Apex Legends was released back in February for PC, Xbox One and PS4 without any build up, announcements or hype. The game came out of nowhere and topped the charts. Many people claimed that it would be the ‘Fortnite killer’. One of the reasons for massive success of Apex Legends was just how polished the game felt without any extra gimmicks. It had well-designed characters and balanced guns along with a revolutionary new ping system that resulted in much better team coordination and strategy.
However, three months later, due to a lack of content, the hype around Apex Legends seems to be dwindling down. While the game is still massively popular, there just isn’t enough content to keep players around and people are getting bored of the game.
Another problem that has recently been plaguing the game is the massive influx of cheaters into the game. If you’ve played a few games of Apex Legends, chances are that you’ve encountered a cheater at some point. The game has such a huge problem that Respawn has had to issue several statements regarding how they’re trying to solve it. In a recent statement, Respawn said that they’ve already banned over 700,000 players for cheating and that number doesn’t even include the console players. Despite all these problems, EA is not letting go of the game as it still has massive potential and just needs the right approach to keep it relevant.
Apex Legends Mobile
During an earnings’ report, the CEO of EA confirmed that a mobile version of Apex Legends is in the works for both Android and iOS. This makes sense as the game genuinely needs some extra hype to attract player base. Mobile gaming is also extremely popular with millions of players playing PUBG and Fortnite on their phones. Since these games are direct rivals to Apex Legends, EA had to push towards the mobile gaming market as there is still massive potential for expansion there. PUBG is one of the most played games on mobile and beating it would be extremely challenging. EA needs to make the game accessible for it to compete. Fortnite was the closest rival we got to PUBG but its downfall on mobile was the fact that it had to be side loaded. It would be pretty interesting though to see how the mobile version of Apex turns out to be. I reckon it would not be like Fortnite or PUBG since those games are much less demanding. It would most likely be a pretty substantial graphical downgrade with somewhat similar gameplay.
Creating a mobile game is still extremely hard, even if a lot of others have pulled it off. Since mobile phones don’t really have any physical buttons, making the game feel fluid and responsive is the most important part. We’ve seen many games being released with amazing graphics and story but bad controls and UI elements. Intuitive design, in my opinion, will always be at the forefront for mobile games. For example, The Elder Scrolls Blades, while being a relatively simple game, is still extremely addictive and intuitive with innovative controls. Another reason why mobile games are so successful is the fact that they are much more efficient with monetization. However, keeping a balance between monetization and player experience is necessary and it would be interesting to see how EA does it.
How is Apex Legends actually doing?
Since it was an earnings report, some numbers were presented as well. According to the CEO of EA, Andrew Wilson, Apex Legends is, without a surprise, the fastest-growing title in the history of Electronic Arts. The game has managed to reach over 50 million players and 1/3rd of those players are actually new to EA. He also announced that EA is trying to bring Apex Legends to China which would open up another massive market for the game. The numbers are not as high anymore though and the game is definitely showing signs of fatigue. However, EA isn’t actually worried about this as the game has already exceeded expectations.
Nevertheless, Respawn is still trying to focus on making the game stable first and then releasing additional content. This is a totally different philosophy to the one Epic Games has with Fortnite as that game gets weekly content updates. We do have some news on new Apex Legends content though, as Andrew Wilson announced that the Season 2 for Apex Legends will be announced at EA Play in June around E3. Season 2 will likely come with a new character and guns. In other news, EA’s other game Anthem failed to quite hit the mark. However, everyone is still committed to improving the game, according to Andrew Wilson. With the Call of Duty game also coming to mobile, the competition is ramping up and exciting times lie ahead.