Apex Legends is a free-to-play hero battle royale game developed by Respawn Entertainment and published by Electronic Arts. It was released for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One in February 2019, and for Nintendo Switch in March 2021. The game supports cross-platform play. A mobile version of the game specially designed for touchscreens appropriately titled Apex Legends Mobile has also been announced which is scheduled to be fully released by 2022 on Android and iOS. The mobile version will not support cross-play.
Work on the game began around late 2016, though the project remained a secret right up until its launch. Apex Legends received positive reviews from critics, who praised its gameplay, progression system, and fusion of elements from various genres. Some considered it a worthy competitor to other battle royale games. Apex Legends surpassed over 25 million players by the end of its first week, and 50 million within its first month. By April 2021, it had approximately 100 million players.
In Apex Legends, up to 20 three-person squads or 30 two-person duos land on an island and search for weapons and supplies before attempting to defeat all other players in combat. The available play area on the island shrinks over time, forcing players to keep moving or else find themselves outside the play area which can be fatal. The final team alive wins the round. The game is set in the same science fiction universe as Respawn Entertainment’s Titanfall and Titanfall 2.
Apex Legends is an online multiplayer battle royale game featuring squads of three players using pre-made characters (called “Legends”), similar to those of hero shooters. Alternate modes have been introduced allowing for single and for two-player squads since the game’s release. The game is free-to-play and monetized through microtransactions and loot boxes, which allow the player to spend both real money and in-game currency on cosmetic items, such as outfits for the Legends and new colors for weapons.
Each match generally features twenty teams of three-player squads. Players can join friends in a squad or can be matched randomly with other players. Before the match, each player on the squad selects one of the 16 playable characters (as of Season 8), with the exception that no character may be selected more than once by a squad. Each character in the squad has a unique design, personality, and abilities that provide different playstyles to the team. All teams are then placed on an aircraft that passes over the game map.
Each new season is intended to bring with it the release of a new playable character, usually new weapons and purchasable cosmetic items. The game’s first season started on March 19, 2019. Associated with seasons are time-limited battle passes that reward players with new cosmetic items, should they complete in-game challenges during the season. Alongside new cosmetic items, seasons can also bring changes to the map and additional gameplay elements.