Blog - February 5, 2024

Apex Legends gets its first custom Mixtape map in season 20

Even though Top Legendary’ The Mixtape playlist has been a huge success since its introduction last year, but its suite of arcade modes has yet to take on a unique arena of its own. That’s about to change in season 20, which will add a fully custom map to Mixtape: Thunderdome for the first time.

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Until part 20, released on February 13, Mixtape still used POIs taken straight from Topbattle royale locations or reused maps originally designed for the discontinued Arenas mode. While these have proven to be suitable battlegrounds, it always makes the Mixtape playlist feel like it was included at a low priority despite its popularity. By comparison, Thunderdome shows signs Respawn is willing to devote a sizable amount of development time to it in the future.

Caustic treatment plant on Kings CanyonTo date, Mixtape has only used maps created for other modes such as this one. Image via Respawn Entertainment

World director Ed Agostini walked us through the new Thunderdome map at a recent press event, paying tribute to a classic game Top location despite the new gaming experience it brings. “It is a floating, modular stadium that pays homage to Kings Canyon, the original site of the Apex Games,” Agostini explains. The homage is evident from a quick glance at the map’s features—recognizable landmarks drawn from Skull Town to Repulsor are scattered throughout.

The game show component is played more than ever. Bright neon signs dot Thunderdome venues, with legends competing “in front of a live audience for glory and fame,” according to Agostini.

As this is Mixtape’s first custom created map, Thunderdome has also been designed to accommodate all of Mixtape’s modes. Instead of places like Caustic Treatment or Barometer having to be molded and tweaked to fit the needs of Control or Team Deathmatch, Thunderdome was built to be the perfect proving ground for everything Mixtape has to offer.

“We hope to see players form strategies as they learn the map and develop different techniques for every mode they play,” said Agostini.

While the addition of Thunderdome may not be as significant as the legendary upgrade system or the upcoming overhaul in ranked, it does reiterate the Revival focus outlined elsewhere in the presentation; developers want Apex Legends is easier than ever to get involved in 2024. Mixtape playlists are a perfect avenue to introduce new players to the game who might be daunted by the battle royale component. Put a little extra love into it with some completely unique content as a natural next step.

Mixtape’s new Thunderdome map is coming Apex Legends with the release of season 20, Breakout, on Tuesday, February 13.