique looks and abilities, most of the abilities will be familiar when you played Titanfall. Each character has a
passiveadvantage over others, an ability on a cool time and a powerful ultimate ability that charges while playing. Working together is key into winning against the other 19 squads, having a good medic for example that heals you on time, or having a portal out of a sticky situation helps tremendously. At the same time, it also provides gamers with a one-of-a-kind shooter experience.
- Unique ideas in an overcrowded genre: Apex Legends is full of neat mechanics, for example, the first time one of your squad members becomes the jumpmaster, picking a spot on the map to land. It also has a motivational progress-system that earns you Apex packs, this contains character and weapon skins.
- Outstanding visuals and performance: PUBG is great but performance still isn’t how it should be. Apex Legends looks far better and plays far better too at a stable frame rate. In all the hours I played, I never experienced a drop or bugs. Quite remarkable if you ask me.
- Loot system and how organizing works: Let us be honest, you waste a lot of time on other battle royale games trying to perfectly gear up your character. Apex Legends pretty much found the solution for this downtime by minimizing the work you have to do organizing your loot. The game clearly shows you when a weapon or helmet is better and automatically changes better attachments. Healing you or charging your shield is done with a single button too, keeping everything fast and on the go.
- Lone Wolves are left in the dark: This game requires teamwork and can’t be played (at launch) alone. I and you know that while playing online you always have gamers that, for some reason don’t understand that playing “as a team” is required to win. So if you are that kind of player that doesn’t take other squad members into consideration (looking at you medics in Battlefield 5 that neglect to revive people) please stay far away from Apex Legends. This also means that the occasional frustration might happen when playing with randoms.
- Titanfall? This likely means we won’t see Titanfall 3 anytime soon, and we all know how unbelievable good Titanfall 2 was! Luckily Apex Legends is awesome too!
It is pretty obvious that EA and Respawn have found a gold motherlode, Apex Legends is the next evolution in the Battle Royale genre and Fortnite and PUBG have new competition, a force to be reckoned with.
We will update this review with a score and more when the first additional content pack arrives in March.