EA and Respawn have taken the lid off Apex Legends: Resurrection, Season 18 of one of the biggest examples of the battle royale genre. Launching on 8th August next week, it sees Respawn stepping back to completely overhaul – resurrect, if you will – Revenant, one of the first characters that they added to the game, all the way back in Season 4.
Revenant was always one of the more twisted creations within the Apex Legends, added to the game with a perfectly executed narrative bait and switch, this assassin bot killing off the heavily teased character of Forge. Over time, more of his backstory has been revealed, the inserted human memories within his programming gradually coming to the fore, and the Mercenary Syndicate and Hammond Robotics repeatedly resetting him time and again.
But now something has changed. Specifically, he has been changed within the latest part of the Killcode narrative arc, wrapped in and around the hunt for Duardo Silva by a clutch of Apex Legends stars, and Revenant’s abilities, voice and default skin have all changed in the process. I mean, Loba stole his eye and tried to hack him.
For players invested in how Respawn are building out and telling this game’s character-driven story, it’s a dramatic turn that will certainly keep you guessing what’s going to come next, but the more important point is what this means for Apex Legends as a game.
Since Season 4, Revenant had slowly faded from relevance, the way that the game is played and the meta shifting away from him. The team saw an opportunity to bring him back to the forefront with this narrative turn, overhauling his abilities to be back level pegging with the latest and greatest.
So here’s the breakdown:
- New Passive – “Assassin’s Instinct”: Revenant can highlight low-health enemies who are nearby. He can also crouch walk faster and has improved wall climbing.
- New Tactical – “Shadow Pounce”: Revenant can unleash a powerful pounce forward and close the gap to his prey from a distance.
- New Ultimate – “Forged Shadows: Forging a shroud of hardened shadows around himself, Revenant can block damage and regenerate. His shadows and tactical are also refreshed on knockdowns.
Revenant can still crouch-walk at high speed and scramble up walls far further than others, but outside of this there’s an almost complete replacement to his previous abilities – the ability-disabling Silence throwables, and the fallback Death Totems that allowed for adventurous forward play. Now everything is all about putting Revenant on the front foot, from the passive’s highlighting of low-health enemies providing vital information in clutch moments, and this going hand-in-hand with damage absorbing Forged Shadows to obscure your approach and soak up incoming damage, while the Shadow Pounce enhances movement even further.
It will be interesting to see how the changes mesh with the current character meta, and everyone is going to be able to find out for themselves. Through Season 18, Revenant will be available to play for free, and completing seasonal challenges will mean that he stays unlocked (for people that didn’t already have him) after the season is ended as well.
Speaking of the meta, Respawn has swapped out the ground and care package weapons once more, the Prowler in the latter with select fire, while the Hemlok returns to the floor pickups with a buff to damage and recoil. It should be more competitive with the R99 getting a nerf with recoil increased and reduced magazine sizes, and SMGs in general having reduced headshot damage multipliers and slightly reduced horizontal movement speed. Oh, and Disruptor rounds are back, this time usable with the Peacekeeper.
And then there’s the Charge Rifle. This is having an overhaul almost as significant as Revenant’s, switching from hit scan to firing a projectile with bullet drop. There’s still the charged up firing mechanism, but it’s no longer an automatic release and only uses one bullet at a time. Respawn’s sure it’s still the most effective long-range sniper in the game, but it will need a bit more skill to get the best from it.
There’s naturally plenty that goes alongside this character rework for this season, with a fresh battle pass a given, and the season kicking off with back-to-back double XP events – during these you’ll have the opportunity to earn Revenant’s new Death Grip Heirloom weapon. Season 18 also gives a little more love for the non-battle royale modes, with Mixtape featuring Broken Moon map, bringing the Gun Run and standard Team Deathmatch to The Core location, and Control game mode to Production Yard.
But really it all comes back to Revenant this season, and what this means for the future of the game. The Killcode storyline is set to run through the rest of the year, with cinematic trailers and in-game teasers,