Stop. This isn’t just another Battle Royale, this is large scale search and destroy, kill or be killed, communicate or lose the game.
Allow me to tell you why you should take a moment and just forget this game is a Battle Royale, you may find yourself having fun in the not cool to like genre.
After all, it’s free and set in the Titanfall universe. Why bother reading what I have to say when you should download it and give it your own opinion.
First of all – Communication
A number of games requiring communications have only one option, voice. Whilst most prefer this type of speech it’s not always ideal, possibly down to language barrier or just a truly disastrous microphone choice.
Apex Legends remedies this by combining visual based communications which described simply is a mix between Rainbow Six Sieges spotting and Battlefield’s Commo Rose.
Middle mouse button to spot, who would have thought. Apex decides that maybe you don’t want to hear Mr. Pre-puberty screaming “git rekt nub” at you, and hopes that he uses the incredibly versatile tagging function instead.
With just a click, you can let your squad know where you’d like to go, or tag an item and tell your bff where that backpack is without having to say “Between the sofa and drawers, brown ones not white on the 2nd floor next to the bathroom”, or call dib’s on a tagged item to see how traitorous your squad mates really are.
Hold down the middle mouse button to get additional commands such as “Checking this area for loot”, “Defending this position” and “Someone’s been here”. It really is informative, and quick too. I’ve refrained from shouting out my every move and let my squad know what I’m doing with the tagging system instead.
Finally double tapping the MMB puts a nice red marker with a crosshairs symbol, this is only for letting your squad know you’ve spotted a hostile. It doesn’t track an enemy, but it’s vital to let your buddies know the last known location. Also by default, this is on F key which is super helpful!
Is this Overwatch?
Currently, we have 8 selectable Legends with more on the way. Two of which are locked, you can unlock them for 750 Apex Coins each (1000 Apex Coins cost £7.99) or with 12000 Legend Tokens, which are earned in game.
Each Legend has three unique abilities, a passive ability, a quick charging triggered ability and an ultimate. Each with a different theme, I’m not going to go over them all, but some of the themes are evasion, illusion, toxicity, tracking and support.
For example, Mirage (one of the two locked Legends) can send a Decoy to draw out enemies who are hoping to get a lucky shot, and it’s relatively fast charging and very useful. His ultimate sends out multiple decoys and cloaks himself, handy to get out a sticky situation. Whilst his passive deploys a decoy and cloaks himself whenever downed.
Wraith is a master of evasion, her triggered ability takes you to another dimension temporarily to evade all damage (this is basically Phase Shift considering this is the same universe as Titanfall). With her ultimate being the ability to create two directly connected portals for the entire squad, and will last for 60 seconds, I used this to link high ground for taking shots and inside a building for cover. Her passive will warn her of incoming dangers, I’ve not figured it out yet.
On the other end of the spectrum is Lifeline, who’s triggered ability is a drone that heals squad mates within the vicinity of the drone, her ultimate calls a supply drop which usually contains good loot (I got a golden Mastiff shotgun from one, it’s incredibly OP), and her passive gives her more health from health items.
Ok so this is a touchy one, no one likes to talk about microtransactions. Although I believe this is good, potentially great news.
First of all, lets be clear. This is not pay to win. No unlocks (except cool ass Legends) have the potential to give you “the edge“.
As far as I can tell you can buy Apex Coins to get Apex Packs (lootboxes), additional Legends or skins. But all of these are earnable whilst playing.
The game has “Crafting Metals” which you can use to construct skins, banners, emotes, anything. Everything is craftable.
You get these from Apex Packs, you get one with each level you rank up. However I’m not sure what happens when you hit max level, maybe it stops?
So you don’t need to buy anything, everything is earnable.
The only pitfall I see is if you want everthing, you might have to buy Apex Coins when the free Apex Packs run dry.
But by then, hopefully you’ll have all you want from the Packs and from crafting. Right?
Battle Passes will be introduced, which I assume are very similar to another game you might of heard of, with unique cosmetics and skins. I doubt Legends will be part of the pass, but we will see.
I’ll be buying regardless, this game is free and awesome!
Like the Titanfall games, Apex Legends is built on the Source engine, it’s smooth, looks great and controls fantastically.
The combat is exactly how you’d expect if you’ve ever played Titanfall, fast and fluid. The only exception being wall-running, which was removed to help prevent squads getting too much distance between each other.
Even so, zip lines and movement speed alone make this game a quick one.
Sprinting and crouching results in a slide, doing so downhill will you get from A to B really quickly, combine it with a jump at the end for extra style points.
Balloons high in the sky are scattered around allowing you to re-enter skydive mode, great for cutting long distances out. Or to get away from pesky foes.
Verticality is great in warfare, the game allows you to climb via mantling and scrambling up walls, a fair distance but not super-human like.
Most ledges around your head level, you can either reach or scramble to, and mantling can be used tactically too.
Letting go of forward and/or jump whilst climbing up a ledge will stop you and let you hang on, peeking over with your beady little eyes.
DBNO – Is now Dead But Not Out
This right here, was a big one for me. Don’t get me wrong, I understand the logic behind a battle royale game, but sitting there watching my team mates get closer to that sweet victory without me. Makes me want to run to their house and turn off their routers. I know, pathetic.
When you’re down you might get revived, or you might die. Wow big shocker right!
No, the shocker is, even if you die. You’re still not 100% out of the match, if your squadies survive and get over to what I’m now officially calling, your “Dedbox™” they can grab your banner and frolic over to one of the respawn points on the map. Fantastic!
But it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. When you respawn your dropship will likely draw attention, and it’s not blisteringly fast either. You’ll also spawn with no loot, at all. Hopefully, and if you’re lucky enough, your teammates haven’t stolen everything from your Dedbox™.
Seriously though, don’t be that guy, this game is all about working as a squad.
My thoughts are my own, I love this game. In the words of my friend who was a keen fan of another free battle royale, “Fortnite can suck it”.
Working as a squad is both rewarding and satisfying, some random guy screamed “WOOO get in there nice one lad” when I took the final kill in a match. It was a truly monumental moment in my life.
Everything about Apex Legends is designed for you and your squad mates, the callouts, the abilities, the way if your alone and no one is watching your back you really are an easy target. Get a nice group of friends to play with and this game is an absolute blast.
I’ve not covered weapons, loot and the map too much. I don’t feel there’s much to say in regards apart from it’s all good and works well, the game as a whole is great.
The map has a wasteland feel to it, which is fitting for what you are actually doing and it’s time period. A desolate futuristic wasteland. It’s varied enough with its large structures, closed environments to its open lands, sunken grounds and swamplands. It works for the game, combat, and movement.
The loot, well it’s good, it’s all over the place with supply containers having some of the better stuff. There’s enough to be decked out every game, not with the best stuff, but enough to survive.
What’s important is all weapons feel and handle differently, and the rarity doesn’t really matter, it just lets you know how often you’ll find it really. But the balance is there (except the golden Mastiff I spoke of earlier, that was a dream gun).
That’s enough from me. Download the game, it’s free. Have fun. Seriously. You will.