a month ago - last edited a month ago
Welcome to the Evolution Collection Event. Unlock event-limited cosmetics for Wraith, Octane, Pathfinder, Fuse, Bangalore, Rampart, and Lifeline that give a glimpse into what our Legends could become with time and technology on their side. Meanwhile, our resident modder is showing those plonkers who’s in charge with the Rampart Town Takeover, Big Maude. Check out her mobile shop, parked between Lava City and the Geyser. It’s sure to be a popular POI for the rest of Emergence.
While the brick-and-mortar location might be in Battle Royale, Rampart’s bringing her entrepreneurship into the Arenas too in “Rampart’s Arenas Extravaganza,” with special discounts meant to inspire players to change up their usual loadouts. For all of her hard work, Rampart’s getting a “Problem Solver:” a brand-new Heirloom pipe wrench, complete with a gumball dispenser. Who could ask for anything more? Oh, well - how about an upgrade to Sheila? Check out the full blog below for all the details in the update.
After a few rough starts to her previous shops, Rampart is pulling out the big guns with the mod shop of her dreams. Finally, she'll be able to show the Outlands—and Big Sister—what she's always been capable of creating.
Enter Big Maude, Rampart’s custom shop (also a giant tank, what else would you expect?) located near Lava City in World’s Edge. This POI is big enough to accommodate a few teams fighting over the shop itself, and she’s also built a wonderful paintball course out front that acts as a spill off location if the drop just looks too spicy.
Inside the shop, you can use collected materials to purchase Rampart’s Custom Modded Paintball Weapons from the new Vend-it Machines. These guns cost a bit, but they come fully kitted at different tiers. This should give players a reason to rotate here mid-game if their weapons just aren’t as upgraded as they’d like.
As usual, be on the lookout for extra lore sprinkled around. Rampart’s shop is back open for business!
Rampart has slipped into the Arenas and is offering modded weapons at special discounts! These marked-down modded weapons replace their base version for the match, making lower tiers of that weapon unavailable. Her special deals update frequently, so be sure to check what’s available in your match and plan accordingly.
While the brick-and-mortar location might be in Battle Royale, Rampart’s bringing her entrepreneurship into the Arenas too in “Rampart’s Arenas Extravaganza,” with special discounts meant to inspire players to change up their usual loadouts. For all of her hard work, Rampart’s getting a “Problem Solver:” a brand-new Heirloom pipe wrench, complete with a gumball dispenser. Who could ask for anything more? Oh, well - how about an upgrade to Sheila?
Finally, unlock event-limited cosmetics for Wraith, Octane, Pathfinder, Fuse, Bangalore, Rampart, and Lifeline that give a glimpse into what our Legends could become with time and technology on their side.
Dev Note: A legend based solely on a defensive position is hard to get right in Apex Legends. We think Rampart has a place as the ultimate defensive Legend, but we wanted to give her a little more ability to be reactive and push with her team. As usual, we’ll be watching to see how this plays out and will adjust accordingly!
Bocek Compound Bow
Dev Notes: The Hemlok’s hipfire effectiveness was reduced a few seasons ago and since then the weapon has seen a steady decline in use. Bringing back some of that hipfire strength (but not all) should help the weapon feel more consistent in close quarters without being dominant or affecting its medium-range excellence.
Shatter Caps - Bocek Compound Bow
Shatter Caps - 30-30 Repeater
Dev Notes: When Shatter Caps work they feel amazing, but currently it can still feel a little punishing to swap into the mode. Increasing the damage potential and improving the CQC flow of the 30-30 should help Shatters feel a little more accessible and rewarding.
Dev Notes: We’re nudging down the L-STAR’s core stats a bit to smooth out the power progression in what we think is a slightly more healthy top-end. We’ll keep a close eye on the L-STAR and it’s recoil as we enter the second half of Emergence. In Arenas, we’re well aware of it’s prevalence in high-level lobbies and are pricing it out of the first round. These changes essentially increase the blue cost by 50 and keep the purple price the same. If its pick rate remains unchanged, we will hotfix further adjustments.
Dev Notes: The EVA-8 holds a lot of power in its speed and leniency compared to its counterparts, the PK and Mastiff. It’s got the edge with fire rate and consistency so we’re shaving off some of its spike damage to even the playing field. We’re normalizing the Mozambique as well for consistency within the shotgun class and to give the P2020 some space as the more precise early game weapon.
9/13/21 UPDATE: The planned changes to tap-strafing have been delayed to a later patch. See context here.
Written by John “JayBiebs” Larson
Earlier this week, we announced our intention to “remove tap-strafing,” a decision that was met with surprise by many movement enthusiasts. Tap-strafing is a term associated with different sorts of movement, depending on who you ask. Internally, we generally use it to describe what many associate with scroll-wheel strafing.
To be more explicit, this change targets multiple rapid directional commands after jumping. Movement should feel unchanged for controllers and for M&K (mouse-and-keyboard) players who hadn’t heard of the term “tap-strafe” until this week. Thanks to the work of a couple of our engineers, this is now easily tunable on the fly, and we have the ability to iterate on or even revert it completely without a client update.
Our goal is to remove some of the sharpness in momentum conservation around 90°+ angles. That’s what I’m thinking of when I use the term “tap-strafe” throughout this post. Things like wall-bounce redirects back onto that same wall should feel unchanged, but movement afforded by scroll-wheel strafing will be removed.
Since tap-strafing is a unique M&K mechanic, many platforms have asked about our approach to controller-specific systems like aim assist. As Apex and its players evolve, it’s only prudent for us to continue to evaluate whether or not aim assist needs adjustment. When top-level controller players say they would be alright with nerfing aim assist, we definitely take note. Players should not feel forced to use a specific input type to stay competitive.
When people say, “Gee dang it, Respawn’s balancing decisions cater to controller players,” the best answer I have is: “When it comes to accessibility, we often must consider controller players given the constraints compared to M&K. But, accessibility isn’t the same as balance design, and it’s a strawman argument to treat it as such.”
This is why we believe tap-strafing exists solely as a design problem. Even in a M&K-only Apex world, or a scenario where controller and M&K could tap-strafe just the same, we don’t believe it would be a healthy change with the freedom it currently allows, for three main reasons:
The first issue: it’s highly inaccessible. By “inaccessible,” we mean that it’s an opaque technique that’s practically impossible to learn organically (and the most egregious examples require a strange keybind).
Secondly, tap-strafes have terrible readability and limited counter play. Path grapples and Octane pads aside, I’ve seen clips of players breaking ankles with victims (including high-skill players) who are at a loss for what to do. While it’s not terribly prevalent, I’m concerned about how this could continue to evolve as more players adapt and further develop their tap-strafe mechanics.
The third point, and the most problematic, is how tap-strafing is exacerbated by movement abilities. I can buy that a tap-strafe at normal velocity in a gunfight occurs infrequently and is relatively mild enough to not immediately kill with fire. But Path grappling past and tap-strafing back into your face with a Mastiff, or Octane cranking 90s while maintaining ridiculous speed both bring up greater gameplay concerns.
Mobility creep is something to be very mindful of in this game. While many love the freedom that Apex’s movement system affords, constraints are just as important. It’s not surprising that mobility legends are highly popular. Why don’t we just do more of that? Well, over time (and I’d say we are already seeing it) mobility creep can open up a Pandora's box of new problems to solve. How is third partying affected by mobility? Within a fight, how are frontlines defined? How quickly can I close the gap on an enemy? As a game, Apex is designed to work well with a finite number of movement possibilities.
I feel it’s important to note that limitations don’t always equate to lowering skill-gaps; there are skill-gaps in working within constraints. One could argue that bunny-hop healing lowered the skill-ceiling—players could make up for misplays with less constraints on their ability to safely heal. Different types of skill expression are changed when we touch something like perfect air control, for better or for worse.
Hopefully this provided some context, and as always, we’re happy to hear your thoughts.