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False facts about Apex Legends you thought were true

With new games in their early days on the market, there's usually plenty of false information, rumors, and leaks that make the rounds on the internet. Respawn Entertainment's Apex Legends is no exception to that rule. The fledgling battle royale game became an instant hit after its February announcement and release as well as an aggressive marketing push. Yet, like its competitors, Apex will surely be a game that will change throughout its life cycle, while also being subjected to a high level of scrutiny along the way.

That's the state of gaming in the internet age: games will always be subject to misinformation because anyone can use the web as a soapbox for their issues, the industry, or fellow players. In the multiplayer experience that is this squad-based shooter, there's already plenty of bad info floating around. From killing its competitors to publisher pressure, Respawn's battle royale has had a lot of fake narratives in its short lifespan. Here are some of the false facts about Apex Legends you thought were true.

Apex Legends never leaked early

On Feb. 4, 2019, Respawn Entertainment simultaneously revealed and released Apex Legends. Through a smart marketing push, the developer and its publisher, Electronic Arts, utilized Twitch, content creators, and a lot of social media to build hype for the game while allowing the gaming public to download and jump right into it. It was a bold way to release a video game, one that has already paid off to the tune of 50 million-plus players. However, contrary to popular belief, release day wasn't the first time that people got wind of a battle royale game from the Titanfall devs.

Nearly a year prior to the game's release, in April 2018, a Reddit user known as Hiticonic created a thread titled "Alleged Minimap for Rumored Titanfall Battle Royal game." In his post, he put up an image of the map that we now know as Kings Canyon, and outside of some small changes, it looked very similar to the actual map today. It even including many of the area names from the final version. Despite its eventual accuracy, Hiticonic's post was met with personal attacks, a multitude of downvotes, and accusations that he was simply creating fake maps for the sake of upvotes on the platform.

Fast forward a year later and the Reddit user's claim has been clearly validated, reminding us that there actually are credible people on the internet.

Ninja has only played Apex Legends because EA paid him

EA has definitely had its fair share of bad press and poor marketing tactics, but it clearly got things right with Apex Legends. On release day, the publisher paid multiple high-profile streamers and content creators to stream the game and post about it on social media. Notable creators involved in this marketing plan included Shroud, who now has assumed the role as the face of Apex, as well as the infamous Ninja. Known for his pro status in Fortnite, Ninja switching battle royale games even for a day was pretty big news. It was no secret that he was paid for his time — later, a report revealed that he received $1 million for streaming the game on that one day — but many assumed that the only reason he played the game was because EA wrote him a hefty check.

Yet, if you look at Ninja's Twitch archive, you can see that this simply isn't true. For the month of February, the entertainer played Apex Legends consistently, even participating in Twitch's first-ever tournament for the game. In fact, he and his team won that tournament, which shows that the man knew what he was doing. That's not exactly the sign of someone who only played the game on release day because he made some money.

EA pushed Respawn to make a battle royale game

There's a misconception that has floated around since the game's release: EA, which owns Respawn, forced the developer to make a battle royale game instead of another sequel to Titanfall. Because of the game industry's changing landscape, EA's emphasis on "games as services," and the growth of the battle royale genre, people assume that it was the publisher's decision to create Apex Legends. This isn't at all true. Respawn actually had to convince EA that developing the title was the right decision for the company.

In an interview with Game Informer, executive producer Drew McCoy outlined this point. He discussed how Apex wasn't the game that EA was expecting. McCoy had this to say: "I had to go to executives, show it to them, and explain it and ... not convince but more, 'Hey, trust us! This is the thing you want out of us.'" The publisher ultimately signed off on the game, but had absolutely no hand in its development. After much work and experimentation, Respawn built Apex because the in-house team felt it was the right choice.

Respawn skipped Titanfall 3 because of poor sales

Respawn Entertainment's choice to develop Apex Legends came out of a great deal of testing and experimentation, as well as a thorough look at the gaming landscape after the success of PUBG and the company's acquisition by EA. What wasn't involved in the decision-making process was poor performance from the Titanfall series. Even though Titanfall 2 missed its sales mark, Respawn's initial plan still involved making a third game in the franchise. However, after testing player-vs-player modes using assets from the second game, the developers determined that a battle royale was what they should work on next.

After realizing that the team was onto something with this experiment, it became clear to executive producer Drew McCoy and his colleagues that it would be good to put emphasis on character-based combat instead of the massive mechs known as Titans. In an interview, McCoy stated, "We wanted characters that aren't just about mechanical differences, but that are deep and rich. We wanted to zoom out [from the core Titanfall series] and find another part of the world." That's why Apex Legends came about: the team desired to tell another type of story in the same universe.

Apex is negatively affecting Fortnite sales

With a AAA title in the battle royale genre, comparisons to Fortnite were inevitable and immediate. When Apex Legends released to positive reception, people likened it to the popular shooter from Epic Games and praised it for intelligent additions like the ping system and the elimination of fall damage. And, not long after release, a news story broke that Fortnite's sales had essentially been cut in half month-over-month, furthering the narrative that Respawn's new game had become the "Fortnite killer." However, anyone who read closely saw an important piece of information from that story: those sales numbers were from Jan. 2019, the month prior to the Apex launch.

Post-holiday dips are common, especially for games deep into their life-cycles like Epic's battle royale. Apex had no bearing on these reported numbers, and even a cursory glance at news reports shows that the long-standing game is still having plenty of success. Its player count is nearing 250 million players, while the record for concurrent player count stands at 10.8 million, a number set in late February.

If your main game is Fortnite, don't worry. This game's not going anywhere. However, neither is its new competitor.

You can get legendary weapons from Lifeline's supply drops

With Lifeline, players get a fantastic entry point to this game. Known for being an ideal main for new players because of her healing ability, Lifeline has become a key factor in many winning squads. While her healing plays an important role, players often see success thanks to her Ultimate ability, which rains down a Supply Drop. These drop pods often feature epic and legendary gear, which can be the difference-maker in late-game situations. However, Lifeline's drops are slightly different from the drops that randomly generate throughout Kings Canyon.

The random supply drops, which you'll find crashing down throughout a match, can feature anything from health items to epic helmets to the game's two legendary weapons: the Kraber sniper rifle and the Mastiff shotgun. Because these Supply Drops have a chance of bringing the epic guns into the match, some assume that Lifeline's can do the same. This isn't the case. Her Ultimate supply drops can lead to legendary gear — shields, armor, mods — but not the Kraber or Mastiff. If you want those for the endgame, you'll have to risk exposure and loot one of the random drops on the map.

Wraith's knife results in a more powerful melee

Currently, only one legend has an heirloom set that players can unlock via Apex Packs: Wraith. This extremely rare — less than 1% chance — set includes a special knife skin that replaces the normal melee "skin." This allows Wraith to run around Kings Canyon brandishing an extremely cool-looking blade that makes melee attacks look much more satisfying. However, some people believe that, due to YouTube videos and articles that feature content creators paying hundreds of dollars to finally unlock the knife, this heirloom set is a pay-to-win situation. The rumor online is that this knife actually increases melee damage.

Let's put that fallacy to bed once and for all. As the knife is nothing more than cosmetic, it has absolutely no effect on melee damage numbers, attack speed, or anything else to do with in-game performance. It's simply a very, very hard-to-acquire weapon skin that puts a blade into Wraith's empty hands. So, if you worry that players with a lot of spare income to buy Apex Packs have the advantage once a match starts, fear not. The heirloom knife gives a lucky few nothing more than cosmetic bragging rights.

Legendary (gold) tems have better stats than Epic (purple) ones

When you're in a frantic scramble for the best gear in a certain area of Kings Canyon, you don't have a lot of time to sit around and compare item stats. It's usually safe to assume that, when an item has a higher rarity and, therefore, a different color representation, that it's automatically better than a lower variation. This is usually true, except when it comes to the base stats of legendary and epic gear items. Keep in mind, we're talking strictly about gear — body armor, helmets, knockdown shields, backpacks — and not weapons.

With gold and purple gear, many players assume that the gold automatically has better stats. But in actuality, both the gold and the purple body shield have the exact same numbers: 200 armor. The difference with the legendary version of the shield comes in the form of its unique ability. A gold body shield has a perk known as Executioner, which fully regenerates the shield after a successful finisher. Each other gold piece of gear has its own ability as well. Helmets reduce ability recharge time. Backpacks allow for faster use of healing items. Knockdown shields give you a one-time-use self-resurrection. These are all great perks to have, but the gold items still have the same base stats as their purple counterparts.

Weapons do more damage the closer you are to an enemy

In many multiplayer shooters, you'll find that your weapons do more damage when you're in closer proximity to your enemies. When this is the case, it often forces you to change strategy, adapting to the situation, the map size, or the skill level of your opponents. It makes close-range gunfights more reliant on strong weapons like shotguns and long-range tactics dependant on sniper rifles. If you're new to Apex Legends, you're likely thinking in this context. This actually isn't correct, though. In Respawn's shooter, weapons do the same amount of damage no matter where you are in relation to your target.

Yes, it's true that you'll still be more accurate with a R301 assault rifle if an enemy is 20 feet from you as opposed to 200. Regardless of the range, the rifle will always do 14 body damage and 28 to the head. If you're skilled enough, you can still be just as surgical no matter that distance, with the damage output staying the same.

You run slower when holding bigger weapons

Obviously, video game logic doesn't always translate to real life. There's no better example of this in Apex — besides the lack of fall damage — than the fact that you run the exact same speed no matter the size of the weapon you're brandishing at the time. When you're holding a weapon that takes up a large part of the screen, like the Kraber sniper rifle, your brain may trick you into thinking you're running slower than your teammate with the Mozambique. Nope. While you do run around 15% faster when you holster your weapons, there's absolutely no difference in your speed when holding one weapon versus another.

This is also a good time to remind you that all Legends run at the same base speed. Certain ones, like the recent addition Octane, can gain speed boosts via their abilities, but base character speeds are consistent across the board. So, no matter the character and no matter the weapon, you'll sprint at the same pace: about 6.5 meters per second.