After Less Than A Year Apex Legends Mobile is Shutting Down

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By | February 6th, 2023 | Categories: Apex Legends

Apex Legends has garnered a lot of success on PC. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for its mobile counterpart. Electronic Arts announced they’re throwing the towel on Apex Legends Mobile, the spinoff title of its popular battle royale. In just eight months after its launch, the free-to-play mobile game will be rendered unplayable in just a few months. Along with this, the company is abandoning Battlefield Mobile. There was no date for release, but EA said it would cease development. The studio behind Battlefield Mobile, Industrial Toys, is also being shut down altogether.

Was the Game Bad?

Gameplay-wise, Apex Legends Mobile wasn’t bad at all. The mobile game has gained a reputation for adding tweaks players would have liked to see in the full game on PC, such as having extra abilities for the legends, mobile-exclusive legends (Rhapsody and Fade), and new game modes.

In an official statement by Respawn Entertainment, they constantly strive to provide their players with quality games. Apex Legends Mobile had a strong start, but its momentum fell flat towards the later months. The developer stated that the content pipeline for Apex Legends Mobile needed to catch up on their bar of quality, cadence, and quantity. For this reason, they’ve decided to sunset the mobile game.

Later on, the CEO of Electronic Arts, Andrew Wilson, gave a more in-depth answer to why Apex Legends Mobile is being shut down. The first reason was gameplay. There’s complexity and immersion in Apex’s gameplay, but they couldn’t translate the team-based play well to mobile devices. The second reason was the small number of players. At the start, Apex Legends Mobile had core players from its PC counterpart and attracted new users. However, it wasn’t able to retain the more casual user consistently. Apex Legends relies on competitive play and a lot of team play, so having a healthy playerbase was a must. If you want a live-service game to have a chance of being relevant for years to come, it better has a consistent number of players to survive.

No Refunds

As of 4 PM ET on January 31, 2023, you could no longer buy cosmetics or items with real money in Apex Legends Mobile. EA has also already delisted the game from iOS and Android app stores.

Perhaps what’s a slap in the face for most of the Apex Mobile players is that EA will not provide refunds for real money purchases made to the title. I know it’s as per the terms of the EA User Agreement, but this is a tight-fisted move, especially when you compare EA with other developers like Epic Games and Iron Galaxy, who offer refunds to players from Rumbleverse—another game that’s also shutting down soon. It gives people another reason they shouldn’t invest cash into a live-service game again.

A Bigger and Better Apex Legends Mobile?

Once the commotion is over, there could be some form of Apex Legends on mobile in the future—at least, based on EA’s earnings call. Andrew Wilson stated that while they and the developers chose to close down Apex Mobile, the company still has plans to reimagine a bigger and better experience of the game. There’s no news yet about when we’ll get this “new” version of Apex Mobile. Still, this statement indicates that EA may bring over Apex Legends back to mobile in some format without its original development partner, Lightspeed Studios—Tencent’s subsidiary and maker of PUBG Mobile.

A Silver Lining

Thankfully, there’s a silver lining to all of this. Despite Apex Legends Mobile’s unexpected shutdown, Respawn said it’s still excited about mobile as a gaming platform. The company is looking forward to new opportunities to serve its players there in the future. Respawn has already attempted to bring new projects to light in the mobile gaming realm. It previously tried to bring the Titanfall franchise with Titanfall: Frontline—a competitive trading card game—and Titanfall: Assault—a real-time strategy game. Sadly, it canceled both projects in the end, but it shows that Respawn Entertainment still has plans to capitalize on mobile gaming.

When is the D-Day?

As I’ve said, Apex Legends Mobile has already been removed from existing storefronts. However, if you’re an active player of the game and still have some premium currency left, you can continue to spend what’s left of your Syndicate Gold and continue playing the battle royale until May 1, 2023. And don’t worry about its PC and console versions—this shutdown is specific to mobile only and won’t affect the other platforms.

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