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Respawn: "No Real Updates" On Apex Legends Cross-Progression

Players still holding out hope for cross-progression shouldn't hold their breath.


Apex Legends developer Respawn Entertainment has been praised for the game's delightful movement mechanics, unique LTMs, and believable, diverse cast of well-designed characters. With Season 15: Eclipse on the horizon, the developer has revealed a great deal of information about the new content coming to Apex this season--including a new legend, a beautiful new map, and even a new gifting mechanic that allows players to gift items to their friends. Sadly, there's a single highly requested feature that has once again been left off the list: cross-progression.

During a recent preview event, Apex Legends design director Ethan Nikolich answered a question about the current state of cross-progression. Nikolich responded that the development team had "no real updates to provide" regarding any, well, progress on cross-progression.

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"We're still working through it," Nikolich explained. "Our tech stack is kind of old. It wasn't built with cross-progression in mind."

The developer also cited Apex's rapid growth and immense, intense popularity as a part of the problem.

"We couldn't predict how popular Apex would become," Nikolich added.

But Apex Legends run on a heavily modified version of Source Engine. That's part of what makes it so easy for dataminers to fish secrets out of the game's files. Unfortunately, it also leads to stubborn bugs and makes large updates an incredibly daunting task.

The lack of cross-progression in Apex has been an issue since day one, and was only worsened by the release of the Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5. Due to coronavirus-related supply chain issues, this has been especially noticeable in the case of the PS5. Apex players who want to "break up" with their current console (or struggle to locate and afford a next-gen version of their current console) are left with three options:

  1. Switch consoles and lose all Apex Legends game progress and cosmetic skins
  2. Buy a current-gen version of the console they already have, even if they hate it
  3. Continue using an older console while they wait for an update on cross-progression

Then you have players who simply wish to play on multiple platforms--for instance, swapping between PC and console--without having to start their gameplay progress from scratch. The issue is so ingrained in the Apex community that a Twitter account exists solely to comment on every single tweet posted by the official Apex Legends Twitter account with a single sentence: "Add cross-progression."

Many other new features are debuting this season, including a new map and a gift-giving system.
Many other new features are debuting this season, including a new map and a gift-giving system.

While gamers grow impatient, Respawn developers are scrambling to keep up, and they fear that over-promising and under-delivering will only make things worse. Still, not all hope is lost.

"I mean, it's something we definitely want to get done, we want to get in," Nikolich continued. "It's just technically very challenging, and we don't want to commit to a date until we can say, like, 'Yep, this is definitely due and this is when we're going to ship. But until then, we're just keeping it under wraps, looking at what can be done."

The last time Respawn spoke openly about the future of cross-progression in Apex was over a year ago, during Season 10. At the time, they hinted at the feature debuting sometime in 2022. It's still unclear what the current timeline looks like when it comes to the implementation of cross-progression, but it's pretty safe to say players won't be seeing the feature hit Apex when Season 15: Eclipse goes live on Tuesday, November 1 at 10 AM PT / 1 PM ET.

Apex Legends is free to play on console and PC. A mobile version of the game, Apex Legends Mobile, is available for download on Android and iOS devices.

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