Last week, Apex Legends came under fire for some dubious monetization regarding its recent loot box shenanigans that required players to spend upwards of $150 to get the best new skins in the game. While Respawn Entertainment apologized and promised to make changes, that still led some players to voice their displeasure using, shall we say, “colorful” language.
In response to all that, Executive Producer Drew McCoy dove into the fray to say that his team “will not engage with temper tantrums” while saying that he could “remember when players weren’t complete ass-hats to developers.” As of this writing, that response on Reddit has -3,562 points, and McCoy doubled down when, in response to a vitriolic reply — the kind he said he “will not engage with” — called the poster a “dick” and that his comment “doesn’t warrant a reply.” But he gave one anyway, and it has -5,311 points. Confused yet?
This is a case where pretty much everyone’s at fault. Respawn shouldn’t have made the Iron Crown loot boxes the way they were. Players had a right to be mad, but probably not to the extremes that these sort of things tend to go to. And then, after a well-worded official response from Respawn, McCoy shouldn’t have chimed in with his personal opinions, especially when he went against his own word and engaged with the type of angry fan he said he wouldn’t engage with.
What does it all mean? Admittedly, probably not much. The number of Apex players who are on Reddit is relatively small, and the number who are pissed enough to quit the game because of this PR misstep is even smaller. McCoy will probably get a bit of a talking-to from marketing, but since he’s in charge of a major money-maker for the company, it probably won’t amount to much.
If I might make a suggestion, though, Drew … the first rule of arguing on the internet is: Don’t argue on the internet.
UPDATE: Respawn Entertainment CEO Vince Zampella has posted a statement regarding the incident:
— Vince Zampella (@VinceZampella) August 19, 2019