Home is where the heart is and some Apex Legends fans miss the familiarity of Kings Canyon. But Apex’s inaugural map might be set to make a return, according to data miner That1MiningGuy.
That1MiningGuy shared a picture that displayed Kings Canyon and World’s Edge juxtaposed side-by-side. The image was found in the game files alongside other visuals and graphics used in the game and was added as part of today’s minor update using the new EPak system.
Users speculated that the image referred to “Kings Canyon After Dark,” one of the modes present in Apex’s Grand Soirée celebrations. The mode will pit players against each other in a night-time version of the original map and is next in the rotation.
The data miner dismissed the rumors by showing a different picture used specifically for the limited-time mode, which depicts a part of Artillery under a night sky and covered by fog. That’s the official representation for the new mode and looks nothing like the image in the files, according to That1MiningGuy.
He also left his followers with some speculation of his own. “Plus these are side by side,” he tweeted. “Like we’ll be able to choose between them maybe.”
Apex’s third season introduced World’s Edge and removed Kings Canyon from the rotation. Project lead Drew McCoy and senior designer Chin Xiang Chong explained Respawn’s decision to eliminate the original map in an interview with Stevivor.
McCoy said the developer team didn’t want players to disconnect when placed in Kings Canyon due to wanting to try out the new map and compared it to the launch of Octane in the first season. Chong shared his concerns about dividing the player pool in half, especially in the more rarified ranked skill levels like Apex Predators.
The introduction of World’s Edge didn’t make the original arena vanish completely, according to the duo, but the map was pushed to the sidelines over the course of Apex’s third season.
“At launch it’s going to be World’s Edge only,” McCoy said. “And then based on feedback from players, and the data we can get, we have a lot of different levers we can pull to see what we can do about reintroducing Kings Canyon.”
Community calls for the return of Kings Canyon are easy to spot on the forums and on Apex’s official subreddit. Based on McCoy’s remarks and the data mine, it’s possible that Kings Canyon could make a comeback, at least in unranked playlists. Respawn hasn’t officially announced the introduction of a map select feature, however, and the picture posted by That1MiningGuy should be taken only as speculation.
In the meantime, players can relive Kings Canyon by playing in a night-time version of the map during Apex’s Grand Soirée. The limited-time mode is the next in rotation and scheduled to be playable on Jan. 24 and 25.