Apex Legends has reached 100 million unique players worldwide, Respawn announced today. The milestone is an important achievement for the battle royale over two years after it launched on Feb. 4, 2019.
The battle royale has carved out an audience on even more platforms than it had at launch. The game was released on Steam in November 2020 and debuted on Switch in March. In addition to the two new platforms, a series of in-game improvements, such as new maps, legends, and weapons, helped the game grow—but not at the same breakneck pace as it did in the beginning.
Apex had a meteoric debut. It reached its first million players just eight hours after launching and was 10 million total players strong after just three days. The game kept its momentum and broke 50 million downloads exactly a month after its inauguration—before it even launched its first season.
Apex's growth remained steady throughout 2019. In October of that year, the battle royale reached 70 million downloads, the last concrete number Respawn shared officially until today. Respawn upheld secrecy about actual player count statistics, but it's safe to assume that the game continued to conquer a series of new fans in 2020.
Season five was “the best start of any [Apex] season to date,” according to a press release from EA, with record numbers of player engagement. Around the same time, Respawn announced the opening of a new studio in Vancouver, focused exclusively on Apex.
The seventh season was another watershed moment for Apex. The game finally introduced Olympus, a new map that had been teased during the season five quest. The new arena was important to the story as the homeland of Octane and Lifeline, as well as the place where Revenant murdered Loba's parents.
At the same time, season seven also marked the game's long-anticipated Steam debut following a partnership between EA and Valve. In March, during season eight, Respawn also launched Apex on Switch, a previously unexplored platform for the battle royale.
Apex has more plans to grow. Respawn has repeatedly mentioned its plans to “evolve beyond battle royale,” which could draw in fans of other genres and offer a breath of fresh air to the gameplay, depending on the form that the evolution takes.