Respawn Entertainment developers have confirmed the team is looking “very seriously” into nerfing Gibraltar in Apex Legends, to tackle the shield meta.
Newcastle is the new Legend on the block, to be introduced with Season 13 on May 10, 2022. He is part of a plethora of changes that are going to be implemented into the game, though his abilities are very similar to Gibraltar’s since he has the ability to deploy shields as well.
Gibraltar has a really high pick rate in high-ranked matches as it is, partly due to Gibby’s popular Tactical ability, Dome of Protection, working as a shield against incoming attacks.
It does not allow projectiles like grenades and arc stars or even bullets to pass through it, allowing his teammates to provide enough time to quickly heal from the inflicted damage. This has given birth to a “shield meta” in Apex Legends.
Apex Legends devs are considering tackling “shield meta”
Gibraltar could be in line for a nerf in the near future, with the arrival of Newcastle coming.
When asked whether the defensive legend would be receiving any nerfs or changes in the Saviors update during the dev Q&A, Senior Game Designer Devan McGuire revealed that they are looking at Gibraltar’s kit “very seriously’. The intention is to “tackle the shield meta” so it doesn’t dominate too much, they said.
Although the devs have been evaluating Gibby’s kit and will continue to do so, they are very much aware that Gibraltar’s pick rate is on the higher side in high-rank, while lower in lower ranks. The introduction of Newcastle to the game may balance that out, though that remains to be seen.
Comparing Gibraltar’s shield to Newcastle’s
When the shields of these two legends are compared head-to-head, the results are quite contrasting.
While Gibraltar’s “Dome of Protection” is motionless, Newcastle’s Tactical deploys a mobile shield. He throws a controllable drone that can also be redirected once the shield is deployed.
Until Season 12, Gibraltar has been the only character to provide strong tactical protection during fights. With the introduction of Newcastle, players feel a new meta might be born with a different approach to gameplay.
Considering the changes that are coming to Ranked on May 10, it remains to be seen how players adapt to the new rules set by Respawn.