Apex Legends' sudden and unprecedented popularity has entered an equally unprecedented downturn recently, with a reported 74% plunge in revenue spanning the past two months. The hype train has clearly encountered some technical difficulties, to say the least.
Respawn's pulling out all the stops to stem the steady loss of interest, and while the drip-fed trickle of gameplay refinements and new seasonal content certainly adds up over time, players don't seem too content with the rate at which it's currently being introduced.
To put that into perspective, here are the ten biggest changes and updates that have been made to Apex Legends since it first went online. But is it all enough to actually tempt formerly dedicated battle royale enthusiasts away from competitors like Fortnite and PUBG?
10 New Legend: Octane
Octane is perhaps the biggest addition to the game since launch, and he's definitely been a hit. Passive health regeneration, a deployable jump pad and speed boosting stimulants make him a blast to play and frustrating to take on.
Like Mirage and Caustic, he just costs 16,000 Legend Tokens to unlock, so there's no need to shell out hard earned cash in order to check him out. Hopefully that'll remain the case for the release of future Legends.
9 Pathfinder's Hitbox Went From The Worst To The Best
Returning players might be a little confused by the recent popularity of the friendliest murder robot in town, and understandably so. Pathfinder's hitbox was atrociously bloated on release, making him an easy target.
Now that Respawn's had a go at balancing it out, it's actually a bit too small. Exacerbating this issue is the fact that some of his skins provide a much bulkier appearance than the others, and it doesn't scale to their size, resulting in a downright misleading silhouette.
8 The Battle Pass
While it's earned some fairly unfavorable comparisons to Fortnite's, Apex Legends introduced its own incarnation of the battle pass back in March, along with the expected rotation of seasonal content.
So far it's been pretty conventional, and most would go as far as saying that the content is pretty lackluster. The greater majority of it is a lengthy grind for cosmetics and loot crates, and it's been pretty lacking in terms of real additions outside of Octane showing up on the roster.
7 Making Friends Got Easier
When you're playing solo and allowing your teammate selection to be determined by fate (or chaos theory, depending on your luck), finding a good pair of comrades can feel like striking gold. The problem is holding onto them afterwards, if you're not already buddies.
Responding to the popularity of this suggestion among players, Respawn added a handy feature that tracks your most recent partners and allows you to invite them with a single click once the match is over.
6 New Weapon: The Havoc
The Havoc was a pretty early addition to the game, and the first of many weapons players can expect to see introduced over coming seasons. It's a little underwhelming at first, kicking out average DPS performance and a lengthy charge-up time similar to the Devotion's.
But it really starts to shine once it's been kitted out. Particularly cool are the hop up mods, as it's currently the only weapon to support different options for this slot. It can be equipped with a Turbocharger, reducing the ramp-up time for its fully automatic fire significantly, or it can be outfitted with a Select Fire, turning it into a solid marksman rifle.
5 The Big Guys Got Buffed
Affectionately dubbed the "thicc boi" update, Respawn responded to player feedback about the hindering hitboxes of the bigger Legends by giving them a little survivability boost to offset this drawback.
The big guys, Gibraltar and Caustic, now get an additional perk that reduces all incoming damage by ten percent. Gibraltar's gun shield got some much needed additional love, boosting the effectiveness of his gun shield, and Caustic's gas was made a bit more deadly. Though the implementation was a little buggy at first, it has since been ironed out and is working as intended.
4 Sniper Rifle Tweaks
Sniper rifles often went passed over in favor of other options earlier on in Apex Legends, lacking enough stopping power to warrant their associated drawbacks. The developers took careful note of this and ended up kicking out a solution that remedied it, especially in the case of the Longbow DMR.
Damage penalties for leg shots were reduced and accuracy was increased across the board, but the Longbow in particular also received buffs to its rate of fire and magazine size.
3 The Wingman Got Nerfed
The fan favorite hand cannon known as the Wingman ended up being subjected to a vicious set of balancing adjustments that really knocked it down a few pegs not once, but twice.
The first round lowered its rate of fire and maximum headshot damage while increasing hip fire spread The most recent one really debased it with a painful reduction in magazine size. All in all, it's still a decent weapon, but it's nowhere near as powerful as it used to be.
2 Some Golden Guns Got Better
Finding a golden gun is supposed to feel like winning the lottery, as a fully kitted weapon is a massive benefit to the person lucky enough to find it. It's a little problematic when the "best" attachments according to the developers are entirely different from what they are according to the players.
The R-301 was easily the worst offender, coming with the widely derided 2x/4x ACOG in place of something that's actually good. Thankfully, Respawn saw fit to correct this by swapping it for the 1x/2x Holo sight, alongside some much needed upgrades for the golden versions of the Havoc and Wingman.
1 Respawn Cracked Down On Cheaters & Exploiters
It may have taken them a while, but Respawn got pretty heavy handed when it comes to doling out the punishment in regards to cheating, hacking, exploiting, and the like.
In addition to whipping up a much requested "Report Player" feature, they weren't shy when it comes to communicating the massive drove of bans that are being handed out and have taken an incredibly firm stance against players "piggy backing." That's essentially AFK farming for match experience while the rest of the team does the work.