Apex Legends’ new battle pass system has players up in arms: ‘This is how you kill the game’

Respawn is changing the way the battle pass works in Apex Legends—and to say players are pissed off about it is an understatement.

The official changes, set to begin next season, were announced today on the Apex X/Twitter account and the game’s official website. There are a lot of moving parts, but the gist of the changes is that there will now be battle passes for each split, as opposed to one battle pass per season. The base premium level of these battle passes will cost the same $10 that the season-long battle passes have always cost. That makes it $20 to buy both battle passes each season, effectively doubling the previous cost of buying a battle pass. The trade-off, according to Respawn, is that the new 60-level battle passes will amount to more cosmetics earned by players if they purchase and complete both battle passes in a season, and that much of the lesser-used items previously in battle passes have been taken out of those reward tracks.

In addition to the new battle pass system, there’s also a “Premium+” option that will replace the old premium bundle that gave players the same battle pass as the base premium level but with a bunch of levels skipped. Premium+ will still offer level skips but will now offer more Crafting Metals, Exotic Shards, and Legendary skin variants players can earn. Additionally, all characters will be automatically unlocked for the duration of a Premium+ battle pass. All of that can be yours for $20.

It’s going to take actually seeing how this system change plays out and what the new rewards look like before anyone can make an accurate judgment of this battle pass system, but on its face, it looks very money-hungry—and players are already letting Respawn know.

The Twitter account’s post is already flooded with replies warning that Respawn will “kill the game,” and that the new policy is “greedy.” Popular content creator Noko even chimed in to say the new system was “some of the most EA shit I’ve ever seen,” a sentiment many players in the Apex community share. Trust for the publishing company behind Respawn’s hit game has never been particularly high, but it’s practically in free fall at the moment.

Outside of the normal cost for a season’s battle pass essentially doubling, one of the other biggest sticking points for many is the fact that battle passes can no longer be purchased with Apex Coins. Players who have simply grinded out 1,000 free coins in every prior season’s battle pass and used those coins to purchase the next season’s battle pass for free are now out of luck.

To Respawn’s credit, it’s giving everyone what amounts to a free test run of the new battle pass rewards when season 22 starts—an interesting echo of season 20, when multiple challenge sets to earn a free reactive Flatline skin led to some record-breaking player retention. A set of challenges during the first two weeks of the season will unlock that spilt’s premium battle pass for free if they’re completed in time. In addition, the new battle pass system does offer more content for the free battle pass track, as well as more Apex Coins, Crafting Metals, and Apex Packs.

The new battle pass system will live and die on how good the rewards are for each split. If we can get a split’s battle pass without being loaded up with dozens of weapon skins and stickers no one uses, the new system might just end up being better than the old one. But it’s going to be a tough hill to climb as players still process the sticker shock.

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