The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA

The Sage

The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA

The Sage

The Sage Publication is the student news site of Sage Creek High School in Carlsbad, CA

The Sage

Apex Legends: The Strongest Flawed Battle Royale to Date

Screenshot from Apex Legends
Apex Legends is the newest game to take the Battle Royale genre by storm. With the game hitting 50 million players in under two months of release.

Early last month, Apex Legends, a shiny new Battle Royale, took the community by storm. It’s been dubbed “The Fortnite Killer,” and many other names, mainly focusing on why it’s going to take down Fortnite, the current Battle Royale victor. While I do think it’s a great base for a game, I think there are many major issues that need to be fixed before it can truly be “THE CHAMPION.”

Apex had a sudden and surprise launch, which partially assisted in the popularity of the game. Most AAA developers develop their game with secrecy until it’s mostly completed, then they put millions of dollars into marketing. But Respawn, the developers of Apex, dedicated its resources and funds into making it the best game it can be, sacrificing lot’s of marketing for it. But it worked, and probably got more engagement than if it had been heavily marketed.

Screenshot from
Apex has overtaken the recently unrivaled Fortnite in Twitch views. Twitch is a live streaming platform that is a good look into a game’s popularity among the gaming community.

The opportunity they received by keeping the game a secret was that they didn’t need to release the game at any specific time! If there were still bugs to work out, they had unlimited time to work them out. And while the game had one of the smoothest launches of a Battle Royale in recent history— especially when compared to PUBG and Blackout— it still has many bugs and overall balancing issues that should’ve been worked out pre-launch.

We’re going to start with one of the biggest issues right now; this game crashes more than any game I’ve ever played. I was super excited when I heard about this game and downloaded it immediately. Unfortunately, I was greeted with two crashes before I even finished the tutorial, and another one my first game that ended up crashing my entire computer. I’ve only put around 13 total hours into this game, and it has crashed at LEAST 10 times. This game was horribly optimized, despite the extra time they had to develop it which has resulted in a ridiculous amount of crashing. This problem needs to be fixed and quickly.

These crashes almost turned me off of the game completely, and understandably so. It’s frustrating when I’m doing extremely well and then the screen freezes, a sense of fear runs down your back as you flick the mouse trying to make the game respond, then the error comes up and you just want to give up. If this problem isn’t fixed, it could result in a loss of player base, the last thing that game needs right now.

Screenshot from Apex Legends
The Peacekeeper is one of the most powerful guns in the game, making it a must-have to get the win. All guns in Apex Legends are customizable with skins earned in loot boxes which can be acquired from leveling up or real life currency.

Another big issue a lot of players have with the game is the time-to-kill (TTK). For those who don’t know, TTK is the amount of time and bullets needed to kill an enemy. All games take a different approach to time-to-kill, with games like PUBG and The Culling adopting a shorter TTK, while games like Blackout and, now, Apex Legends, taking a look at a longer TTK. But for the fast-paced, in and out, quick action of Apex, the longer time-to-kill doesn’t really suit the play style they’re trying to achieve.

But even then, with armor being a HUGE buff to the player, the problem doesn’t lie in the health of the player, the problem is that most of the guns just aren’t useful. Most guns in Apex Legends, such as the “Hemlock Burst-Rifle,” the “RE-45,” or the dreaded “Mozambique,” are absolutely useless and are never needed in your inventory. You’re more likely to beat someone to death with your karate kicks than trying to take someone out with the “Mozambique.” So the uselessness of these weapons leads to the problem; there are only a few guns people can use to effectively kill a player.

The reason these guns are so hated and unused are because of their lack of damage. Why use any other gun when you can pick up a “Peacekeeper” or a “Wingman” and dominate the arena with one shot kills. Most players default to a few guns for their loadout which makes games feel uninteresting or repetitive, creating a lack of diversity in gun choice and late game gunfights. If you get stuck running a “Mozambique” and an “Alternator,” you’d be better off just disconnecting than trying to win a gunfight.

Screenshot from Apex Legends
This is the first character select system to be implemented into the Battle Royale genre. This system creates new and interesting gameplay into Battle Royales, making each game a new experience.

Now, while it sounds like I hate this game and never want to pick it up again, that’s not the case. Apex is horribly addictive, in the best way possible. If you get taken out in a gunfight, it leaves a sense of “Just one more,” that just forces you to do another game. The game’s launch also benefited it, probably the smoothest launch in Battle Royale history.

Most Battle Royales, and most games now, launch half finished, with the rest of the game being fixed throughout its life-cycle. Games like PUBG and Black Ops 4 launched either still in an early build, or just not finished entirely. But Apex Legends launched a complete and solid game, with all the mechanics and bugs mostly ironed out. But just because of it’s above-average launch, doesn’t mean it’s a finished title. I think this game has launched an amazing base, but with a few improvements, this can be a standout title for the Battle Royale genre.

Apex Legends is genuinely enjoyable, and in my opinion, is by far the best Battle Royale drop so far. I just think that with a few optimization fixes and balance updates, the game will be able to “Finish” Fortnite once and for all and become the Battle Royale “CHAMPION.”

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    Sean Dallas-OrrApr 9, 2019 at 10:57 am

    Okay first of all, the longer TTK in my opinion is justified in the player count. Unlike fortnite and blackout’s 100 player game, this game has a 60 player cap, along with the fact that squads consist of 3 players, as opposed to the common 4. About the weak weapons, I agree that sometimes weapons can be unreliable, but weapons like the Hemlock are guns that fit a certain play style, so just because it isn’t for you doesn’t mean it sucks, and if in your opinion all weapons besides the obvious couple which are overpowered are trash, I dont think thats the games fault if you get what i mean, I’m not being rude I’m just being honest.