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Apex Legends dev responds to calls for Wattson to be reworked

The Apex Legends community have asked for legend Wattson to be reworked and made more viable, but a senior developer shut down that idea.

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wattson tactical electric fence

The Apex Legends community has called for playable legend Wattson to be reworked, but one of the game’s developers has explained why that’s unlikely to happen any time soon.

Wattson came to Apex Legends in its second season and must be purchased through either 12,000 Legend Tokens or 750 Apex Coins. If you’re new to Apex or are missing some legends, she is also included in the Champion Edition of the game.

As her name might suggest, Wattson’s abilities relate to electricity. She is a defensive legend who can create electric Perimeter Security Fences that deal damage and reveal the enemy’s location as they try to pass through. Ultimate Accelerant fully recharges her Ultimate Ability, which allows her to place an Interception Pylon that blocks incoming ordnance and repairs damaged shields over time.

While Wattson is effective in Competitive Apex, the community feels she needs a rework in public matches.

“Buff Wattson please”

Reddit user ‘BaguettePaquette‘ gave feedback on Reddit asking the developers at Respawn to “Buff Wattson.”

In this post, which has gained almost 15k ‘upvotes’ in its first 24 hours, BaguettePaquette made the case that the legend is “completely useless” in public matches. They believe that with many of the other legends being buffed and reworked, she has been left behind and is no longer a viable pick.

“Her fences are useless,” the post read. “They are too noticeable to trick someone.” It then went on to explain how her abilities are easily countered by most other legends.

As many other Legends have had complete reworks in the past, BaguettePaquette asked Respawn to do something similar for Wattson. “It’s time to radically remake Wattson,” it read. “Not just another +5 to fences but the whole concept of a ‘defending’ legend.”

Respawn’s response

Senior Game Designer Daniel Klein gave a detailed response to the feedback.

The first part of the post that Klein took issue with is when BaguettePaquette said that Wattson isn’t often picked in competitive play. The Reddit post claimed that in the ALGS Grand Finals, there wasn’t a single Wattson. Klein responded by saying that Wattson was in four of the final six sqauds.

“Not saying that she shouldn’t be buffed in normal play,” said Klein. “But let’s please base our assessments on reality. She is still dominant in pro play.”

Next, the developer respectfully disagreed that Wattson is useless, saying: “You’re confusing two things: pick rate and effectiveness.” While Wattson has a low pick-rate, she has a high win-rate.

The reason Wattson has a low pick-rate is that most prefer to play for fun, rather than for the win. Wattson’s defensive abilities aren’t as exciting for most players as some of the offensive choices. The success of her ability creates a lack of action (e.g blocking enemies from entering a building), which isn’t as fun for most casual players.

A complete rework for Wattson would be costly and take up time that could be put into new legends and seasons. Klein says that ideally, they’ll find a rework in the future that makes her more exciting in the moment without changing her role.

“I could be convinced to buff her here and there just to throw Wattson mains like yourself a bone,” Klein concluded. “But with absolutely no hope that any such buff would change any of the underlying problems (low pick rate and lack of satisfaction).”