You’ve probably heard or even played Apex Legends since it was released in February 2019 to Windows and consoles. Apex Legends was made by Respawn Entertainment, the same studio that made Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and the Academy Award-winning Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond. Published by Electronic Arts and set in the same world as the Titanfall series, Apex Legends was a surprise hit. A game with more than 100 million unique players and earning $500 million in 2021 alone, Respawn wants to continue that trend with the upcoming release of the game’s mobile counterpart. In this article, we look into what you can expect from it based on the Apex Legends Mobile beta.
Now, you may be thinking — there are other popular shooter battle royale mobile games like PUBG, Fortnite, and Call of Duty: Mobile in the market. So, what makes Apex Legends Mobile unique? We’ll answer that and a few other questions like when the game would release if it’s free to play, what countries it would be available in, and how to sign up for it in the following parts of the article.
Also read: Best First-Person Shooter Games
First off, what is Apex Legends Mobile? According to Respawn Entertainment’s Apex Legends Game Director Chad Grenier, Apex Legends Mobile is their attempt to recapture the magic that the release of the original version had while retaining the same spark and style.
Coming in two years after the original, this game lets you play your favorite hero shooter from the comfort of your smartphone. With this port, they’ll bring in streamlined and optimized touchscreen controls, as well as the same promise to stick to cosmetic paid items and not to include “pay-to-win” mechanics like adding paid items which give gameplay advantages. That said, the mobile version would feature all of the same (currently 17) “Legends,” maps, and other gameplay quirks that would essentially make it function as a mobile port with touchscreen controls.
On a technical side, Grenier promised the game would receive Respawn’s full support with collaborative efforts from their in-house team as well as their partners. These partners reportedly include Tencent, the Chinese company that ported both PUBG and Call of Duty: Mobile to smartphones which promises a more successful port for Apex Legends Mobile.
One of the things you’d probably ask is if it’s free. The answer is a resounding yes! Similar to its Windows, PS4, and Xbox One versions, Apex Legends Mobile is also a free-to-play game. While free to play, it will continue to have cosmetic items, Battle Pass, and skins for sale on its online store. That feature though is somewhat limited for the current beta version. This ranks the game as similar to other games like PUBG, Fortnite, and Call of Duty: Mobile that has the same paid features.
So, when’s the release date? EA CEO Andrew Wilson announced their plans for the Apex Legends franchise in 2019 to make it into one of their “core” games. This means they’ll focus on porting the game to PS5, Xbox Series X/S, and mobile by the 2022 fiscal year. Hopefully, this slower release date would ensure the game’s quality and bring a truly polished feel to its full release.
Currently, the game is still in a beta state which means it’s still unfinished and is undergoing testing before it fully releases. However, on April 19, 2021, Respawn and EA announced the Apex Legends Mobile beta would be a limited closed beta to get player feedback and implement changes to the game accordingly.
In the press release, Grenier announced the limited beta would only include “a few thousand players in India and the Philippines.” Don’t give up hope yet though since he also added that they’ll roll the game out to more regions and countries worldwide as they fine-tune the gameplay and add more content. The game’s beta was released in India on April 27, 2021, while the Philippine release came in May. Other countries including Indonesia, Peru, Colombia, Egypt, and Lebanon are up next.
In a few weeks, Apex Legends Mobile's closed beta test will roll out to five more countries.
If you're in Indonesia, Peru, Colombia, Egypt or Lebanon head to your local Google Play store page to sign up: https://t.co/CshBg78jeK
— Respawn (@Respawn) June 23, 2021
You may want to follow the Apex Legends Twitter account (@playapex) and the Respawn Entertainment (@Respawn) to be instantly updated on the latest updates not just on the game’s regional availability and news about the beta’s progress but about Apex Legends in general.
The same announcement from Grenier also canned the idea of the Apex Legends Mobile beta having a cross-play feature with players on other platforms like consoles and PC. This mostly follows the precedent set by PUBG and Call of Duty: Mobile due to the severe hardware differences between other versions and the mobile one that may give unfair advantages to some players.
Before moving on to how to register for the game, you should first know the system requirements which aren’t that rigorous. To play Apex Legends beta, you only need to have an Android phone with Android 6.0 or above, but this may change in the future as the game becomes more complete.
As Respawn and EA slowly bring the game to more countries, you should be able to register and play the game when it’s made available to your country. You can do this by going to the Apex Legends Mobile Google Play Store page and click the “Register” button. This would let the Play Store alert you when you’ve been invited to join the closed beta. There’s also an option to allow “Automatic Installation” when you’re accessing the page through the Android app.
While we weren’t lucky enough to be part of the players that got to try the beta out, we’ve talked to a few players who have. We’ve also scrutinized gameplay footage and technical information to give you some ideas on how Apex Legends Mobile would play and feel.
Graphics-wise, you shouldn’t expect the game to look like its PC and console counterpart that can run at 4k quality with 144Hz refresh rates. That said, Mobile is a very accurate copy of the original game to the point where you won’t be surprised if the same art and models were reused for the Mobile version. The models are vivid with even small details like grass and the gun ammo counters standing out. It’s comparable to playing the original game with a potato PC.
Audio feels like they did actually reuse a lot of the original game’s assets. Considering their goal was to create a mobile copy, this was a well-thought-out plan. The most important part for FPS gamers is still present though. You can still feel and grasp the enemy’s location through just the sound with distance and gunfire accurately being modeled. You should play Apex Legends Mobile with a good pair of headphones to help your play style if you’re a sound intuitive player.
Also read: Best Over-Ear Headphones
Compared to the console and PC versions, the stark difference with the Mobile version has to be the interface. Blanketed over the entire screen, the various buttons and player abilities are placed in “thumb-friendly” locations. While a bit jarring at first to those used to playing on other platforms, Apex Legends Mobile’s unique interface is quite intuitive and provides a lot of feedback due to its ergonomics. Weapon selection, player sprinting, stance toggles, and inventory looting come up when needed and can instantly be selected.
So far, the Apex Legends Mobile beta has eight “Legends” available with four currently locked. Mode-wise, the game only has Battle Royale mode with one FPP map, the World’s Edge. You can expect the choices and features to slowly ramp up as the beta progresses forward.
Apex Legends Mobile is again, still in a closed beta with “Legends,” maps, modes, and other features and graphics subject to change before the full version comes out of early access. A lot of changes may occur between beta updates like the eventual inclusion of the online store and other play modes.
We’re advising a wait-and-see approach to the game. This is due to the limited region releases and the rarity of players gaining entry into the closed beta. Apex Legends Mobile though is a game with great promise. A promise that may, or may not, turn out well depending on how the beta changes. Basing it on its beta version, however, it’s giving us the same experience as its PC and console counterparts, although there’s a slight downgrade in graphics. The maps are also polished and realistic, giving players a rich experience when engaging in crossfires. Apex Legends Mobile is off to a good start.
It’s important to note that the Respawn team is serious with their support of the game. They’ve proven this with constant updates to the beta, the latest of which was an update on July 6, 2021. We’ll continue to monitor this game and update the article to give you up-to-date information.
That said, while you’re waiting for the chance to get your hands on the Apex Legends Mobile beta, you might want to look at our list of the Best Multiplayer Games for Mobile or, for a change of pace, our list for the Best City Building Games on Mobile.