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Apex Legends devs say Arenas could make a comeback Dot Esports

Apex Legends game director Steven Ferreira and design director Evan Nikolich provided positive news on the future of dormant Arenas game mode.

As part of the season nine update in 2021, Respawn Entertainment introduced a bold new game mode called Arenas. Instead of the traditional battle royale format, Arenas was a three-vs-three battle to be the last team standing. Like CS:GO or VALORANT, players had the chance to spend resources to purchase gear, weapons, or consumable items before a round started.

Apex Legends Mixtape mode
Apex Legends fans would welcome back Arenas with open arms. Image via Respawn Entertainment

Arenas established a passionate cult following and even received a ranked iteration, but in February 2023, Respawn discontinued the game mode, as it didn’t quite garner the success originally envisioned and ended up splitting up the player base between Arenas and battle royale players. Almost a year later, the Apex devs gave us some hints on if we will ever see Arenas again.

Apex Legends devs don’t rule out potential Arenas return

In an interview with GameInformer, Ferreira and Nikolich provided an optimistic update on Arenas. “Arenas has been backburnered, but it’s in our quiver to use again at some point,” Nikolich said. “It’ll potentially come back in the next 12 to 24 months. It’s definitely something on our roadmap.”

In saying that, the devs plan to do things differently next time, as Respawn doesn’t want players to favor one experience over the other to the point where they neglect the primary battle royale game mode.

“I don’t think we fully understood what we were doing in terms of bifurcating our audience,” Nikolich added. “We have to build something that is more unified and brings players together to play the entirety of the game. Not just like, ‘I’m an Arenas main’ or a ‘BR main.’”

Ferreira explained that the game’s current Mixtape playlists serves as an “evolution of Arenas,” giving players an easy way to learn or test weapons, legends, or mechanics. If and when Arenas returns, it will probably need to claim a different niche than it did before, considering Mixtape doesn’t look like it’s going away.

It’s safe to say we won’t ever see Arenas take as much center stage as it did before, but fans can at least rest assured that the Apex devs haven’t forgotten about it completely.

Ryan Lemay

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