Apex Legends hits all-time player count peak on PC following team deathmatch update, free hero giveaway

Horizon and Crypto, mean and ready for action
(Image credit: Respawn Entertainment)

As spotted by Kotaku, Apex Legends surpassed its all-time peak Steam player count on February 15, logging 610,433 concurrent gamers and blowing away its previous high of 510,000 last August. This milestone comes in the midst of a beefy four-year anniversary update to the game that added a new class system to organize its heroes, a team deathmatch mode, and free hero giveaways.

The new class system is probably the biggest long-term change to Apex. The preexisting heroes have been organized into team roles in a similar fashion to Overwatch, and the new archetypes confer additional bonuses to their respective heroes. There's a full breakdown in Apex Legends' Revelry patch notes, but the new classes are as follows:

  • Assault: More ammo per stack, can access "red bins." Bangalore, Ash, Fuse, Mad Maggie, Revenant
  • Skirmisher: Can reveal care packages. Wraith, Valkyrie, Octane, Horizon, Mirage, Pathfinder
  • Recon: Can deploy a survey beacon to show enemy locations. Bloodhound, Crypto, Seer, Vantage
  • Controller: Access to "Ring Consoles" that show the Ring's location. Caustic, Wattson, Rampart, Catalyst
  • Support: Crafts banners and can access "blue bins." Lifeline, Loba, Gibraltar, Newcastle

Apex Legends has also introduced a team deathmatch mode, one of the community's "most-requested" additions. Since the update came out, Respawn has quickly responded to player feedback on the mode, reducing the number of rounds in a TDM match from three to two, as well as lowering the winning kill number from 50 to 30 in the hopes of encouraging faster turnover in games.

After the first three weeks of the new season (so after March 14), TDM will be folded into a general "Mixtape" playlist of other alternate modes like Arenas and Control.

Lastly, Respawn is offering players two free heroes as a log-in bonus during the initial weeks of the season. Players will receive Crypto (Apex Legends Players To Receive Free Crypto!!!) until February 21, with Ash replacing him as a log-in bonus from February 21-28. The Revelry season as a whole will continue until early May.

Associate Editor

Ted has been thinking about PC games and bothering anyone who would listen with his thoughts on them ever since he booted up his sister's copy of Neverwinter Nights on the family computer. He is obsessed with all things CRPG and CRPG-adjacent, but has also covered esports, modding, and rare game collecting. When he's not playing or writing about games, you can find Ted lifting weights on his back porch.