In the long and storied history of Apex map updates, one point of interest on World’s Edge has managed to evade changes for much of its existence. Season 17, Arsenal, is set to change that on May 9 as Fragment finally gets an overhaul with the Apex Games Museum—a sizable addition to the map’s central city sure to shake things up as part of a wider refresh.
It’s part of an update to the game’s second oldest map focused on healing—both for World’s Edge itself and for the quality of its gameplay. Respawn’s lead map designer Jeff Shaw took us through the overhaul in a recent press event, emphasizing that it’s about “keeping what we love” about World’s Edge.
With the region becoming less volatile, the lava chasms that previously fractured many areas of the map are a thing of the past. The molten rock still provides an environmental danger, but these spots can now be more easily traversed on foot for smoother rotations. Harvester, similarly, now lacks the deep hole that used to sit in the center of the POI, instead replaced by a “honeypot” platform at its core that can be skydived into for some good loot.
Vault keys have been made a more common occurrence around the map to better encourage players to make use of the tucked-away treasure troves, with a new vault location also being added near Skyhook to further increase the opportunities of accessing one during a match. Even the Trials POI has undergone a revision, speaking to how universal the tweaks to World’s Edge are.
When it came to Fragment, though, Shaw said it was a “hot topic,” even on the dev team. It’s become a polarizing location throughout its lifespan, but it had quite a few fans at Respawn itself. Yet the devs decided season 17 was the time to shake things up, and the location introduced to us as “Monument” was the answer.
This “Monument” itself is only one addition to the landscape of Fragment, but it’s a big one—a large museum building, filled with Easter eggs dedicated to celebrating Apex’s history both as a game and as a piece of in-universe showbiz.
Display cases and hallways are filled with nods to the history of the Apex Games, from developed technology like the crafting bench to the legends themselves. From a gameplay perspective, the museum is an underground bunker with quick-access sniper nests, a glass ceiling that prospective third parties can observe the battle below through, and long hallways that offer close-to-medium-range combat opportunities.
The Apex Games Museum offers something new to the dynamic at play in Fragment, but fans of the hectic drop that the construction stack building offered aren’t as deprived as they may first imagine. That area of Fragment has found a new home, lifted and moved across World’s Edge to be part of a refreshed take on the Lava City POI called Stacks. It’s a frantic combat space designed to better space out the initial drops and take some heat away from the center.
With adjustments to elements such as the lighting and skybox as well, World’s Edge will feel a lot fresher despite its age when it headlines the map rotation in Apex season 17, which launches on May 9.