‘Apex Legends’ Accidentally Punished Players For Abandoning Their Friends
Apex Legends is a team-based game in which you and your squad try to be the very best at murder via the power of friendship and bullets. As such, it can be frustrating when your friends bail, leaving you to face the thunderdome alone. Last week, developer Respawn accidentally added a penalty for that.
Apex Legends‘ latest patch went live late last week. Update 1.1 is rather small, focused primarily on things such as fixing bugs and stability issues. The most noticeable change is that players can now invite squad members from their last game to party up again via the lobby.
However, players quickly noticed another change that wasn’t listed in update’s patch notes. Apex Legends had added a leave penalty, which put a five-minute cooldown on players who quit in the middle of a match three consecutive times. This meant that they’d have to wait five minutes before they could join another game. Quit another time after that, and the cooldown reportedly increased to 10 minutes.
#ApexLegends new update is trash. i don’t enjoy getting a 5 minute penalty just because i decided to leave a match. i shouldn’t have to stay in a match if i don’t like how things are going and/or the team i got put into. sheesh, come on.
— Adym 👾 (@_mydA_) April 3, 2019
"Boo hoo I can't leave and make things unfair for my team bc I'm Better Than Everyone Else at a Video Game" – Apex Legends players now that there's a leaver penalty.
— Gay For Symmetra 💙💜 (@buttbuttbrigade) April 4, 2019
Some players were happy about the addition of the penalty, while others were upset they could no longer abandon their teammates for the potential of greener pastures. Regardless of their stance on the matter, many questioned Respawn’s apparent decision not to detail the penalty in the patch notes. It turns out that this was because the feature wasn’t meant to go live yet.
“So internally, we have been working on and testing this feature but it wasn’t our intention or plan to have it go live with the update that went out today,” wrote Respawn Community Manager Jay Frechette on Reddit.
“There was a piece of script that was missing and caused the leaving match early penalty to be turned on when it shouldn’t be. That’s why it wasn’t in the patch notes.”
The penalty was quickly disabled, and according to Frechette, there is currently no set date for when – or if – the feature will be intentionally added to the game.
— 🔴 Live Now | Kevin Malarkey (@kevinmalarkey) April 6, 2019
Lead Designer Brent Mcleod shared further details about the leave penalty via Reddit. According to Mcleod, the penalty didn’t kick in if the team you were leaving wasn’t full, allowing people to quit when they’re at an obvious disadvantage from the outset and search for a fairer game. The penalty also didn’t apply if you were already dead and could not be respawned, meaning you weren’t forced to watch from the sidelines like a sad ghost.
Apex Legends‘ leave penalty sounds like a reasonable measure to discourage players from dropping out of matches that aren’t going their way, particularly as it takes an excessive amount of leaving to trigger. We can only hope it will eventually be added properly.