Apex Legends' First Balance Update Nerfs Its Two Most Popular Guns

Apex Legends' First Balance Update Nerfs Its Two Most Popular Guns

Wingman and Peacekeeper take some hits.

Apex Legends received its first real balance patch after its surprise launch last month. And if you're a fan of the Wingman and Peacekeeper (like so many of us are) then you're in for a rude awakening as both of those guns received nerfs.

While Apex Legends doesn't have a strict meta per se, other than the general hatred towards the Mozambique shotgun, the Wingman and Peacekeeper are reliable weapons to have in your kit. So, it's a shame that not one, but both of those weapons were nerfed after yesterday's balance patch. As our features editor Caty McCarthy put it when she heard the news, "I cannot believe this slight."

The Wingman is a powerful heavy ammo handgun that's reliable in any firefight. It's even good long range if you have the right equipment for it. But after the nerf it's now a bit slower, and a bit less accurate if you aren't aiming, and takes a bit of a hit to damage if you have the Skullpiercer mod.

The Peacekeeper is a shotgun, and while it's got somewhat of a learning curve, is deadly when used properly. Unlike the Wingman, the Peacekeeper only took a hit to reload speed when equipped with a Shotgun Bolt. Both guns will also be a bit harder to find on the map as a result of decreased spawn rates.

Wingman Nerf

  • Rate of Fire Reduced from 3.1 to 2.6 shots per second
  • Skullpiercer Headshot damage multiplier reduced from 2.5 to 2.25
  • Increased base hip fire spread and decreased the rate at which hip fire spread decays (shrinks back down)

Peackeeper Nerf

  • Shotgun Bolt rechamber rate has been reduced for the Peacekeeper only.
  • Level 1 mitigation 10% to 7.5%
  • Level 2 mitigation 20% to 13%
  • Level 3 mitigation 25% to 16%

On the flip side, Respawn has made it so that energy weapons will be more available across the map, hopefully making them more viable. Otherwise there aren't a lot of buffs in this update. That's because as Respawn notes, it prefers having a power curve on weapons, meaning some weapons will just be weaker and more common by design. Love it or hate it, that's how Respawn prefers to keep its game.

Similarly, Respawn revealed that when it comes to balance updates, the developers prefer making less frequent, but "better tested, higher impact balance changes" to minimize any impact on mastering the game. So maybe don't expect balance updates to start appearing weekly.

Despite these changes, Apex Legends shouldn't suddenly become unplayable. And if you found yourself dependent on the Wingman or Peacekeeper, we have some Apex Legends tips to help you overcome the recent nerfs.

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Matt Kim

News Editor

Matt Kim is a former freelance writer who's covered video games and digital media. He likes video games as spectacle and is easily distracted by bright lights or clever bits of dialogue. He also once wrote about personal finance, but that's neither here nor there.

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