After months of game-breaking bugs, little communication, and an excessive amount of cheaters, Respawn Entertainment is finally seeing the consequnces of Apex Legend’s many issues.
According to SuperData Research, Apex Legends is no longer in the top earning list of console and PC titles. While the battle royale managed to generate $24 million last month, that was just one quarter of the sales Apex Legends had when it launched in February.
Meanwhile, Fortnite remains on both lists, including a fifth place spot in PC titles and second place for console.
When Apex Legends was released almost four months ago, it shot past Fortnite’s world record as the most downloaded title. The game had 10 million players in just 72 hours. In one week there were over 25 million players.
Apex Legends also beat Fortnite’s single-day Twitch views record thanks to their Twitch Rivals tournament on February 12. It was actually the streaming service’s most successful day to date, with viewers watching a collective 8.28 million hours of the game. This shattered Fortnite’s previous record of 6.6 million hours viewed in one day.
“This has been a truly incredible journey. We knew it would be risky to take the franchise in this direction, to go free-to-play, and do a surprise launch. But we fell in love with Apex Legends and wanted – needed – other people to play it, too,” Respawn Entertainment CEO Vince Zampella said at the time.
Free-to-play may have been one of the reasons behind Apex Legend’s record-breaking downloads. But it also brought on many problems for the popular battle royale. Hackers and cheaters have made the game frustrating for casual and competitive players alike. The game has addressed this issue on a few occassions, like the time it banned over half a million hackers. But the community feels that the game has not done enough to keep up with the issue, with a lack of in-game anti-cheating tools, and infrequent updates and communication on the topic.
In fact, Respawn Entertainment’s lack of communication has been another recurring issue over the past few months. When game-breaking bugs were reported, including one where players couldn’t hear footsteps or take out their weapons, Respawn Entertainment didn’t seem quick to offer any solutions. The developers have promised updates, including information on Season 2, to be discussed further at E3, but players are left wondering why these important issues can’t be addressed seperately and in a more timely manner.
Then there’s the lack of updates in general. While battle royale competitors has frequent patches and content updates, Apex Legends players have only received one new legend these past four months. While some players have respected Respawn for not overworking their employees to get out constant updates, it seems that the infrequent content additions have still harmed the game’s earnings overall.
Come E3 in June, fans are hoping to see some major changes to Apex Legends when it comes to content and bug fixes.