Olivia R. March 11, 2019
Team Liquid’s Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Blackout team has moved to Apex Legends.
The esports organization’s Apex Legends roster now consists of four players: Brenden “Casper” Marino, Gage “Caliburn” Meyer, Thomas “Flankxr” Cook, and Tanner “Rogue” Trebb. Despite Apex sporting three-person teams, Liquid has announced that they’re looking to add even more players to their new roster. A Proving Grounds initiative has been announced, calling all skilled players to apply.
According to Rogue, Team Liquid made the transition from Blackout to Apex Legends because of publisher Activision’s lack of event and tournament support for the Blackout game type. Most existing tournaments were run by third parties, and the lack of developer interest in the esports scene seemed to hit a sour note with Blackout players.
“When Apex Legends came out, and Rspawn came out and said they would support the esports scene, most of the competitive Blackout players switched over,” Rogue said.
Rogue called the transition “easy” thanks to Blackout’s rapidly decreasing popularity on PC. Twitch viewers were quickly losing interest, he said, especially when games became difficult to find later in the evening. In February, Black Ops 4 was the 43rd most popular game on Twitch, with 2,800 viewers, compared to Apex Legend’s 200,000.
Despite breaking into the scene with a huge following, Blackout was overtaken by Apex Legends upon the latter's February release. The new battle royale boasts over 50 million downloads, even threatening mainstream media darling Fortnite. But while Apex Legends is often compared to Fortnite, it shares more similarities with Blackout, thanks to its first-person perspective, futuristic setting, and more realistic weapons.
Team Liquid isn’t the only esports organization looking to get into the Apex Legends competitive scene early. 100 Thieves and NRG Esports were among the first organizations looking to recruit players for the new battle royale, announcing their intent as early as in February.