Apex Legends Devs Explain Why Skins Are So Damn Expensive

As with any free-to-play game, the developers have to make money by selling in-game cosmetics, though Apex Legends’ skins seem to be unreasonably expensive. In a recent AMA, Respawn Entertainment gave some insight into why skins costs as much as they do (via GameRant).

How much do skins cost?

First off, are Apex Legends skins actually expensive? It depends on how badly you want a skin. Until recently, you could buy skins in-game with Apex Coins, the game’s premium currency. Legendary skins would generally cost around $20.

As of writing, there’s no option to buy skins directly anymore. Instead, Respawn Entertainment offers bundles centered around a single Legendary skin (with some additional cosmetics). Those cost 2,500 Apex Coins, or around $23 (based on the 4000 +350 Apex Coin pack).

Why are Apex Legends skins so expensive?

That’s a pretty hefty amount of money for basically a single in-game cosmetic and some filler. For the same amount of money, you could buy most indie games that would almost certainly provide more fun than looking fly in Apex.

But that’s the thing, Respawn argues, you can’t think about it like that. Of course, any game is a business and businesses have expenses. It’s easy to play the role of sad consumer and ask for as much free content as possible.

But it’s hard as a developer (or provider of any service, like, oh, maybe a free gaming journalism website) to come up with a way to finance all that.

Math is harder than people think and when your assumptions are wrong, it’s hard to adjust. As much as people think we can turn cosmetics out easily because our competition outputs content at a high rate, our team is much smaller and spends more time on our skins. (…)

It’s more expensive than people think in terms of number of people and hours because people don’t factor in tons of back and forth on concept, QA, ideation, creation, etc.

Pricing changes in the future

Nevertheless, 20 bucks is a lot of money for a skin, and Respawn Entertainment hears you when you say Apex Legends skins are too expensive. “We want to try and serve as many players as we can for sure so we’re going to try things to learn what works.”

Prices have changed throughout Apex’ life cycle already. Additionally, cost of the Battle Pass and it’s returns changes. Starting this season, players get 300 Apex Coins for free by just playing. In a way, that’s a discount on future skins or the Battle Pass for free.

And let’s be honest, it doesn’t matter what the skins cost, free-to-play games are generally entirely reliant on players with deep pockets spending inexplicably large amounts of cash on one game. Like Respawn said, math is harder than you think, and we might not even really matter in the grand scheme of things!

What do you think? Are Apex Legends skins too expensive, and would you buy them (more frequently) if they’d be priced at, say, $10 or $1? Let us know in the comments below.

Image credit: Respawn Entertainment / Electronic Arts

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