Hello, happy Saturday and welcome to a new feature that I just can’t stop myself from writing, eSports Saturday. As many of you know by now, I don’t want traditional sports. You know those games where you hit a ball with a bat or throw a ball through a hoop, yeah…not my jam. I’ve always been a fan of chess, I just like the strategy that goes into it and all the different possible moves that players have every turn. This is what has captivated me about eSports and it’s no secret that eSports is growing like crazy, so fast that it’s expected to have more viewers than all sports except for the NFL by 2021.
So, since eSports has become a bigger part of my life it seems like the time is right to share some of my thoughts about eSports on a weekly basis in my new column – eSports Saturday. Now let’s dive-into this week’s topic. First, a little primer.
What the heck is Apex Legends?
If you don’t follow eSports then you probably don’t know what Apex Legends is, so let me break it down. You’ve probably heard of Fortnite, which is a “Battle Royale” game. What’s a Battle Royale game:
A battle royale game is a video game genre that blends the survival, exploration and scavenging elements of a survival game with last-man-standing gameplay. (Source – Wikipedia)
The first Battle Royale game to get really popular was PUBG (the full name is Player Battlegrounds Unknown)…then Fortnite came stole PUBG’s thunder. What makes Fortnite pretty unique is that it combines the Battle Royale concept with the complex and unique building mechanics of minecraft. Players in Fortnite don’t just run around shooting each other, they also build structures to defend themselves, and create basis to help them be the last person standing.
While other games have tried to unseat Fortnite none has been successful, but there’s a new game in town called Apex Legends and lately it has seen a higher viewership than Fortnite on Twitch.
Apex Legends is published by Electronic Arts and was developed by Respawn Entertainment. The Domainers reading this will love the fact that Respawn Entertainment does own Respawn.com which is a pretty awesome game IMO. EA is spinning Apex as the “next evolution of Battle Royale” and so far, players are really digging it.
With major eSports influencers like Ninja jumping in and playing Apex, it’s viewship and popularity has grown very quickly, and not surprisingly, some are calling it a Fortnite killer. Still, plenty of people think it’s just going to be a fad and that Fortnite still has captured the magic in a way Apex hasn’t.
Respawn’s game is good on the first count: it’s a tough battle royale with intricate squad and weapon mechanics, both of which reward skill and mastery. That’s why it’s big on Twitch right now and that’s why it’s been so popular with a core gamer set. But it’s nowhere near as approachable as Fortnite, and that means its unlikely to make the same impact even if it does get the mobile version that EA has hinted at. (Source – Forbes)
So what do I think? Personally I think it’s too early to know, but it’s hard to ignore the level of viewership Apex has been able to garner in such a short period of time. I’ve played quite a bit of Fortnite but I haven’t tried Apex yet…but that’s going to change this weekend as I plan to spend an hour or two trying it out so I can see what it’s like for myself.
What do you think? Is Apex going to unseat Fortnite? I want to hear from you, comment and let your voice be heard!