Apex Legends reveals major Ranked changes for Season 18 after Season 17 problems

Calum Patterson
Bangalore in Apex Legends

Respawn Entertainment has revealed extensive changes for Ranked play in Apex Legends coming in Season 18, after a series of changes made Season 17 one of the most disliked Ranked experiences so far.

Although made with good intentions, Season 17’s ranked updates simply did not work out. Changes to the points system and matchmaking just resulted in over 20% of the player base reaching Master rank, as opposed to being evenly spread across all the ranks.

It was clear changes were needed for Season 18, and with a few weeks until the reset, Respawn have outlined their plans in a detailed blog post for Apex Legends players to check out.

Ranked changes in Season 18 of Apex Legends

After revealing data about Season 17’s ranked system, including the massive increase in “ratting” (hiding to earn a higher placement rather than fighting enemies), Respawn laid out some of the headline changes they have planned:

  • Decreasing overall LP gains per match to combat the overall shift in the rank distribution.
  • Adding a ruleset that only applies to Diamond+ to properly dial in the top of the ladder.
    • Players in these ranked tiers will have increased stakes and losses, and decreased rating bonuses and loss mitigations. Be ready to put it all on the line.
  • Adding a minimum elimination bonus increase based on the player’s MMR and buffing elimination bonus in general. Eliminations should always be a contributor to your rank.
  • Increasing action in the ring by adjusting ring damage.
  • Adjusting ring timings to create more mid-game encounters and less pre-finale lulls.
  • Updating matchmaking to better handle players that are actively challenging their MMR, for more competitively challenging matches that mirror their ranking.

The exact tuning of these changes is still to be determined, and Respawn is also asking for feedback from players, by hosting an AMA on Reddit, on July 21.

“We want to deliver the best Ranked BR experience in the world,” Respawn said, “with the tightest matchmaking and the sweatiest competition at every rank tier.

“Splits will not be returning for now as we’re focusing on monitoring and further finetuning. We look forward to sharing more updates on Ranked and how we plan to achieve our goals, especially as we approach Season 19—which is already in motion!”

While Respawn does admit they “missed the mark” with some of the Season 17 changes, they also say “We hit some aspects of our goals.”

Season 18 of Apex Legends is due to release on Tuesday, August 8, 2023. We should see the changes in full just before then, when patch notes for the season release.