Respawn Entertainment’s new Battle Royale shooter, Apex Legends, has taken the gaming world by storm. Announced and released on Monday of this week, the title has attracted considerable attention from gamers looking for an alternative to Battle Royale juggernauts Fortnite: Battle Royale and PlayerUnknown’s: Battlegrounds. The bold no-warning release and a slew of innovative features have allowed the new title to surpass all expectations; in an article on Electronic Arts’ website, Respawn announced that the title had already reached the 10 million player milestone.
Indeed, it seems Respawn and EA have a hit on their hands. A Free2Play Battle Royale shooter based on simple, workable concepts such as hero abilities and teamwork was sure to be popular. The current leader of the pack, Fortnite, has attracted derision for its building mechanics, which many say interferes with gunplay and makes engagements tedious. A polished, AAA experience from a proven developer using more traditional mechanics has been eagerly embraced by fans of the genre.
Respawn also went out of their way to put a lot of care into the came, and clearly studied the genre and looked for improvements that could be made. Players can be resurrected; instead of dying and then spectating your friends for the rest of the match, you can now get back in the fight. The lauded ping communication system allows easier coordination between randomly matched teammates, and a streamlined loot system reduces headaches that can be caused by micromanaging your inventory.
All of this has combined to make Apex Legends an overnight sensation. Surpassing genre titan Fortnite, the game became the most viewed game on Twitch earlier this week and still holds that title. Personalities from Twitch, YouTube, and the Esports scene are picking their favorite heroes and running all night streams. If anything, Apex Legends shows that risk-taking and innovation are in-demand practices in the gaming industry.