Apex Legends introduces control points and a killer Kiwi ahead of next season

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We've already been introduced to Apex Legends' next hero, the tooth-spittin' throat-bitin' war criminal (and space New Zealander) Mad Maggie (opens in new tab). Now, with a week to go untiil Apex Legends' next season, Respawn has filled us in on the mayhem she'll be bringing to the games on February 8.

But before we meet Maggie, the trailer for Season 12: Defiance gave us the rundown on Control (opens in new tab)—a new Limited Time Mode that'll be playable for the first three weeks of the season.

Control is your classic FPS control points mode. Two teams of nine fighting to hold three points across a section of an Apex map (Olympus' labs, Storm Point's Barometer). The more points you control, the faster your score climbs, with the first to reach 1250 or the closest at the end of the game winning.

New for Apex are infinite respawns, and with teams formed of three trios, expect some wild combinations from duplicate heroes. From the sounds of it, Control looks like a chaotic, low-stakes way to get into some big daft brawls—a welcome alternative to the constant tension of skulking around a battle royale.

I'll be giving the new mode tonight, so expect full thoughts later this week.

A Control Mode score overview

(Image credit: Respawn Entertainment)

So, Maggie. As teased in last week's launch trailer, Maggie's tactical is a Riot Drill that sticks to walls and fires a burst of flame through cover, demonstrated by downing a poor Lifeline from behind Rampart cover. Her ult, meanwhile, is a massive spinning Wrecking Ball she hurls out, dropping speed-boosting pads where it bounces and exploding near baddies. She also runs faster with shotguns, and gets a brief highlight on damaged enemies.

Season 12 also sees Olympus "sabotaged", though thankfully it hasn't gone the way of World's Edge, all fire and rust-red clouds. The skies are still blue, a dense new phase portal location has been added near Bonsai Towers, and parts of the map are now littered with crashed and phased buildings, adding cover to fields that once felt a little too open.

Finally, Apex touched on its third birthday plans in full. We already knew that there'll be login bonuses letting you unlock Octane, Wattson and Valkyrie for free, but Repsawn also unveiled sets of new matching skins, along with what appears to be the game's first "Heirloom" quality outfit for Bloodhound—complete with its own finisher animations and some kind of reactive colour change.

Not that I'm jealous or anything, but you couldn't have saved that for Horizon, could you?

Natalie Clayton
Features Producer

20 years ago, Nat played Jet Set Radio Future for the first time, and she's not stopped thinking about games since. Joining PC Gamer in 2020, she comes from three years of freelance reporting at Rock Paper Shotgun, Waypoint, VG247 and more. Embedded in the European indie scene and a part-time game developer herself, Nat is always looking for a new curiosity to scream about—whether it's the next best indie darling, or simply someone modding a Scotmid into Black Mesa. She also unofficially appears in Apex Legends under the pseudonym Horizon.