The second ranked split for Apex Legends released March 23, 2021 and with it came only a few, yet impactful updates. As we’ve seen over the past month, while peacefully running around the map, is a bunch of adrenaline junky, speed demons that we call Octanes. He obviously received a previous Buff before season 8 that we all have heard about by now. What we didn’t expect is his popularity to rise. He went from being mid tier selection for squads to being selected in nearly 98% of squads as of Tuesday. While the popularity of flying around the map, rotating through storms in seconds, garnered a lot of popularity there is one thing that did not: Heat Shields.
Heat shields got introduced during the Caustic collection event, along with ring flares. While both received heavy criticism, the heat shields seem to be a permanent item in the games allotted loot pool. With it being a permanent item, Respawn decided to pull the item from ranked playlists on March 12th. Heat Shields give you the ability to place one down while caught outside the ring and remain in cover for an allotted amount of time and were originally being exploited to essentially have an infinite amount of time to sit outside of the ring while in the final circles. That exploit was what originally led to it’s removal.
Since being reintroduced it seems that the aforementioned exploit has been removed. Also being removed from the heat shield’s capabilities was: fast healing. Originally the shields gave you an increased speed of healing, similar to the speed of the old gold body shield, but now only offers you protection from the ring. While being used in rank they theoretically can’t be placed down in the final circle due to the ring damage it takes in. It’s full return back to the maps of Kings Canyon and Olympus seems to be, in the future, continuously problematic.
The removal of the fast healing and reviving offers the gadget minimal ranked usefulness other than camping for better RP as you look to reach high ranks. Respawn on the surface level removed the only type of medical benefit other than Lifelines character without offering any type of substitute for the original purpose. While the return of a new item in Apex is always appreciated, be on the lookout for future tweaks as the feedback from the community seems to be leaning towards that direction. Grab yourself a heat shield, or don’t, and head down to Olympus and continue that grind to be known as an Apex Predator.