The first-ever battle pass has finally been detailed for Apex Legends but unfortunately for Respawn Entertainment, the reception has been pretty mixed.
Many are still reeling from how underwhelming the content plan actually is. While the community was expecting unique character and weapon skins, they mostly got color-swapped variations. Those who were expecting unique animated banners and new executions are now staring at useless level badges and stat trackers.
There is very little in the battle pass that can convince you to make a purchase. The only rewards that most players are looking forward to are a bunch of Apex Packs, a legendary Havoc skin, and 1,000 Apex Coins that can be put away for the future. In terms of actual content, there is nothing new and exciting. Suffice to say, the community had set its expectations pretty high and hence, are now pretty disappointed.
So what went wrong? There are some people pointing out that Respawn Entertainment was never expecting the game to become this successful. That reasoning seems pretty weak when knowing how much is on the line for the developer.
While speaking with The Verge last month, executive producer Drew McCoy revealed that they had to really convince Electronic Arts to do things differently this time around. Not only did the publishing giant have to forego an aggressive marketing campaign, it had to also place its absolute trust in the developer for maximizing sales. Considering how Electronic Arts hates to break away from its standard approach when it comes to new releases, it is actually amazing that it decided to let Respawn Entertainment run the show.
Do you really think a studio in such a position would go to all that trouble and not even bother to chalk out a fairly good business model? Apex Legends has over 50 million players worldwide, but without any quality in-game shop for those players to sink money in. That is a massive faltering on the end of the developer and not something that Electronic Arts would be very happy about.
The battle pass was not something that Respawn Entertainment cooked up in the last minute. It was planned from the very beginning. Fortnite is being constantly compared with Apex Legends in this regard but do note that even Fortnite had an underwhelming battle pass for the first season. It was not until a few seasons later that Fortnite set a really good standard. You cannot possibly say the same for Apex Legends because Respawn Entertainment already had a roadmap thanks to Fortnite. It is not possible for the developer to be in the dark here when Apex Legends was being made with the intention to take on Fortnite from the very beginning.
Hence, why Respawn Entertainment obviously knew that it would face severe criticism over the present battle pass and still did nothing. This becomes even more obvious when looking at how the developer responded in turn.
Posting on the official website just hours after the battle pass was announced, lead product manager Lee Horn promised to do much better with future battle passes.
“As a studio, we’re always striving to innovate like we did with our Ping system, the Jumpmaster, Respawning, and more,” said Horn. “We look to do the same with our Battle Pass. Season 1 is just the first version on a long road of improvements, updates and tweaks. We have a lot of cool ideas in the works, but we want to hear yours too.”
At this point, only Respawn Entertainment and Electronic Arts know why the battle pass got messed up this bad. If the developer wanted a cue, it sure got one from the community. Everyone is trying to swallow this like a bad egg. Apex Legends is a wonderful game but it sure has some bad content plans. The first season has started on an incredibly underwhelming note. Hopefully, things will turn out better with the next one.