“Play Apex Legends bro” is a phrase I was constantly hearing, from a friend who I play Valorant with almost every night. After a couple of months of peer pressure, I caved in and played Apex Legends with that same friend. I’ve never been a big fan of battle royale games, having tried PUBG and Fortnite and not enjoying them. Apex Legends, however, hooked me from the get go, and we played for four hours straight on our first sitting, until we finally won our first game. It was a satisfying first-win, considering my friend is level 50+ so we went up against some pretty experienced opponents.
Baptism of Fire
I did not read any guides, or watch any videos before I jumped into Apex Legends. I got to tell you – It was confusing as hell for my first few games. Being used to the slow, tactical gunplay of Valorant made it more difficult to adapt to the wild gunplay of Apex Legends as well. So, if you’re like me, and did not get into the Apex Legends hype until now, here are some lessons I learnt from brutal firsthand experience to help you get started. I’ve kept the list short, so they’re hopefully easy to remember and practical.
#1 How to Win Gunfights
If you’re used to the slower gunplay of CS:GO or Valorant, chances are you’ll be used to standing still or crouching while shooting. You can’t do that in Apex Legends, because guns don’t kill as quickly as they do in those games so your opponent will be firing back at you. Spamming A-D-A-D will go a long way to help you win gunfights.
Another thing about Apex Legends’ gunplay is that the guns are wildly inaccurate unless you use your aim-down-sights, so make sure you keep that right mouse button clicked while shooting the enemy.
#2 Always Pick Up Restorative Items
Syringes, Med Kits, Shield Cells, Shield Batteries, and Phoenix Kits are all super important items because they let you heal your HP and Shields which do not regenerate naturally. If you’re getting too full on them, pass some to your team mates. You don’t want to run out of healing items while travelling between two locations.
#3 Always Look for Cover
Due to the fact that trouble can come knocking on your team’s door any time, you should always be positioning yourself in a way that you can duck into the nearest cover when a fight arises. Accuracy aside, cover is the greatest determining factor in whether a team wins or loses a gunfight. You’ll need cover while fighting so you’re harder to hit – Remember that A-D-A-D strafing we talked about? Think about how much more effective it is when you’re constantly weaving in and out of cover. You’ll also need cover when you’re injured, so you can quickly heal up or repair your shields during a fight.
#4 A Few of the Best (and Worst) Weapons
There are a LOT of weapons in Apex Legends, so you should take at least a few minutes familiarising yourself with them in the shooting range. I’ve taken the trouble of testing them all out and listing down the best and worst guns so you know instantly what to look out for and what to ditch when you first drop into the map (as of Season 5):
Best: Hemlok (Rifle), Mastiff (Shotgun), Wingman (Pistol), R-99 (SMG) L-Star (Energy)
Worst: Mozambique (Pistol/Shotgun), P2020 (Pistol), Havoc (Energy), Eva-8 (Shotgun)
Do note that on your initial drop when you’re scrambling for weapons, ANY weapon is good enough, even a Mozambique. So just pick up whatever you can find, get some frags, then slowly pick your gear after the dust has settled.
The rest of the guns are all OK, and you’ll be able to do well with them regardless.
#5 The Third Party Rule
In a nutshell, the Third-Party Rule states that once a gunfight breaks out between two teams, a third party will show up and ruin everything.
There are two key lessons to learn from this rule. The first lesson is, if you win a gunfight, loot quickly and get the hell out of there. You don’t want to be limping and be low on supplied when a third-party swoops in and destroys your team.
The second lesson is, if you hear gunfighting in the distance, swoop in when the dust settles and loot everything. Loot-quality is a very important factor in deciding the ultimate winner of a match, and the best way to get good loot is to pluck it off the cold, dead corpses of your enemies.