Wait, What Is This New Overwatch-like Battle Royale ‘Apex Legends’ Game, Exactly?

Apex Legends

During a live stream this morning, developer Respawn revealed free-to-play battle royale game Apex Legends for the first time. Then, not to waste any time, they made it immediately available in a surprise launch.

Set in the Titanfall universe, Apex Legends has been described by many as an Overwatch-like battle royale. Like the heroes in Overwatch, Apex Legends‘ cast of eight playable characters each have a different set of abilities – including a powerful ultimate ability. For example, soldier Bangalore can order an artillery strike, while Wraith can set up a portal to teleport her team between two locations. Each character has also been given a distinct personality and backstory.

Apex Legends is a team-based battle royale, with each match hosting up to 60 players in 20 teams of three. Those who have already jumped in have found Apex Legends more fast-paced than other battle royale games, and an interesting offering for those who want their last-man-standing action to involve less waiting and watching and more running in with guns blazing

While Apex Legends is free-to-play, some of its content is locked. Disappointingly, the characters Caustic and Mirage are not immediately available to play, and must be unlocked either by spending real money or by earning 12,000 Legend Tokens. These are granted when you play a match. There are also cosmetic items to earn, but nothing that would alter gameplay – aside from the aforementioned characters.

Kotaku reports that developer Respawn had originally been working on a third entry in the Titanfall series, but that game is no longer in the works, having morphed into Apex Legends. Both Titanfall and Titanfall 2 were well-received, and fans had been looking forward to a third game with eager anticipation, so this news came as a big disappointment to some.

However, widespread reaction to Apex Legends has been positive, even among some who are generally sceptical of battle royale games. The game has done well to distinguish itself in an overcrowded genre, but only time will tell whether it can carve out space in a Fortnite-dominated world.

Apex Legends is now available for free on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.