Coming up on its one year anniversary, Respawn Entertainment’s Apex Legends has been through some changes since its surprise release back in February of 2019. Dubbed “The Next Evolution of Battle Royale” on its own website, Apex Legends was a breath of fresh air in the battle royale genre with its strict team-based gameplay that utilized unique character abilities. The hardworking team at EA’s Respawn has kept up a constant flow of updates to satisfy its growing fanbase all while delivering new content with each “season” every few months. Since its launch, players have seen new characters, new weapons, new weapon modifications, and a brand new map to slay other teams of three on. What there hasn’t been a lot of, however, is permanence. What Respawn giveth to the community, Respawn taketh away.
Each past season players were challenged to try new game modes that deviated from the standard team-of-three style matches. First came Solos in the Iron Crown Event back in August, where players were forced to rely on their own survivability in an every-man-for-themselves game mode. In November, Duos was added so that players finally weren’t forced to find a third wheel to complete their team. Both modes were very welcome changes to the normal formula the Apex community was used to. But each time a new game mode was announced, it came with a catch… They were for a limited time only.
Limited-time events are nothing new to fans of even the most popular battle royale games. But typically, a limited-time event will just include a simple map change or add some kind of new gameplay element. Apex Legends is certainly no stranger to this kind of event scheme as players have seen multiple changes to the original King’s Canyon map, with character thematic changes being added to the landscape over time.
But when gamers boot up strong competitors like Fortnite and PUBG, they always have multiple choices in how they want to play. Whether they want to play alone, with a friend, or with multiple friends, they have the options readily available to them. So far, Apex Legends let their community experience this kind of freedom only for a mere couple of weeks before they were once again confined by their limited ways to play.
At the same time, Respawn deserves all the credit in the world for building and retaining such a loyal fanbase. From the spooky Halloween themed event that turned dying legends into swift-moving, one-hit-killing zombies, to the most recently added Mirage’s Holo-day Bash that gave a new take on King of The Hill, Respawn is constantly giving it’s players new ways to show off their skills in the Apex arena.
These limited-time events are great ways to keep fans interested, but the core game has remained the same for a full year now. If players aren’t keen on the limited-time game mode(s), they still have to drop into the arena as a team of three whether playing in ranked or non-ranked matches. They’re forced to either play the original game type or try something new that will ultimately be taken away from them. So in reality, there’s only a couple of options available to play at a given time. One option is constant, the other is constantly changing.
Starting January 14th, Apex Legends will launch the “Grand Soirée” arcade event which will bring 7 new game modes as well as new cosmetics. Following the same pattern of their previous limited-time events, these game modes will be short-lived and even shorter-lived than the others. Each game mode will be available for just two days each, urging players to get in on the action before the fun is gone forever.
Apex Legends is currently in its third season which will soon be ending on its one year anniversary come February 4th. With a new year beginning for the battle royale juggernaut, it may be time for a little more permanence in its culture. As of now, fans can’t get too attached to a new game mode for the knowing fear that it will be ultimately deleted. But there is hope that fan-favorite game modes can make a return, as Respawn is constantly taking in feedback from the passionate community on social media. But for now, fans will just have to be patient and see what’s in store for Apex Legends year two.