Apex Legends is a battle royale game under EA Games that is free to play. It was developed by Respawn Entertainment and released on major platforms Windows, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 on February 4, 2019. The game releases a new season every quarter, and each season brings new updates in the form of Legends (playable characters), skins and cosmetic outfits and decorations, and changes to the maps. On PC, Apex Legends is downloaded on EA's digital distribution platform Origin. Due to the fast-paced nature of the battle royale genre, beginners to gaming will most likely find gameplay overwhelming, as the tutorial is relatively short and covers only the basics, assuming that the player is familiar with gaming jargon. With some practice, even new gamers will get the hang of how the game works and the playing in squads could actually be to their benefit.
A true competitor for Fortnite emerges without fanfare
Free to play battle royale for all ages
The main screen shows a default Legend which you can change in the Legends tab. There are a few that are playable, but the greyed out characters become available as you level up. The home page also has daily challenges that earn you points for actions like getting headshots with certain weapons while you are using a specific Legend. You can unlock skins, weapons, finishing moves and other cool elements. After exploring the home page, you must complete the training session, or tutorial before you can begin the main game. You start out as a Legend named Lifeline, whose Tactical Ability is being a Combat Medic. You're taught how to maneuver your character with a mouse and keyboard, sprint and slide before your character is brought out to the tutorial field to meet Pathfinder, another Legend.
Pathfinder walks you through the tutorial and shows you how to pick up items, communicate with teammates, ping ammo and enemy locations, shoot and aim at targets and other basic training tips.You learn that Lifeline's Ultimate Ability is her Lifeline Package, which has health and other defensive loot. She can distribute health to other squadmates that are near. Respawn teammates with their banners while standing near respawn beacons.
Start the match by launching with your squad out of a dropship. You have no weapons or items, so until you find some on the ground, you have to rely on melee attacks and stealth. The Jumpmaster chooses where on the map you'll drop. If you're assigned to be Jumpmaster, you can pass the responsibility off to another squadmate and launch solo. Once on the ground, the goal of the match is to explore the area, finding loot boxes to hopefully acquire weapons, health packs, and other useful items. Usually, a battle royale means that the goal is to be the last man standing, but the game forces you to be in squads of three. This is frustrating if your squad grabs all of the loot or don't work together as a team, leaving you scrambling to find items to defend yourself in the middle of a battle. Weapons are different colors, each representing a level of rarity and you can only hold two at a time. White is least rare, while gold is the most and highly coveted. Besides guns, throwing weapons, armor, and explosives, you can use your Tactical and Ultimate Ability, but they have to charge as you play before you're able to use them. In the Kill enemies by weapon or hand to hand combat and survive until your squad are the only players remaining. Scouring the map to find weapons and items is made even more difficult when after a few minutes of play, a barrier begins to close in around the map, squeezing everyone together and making the battle even more intense.
Where can I run this program?
Apex Legends is available to play on PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4. If you're going to be playing on a PC, it is highly recommended that you use a desktop or gaming laptop with a high-quality graphics card and enough space for the game, which is just under 13GB. If you're not into shelling out for a gaming setup and it's not impossible to use a regular laptop to play, but you'll have to lower your settings to hold up at 60fps in order to avoid lag or other gameplay errors.
Is there a better alternative?
A good alternative to Apex Legends would be PlayerUnknown's BattleGrounds. This game is also in the battle royale genre, and sticks to what we would normally expect - you win when you're the last player left alive. Similarly to Apex, you and your team members are dropped from an aircraft onto the map and you have to find weapons, armor, and other items to survive while the barrier closes in. The differences are that you don't have to rely as much on your group, and can pick them off as you near the end of the match if you choose. You have the option in the beginning to play solo or to choose the number of friends you play with as a part of your squad. There are no special skills, magical powers or abilities - everyone is the same, a regular human being that starts off with nothing, and can use guns or frying pans to fight.
Apex Legend is a great game. It's polished and pure fun, and we're honestly surprised that a publisher like EA released something with so much promise as a free to play title. After playing, we can see why over 50 million people downloaded this title within the first month after launch.
Should you download it?
Yes. Even though the game is free to play, in order to get new skins you'll have to use real money. The in-game currency is Crafting Materials, which you can get in Apex Packs that are earned each time that you level up your Legend. With that said, the pros far outweigh the cons. We absolutely recommend downloading this game, and players of all skill levels should at least give it a try. The base game has a unique Legend for everyone, you can use both real weapons and magical abilities, and have a great time exploring a huge map with a ton of fascinating and creative elements.
- Free to play
- New seasons every quarter
- Micro transactions
- No solo play