Respawn responds to complaints about the cost of cosmetics in Apex Legends
"Content creation costs."
Respawn has opened up about the cost of premium items in Apex Legends' in-game store.
In a recent Reddit AMA, players pointed out that the cost of premium skins can cost around 1800 Apex Coins - which is the equivalent to $18 (£13) give or take.
"I get that you gotta make the game profitable, but there's gotta be a way to prevent the player from feeling cheated when they buy something," pointed out Redditor x5hadau.
"$18 (realistically $20) is a lot to ask for one cosmetic item. As the game grows, is there any potential movement towards more affordable content across the board? People want to buy these things, but it's hard to justify it or feel good about it."
"I'll tell you right now that when I spammed our director-level monetisation guy about attending this, he was pretty hesitant (which is fair, given how spicy that topic can get on Reddit)," replied director of communications, Ryan K. Rigney.
"However, he has agreed to respond to a few questions so long as I team up with him and have his back."
During the Q&A session, Rigney gave four reasons why "pricing is tricky and something [Respawn] thinks about constantly", including confirming that the studio is "gameplay first" and that "content creation costs".
"As much as people think we can turn cosmetics out easily because our competition outputs content at a high rate, our team is much smaller and spends more time on our skins," they explained. "The part of the equation people miss is the expense side of the people we have working on these things and the fact that we can't work 24/7. It's more expensive than people think in terms of number of people and hours because people don't factor in tons of back and forth on concept, QA, ideation, creation, etc."
So what about pricing?
"We think about this constantly and it's tough because we want Apex to be around for a loooooong time," Rigney added (thanks, Dexerto). "Us being able to continue to make the game depends on operating a healthy business. We're hoping players understand this is something we're working hard to balance, but when you consider the full picture, it's a tough challenge.
"There's a lot players want from the Apex Universe, there's a lot we want to give, but we can't do that unless we're a healthy business at the end of the day. New Game Modes, Maps, Features all come at a cost we're trying to support."
The response - though welcomed by the community given monetisation is often very secretive - didn't impress all players, with some accusing the studio of giving a "non-answer".
ICYMI, Respawn will shortly fix Wattson's electrified fence in Apex Legends after it was unexpectedly nerfed when the new season rolled out. Previously, running into Wattson's fence would slow down an opposing player, but right now the slowdown and corresponding stun has been removed, essentially making the fence useless.
The much-anticipated Legacy update for Apex Legends arrived earlier this month, and while Apex saw record numbers of Steam players and a huge audience on Twitch, it wasn't exactly a smooth launch. The high demand meant many couldn't get into matches, while players also reported problems with the in-game menus and marketplace.