You'll be excused if you don't know that Apex Legends is set in the same universe as Respawn Entertainment's debut title, Titanfall. Respawn sure didn't play up this fact in the free-to-play battle royale, the continued popularity of which is blamed by many for the apparent death of the Titanfall franchise. Now, based on some datamined info, it seems the devs will acknowledge the connection in a more meaningful way.
Based on leaks, backed up by actual game footage using assets ripped from the game files, Apex Legends is getting a new Legend soon named Blisk. You might recognize him as Kuben Blisk, former mercenary villain in the Titanfall games working for IMC, and commissioner of the Apex Games competitions. Based on the leaked abilities, he's basically designed to be a full-on nostalgia character.
Beyond being able to wall-run thanks to his Pilot Kit, hearkening back to the parkour mechanics of Titanfall, his ultimate ability called Standby for Titanfall will call down what looks like a redesigned Ogre locked in Autotitan mode. This means you won't actually be able to pilot the titan, which while a bummer, is to be expected for balance reasons.
Because people asked for a better quality version:https://t.co/OxWI1sV8er
— Tobias (Biast12) | Aqualix (@Biast12Personal) March 24, 2021
This ultimate ability will call down the Titan who will then stand in the spot you called it in and act as an automatic turret, firing off a powerful volley of shots in a forward cone. Essentially, this is a flashy area-of-effect ability - a bit underwhelming for the legacy of the franchise. This ultimate ability can be seen in action thanks to a video posted by dataminer Biast12.
Blisk is reportedly hitting Apex Legends in Season 9, but Respawn have taught us not to believe even seemingly legitimate leaks. While all these assets we've seen would be a bit of an overkill for a fakeout designed just to lead dataminers astray, one would have said the same about announcing and hyping up a new hero just to have them killed by the actual new hero.
Titanfall first launched in 2014 as a multiplayer only title, bringing a fresh high-speed gameplay model to the bland modern military shooter genre. Alongside the hulking titans which were the poster-mechs of the franchise, on-foot gameplay was also spiced up by parkour mechanics.
Launching to critical and financial success, with a few complaints about the lack of a single player element, Titanfall went on to be popular enough to warrant a sequel. Titanfall 2 sported a story driven single player campaign that was praised by critics and fans for its unique mechanics and map variety. The Cause and Effect mission in particular was widely lauded, as well as the bond forged between the protagonist and his Titan, BT-7274.
Unfortunately, EA shot the franchise in the foot by wedging Titanfall 2's release date in between that of Call of Duty and Battlefield, the two most popular mainstream shooter franchises. Despite the outstanding reception, the sequel failed to move enough copies to satisfy the executives.
Apex Legends jumped on the battle royale bandwagon when the trend was rising meteorically. Why the developers decided to place the game in the same universe as Titanfall while also omitting the Titans which made it interesting in the first place is baffling - you'd think battle royale, but with Titans would be a hit - but seemingly served them well nonetheless, with Apex Legends rising to become one of the most popular titles in the genre.
We don't know when Season 9 is set to drop, but will keep an eye out for more info.