Apex Legends is currently ringing in the new year, but on February 4 it'll celebrate its one-year anniversary with the start of a whole new season. Today, Respawn gave players their first look at what's coming in Season 4, Assimilation, including the fourth addition to Apex's cast of legends: Forge, a beefy brawler with a shiny cybernetic arm.
A "five-time hyper fighting federation champion," Forge is moving on from the Titanfall universe's sci-fi version of MMA to the bloodsport of Apex Legends. Respawn doesn't give away Forge's exact abilities in his profile or show him off in-game in the Season 4 reveal video, but he is described as "an up-close and personal" fighter (which you probably gathered from the bare chest and clenched fists).
The developers did reveal that Forge's gleaming metal arm has lore implications for the world of Apex Legends, as he's the first combatant in the game to have a corporate sponsor: Hammond Robotics. That's a name that hasn't cropped up in Apex before, but in the Titanfall games Hammond is the military defense contractor that supplies the IMC (the baddies) with all of their robotic workers, soldiers, and hulking Titans. Apex characters who resent the IMC, like Wraith, might not be too thrilled to have a Hammond poster boy in the ring.
As per usual, Assimilation will introduce a new premium battle pass with unlockable cosmetics and a new weapon to Apex's arsenal: a Sentinel bolt-action sniper rifle. The season will also lead off with a couple free gun charms and a special emblem in celebration of Apex's first anniversary.
Apex's next season will also crank up the competition in ranked play. A new Master rank tier will be added between Diamond and the game's highest tier, Apex Predator. Starting with Season 4, Apex Predator will be limited only to the top 500 players on each system at a given time, meaning the very best players will have to keep earning points to stay in Apex Predator throughout a ranked series. Ranked play will also be split into two halves during the next season; after the first split is played on the World's Edge map, there'll be a soft rank reset and the second half will take place on Apex's classic Kings Canyon arena.
We'll surely learn more about Forge and the other changes coming to Apex Legends between now and Assimilation's launch on February 4, but for now players will just have keep wondering what Apex's mysterious UFO is hinting at while they work through the last few game modes in the Grand Soiree event.