All Apex Legends nerfs & buffs to weapons & Legends in March 3 update - Dexerto
Apex Legends

All Apex Legends nerfs & buffs to weapons & Legends in March 3 update

Published: 4/Mar/2020 0:28 Updated: 4/Mar/2020 12:27

by Albert Petrosyan

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The update that launched the System Override Collection Event in Apex Legends also implemented some balancing changes to several Legends, weapons, and items.

System Override is the biggest event in Apex Legends since the launch of Season 4 in early February, and it’s introduced new content and changes to the battle royale.

While not as major as the balancing adjustments made in the Season 4 patch, there were still some changes that could end up impacting the game’s meta.

Respawn EntertainmentSystem Override is the newest event in Apex Legends.

Weapon changes

Several weapons were tweaked in this March 3 update, but the Peacekeeper was the only one that was seriously nerfed in its mag size, reload speeds, and blast patter scale:

  • Mag size reduced from 6 -> 5.
  • Increased reload time from 2.5s -> 2.65s.
  • Increased reload time with empty mag from 3.5s -> 3.6s.
  • Slightly increased the scale of the blast pattern from 1.6 -> 1.7.

The Sentinel, the new sniper rifle that was released at the start of Season 4, was buffed so that it now does more damage and takes less time to rechamber:

  • Base damage increased from 65 -> 70
  • Reduced time it takes to rechamber from 1.85s -> 1.75s.
Respawn EntertainmentThe Peacekeeper was nerfed in the Apex Legends System Override Collection Event update.

The Prowler and L-STAR, two of the strongest guns so far in the current season, now feature a red dot on their iron sights, which will “stay properly centered during weapon sway and bob movements.”

The final weapon-related change was that a fix for the frustrating muzzle flash issue was finally implemented, applying to all guns except for sniper rifles and shotguns.

Now, when you aim down sights of a weapon while firing, the flash of light that emanates from the muzzle will be of reduced intensity, making aiming a lot easier.

Legend changes

Respawn EntertainmentBloodhound’s Eye of the Allfather ability duration was increased by 3x.

There were three Legends addressed with the March 3 balancing changes: Bloodhound, Gibraltar, and Crypto. For Bloodhound, Respawn explained that their intent was for the character to “use their tactical as they are approaching towns pre-combat versus reacting while in a fight.”

Thus, the scan distance for the Eye of the Allfather ability was increased by 3x, while the time to activate and the duration of the scan were also increased to help balance things out:

  • Increased the scan distance for Eye of the Allfather by 3x.
  • Increased time to activate: .4s -> .8s
  • Increased duration of scan: 2s -> 3s

Gibraltar was finally nerfed a little after the last several updates had made him considerably stronger. His Gun Shield health was reduced from 75 all the way down to 50.

The third character tweaked was Crypto; players using the hacking expert now have their primary weapons reload automatically while in drone view.

Backpack buffs

Respawn EntertainmentThe Apex Legends backpack doesn’t have fast heal anymore, but it’s got another buff now instead.

This System Override patch made some major changes to player inventories, one of which was an increase of the base number of slots from eight to 10. In turn, this buffed Backpacks a bit, as each rarity now further expands inventories by two more slots than before:

  • Common (gray) Backpack: expands inventory to 12 slots (previously 10)
  • Rare (blue) Backpack: expands inventory to 14 slots (previously 12)
  • Epic (purple) Backpack: expands inventory to 16 slots (previously 14)

However, in order to balance this, Respawn nerfed the stack sizes for Grenades, Light/Heavy/Energy ammo, Syringes, Shield Cells, Med Kits, and Shield Batteries. For more details about these changes and the new stack sizes for those items, make sure to check out our Apex Legends inventory changes info page.


That’s everything on the nerfs and buffs that this March 3 update implemented. For more information on everything else, including the new content, visit our Apex Legends System Override Collection Event update patch notes.

Apex Legends

Apex Legends dev explains why “useless” Wattson won’t get more buffs

Published: 26/Nov/2020 5:27 Updated: 26/Nov/2020 5:29

by Isaac McIntyre

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Bad news Wattson fans… Respawn has no plans to buff the Apex Legends engineer again in Season 7, despite the fact much of the battle royale’s player base believes the Static Defender is “useless” in her current state.

Wattson who has been part of the ever-growing Apex Legends roster since mid-2019, was recently handed a buff in Season 7’s ‘Ascension’ patch; her signature ability, “Perimeter Security,” had its damage topped up slightly.

According to the Apex Legends community, however, the French defender is still relatively “useless” in the Season 7 meta. In fact, the view is so widespread that a Reddit thread simply titled “Buff Wattson please” racked up 15.1k upvotes, and more than 125 awards.

In the thread, ‘BaguettePaquette’ declared: “It’s time to radically remake Wattson. Not just +5 to fences, but the whole concept of a ‘defending legend’.”

Unfortunately, when an Apex Legends dev did finally arrive in the thread, it was to deliver bad news: there are no plans to give Wattson more buffs in Season 7, despite the defender’s low pick rate in public playlists and ranked lobbies.

Respawn Entertainment
Wattson has been dubbed “useless” by the wider Apex Legends player base.

Wattson isn’t “useless,” says Apex dev

The reason, game designer Daniel Z. Klein explained, is twofold. The first is that Wattson is “all over the place” in pro play. According to the dev, who “rewound the final game,” four of the final six squads in ALGS finals included a Wattson.

The second was a rebuttal to the Reddit thread’s suggestion Wattson is “useless,” both on new map Olympus, and in all Apex Legends lobbies.

“I’m going to respectfully disagree… on Olympus, or elsewhere. You’re confusing two things; pick rate and effectiveness,” Klein said. “Yes, she’s lowest pick rate, but her win rate is very good. She’s is top 4 across most power metrics.”

The “fun” problem: why no one plays Wattson

The problem, he continued, is that Wattson “isn’t super fun for most people.” Her abilities are based around holding choke points, which Apex Legends players often shy away from.

“[That] means we can’t just put power into her until she’s more widely played, because she’s already very near the top of our power charts; on the other hand, it means that putting power into her won’t address the problem either,” he said.

“It’s not that people pick her and fail to be effective. Clearly the people who do run her have more success than on most other characters. There’s something about the FEELING of playing her that isn’t attractive, and power doesn’t fix that.”

Wattson Apex Legends screenshot
Respawn Entertainment
The French defender is powerful, but fails to be “fun” in public lobbies.

Rework may be one possible solution

So, no more Wattson buffs in Season 7, especially as she continues to hit top scores on many of Respawn’s hidden metrics. A rework though? That’s another story.

“Your suggestion for a rework is most promising,” Klein admitted, but said there are two issues there; the cost ⁠— “reworks are incredibly expensive” ⁠— and two, she already fills an area “very needed” in competitive play: defensive strengths.

“I don’t think she should be 100% or near 100% pick rate in competitive… ideally we find a rework that makes at least part of her kit exciting in the moment, while not losing her identity as a structure giver,” the Apex developer concluded.

Respawn Entertainment
Mirage (pictured) and Lifeline have both got reworks; could Wattson be next?

There was a glimmer of hope for fans of the French defender, however. Klein admitted he “could be convinced to buff her” in an effort to “throw a bone to Wattson mains,” but promised that “wouldn’t change the problems.”

For now, Wattson mains should hold tight. There’s a rework in the pipes that may eventually land, and more buffs are possible; it may just take a bit of begging!