The alarm has sounded, the light has changed from red to green and you are standing on the drop ramp. Your squad gets the “jump!” command and you go all out with rocket boosters forcing you to the ground more quickly than a freefall. You touch down on the landing platform and begin to scour for weapons, all the while enemy squads are doing the same. This is our review for Apex Legends.
From Developer Respawn Entertainment and Publisher Electronic Arts comes the new evolution of the Battle Royale genre in Apex Legends. Apex is a free to play battle royale game that launched with very little warning, but oh my goodness when it did. Since the game launched, it has taken its place upon the top of the twitch leaderboards as the most viewed game for several weeks now. It is crushing Fortnite’s milestones with no signs of slowing. Let’s not forget that this is in the Titanfall universe, and you can definitely tell it is.
The combat in Apex Legends is pretty straight forward. You have dropped with your squad out of the dropship and pick your landing zone. Find your guns and armor and take the action to the enemy teams. Right now three-man squads are the only mode you can play, however, there are rumblings of solo and duo play coming, but we will leave that where it is for now. For this game being more of a sci-fi title, you will notice little things that make it seem very realistic. For example, when you are trying to snipe someone from long range, you will notice the bullet drop is real. You will have to account for the angle of your shots and make them count for that glorious headshot. There is one mechanic that makes the game feel a little bit like Call of Duty Blackout, the sliding in the game. If you are trying to make your way towards a certain spot, trying to slide down a hill, or just trying to duck for cover, this simple mechanic can save your life and your time. Another thing about combat is the special skills that each of your players can utilize to give you an advantage in the game.
Character selection is key in Apex Legends. You have the choice from six legends characters to start with, and you have the ability to unlock two more characters through playing the game or through straight out purchase through the game store. The character selection choices make this section of the game feel a bit like Overwatch with the types of choices you get. Each one having its own specific role in the game will help you decide how your team will do based just on roles. Characters have their own special skills like Bangalore, who can call in a rocket barrage or use smoke grenades to evade your enemies. While some characters like Wraith can escape with a short burst of invisibility and create portals from one end to the other, which allows you to quickly traverse the map or sneak in behind the enemy and take the fight right into their backyard. Below we have made a short video which shows clips of gameplay for your enjoyment.
Graphically, Apex Legends is a beautiful rendering of an island in the Titanfall universe and has several places that you can run to, or fly to, and will let you get that immersive feeling of being in the game. Respawn went as far as to add giant creatures that walk around the outside of the map and they almost look like they should be in a War of the Worlds movie. The character animations, the finishers on enemies that you have downed, everything looks like it belongs and it’s very nice to look at.
Normally in a battle royale game if you die, then you are dead. Well, that isn’t the case for Apex Legends. If you die all your friends have to do is go to your body, take your banner, and retreat to the nearest respawn bot. Once your banner is placed into this bot on the map you will see a dropship bringing you in for another landing. This is good because you can get back into the fight, this is bad if you have no guns around you. You will lose all of your gear unless you are close enough to go get it again, but if you were killed in an area the chances are your stuff is already gone. The other thing that is different about this game is that you will actually level up your characters as you are playing. This gives you more of an RPG feel to it while not having really any health or damage benefits. What it does do is help you earn Apex packs which will gift you with crafting materials and skins for your character and weapons. This gives you a second lease on life if your mates can save you. You have a limited window to get your banner though and after that, it’s game over.
Overall, Apex Legends is a free game and it is a pretty fast-paced game for a battle royale. Anyone who has played PUBG or Fortnite can respect what Respawn has done here. They took a genre and added their own Titanfall twists to the game and have something that is genuinely fun to play. You can literally earn everything in the game or spend a little cash to get the things you want. For a game that had literally zero marketing, it has taken the player base by storm.Note: Our copy was reviewed on Origin with a code provided by PR.