Roughly a month after its February 2019 launch, Apex Legends just got its first balance patch last night. Only two weapons, Peacekeeper and Wingman, are impacted by this update, but they get some significant nerfs. Interestingly, no characters are being changed (yet). The update comes as Apex Legends prepares to launch its first season, and the corresponding battle pass.
The Reddit post goes into detail on Respawn’s philosophy when it comes to updates. However, the “TL;DR” version is that updates will be “less frequent,” but “better tested.” The developer believes this will “minimize the impacts on your time spent mastering the game.” So don’t expect updates all too often, but do expect the ones that drop to be fairly significant. With Apex Legends seeing a staggering amount of success, it’s great to see Respawn focus on wanting to see its players improve their skills with minimal interruptions.
Here are the patch notes:
WEAPON ADJUSTMENTS LIVE ON ALL PLATFORMS
Rate of fire reduced from 3.1 -> 2.6 shots per second.
Skullpiercer Headshot damage multiplier reduced from 2.5 -> 2.25
Increased base hip fire spread and decreased the rate at which hip fire spread decays (shrinks back down).
Shotgun Bolt rechamber rate has been reduced for the Peacekeeper only.
Level 1 mitigation 10% -> 7.5%
Level 2 mitigation 20% -> 13%
Level 3 mitigation 25% -> 16%
Wingman and Peacekeeper availability has been reduced in all zone tiers.
Increased availability of energy weapons & ammo in all zone tiers.
Why no P2020 or Mozambique buffs?
We love y’all’s ‘Bique memes, so we’re hesitant to lose that 😛
In all seriousness, our goal is to have a power curve of weapons. “Power curve” just means that some weapons will be weaker and more common, while others will be stronger and rarer. Some weapons are intentionally less powerful until fully purp’d with hopups and attachments, while other weapons on the bottom of the power curve are your early game, better-than-melee, but-gotta-upgrade-out-of-ASAP weapons. We’ve seen some good feedback from players about how to make these pistols more exciting without losing out on the goal above that we’re listening to. We’ll be continuing to watch player data and feedback and trying things out internally but for now, they’ll remain the same.
ADDITIONAL PATCH NOTES
Fixed some script errors that we identified were occasionally causing disconnects during matches.
Caustic occasionally causing disconnects while throwing is Ultimate.
Pathfinder occasionally causing disconnects when activating a Survey Beacon.
Players occasionally causing disconnects when removing an attachment.
Gibraltar occasionally causing disconnects when pulling up his Gun Shield.
Players occasionally causing disconnects when entering Spectate Mode.
While these changes aren’t part of the current update, they planned for when Season One launches. We still don’t have an exact date on the official launch of Season One, though it is set for March 2019. It’s expected to introduce a new character known as Octane, though Respawn hasn’t commented on that yet. Unlike this update, these changes pertain to the legends themselves:
Major balance changes:
Hit box size reductions and optimizations for Caustic, Pathfinder and Gibraltar
We’re better sizing hitboxes to character gear & model
Since these adjustments have a MAJOR impact on the game, we want to make sure there aren’t any major bugs, so we didn’t want to rush them out
If these adjustments prove to be insufficient, we’ll consider additional adjustments during Season 1
Minor balance changes:
Traps – Reduced cooldown to 25 seconds from 30 seconds
Traps – Increased radius and proximity radius by about 10%
Traps – Removed a 1 second delay on the smoke dealing damage to players
Insider Knowledge – Increased the number of beacons in the world to 12 from 10
Care Package – Removed slight chance that level 4 armor and helmets will drop
Into The Void – Cooldown increased from 20 -> 25 seconds
Double Time – Reduced move speed bonus to 30% from 40%