In the trailer, a blond, human male accepts a bounty contract. Later, the bounty and his cohort are attacked by a large, skeletal-looking robot who can become undead — a callback to Apex’s Halloween Fight or Fright event, in which downed players could respawn as similar-looking undead characters to torment the still-living players.
As described in the official Season 4 trailer:
Revenant used to be human. He was the greatest hitman the Mercenary Syndicate ever had. But when his programming eventually failed, he saw what Hammond Robotics had turned him into: a walking nightmare of steel and vestigial flesh.Respawn
Respawn Entertainment, the developers behind Apex Legends, had been dropping hints about Revenant for months. The hero appeared briefly in promotional material for Fight or Fright, and character art hidden on the game’s website was uncovered by eager fans. The art for the Season 4 launch trailer, which featured a close-up of an unidentified person shaving their chin with a straight razor, was another vexing clue for players following the narrative around the game.
But then, a twist. On Jan. 23, Apex Legends announced a different new hero for season four: a former MMA champion with a robotic arm, named Jimmie “Forge” McCormick. The character was notable for his tie-in with Hammond Robotics, a company which played a role in the Titanfall series, also developed by Respawn Entertainment. (Apex Legends and Titanfall take place in the same universe, and share a number of attributes.) The new trailer also references Hammond Robotics in the context of protests and backlash around its development of robot soldiers, which feature heavily in the Titanfall series.
The much-teased hero, Revenant, was out of sight and out of mind. Or so it seemed.
In subsequent promotional material, in-fiction messages hinted at break-ins at Hammond Robotics facilities. The campaign culminated on Jan. 27: In a short animated video, Forge is assassinated by Revenant mid-interview.
On Wednesday, Moy Parra, a senior animator at Respawn Entertainment, took to Twitter to quell fan speculation, confirming that Forge was dead. Players can also find Forge’s death box — a crate which drops after a player dies, allowing opponents to loot their items — in-game.
The new season also brings other changes, including an update to the map rotation. In ranked mode, the current map, World’s Edge, will remain in rotation from launch to March 23; after that, Kings Canyon will return through May 5. The ranking system has also been revamped. Most significantly, the highest tier in the game, Apex Predator, will only be available to the top 500 players on each platform. In total, only 1500 players will hold the rank.
Some restrictions will also be introduced to party structure. Once a player reach the Platinum IV rank, they will only be able to match with players within one tier of them. The intent is to eliminate parties where higher-ranked players carry lower-ranking players to boost those players’ ranks.
The game will also be introducing more rewards for team-oriented play. The time span for getting an assist will increase from five seconds to 7.5 seconds. Moreover, players can now get assists by, well, assisting the player who secures the kill via their secondary abilities.