Loba’s Black Market Boutique was changed in the Apex Legends Season 7: Ascension patch update, but it was met with a few concerns of the buff being too strong. The devs have since explained why a “nuclear option” was needed for the thief and how it could be reverted.
In the Season 7 update, Loba’s ultimate ability was upgraded so that “ammo taken no longer counts towards Black Market’s maximum” cap, meaning she could either steal or simply keep hostage munitions in the immediate area.
This now opens up the potential for her to ‘starve’ out nearby teams that are trying to maneuver a prolonged firefight. While her new prospects made a lot of players excited, some could easily see how this could immediately be reverted by the developers.
“I’ll say this: within a week they’ll change that buff back,” one Reddit user said. “A full squad can scoop absolutely all the ammo in a POI. Just scoop it up and hide or carry it…. It will make ammo even harder to find around.”
Respawn Senior Game Designer Daniel Z. Klein emphatically agreed, admitting that the change “scares” him, but also explained that the High Society Thief’s ultimate wasn’t getting quality use.
“This is a change that scares me, but seeing how little Loba uses her ultimate and how little it benefits her team (almost no benefit at all) I decided we needed to invoke the nuclear option here,” he said of the buff.
While the devs might not be happy with the state of Loba’s ultimate, there are mounting concerns about how this could get out of hand. As it is, it’s not difficult to charge her ultimate, so there’s legitimate worry that the frequency of the ability can eventually give the Legend a stranglehold on ammo.
That is why, at least according to Klien, the option to revert the buff is still on the table if her ability becomes too impactful of an exploit: “Hold me accountable if this was a screw-up, and if you’re right and it makes the game miserable for everyone else because there’s no more ammo then yes, we will revert it.”
However, when presented with the possibility that the buff could fundamentally affect the looting habits of players, the dev remains confident that the loot pool is wide enough for it not to be an issue, since there’s “plenty of tough choices to make around weapon mods, equipment, healing, ordnance.”
For Loba mains, a lot hangs in the balance, and whether or not her Season 7 buff will be reverted remains to be seen.