Apex Legends devs discuss season 2, content cadence, and avoiding development crunch


Although the frankly obscene amount of hype that surrounded Apex Legends in the weeks following its launch earlier this year has subsided to more reasonable levels, the devs at Respawn Entertainment have still been adjusting to the game’s unexpected success. As Executive Producer Drew McCoy notes in the latest producer’s letter, the game’s rapid growth, while a pleasant surprise, has presented some challenges to the dev team in regard to update cadence, communication with the community, and so on, and it’s these issues that the studio is now planning to address.

In the letter, McCoy lays out some of the critical issues that Respawn is looking to address in the near future, including server performance, cheaters, and hit registration issues. He also gives players a peek at what they can expect from the game going forward, and although players will have to wait for EA Play in June to get solid details about what’s coming in season 2, McCoy confirms that season 2 (and each new season thereafter) will “start big with a new Battle Pass, a new Legend, [and] something new for the meta” and teases a big shake-up coming in the next season: “[Y]ou didn’t expect Kings Canyon to stay the same forever, did you?” he asks.

And while the dev team has been hard at work, Respawn CEO Vince Zampella recently took to the stage at the GamesBeat Summit, where he spoke about the studio’s decision to stick to its original plan for seasonal content updates rather than giving in to the temptation to speed up production in light of Apex Legends’ runaway success: “The thought was ‘hey we kind of have something that’s blowing up here, do we want to start trying to drop more content?’ But I think you look at the quality of life for the team. We don’t want to overwork the team, and drop the quality of the assets we’re putting out.”

It’s a particularly timely subject, too; just a few days ago, Polygon reported on the intense crunch that has plagued Fortnite developer Epic Games since the game’s popularity skyrocketed, and although Zampella never mentioned Epic or Fortnite by name, it’s hard not to see the stark contrast between the two studios’ approaches.

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