Titanfall is at the core of Respawn's DNA. Are its mistakes there, too?
Apex Legends doesnt have the greatest reputation when it comes to game security. The game is semi-regularly inundated with cheaters finding ways to exploit the game. Wall hacks. Aimbots. The infamous akimbo weapons exploit. Speed hacking. You name the hack, and Apex has seen it.
Cheating has become a significant issue once again in season 15. While many of the games cheaters seemed to have been cleaned up over the course of the last couple seasons, season 15 has brought them back in full force. And one of the biggest critics of the games security, FURIA pro HisWattson, is very worried about the future of the game if its ranked mode continues to suffer from the influx of cheaters that seem to constantly find their way back in.
HisWattsons attempts to get Respawn to address cheating in Apex are well-documented and a bit infamous. From saying that he wouldnt be reporting cheaters to advocate for a better anti-cheat system to plotting to embarrass developers with whom he has clashed on Twitter, raising hackles about cheaters and other issues within Apex has become his brand. He even served a suspension for the way hes gone about criticizing developers recently that kept him out of FURIAs first match of the new ALGS season.
By invoking the name of Titanfall, however, HisWattson brings up a very scary possibility for Apex fans and one that became a reality for Titanfall players.
Respawns original mech and movement-shooter, Titanfall and Titanfall 2 are beloved games for a subsect of hardcore fans. But while Titanfall 2 continues to have live server support for players, the games player base has significantly dwindled, with rampant cheating taking place in matches. After almost a decade on the market and with most players moving on to other games, the Titanfall community has often accused Respawn of leaving one of their landmark titles to rot while cheaters roam free.
Indeed, the issues with Titanfall became very clear to Apex players last year, when hackers made Apex unplayable for a stretch of time, and banners and messages were inserted into the game with Save Titanfall emblazoned on them. The hack was yet another example of how simple it seemed for people to access and manipulate Apex.
HisWattson also provided Arenas as another example of Respawn seeming to let a game or mode die a slow and painful death. The mode has frequently been cited as a hotspot for cheaters over the last couple of years, and while the mode was initially supported heavily by the team with new maps and regular updates, the content cycle for it has seemingly dried up completely. The last Arenas map to be introduced to the game was Drop Off, which debuted eight months ago.
The cheating issue is another warning bell that top players are sounding for Apex amidst low viewership rates on streaming services, big new games like Overwatch 2 and Modern Warfare II releasing, and a ranked system that top players in the game loathe. And with the example of Titanfall 2 there for everyone to see, its hard to say those fears arent unfounded.