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Apex Legends devs reveal battle royale almost had bouncy-ball shotgun

Apex Legends is full of fantastic guns, but the developers have revealed that there are some crazier prototype weapons that never quite made the final cut

Apex Legends prototype weapon bouncing shotgun: an image of Vantage looking confused at a Mozambique

Whether you’re personally a fan of Apex Legends or not, the recent Beast of Prey collection event is proof that Respawn Entertainment’s free-to-play shooter is one of the best battle royale games ever. However, there’s always room for improvement and it’s clear that the developers behind this competitive FPS game are always trying to find ways to build on the experience available. Why are we saying that? Well, Apex Legends’ developers have been talking about prototype weapons online and, frankly, they just sound a little bonkers.

During a Reddit AMA where Apex Legends’ developers talked about “weapons and legends”, senior game designer Eric Canavese shared some insight into a handful of prototype weapons that never quite made it to the battle royale – and one of those was a shotgun with bouncing pellets.

Explaining this concept, Canavese detailed that “[Respawn Entertainment] prototyped a shotgun where each of the pellets was basically a bouncy ball… it was pure chaos. Each bounce reduced the damage of the pellet and it was designed to be sort of like a flushing out tool.”

While this does sound like quite a lot of fun, and quite a lot like Maggie’s Wrecking Ball ultimate ability, Canavese explained that “taking bullet damage from enemies you cannot see yet felt unfair.” So, they ended up scrapping it after a couple of “pretty hectic” internal playtests.

However, this isn’t the only prototype weapon Canavese detailed in his response to a question asking about the “craziest weapon ideas” Respawn Entertainment came up with for Apex Legends. He also talked about an “early iteration” of the Rampage LMG that would throw thermite wherever you were shooting

“One very early iteration of the Rampage lit people on fire and allowed you to “paint thermite” wherever you shot… But, we found layering in shooting the ground people walked on to maximise their panic and your own area control was just too much – in a number of ways.”

While it’s a shame that this never made it to the final game, we can see why – and it’s clear that the link between the Rampage LMG and the Thermite grenades wasn’t completely severed. Would that feature make you reconsider Rampart’s place in the Apex Legends tier list? We’re not so sure, but it’s certainly an exciting idea.