Apex Legends‘ first season is almost upon us but what, exactly, should fans of Respawn Entertainment’s battle royale shooter expect when the paid-for content goes live later today? Those keenly in-tune with the genre will be bang on the money in expecting a deluge of new weapon, character and audio cosmetics, but don’t expect their delivery method to mirror that of the challenge system seen in Epic Games’ Fortnite. For the initial season at least, Respawn has opted to follow in the footsteps of other contemporaries like PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds and Call of Duty: Black Ops 4‘s Blackout by utilizing a strictly experience-based system.
That might seem like an odd choice, given the huge popularity of Fortnite, but Respawn product manager Lee Horn provides a sound justification for the decision. Horn’s preliminary briefing over on the official Apex Legends website stipulates that the development team didn’t want to inundate players with a long list of challenges to complete so early on in the game’s lifespan. Wet behind the ears (relatively speaking) as it is, Apex is no doubt still enjoying an influx of new players into the fold and the last thing Respawn will want is to scare potential newcomers off with a series’ of tasks that folks have no idea how to complete, and New Frontier appears to have found a fine balance between accessibility and longevity.
With that said, however, Horn cautions against expecting future seasons to follow the same format. In fact, he continues to reiterate the enjoyment that can come from giving players wacky challenges to complete, providing one potential example as doing a “720 backflip off of Watchtower Artemis and get two Wingman headshots before hitting the ground.” For all our sakes, let’s hope Apex Legends‘ eventual introduction of challenges doesn’t require mastery on such a scale.
In any case, Season 1: New Frontier should have plenty of meat on the bone for newcomers and fledgeling veterans alike. And those eager to discover exactly what will be included with the premium subscription – and the associated cost – can see here.