- "Apex Legends" is a new Battle Royale video game from Respawn Entertainment and Electronic Arts.
- Respawn announced the game on February 4th and released it for free on the same day for Windows, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4.
- More than 2 million players downloaded "Apex Legends" during its first day, and it's currently the most-watched game on Twitch, the top video game streaming platform.
- Less than a month later the game has already crossed 50 million players.
Electronic Arts and developer Respawn Entertainment shocked the video game world in February when they revealed "Apex Legends," a new Battle Royale shooter, and immediately released the full game for free.
Battle Royale describes a relatively new genre of game popularized by "Fortnite" and "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds," the two most-played video games in the world. "Fortnite: Battle Royale," is free-to-play and has more than 200 million players worldwide — the creators of "Fortnite," Epic Games, reportedly earned $2.4 billion in 2018 from the sale of cosmetic items within the game.
"Apex Legends" is a clear challenger to "Fortnite," with Electronic Arts adopting a free-to-play model similar to "Fortnite" for its own Battle Royale game. While the surprise announcement of "Apex Legends" only brought in about 90,000 viewers at its peak on its first day, word traveled fast — more than one million players downloaded the game in the first eight hours it was available.
If you're new to the game, here's what you need to know about "Apex Legends."
More than 50 million people played "Apex Legends" in its first month.
Vincent Zampella, CEO of Respawn Entertainment, said the "Apex Legend" player base reached 2 million in less than 24 hours, and one month later, he tweeted that the game had surpassed 50 million players.
"Apex Legends" quickly became the most-watched video game on Twitch too, with more than 390,000 concurrent viewers watching live a day after the game's release. The game is fast-paced and features unique characters, rather than the generic avatars of "Fortnite" and "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds."
Here's how the early growth of "Apex Legends" compares to "Fortnite":
Like other Battle Royale games, players fight to survive on a remote island.
The Battle Royale genre pits dozens of players against each other in a fight for survival. Players are dropped off in a remote area and need to find weapons to defend themselves. As the game progresses, the safe areas of the map start to shrink until only one team or player is remaining. Each round lasts about 30 minutes at most, and players can join a new match as soon as they're eliminated.
"Apex Legends" will continue adding new playable characters over time.
Rather than making their own character, like in "Fortnite" or "PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds,""Apex" players choose from one of eight playable legends, or unique characters with their own special abilities. Their powers can include extra mobility, shields for support, or specific weapon types. New legends will be introduced as the game is updated over time.
While players can select most of the starting cast for free, "Apex" will sell new playable characters for $7.50 each.
Unlike "Fortnite," "Apex Legends" isn't available on Android or iOS devices.
"Fortnite" still holds one major advantage over "Apex Legends" - cross-platform play.
"Fortnite" players can play with friends on the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC, and iOS or Android smartphones. "Apex Legends" is on PS4, PC, and Xbox One, but players are currently limited to playing with other people on the same platform.
"Apex Legends" will eventually have cross-platform play for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.
"The "Apex" creative team said they plan to add cross-play support to the game in the future, but progress and unlocked items will not be shared between different platforms. Availability on smartphones also brings droves of new players to "Fortnite," but there are no plans to bring "Apex Legends" to mobile devices at this time.
"Apex Legends" is free-to-play and available now on Xbox One and PlayStation 4, and via Origin on PC. Check out the gameplay trailer for more details below.