After a stellar launch and garnering 50 million players, Apex Legends controls its own destiny. The game has skyrocketed in popularity and has become a staple in the battle royale genre right off the bat (you can read our review here). The unique elements of the ping system, character abilities and being the jumpmaster all play a role in the game’s success. But what about future success? Will anything carry Apex Legends to infinity and beyond? We will get our first taste of that with season one: the Wild Frontier, which brings several new things to the table. Let’s check it out.
Octane. Is. Fast.
Probably the biggest addition to the game is a new character called Octane, an adrenaline junky who is always looking to pull off the next big stunt. Octane is fast. His tactical ability lets you stab yourself with a stim allowing you to run like a madman for six seconds. This is a great way to close the gap on an opponent or runaway from a grave situation. Using the stim does take away from your max health every time you use it, but can be offset with his passive ability, Swift Mend, which just heals you over time. His ultimate ability is where the fun gets all tied together. This lets you set down a jump pad that flings you upward. It can be a great way to get an angle on an enemy team or can be used to get the high ground quickly in a gunfight. Or you can use it to just goof around with. We don’t judge.
I have found that pressing the jump button right after you hit the pad launches you even farther. So feel free to experiment with the distance. Octane is a nice addition to the roster list and I hope they add even more zanny characters in the future. His backstory is actually kind of interesting and is also linked to Lifeline. This does sort of raise the question if Respawn will tie in more lore with future updates. Regardless, I would love to see more of the lore unfold.
Season One Battle Pass
With season one comes the battle pass and more rewards for players. You play games, you get more stuff. Normally how it works is when you level up your account level you will receive an apex pack loot box or in-game currency. The battle pass adds another layer of rewards on top of that. The battle pass can cost 950 Apex coins or 2,800 Apex coins for the battle pass bundle. The bundle lets you unlock the next twenty-five levels in the battle pass automatically. So if you are say level twenty in the battle pass you will unlock everything up to level forty-five instantly. Reward-wise the pass is… okay. There are some cool cosmetic items scattered throughout and the Wild Frontier styled items look pretty nice. But overall it is a little underwhelming. I wanted some legendary skins for the characters or maybe a big chunk of crafting metal to unlock the specific items I want. Alas, it is not so.
You level up the battle pass a little differently as well. Your account levels up every 18,000 points while the pass levels up every 29,000 points. That may seem like a lot (and it kind of is) but each week you can earn extra points by simply playing each character. Each character has a 25,000 point cap you can take advantage of each week to level up your BP faster. So for example, say you are playing Mirage (and you have not reached the 25,000 point cap yet) and you get 4,000 points from the match, then 2,000 from playing Mirage. The 4,000 will go to your account level and then 6,000 will go to your BP level. It is an interesting and organic way to get players to play characters they would not normally play.
The Wild Frontier (minor fan theory)
Season one is the season of the Wild Frontier. What does that mean? It is simply the new aesthetic you will see throughout the menus and new items that work well for the game. You can unlock new badges that have teeth sticking out of them, some of the new gun skins have the Wild Frontier color pallet slapped on them, etc. You will notice the new home screen showcases some cool animal bones in the background. I wish they would have added some of that aesthetic throughout King’s Canyon. Nothing about the map has changed and it would have been cool to see maybe more animal bones scattered throughout the map to enhance that “Wild Frontier” feeling.
If we can jump on the conspiracy train for a second. My friend and I were talking about the new battle pass and he had an interesting idea. For a while, the Apex Legends Twitter account was hosting a little map bracket where people could vote on their favorite map location to see who would win in the end. Skull Town eventually won. The interesting thing is that the battle pass was not announced until right after the map bracket was finished and the winner was Skull Town. Now we have season one which is grounded in an aesthetic of skulls and bones. Coincidence? It’s just a theory (mainly conjured up by Ydocvader), but it does make me think “Do they have a few seasons planned out and just wanted to see the winner of the bracket first?” It’s a stretch but is interesting to think about.
Overall the first season in Apex Legends is decent enough. The Wild Frontier is really cool, Octane is very fun to play and the battle pass could use some innovation (and really the game’s economy in general). I will definitely be sticking around to play more but I hope Respawn can really blow us out of the water with season two.