You want to talk about taking stealing pages out of a winning play book, then stripping away all the things that make it silly. Like dance parties, emotes, and stupid costumes. Well then you want to talk about Apex Legends. The newest contender in the Battle Royale genre. The newest title from Respawn dominated it's surprise announcement and subsequent immediate launch shortly after. Fact is Apex Legends came outta nowhere like a Randy Orton finisher. Which is hard to do in the age of leaks. But just like a well delivered RKO it brought the people to their feet. Astonished by just how amazing and unexpected it really is.
So lets break it down really quickly. Games are played in squads of three. Your 3 Legend squad faces off against 19 other squads for a total of 60 players. Before a match begins, each player chooses from 8 Legends all with unique abilities. 6 available from download, with 2 you need to unlock. No squad can consist of duplicate Legends. Once you're all set and ready to go, the game starts. You're in a ship, you choose a drop zone, and you're off. From there you'd think "aaaaaaaand it's just another Fortnite/PUBG ripoff." And there's where you couldn't be more wrong.
First off this game only has one mode. Therefore a lot of attention to detail has been put into it. One of those things being that everything is done as a squad. Now, that's not to say that you can't go off on your own, but it's definitely not recommended. Take the drop for example. Since no 3 Legends can be the same on a squad, you pick in turns. the person who picked third might not have gotten the Legend he/she wanted; but now gets to control the drop for the entire squad. Now if you don't like the location the drop leader picked, you can break off and go your own direction. It's subtle things like this that keeps the game balanced. Which as you read on you'll see is almost the mantra of this article.
Now lets talk about the other big change Respawn made to the Battle Royale scene with their title. It's the Legends. It's not like Fortnite where everyone is the same just with a different skin. Legends carry their own weight as each has special abilities, that for the most part, compliment each other. For example, lets take my favorite character Gibraltar. He has a shield dome ability that helps with not only reviving fallen teammates when under fire from a distance; but works in synergy with the Legend Lifeline's ability, which is a healing drone. It's pretty dope stuff and those are only two of the 8 Legends. There are so many possibilities. And it's those small details that really makes Apex Legends stand out from the crowd. That being said, truly the best thing about the Legends is that despite having so many unique abilities, every character is balanced. And even if they weren't, since the game forces you to have choose different characters from each other, the power dynamic on squads is always balanced and fair.
Speaking of balanced and fair, most team based games struggle with communication. Which can be frustrating. "Where are you getting shot from?" "How many enemies?" Or "I need ammo!" How can these things be communicated if teammates don't have mics? Also, if you're a team of no mics and the other teams do have them. You're at an incredible disadvantage most times. Well Apex Legends has an answer and it's a system called pinging. And though it's not new to gaming. Respawn's version might be the best. Here's how it works: by simply pressing a button, you can mark gear, enemies, and locations in the environment allowing your teammates to see it. All of this is done without getting in the way of what you're doing or slowing down your ability to play matches effectively. It takes some getting used to, but once you do it becomes a legit form of communication that keeps matches both balanced and fun.
Another big thing that Respawn has done with Apex Legends is the way that you, well, respawn. In most Battle
Royale games when you die that's it. You're left with the choice to sit there and watch your teammates or other people play. Or back out entirely and que up a new game. this is not fully the case however in Apex Legends. Upon dying you drop something that the game calls a banner. If one of your teammates can get to your banner before a timer runs out, they can take you to a respawn point somewhere on the map and get you back in the game. You do come back without any of your gear or weapons, however, you are back in the game and ready to go. And usually respawn points are in the center of supply crates that carry items for you to re-gear with. It's a great system that keeps the squad together, keep the game play fun, and give fallen players a reason to stick around.
I honestly haven't been this addicted to multiplayer action since Halo 4. And regardless if you use the master illusionist and humorous mirage or a rope slinging emoji wielding robot like Pathfinder, there is a character for everyone. I'm sure the game has its shortcomings, however I haven't found it yet. There are some talking about the lack of ammo and how small magazines are. However, these things don't bother me. This is a game that can only get better with time. We all remember how Fortnite started and how it definitely wasn't expected to be the powerhouse that it is now. Apex Legends is on the rise and there are no limits on how awesome this IP can become. So if you haven't checked it out. Go for it. It's free to play, with 6 characters available at download. There's literally no reason not to give it a shot.