The current popular advice for getting good in Apex Legends is very sweaty. Hot-drop, get in as many gunfights as you can, and learn the hard way. To be sure, this is good practice for players who are already proficient in the game’s gunplay. For Apex neophytes, however, it basically means sacrificing themselves in the first minute of the game.
Then there are the patient types. Ambushers, snipers and Bunker lurkers who improve and win through disciplined and well-practiced tactics. But even they will have to get in some messy gun fights eventually, and there their composure and plans both fall apart.
Regardless of which approach you subscribe to, there are many small things you can do to elevate your game. Below are five easy things that both new players and Apex Legends veterans can benefit from.
1. Use thermite grenades
Currently, thermite grenades are the least popular throwable weapon, aside from the Mozambique. Perhaps it’s because they lack the burst damage of frag grenades and the skill-shot flair of arc stars. Yet the thermite is actually the most multi-purposed and useful grenade in the game.
Aside from temporarily blocking off areas to give you some breathing room or to stop a flank, it generates some smoke while burning. It is enough smoke, in fact, to obscure the vision of players trying to aim through the fire. You can also track any player who touches the fire by following the damage numbers, which are visible through walls. The damage-over-time effect lasts two seconds.
Thermite grenades are also the best for finishing downed legends or denying their squad-mates from reaching them. Since Update 1.2 they can also break doors, so they can now do everything.
2. Learn to box
The Apex Legends melee system is simplistic, but it does feature some tricks. Learn to sneak a punch in when scrambling around in close range firefights, especially inside buildings. Sometimes that extra 30 damage will be the difference between two extremely similarly-matched players.
The slide-uppercut is a great move, as it helps you close the distance while keeping up a low profile to avoid getting hit. It’s also useful in gunfights, so practice it as often as you can.
While kicks are faster, they are also more risky. Jumping in the air costs you your momentum, which makes it easier for opponents to land a hit or make their escape.
3. Use downed players for cover
Whether they are your unfortunate squad-mates or a downed enemy caught in between yourself and opposing Apex teams, try to use them for cover. Any player downed in the open will instinctively hold up their shield, turning them into an imperfect but serviceable piece of cover.
Conversely, when downed, make sure to block enemy firelines as much as possible. Crawl to a position where you can effectively act as cover for your teammates. In a coordinated team with good communication, this tactic can prove highly effective.
4. Share loot
While decking out your legend with as much prime gear as possible feels great, that’s not always the smartest approach. Some items benefit certain legends more. For example, Bangalore will likely get the most use out of a close range digital threat optic, so ping it first to see if she wants one. It’s important to recognize when to share.
To put it bluntly, your Lifeline’s survival is more important than yours. Make sure she has the best armor and give her the gold helmet. Conversely, if you are Lifeline, don’t hoard the gold backpack – its fast healing buff is less useful for you.
And of course, whenever respawning a teammate, make sure to drop a gun and some ammo for them. You don’t want all that rescue effort to go to waste.
5. Optimize your cosmetics
This last bit of advice falls under the category of things which won’t make any difference in 99 percent of your games. But in those rare moments when they help, you’ll be glad you took a moment to give yourself the edge. Quite simply, certain Apex Legends cosmetic items are better than others.
First, don’t equip any weapon skins which are too chunky or ornate. While they may be aesthetically pleasing, skins like the EVA-8 Firebreather you see above obscure your view a lot. Conversely, some skins might actually help you aim. One example of that is the Death Ray Wingman, which has slightly better iron sights than the default skin.
Also make sure to take the fastest and most confusing finisher move you have unlocked for each legend. While it’s usually best not to use finishers, sometimes you just have to. When that happens, you want to get it over with fast. Wraith’s Existential Crisis finisher is particularly hard to interrupt.