No genre in the video gaming industry is more saturated with games than battle royal (BR). The explosion of popularity can be attributed to the early successes of H1Z1 and PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS (or more fondly known as PUBG) and launched to astronomical heights by Fortnite. It is, for this reason, I avoided the genre like the plague, outright refusing to play any game that even resembled a battle royal. Unfortunately for me, my inner contrarian prevented me from experiencing one of the most invigorating video games in recent memory: Apex Legends.
From an outsider’s perspective, Apex Legends doesn’t do much differently than say, Fortnite or PUBG: there’s a dropship, you are perpetually chased by an enclosing ring, and battle tactics take similar plays from the BR playbook. What could this game possibly do that is any different than what the market had already offered gamers? Surprisingly, an AWFUL LOT.
My Apex Legends journey began on February 7th, 2020. Yes, you read that right. I finally began playing the game just over a week ago. Yet, because BRs have similar rule sets and win conditions, the most difficult part for me was getting used to the lore specific abilities and game mechanics. I embraced the learning curve and poured dozens upon dozens of hours playing the game and watching tips and tricks videos on YouTube. In addition, I’ve had the luxury of playing with friends who have dedicated hundreds of hours into Apex Legends; they whipped a newbie like me into shape quickly. Now, I have just over 16 total wins for this relatively new season and only see myself getting better over time.
Admittedly, I’m still learning the ins and outs of the game, but I suspect those reading find themselves in a similar situation. This newcomer’s guide is purposed for those who are looking to bridge the gap between their new experience to matching against veteran players of the game. Many of these tips are well known amongst the top players but are nevertheless helpful either just picking the game up or trying to take the next step. Without further ado, here are your (champions!) tips and tricks:
- Positioning is key to winning. It all begins with that first drop. Make sure your team agrees on an area and where it is according to the train, hot zone, and center of the map. In combat, knowing when to flank can mean the difference between winning an exchange or getting picked off, afraid and alone.
- Be aware of your surroundings. This should be common knowledge but surprisingly becomes the main reason new players are dying in the 1st round. Shooting on sight, for instance, can be a quick way to be sandwiched between two or more teams… Which can spell an early exit for you and your fireteam.
- Match your playstyle to the weapons you choose to fight with. Too many new players are trying to follow tier lists and “The meta”. If you are a twitchy shooter who thrives in close combat, then the R-99, EVA-8, and the Wingman should be your weapons of choice. If you know you are not good at sniping then pass that Kraber off to a teammate who has the skillset built for it.
- Speaking of matching playstyles to weapons, make sure you balance your kit to ensure you are prepared for the coming situation. Medium ranged weapons tend to do well under any circumstances so I would recommend the HAVOC, Hemlock, or G7-Scout as great flex options. Yet, if you know if the circle is closing into the city, where close-range fights become inevitable, don’t be afraid to rock TWO close-range weapons for quick swaps in the heat of combat.
- If you come across Ultimate Accelerants USE OR STASH THEM. I’ve seen a surprising number of players who completely ignore them or gloss over them while looting. Getting your ultimate sooner is an excellent situation to be in, as ultimates can change the tide of battle. Also, UAs are consumables, not passives. You must go directly into your inventory to use them.
- The new Legend Revenants totem can be used by enemy teams as well as your own. Keep this in mind whether you have him on board or if you see him as an enemy combatant. As Revenant, be sure to put his ultimate out of reach, that way your team will also spawn in an ideal position to heal.
- Also, regarding Revenant’s totems, if you can’t reach them to use them as a counter you can destroy them to negate the use of his ability altogether.
- One final note about Revenant: his movement speed in his crouch matches his walking speed. This is insanely useful to keep a low profile in a firefight (although it’s hard to recommend crouching in a fight) but also for maneuvering around enemies to get the jump on them.
- When dropping, be sure to land in areas that are conducive to your team’s strengths. Whether that’s accommodating to your skills as snipers or CQC or to Legends abilities (Caustic will want tighter quarters and Bangalore Artillery thrives in open fields).
- The train may be tempting but you can bet that most players will b-line it to it, making it a dangerous venture. I would advise avoiding it until you get more comfortable with the game or have a solid pre-made.
- In addition to the train, there is a hot-zone that spawns randomly every match. This zone guarantees high tier loot, therefore, becomes a dangerous landing prospect. If you want to contest this zone I recommend landing in the outer limits of the ring and working your way in.
I hope these tips help some new blood out there become a better champion, for themselves and their team. We’ve got more Apex Legends content coming your way so be sure to drop into the #1 geek culture destination The Game Fanatics!