Those holding out hope of Titanfall 3 being in development should be very disappointed by the recent announcement of Apex Legends, as this is the game the Titanfall team has been working on the whole time.
In a recent interview with VG 24/7, Apex Legends design director Mackey McCandlish confirmed that Respawn’s new battle royale game is the team’s next continuation of the Titanfall universe.
“This is the game being made by the Titanfall team, Apex Legends,” McCandish said. “The Titanfall universe is continuing. It takes place in the Titanfall universe. This is the next game from the team that made Titanfall. There is no other team that makes Titanfall. That doesn’t mean there never could be another team that makes Titanfall.”
When prodded for more information on how teams are split within Respawn, the designer explained that a small handful of developers moved over to help on Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, but the crux of the Titanfall team remained in place to back Apex Legends. He also confirmed that no other projects are currently in the works, so if a true Titanfall sequel does eventually launch, it will be years before we see it.
A previous Kotaku report claimed that Titanfall 3 was originally in development and planned for a 2018 release, but it began falling behind on a technical level due to running on the same modified version of Valve’s Source engine as the previous games. In an effort to avoid feeling dated, the pivot was apparently made from Titanfall 3 to Apex Legends, which aligns with lead producer Drew McCoy’s explanation to Eurogamer that battle royale started out as a mode for the sequel before becoming the game’s sole focus.
As for the game’s abrupt release, it was apparently an effort by the developer to combat skeptics (like yours truly).
“The world thinks we’re making Titanfall 3 and we’re not—this is what we’re making,” McCoy told Eurogamer. “To try and convince a skeptical audience for months with trailers and hands-on articles, we’re just like, ‘Let the game speak for itself’—it’s the most powerful antidote to potential problems. We’re doing a free to play game, with essentially loot boxes, after we were bought by EA, and it’s not Titanfall 3. It’s the perfect recipe for a marketing plan to go awry, so why have that—let’s just ship the game and let players play.”
Apex Legends is available for free download right now on PlayStation 4 Xbox One, and PC. The developer is not currently discussing plans for a Switch or mobile launch, although there are plans for cross-play later down the line.