Respawn Entertainment’s newly released Apex Legends has those familiar gameplay elements that you would expect when playing a Battle Royale game, but the developer has switched things up, making Apex Legends something unique. I’m going to be discussing what makes Apex Legends different from other games in the Battle Royale genre. As with any Battle Royale game, teams drop into a large map to collect weapons, form a strategy, and defeat others to remain the last team standing. Sounds familiar right? Apex may not boast 100 player lobbies, as currently lobbies consist of 20 teams of three, but what it lacks in numbers, it makes up for in tactics. Upon further inspection you will realize that Apex Legends is more focused on communication and team work, adding an element of depth that is so often missing from other games in the genre. Instead of everyone running off on their own to horde the best gear, Apex encourages you to work as a team, and Respawn has implemented various ways for players to do just that.
Tactics and Teamwork:
Apex Legends introduces a plethora of ways that you can work together as a team to ensure your victory on the battlefield. Here are the best examples I have come across so far in my playtime that highlight Apex‘s focus on tactics and teamwork.
Unlike most Battle Royale games, by default Apex Legends starts you grouped together when you drop into the map. At first I was confused at this decision. The more you play though, the more you will realize that this is just one of the many ways that Apex encourages you to work as a team. Rather than everyone dropping into the map in three different spots (which you can do by the way), it is wiser for you to drop as a team. This will help you stay near teammates in the early stages of the match to ensure that no one is eliminated while grabbing loot. This way, your allies will be close enough to revive/respawn you in case that happens.
Apex Legends features a Ping System which allows players to point out locations, enemies, and loot for your teammates. You can point out where ammo is for your team when they are low on bullets. You can point out where medkits are if you just finished a firefight. All of this is done with a single press of the R1 button on PS4 (Right Bumper on Xbox One). Your team can then confirm your Ping by tapping R1 at the same location and you will hear squad chatter between Legends where they confirm the initial Ping. This may seem like a small feature, but it gives players an extra way of keeping every team member on the same page before entering a potentially risky situation.
In most Battle Royale games if your teammate doesn’t revive you, you’re out of the game. In Apex Legends when you die team members can pick up a respawn token from your loot. They can then head to the nearest Respawn Beacon to spawn a Dropship which will contain any fallen allies. This mechanic is easily one of my favorite features within Apex. If you have a skilled team you can turn the tables and give your group a second chance at victory. If your team picks up a respawn token, any member of the team can initiate the Dropship as well, which is a nice addition. Be warned though, the respawn token is on a timer so you don’t have forever to pick it up.
In Apex Legends you can find an item known as the Knockdown Shield. This item will allow you to deploy a shield in front of you to block incoming fire when knocked down. This can prevent opponents from instantly knocking you out of the game when you are downed. The Knockdown Shield may save you and your team time in a battle, or just provide you with a means of defense when most vulnerable. You can find better versions too, so be on the lookout for different rarities as you progress through the match.
Apex Legend‘s Classes
Apex Legends currently includes eight different Legends available to players. They each have their own unique abilities that compliment certain playstyles. When combined with a team that communicates well, these abilities can change the tide of battle when in dire situations. As an example, one of these Legends, Wraith, can place an entry and exit portal down so your team can pass through it and regroup at a safe location if you are about to die or get trapped in the storm. There’s also your standard fair when it comes to classes; a Medic, a Soldier, a Recon, and a Decoy class to name a few, so you can pick the class that suit your playstyle best when playing. Although, each Legend can only be used once per team. I’d recommend picking a backup Legend and learning their abilities in case you don’t get to play your preferred character.
All of these changes mixed together make Apex Legends stand out on its own. The emphasis on teamwork, abilities, and cooperation add depth to the Battle Royale genre in a way that I wouldn’t have expected. I am pleased to say that I have had plenty of fun playing this game so far, and I’m excited to see what the future holds for Apex Legends. The shooting feels great, and the movement feels smooth (although I wish they would bring back the Wall-Run mechanic). The foundation that Respawn has laid at launch is solid, and I am hopeful the developers will add more game modes, weapons, skins, and Legends to give players even more ways to play Apex. Personally, I would also like to see modes like Solos, Duos, and Fours or Fives added in to the game so I could bring all of my friends along with me into battle. Another thing I’m holding out for is a Titanfall Mode. Seeing as Apex Legends is set within the Titanfall Universe, I’m hopeful Respawn will lean into that as time progresses.
Have you had a chance to try Apex Legends yet? If so let us know what you think in the comments below, and if not, download it and give it a try, it is free after all!