A lot has happened in the world of APEX Legends over the last year. Four new legends, lots of weapon and balance changes and of course Storm Point was introduced as 2021’s new map. The divisive map has had players arguing over map design and the best way to play APEX, especially competitively. The general consensus is that Storm Point was a failure. The map was too large without enough ways to rotate around efficiently. One year after it’s release comes Season 15: Eclipse, which marks the launch of APEX Legends’ 5th map, Broken Moon, as well as the 23rd legend to enter the APEX Games; Catalyst.
Broken Moon is a mixture of Kings Canyon and Storm Point. It takes what the developers learnt from the Storm Point issues and fixes them by adding multiple speedy ways to traverse the map. One of these is the “Zip Rail”. Quite possibly the most exciting addition to any map since launch, Zip Rails allow the player to zip around at an accelerating speed, almost like a monorail or roller coaster. I could see a race style LTM (Limited Time Mode) coming out of this map, and it would be amazing.
The new map is varied in its points of interest and has the most beautiful skybox and general visuals to date. Points of interest such as The Divide with it’s deadly chasm, and Bionomics with the beautiful Cherry Blossom-esque tree leave the player in awe when they are not getting shot to bits.
The map is extremely fun to play, while also providing a great skill gap that will make competitive players happy. Starting the ranked season off with the new map in the first split was an interesting choice but doing so allows players the option to always play Broken Moon on demand which is welcome.
There are a fair few bugs that need to be ironed out, which is understandable given the size of the new area. Things like phantom walls that don’t block traversal but block grenades, and rings that end on top of a mountain. The latter can be catastrophic to the players chances of winning, but will be fixed promptly, I’m sure.
Catalyst is the new legend that has arrived in Season 15. She is a defensive legend that manipulates ferrofluid (yes that is a real thing) to provide support for her team. Catalyst’s passive skill “Barricade” allows the player to barricade doors with ferrofluid, which stops enemy teams from opening them similar to standing behind them. However, it also strengthens doors so that they date double the damage before breaking. Once doors are broken, Catalyst can also replace them with a web of ferrofluid that provides the same defence but cannot be opened by her or her team.
The new tactical available to players who choose Catalyst “Piercing Spikes” is a projectile ball of ferrofluid that creates a blanked of spikes on the ground. When an enemy player walks over them, they are damaged and slowed. The spikes linger indefinitely unless they are destroyed (by an enemy shooting their core that pops up when close), so they are great for defending a building or area. They also emit a sound when an enemy draws near, providing advanced warning to the player and their team.
Catalyst’s ultimate is “Dark Veil” a giant wall of ferrofluid that blocks the vision of enemy players and stops scans from penetrating it. If an enemy player attempts to walk through the veil their vision is severely hindered, and they are slowed. There is almost never a time that the player would want to pass through one of these ultimate abilities. Catalyst is immune to the negative effects of the wall, even if the wall was created by an enemy.
All round Catalyst seems like a great addition to the roster, providing a utility that was not previously present in the games. Funnily enough her passive skill seems to be the most useful and irritating when coming up against it.