Apex Legends devs declare iron sight changes amid ‘pay-to-win’ controversy

Apex Legends developers Respawn Entertainment have given more context to the changes in the battle royale’s iron sight after players raised concerns about the pay-to-win nature of some weapons’ base optics.

Iron sights are hard to balance for any shooter’s developers. They vary, of course, depending on a weapon’s design, meaning each weapon has a slightly different base optic.

That has proved problematic in Apex Legends, with players expressing serious concerns about ‘pay-to-win’ iron sights on certain weapons.

In particular, the VK-47 Flatline has come under scrutiny for its Heat Sink and Revelations weapon skins, which players believe give unfair advantages to users due to their iron sights.

Apex Legends devs announce nerfs for Flatline iron sights

Because weapon skins can be purchased for players, some have accused the BR of being “pay-to-win,” with those willing to invest money reap in-game benefits.

However, on September 16, Respawn issued an “Update on Iron Sights,” explaining that changes are being made to the controversial Flatline skins.

They said: “Standard iron sights are designed to force players to loot for better optics. We also believe that skins should not play a role in the functionality of the sights either… To make things as fair as possible, we wanted to provide feedback on the Heat Sink skin and also update other skins that we thought were could be improved.”

Attached were images of the custom iron sights, with the comments ending: “We believe that a competitive advantage in Apex Legends should be gained through honing your skills and not because of alleged benefits of purchasing gun skins.”

Respawn went on to add more context through Reddit, where they expanded on the decision to nerf the weapon skins themselves, rather than the basic Flatline.

“We know players need an adjustment period and that for those who have mainly used Heat Sink – it’s a mess for now,” they acknowledged. “But we had to make a decision that is a classic example of a designer’s job: to diagnose and separate what the player and the game need from what is sought.”

Depending on player feedback and the stats behind the powerful AR, there may be more customizations over time.

Despite the potentially controversial changes, many praised Respawn for their transparency and attention to detail in explaining the changes.

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