Apex Legends Mobile on iOS
Apex Legends Mobile is, thankfully, better than just a carbon copy of the PC and console versions of the game. It offers more than what a smaller, more portable version of Apex Legends would — the game has its own separate identity with exclusive content that should pique the interest of existing players, giving them a reason to pick it up and try it out. Though, my iPhone 8 did struggle to run the game at certain points, so quality may vary depending on your mobile device.
The Apex world and lore stay the same here, so the main differences come from gameplay options and the slight adjustments in how content like the battle pass and ranked seasons work.
Even the tutorial is unique in that Mirage leads you through the specific basics of mobile gameplay as opposed to learning the ropes with Bloodhound and Pathfinder, which is appreciated since controller support isn’t arriving until sometime after launch.
This mobile-specific tutorial is also a positive for someone like me who has little experience playing FPS games on my phone, even though I’ve played every single season of Apex Legends to date. I never would’ve known that there’s a new third-person option, for example — let alone how to enable and use it.
The most attention-grabbing difference here is that there’s a mobile-exclusive Assault-class Legend named Fade who won’t appear in the PC and console editions — at least, not yet. This is likely going to be one of the biggest reasons for existing players to try out Apex Legends Mobile.
Like Ash, Fade is another character who uses the same Void technology as Wraith. His Tactical, Flash Back, allows him to rewind back through the Void to a spot where he previously stood. Think Tracer from Overwatch if that’s hard to picture. And to go along with that, his Slipstream Passive provides a speed boost after slides.
Fade’s Ultimate, Phase Chamber, also uses the same tech, which gives him the ability to actually throw a device that sends anyone caught inside its AOE into the Void. This traps them in that dimension, cutting them off from the real world and shutting them out of the action for a short time. It’s great for crowd control when overwhelmed by multiple enemies.
Fade feels like a fully fleshed-out Legend that could work even beyond mobile devices. His inclusion also helps you forget, if only for a little while, that many of the existing DLC Legends aren’t available on mobile. The launch roster includes Bloodhound, Gibraltar, Lifeline, Wraith, Caustic, Mirage, Bangalore, Pathfinder, Octane, and Fade. So, it’s likely that some of your favorites might’ve been left off the list.
Looking beyond the addition of Fade, there are whole new game modes and LTMs to choose from that run separately from what’s on PC and console. The most notable one being the inclusion of a standard team deathmatch mode.
TDM allows players to team up in 6v6 matches and choose whatever loadout they want for free, unlike in Arenas. There’s both a random respawn and base respawn option here that determines where players will return to battle. No matter which you choose, you’ll always be able to switch Legends and loadouts after each death.
TDM feels like a natural progression of the Apex Legends game modes, especially knowing that all of this stems from Titanfall in one way or another. A similar LTM, Control, was added in Apex Legends Season 12: Defiance, but that was more akin to Titanfall’s Hardpoint Domination.
Going deeper into the exclusive gameplay features, we have Perks, which are essentially buffs that give Legends more passive bonuses in matches. These include gaining Evo Shield points for finishers, scanning for enemies, and more. They’re all gained through leveling up by using the character you want Perks for.
Legends also have some exclusive Perks. For example, certain Perks make it so that Bangalore smokes can give her the ability to see enemies through it while aiming down sights, and Fade can Flash Back while downed. I’m sure you can see how these twists on existing abilities can be extremely powerful.
Some Perks are so powerful, in fact, that the Perk feature is completely disabled in ranked modes so that gameplay stays as balanced as possible. Regardless, this is yet another change that makes Apex Legends Mobile more intriguing for both newcomers and those who have been playing Apex for a while.
Speaking of ranked modes, the ranked seasons in Apex Legends Mobile don’t stay around as long as the PC and console ones. Here, each ranked season lasts for two months and contains two parts with different battle passes. Battle passes are also monthly and will change much more frequently than what current players will be used to. In theory, this seems like a good way to keep things fresh, ensuring that there’s regularly new content to collect or strive for.
Even with all of the new content, there are still a few kinks and omissions that need to be mentioned. I’ve been playing Apex Legends Mobile on an iPhone 8, and have been met with more than a few crashes along with low frame rates in battle royale modes.
Getting into a large firefight in World’s Edge or Kings Canyon can be rough, to say the least. So rough, in fact, that Kings Canyon’s battle royale map is being delayed and will be added to the game post-launch.
A game can have all of the features in the world but if it can’t run smoothly, there’s no reliable way to enjoy them. I’m saying this as someone who knows that a newer phone would likely run the game better, but this was my experience with nearly every battle royale match ahead of launch.
As expected, TDM and Arenas run much smoother, and those modes are where I had most of my fun as a result.
Apex Legends Mobile offers more than you’d expect in terms of new gameplay and overall content options. Certainly more than enough to warrant a download, especially with the nonexistent price tag.
There are definitely issues that need to be ironed out in terms of the battle royale gameplay quality, but whether you’re in it for the new TDM mode, exclusive Legend, third-person option, or even just some new cosmetics, there’s bound to be something here that gets players excited — or interested, at the very least.
- More than just a carbon copy of the PC and console versions.
- Exclusive Legend, modes, and Perk system.
- Gives plenty of reasons to play besides being a portable version of the game.
- Battle royale mode can be rough, with choppy visuals and frame rate.
- Experienced a number of crashes in BR mode.
May 17, 2022
Respawn Entertainment, Tencent Lightspeed & Quantum