The Battle Over Battle Passes: Why Apex Legends is Getting Review Bombed


Apex Legends is one of the most famous free-to-play hero shooter game. It took over the gaming world ever since it was released on 2019. However, this time it is trending again but for a different reason. Apex Legends have been getting negative review bombed due to a specific change in the recent battle pass system.

In Apex Legends a battle pass is a season progression system which is mainly free-to-play. Players will go through differences challenges to level up, unlock cosmetics and other character boosting items. Ever since the beginning Apex has always offered free and premium battle pass. This caters to both casual and veteran plays. But what exactly caused this uproar?  Let’s look into the potential culprit of this chaos.

From Self-Sufficient to Spenders: The Battle Pass Revamp

Previously, the battle passes were player-friendly. Players could easily progress in seasonal challenges to earn in game currencies also known as Apex Coins. Using the hard earned in game currency players could proceed to purchase the next seasonal pass. This structure allowed the players to enjoy the core gameplay loop and get access to some rewards without spending real money.

However, everything changed with the recent update. The new Battle Pass system has two tiers. First one is a base pass which remains free for all players. Secondly, there is premium-plus Pass that with all the other rewards which doubles your cost.

Players are angry about this sudden monetization system. Players are claiming that the developers are prioritizing profit over player’s experience. Previously, players could use apex coins earned from battle pass to purchase new battle pass. However, this change will force players to use real money to purchase new battle passes.

A Perfect Storm of Discontent: More Than Just the Pass

The battle pass changes aren’t the only concern that led to the review bombing. Players also have concern that the base pass with give less rewards. The base pass will just act as an advertising tool to force players to invest real money to get premium-plus pass.

Secondly, the potential grind associate with free pass will be more but the reward will be not that enticing. Players feel like they are being pressured to buy the premium pass one way or another.

Lastly, this is not the first time Apex Legends caused some trouble for the players. The game’s loot box system also caused a storm back in the days. It promotes excessive spending according to most of the players.

The Impact of Review Bombing: A Double-Edged Sword

Review bombing is an act of flooding a game with negative reviews. It is a way to show displease over a certain change or game. Review bombing has been a thing for a very long time in the gaming community. It is a controversial tactic but it is one of the best ways to shine lights on the factors that are frustrating in the game.

For developers review bombing can wreck a game’s reputation and may potentially impact the sales negatively. However, it can also act as wake up call for many developers. Review bombing helped many developers to address issues and make changes according to player’s demands.

The Path Forward: A Dialogue Between Players and Developers

So, what can be the possible solution? The developers of Apex Legends need to clearly communicate with proper details with the players. This will help to manage the player expectation and potentially alleviate the concerns. If Respawn is set on the two-tier pass system then they need to explore alternative ways to mitigate the situation. They can implement time challenges or in-game achievements. Respawn needs to give priority to player’s feedback. They need to listen to their backlash and concern to make player experience more fun.

Conclusion: A Turning Point or a Passing Storm?

The review bombing of the players shows that developers need to prioritize player experience instead of just making random significant changes. Players have an impression that the developers are trying to chase profit instead of player experience. Respawn should be more transparent with their decisions and actively listen to player’s concerns. Clearly communicating the Battle Pass changes will help them to rebuild the trust that was broken.

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