Apex Legends has proven nothing short of a phenomenon, with developer Respawn Entertainment revealing that more than 50 million players have hopped into Kings Canyon since the gates were opened on February 15. With such a strong start, the real question is whether or not Apex Legends will be able to maintain its success. In this article we'll take a look at the problems the Apex Legends Battle Pass may run into when stacked up against Fortnite.
Respawn has already detailed a general roadmap for the game’s future, splitting new content additions into Seasons which will introduce new Legends, weapons and loot to the game. Much like Fortnite, each of these Seasons will come with a Battle Pass players can purchase, offering up challenges and rewards as you progress through them. However, the form those rewards will take has yet to be revealed.
Season One of Apex Legends is due to arrive any day now in March, bringing the Battle Pass along with it. As new Legends are to be introduced each Season, there’s little doubt that the Battle Pass will generate Apex Points and Crafting Metal to save up for unlocks, but what kind of skins and extras can we also expect?
It’s here the Fortnite holds a key advantage. Apex may have a good sense of humor, but Fortnite’s cartoon aesthetic allows for far more outlandish additions. While Fortnite has everything from lizards to zombies, pets and medieval knights, Apex’s base skins are largely just color swaps.The finishers, quips and Legendary skins add a bit of a twist, but rivalling Fortnite’s evolving and unique designs will be a challenge.
In addition, Fortnite’s classes each have powerful abilities to account for in battle, and this means identifying them easily a key priority in design. If players can’t easily spot their Bangalores from Wraiths, frustration is sure to ensue. Whatever skins are added, each class needs to be kept distinct.
Learning from the past
Other contenders in the BR field can act as a word of warning to Apex, too. PUBG hopped on the seasonal system later in the day than Fortnite, but provided similar incentives in the form of unique weapon skins and clothing. Sadly, the pass provided far less in rewards and even time-limited certain items you’d earn. With a shorter duration that Fortnite’s Seasons, a slow grind and weak incentives, PUBG’s Battle Pass was regarded as an insult by most players. Respawn would be wise to heed the mistakes made by their predecessors here.
Besides being reasonably priced, Apex Legends' Battle Pass needs to be more than a poor facsimile of Fortnite's systems. Whatever form this takes, we need to see something new here. The good news is that Respawn Entertainment is clearly willing to innovate in the battle royale genre, and there’s no reason that shouldn’t extend to the Battle Pass too. Whether they find some method to incorporate new modes or tasks beyond challenges will be interesting to see, but for now we’ll just need to wait until the Apex Legends Battle Pass kicks off.