Apex Legends will be introducing its 16th legend, Fuse, as part of Season 8. The problem is he looks extremely similar to a character from upcoming indie hero shooter BulletVille. According to an email received from the developer, BulletVille‘s developer NOWWA has accused Respawn and EA of ripping off their character known as Hunter.
Hunter apparently bears “a lot of similarities” to Fuse. NOWWA listed his eyepatch, biker attire, skull belt, mechanical arm, moustache, belt of grenades, gloves, necklace, vest jacket with circular symbol on the back, leg holsters, red/grey color scheme, and characteristic grey stripe of hair. They also said “Hunter can count on two weapons: a pistol and rocket launcher. Guess what Fuse’s ultimate ability is? A rocket launcher.” To be fair, if you put the characters side by side in an image, they kinda have a point.
The problem is Hunter was introduced publicly two years ago, whereas Fuse was revealed this week. The developer even explains BulletVille had playtests at EA during October and November 2020, blaming these as “potential ‘inspiration’” and making it seem “unlikely that it’s a coincidence”. While EA was going to be publishing BulletVille, talks between the two companies had stalled until NOWWA could provide a beta version of their title. NOWWA’s main concern is when their game is eventually released, they themselves would now be accused of ripping off Apex Legends:
We are happy that the Apex Legends team liked Hunter’s style to the point of wanting to recreate it in Apex Legends – we were even hoping for an eventual crossover! Nonetheless, we are afraid that, as a small indie game producer whose game hasn’t been launched yet, we’ll be called a ripoff of Apex Legends, which is certainly not true.
So far, both EA and Respawn have refused to comment on the accusations. In the meantime, Apex Legends Season 8 will bring a new weapon, Battle Pass, ranked season, and a redesigned map in addition to their new Legend. Today’s Mayhem launch trailer gives some clues as to how King’s Canyon will be altered with the new season.
Season 8 Mayhem will arrive on February 2. Further content will continue to arrive as part of the game’s ten-year plan, although whether this has similarities to other titles remains to be seen.
What do you think? Did the Apex Legends team rip off NOWWA’s character design, or is this just an unfortunate coincidence?
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