Will the Solo mode in Apex Legends ever work for esports?

Aug 23 2019 5 min read

Will the Solo mode in Apex Legends ever work for esports? ⚡⚡⚡ Esports and gaming news, analytics, reviews on WePlay! The latest news on WePlay!

The addition of the Solo mode to Apex Legends has been one of the major recent novelties for the game – if not the most important one. While it gives solo players an opportunity to hop into matchmaking queue without the need to share a squad with two randoms, the whole idea of the mode seems questionable. Apex Legends has a heavy emphasis on teamplay and squad-based tactics – even the characters are balanced in such a way so that they can be efficient for the crew. And it’s fairly obvious that some Legends are not designed to make a solo run for victory.

A total anarchy

Unfortunately, the common idea that the Solo mode is not suitable for Apex Legends is not generally shared by the game’s community – and players have been long asking the devs to add this variant to the project. Respawn has finally given up and has introduced the mode within a limited-time event, which feels like it is intended as a demonstration that soloing in Apex Legends is not the way to go. Hopefully, the community will learn the lesson, but judging by the current reception, almost everyone is keen on the idea of having 20 Wraiths, 20 Pathfinders, and 20 Octanes in a single match. That’s a slight exaggeration, of course, but you can barely meet Gibraltars, Caustics, or Wattsons on Kings Canyon in the Solo mode. The reason for that is fairly simple – these Legends do not suit the mode because they can’t quickly escape the combat and cannot change positions as fast as the others.

It was the right decision to make the Solo mode a limited-time one. Otherwise, why would Respawn deliberately throw away the diversity of characters only to incorporate an unnecessary game mode?

Perhaps, the only positive effect of Solos is the opportunity to gain much-needed gameplay experience with the Legends that you can’t always pick in Squads. While playing alone, you also become more aware of the possible tactics and you learn to be effective on your own without relying on your teammates. As a result, you become a lot more valuable unit for the Squads mode since you can act independently and have a clear understanding of how to take down an enemy. As a training mode Solos do work – but the mode cannot be justified as an equal option to choose instead of Squads simply because it ignores a fair amount of content the game has to offer. And let’s not forget about finishing moves. They are not just part of the game’s mechanics – you can spend real money to buy new animations. And 99% of the time, you won’t be able to use them in Solos (except when an enemy has a gold knockout shield).

Survival of the fittest

Most likely, the developers share the same opinion – that’s why the Solo mode will become unavailable next Tuesday, on August 27. The community had some fun, the studio received enough feedback, and, perhaps, in the foreseeable future Respawn will introduce another take on the mode – or will abandon it forever and will instead focus on testing Duos. Which – unlike Solos – could’ve been a working solution to the problem of creating additional gamemodes for Apex Legends. The title desperately needs new content and features – so working in the direction of offering different ways to play is a reasonable, an understandable, and a welcome intention. However, Apex Legends aims to be a proper esports title – that’s why we are having various tournaments and events while famous teams announce their fresh line-ups for Respawn’s Battle Royale project.

Making a proper competitive mode out of Solos in Apex Legends is most likely an impossible task since it would’ve required too many efforts to deprive the unique game of its cool features.

Obviously, the idea of adding the Solo mode to the rotation of Apex Legends esports events has been already called out by the fans – and there’re even more reasons why that wouldn’t work in comparison to simply having this mode in the game. First of all, you expect professional competitive tournaments to be entertaining and exciting. And where’s the excitement in looking at 60 Pathfinders? On top of that, you have all of the reasons we’ve listed above. Is there a way to balance the mode so that it can become suitable for esports? Well, we can’t imagine a single solution, which wouldn’t require a sensible rework of the game. For instance, Respawn could take away the characters’ abilities for the Solo mode – but that would literally rip off one of the most exciting parts of the game.

Another solution would be to take away the character selection screen – so that you don’t know, which Legend you’ll be given. Still, it doesn’t rule out the issue of the characters being unbalanced for 1v1 encounters. Being given a Pathfinder would be a straight out advantage for the lucky player – unlike the poor fellow with Wattson. In other words, Solos do not work for esports in Apex Legends even more than in the regular game. Funnily, the most effective solution would be to make Legend-specific matches – like the aforementioned situation with 60 Pathfinders. But once again, that’s just ripping off a part of the game. We all just have to admit that the marriage of Solos in Apex Legends and esports is impossible. Sad but true.

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