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Small details you missed in Apex Legends

It's hard to believe it, but Apex Legends has really taken off. There were a million ways for this game — yet another battle royale title — to fail. But it seems it came along at just the right moment, when players were looking for something that offered a different experience than PUBGFortnite, and all of their many offshoots. And now here we are, trying to make sense of how a free-to-play multiplayer game from Titanfall developer Respawn Entertainment has somehow accomplished so much in such a short period of time.

But while we're trying to figure things out, we're also digging around inside the game to learn more about it.

There are definitely some interesting things that you might have missed in here, especially if you're unfamiliar with some of Respawn's prior work. Below, we've collected what we — and many others — have discovered so far. All of the small details you missed in Apex Legends.

A shrine to a beloved pet

Easter eggs aren't uncommon in video games. In fact, developers have been including them in their projects for decades, sometimes as a bit of a joke to share with fans, and other times to give someone a special shout-out. It won't surprise you, then, that Apex Legends has a few Easter eggs of its own. But this one in particular is touching because it reminds us of what it is to be human. We all experience highs, lows, ebbs, and flows. We all have our moments of joy. And every once in a while, we're confronted with tough times.

And when those tough times manifest themselves in the loss of a pet, as they did for Apex Legends developer Jason McCord, the grief can be tough to cope with.

McCord decided to include a tribute to his pet dog, Shadie, in the form of a stuffed animal found in the Market area of Apex's map. And included near this plush version of Shadie are two photos — one of Shadie herself, and another of both McCord and his wife.

"It legit makes me feel better to visit this area sometimes," McCord said.

The Loch Ness Monster returns

We've already covered a couple of the reasons someone might want to include an Easter egg in a video game. Sometimes, though, one comes along that doesn't quite make any sense. We just chalk those up to a developer with a unique sense of humor, or one with a little too much time on their hands. But this one's different. It appears in Apex Legends, as you might have guessed. But it also appears in the original Titanfall as well as Titanfall 2. And we have no idea why.

So we're going to speculate. Someone at Respawn Entertainment must be obsessed with the Loch Ness Monster.

How else can you explain the appearance of this plush Nessie doll in three different Respawn games? It shows up in Titanfall's multiplayer maps. It makes random appearances in Titanfall 2's campaign levels. And it shows up in both Apex Legends' training mode, as well as in the game's sole battle royale arena. In fact, it shows up in ten different locations throughout the map ... and if your squad can shoot all ten in the right order, an actual Loch Ness monster will appear. All without any kind of explanation whatsoever.

There has to be a story behind the Loch Ness monster starring in all of these games. If you work at Respawn Entertainment, could you get in touch? We're dying to know what the deal is.

Pathfinder is no Bastion

When you hear the words "hero shooter," as you likely have about Apex Legends, it's hard not to think about Overwatch. And there are plenty of similarities between the two games, from the way Apex mimics the Overwatch model for character abilities, to the way each title has extended its lore outside of the game.

It seems that the Apex Legends team thinks pretty highly of Overwatch — all you have to do is look at the character Pathfinder.

Each Legend in Apex Legends comes with a variety of animations that can be unlocked. And one of Pathfinder's animations happens to be one where he gets attacked rather comically by a bird. It's almost certainly a reference to the robot character Bastion in Overwatch, who has an animation of his own that shows a bird landing on his finger. 

Out of the two robots, Bastion is a little closer to nature than Pathfinder, apparently.

Referencing one video game in another isn't anything new. But we especially appreciate these little nods when they're done out of respect for another team's work. Gaming has a reputation for being a bit tribal, after all. When something comes along and disproves that assumption, it deserves to be highlighted.

Bloodhound was almost in Titanfall 2

It's not uncommon for video game concept art to be left behind when the actual product gets made. Game development projects are constantly evolving, and can pivot at a moment's notice. One only has to look at some of Destiny's concept art, which originally placed the game's world in a fantasy setting. That never happened. We got a sci-fi shooter instead.

But the folks at Respawn Entertainment clearly liked some of the early art for Titanfall 2, as evidenced by the Apex Legends character Bloodhound.

A sharp-eyed Twitter user went back and flipped through Titanfall 2's official art book, and there, he discovered something quite interesting. A character that looks an awful lot like Bloodhound appears in the book, which means Respawn had considered either including him as a playable character in some form, or toyed with putting him in the game as an enemy type. It never panned out, but Respawn did eventually make use of the character concept a few years later when Apex Legends released.

It just goes to show you that the work someone puts into a game — even the work that doesn't get used — rarely goes to waste. 

Titanfall 2 abilities are very much a part of Apex Legends

If Apex Legends is the first Respawn game you've ever played, you might find some of the character abilities pretty novel. They're certainly a change of pace for the battle royale genre, which is usually all about the guns. If you've played some of Respawn's earlier games however — namely, Titanfall 2 — you're likely seeing a lot of very familiar elements in the studio's latest title.

That's because Apex Legends took some of the Pilot abilities (available via tactical mods) from Titanfall 2 and grafted them on to various characters in the Apex Legends roster.

Mirage and his decoy abilities? That's definitely borrowed from Titanfall 2's Holo Pilot mod. The Phase Shift mod from Titanfall 2, which lets you move through another dimension while avoiding damage, is now an ability for Apex Legends' Wraith. Bloodhound's ability to use sonar to detect enemies used to be activated with a Pulse Blade in TF2. And the famous grappling hook from Titanfall 2 — the one that made movement around the game so speedy — is now exclusively used by Pathfinder in Apex Legends ... and it has a cooldown. Bummer.

There are some things that didn't make the trip from Titanfall 2 to Apex Legends, such as the Titans themselves and the ability to wall run. But there's plenty here from Respawn's previous title if you know where to look.

Many Titanfall 2 weapons are present inside Apex Legends

Titanfall 2's abilities aren't the only thing Respawn repurposed in its newest game. If you spent any amount of time in that older title — and more importantly, if you paid close attention to your arsenal — you might have noticed that both Apex Legends and Titanfall 2 share many common weapons.

That killer half-pistol, half-shotgun known as the Mozambique? It seems like a cool new weapon dreamed up for Apex Legends, but believe it or not, it actually appears in both games. You'll also find the Wingman, the RE-45 Auto, the EVA-8 Auto, the Mastiff, the Alternator, the Hemlock, the VK-47 Flatline, the M600 Spitfire, the Devotion, the Kraber, and the Longbow DMR — all Titanfall 2 weapons that are now a part of Apex Legends.

And then there are some older TF2 weapons that have a new spin. For instance, the gun formerly known as the Double Take in Titanfall 2 is back in Apex Legends, but this time, it's called the Triple Take. That means it shoots three projectiles at the same time instead of two. A pretty nice upgrade.

Those who've played Titanfall 2 will undoubtedly appreciate the consistency here. And for those who never played a Titanfall game and are jumping into Apex Legends anyway? You'll still probably like the guns.