If you play Apex Legends or have ever spent more than a minute within earshot of someone who does, you probably know the Peacekeeper is just unfair and terrible and needs a nerf yesterday. Respawn did nerf the weapon early on by lowering its rechamber rate scaling, which helped. After some recent changes to projectiles, though, players are upset with the uber-shotgun again. This prompted the studio to hit the Peacekeeper with a much more substantial nerf.
Head's up, Legends. We've just pushed a balance adjustment to the peacekeeper that does the following:
🔹Increased rechamber time: 1.1 -> 1.2
🔹Decreased head shot multiplier: 1.5 -> 1.25 pic.twitter.com/HsljjPZ4JC
— Apex Legends (@PlayApex) November 22, 2019
This lowers the weapon’s effectiveness in general, but it also takes away its only edge: its headshot burst. With a maximum headshot damage of 132 – down from 165 – the Peacekeeper can no longer 1-shot players with white armor. Nevertheless, the Apex Legends community’s immediate reaction was to denounce the nerf. Within minutes, the top-liked comment on the announcement was community figure Lucas “Mendo” Håkansson calling it “nowhere near enough.”
Now, that reaction doesn’t really mean much. Responses were pouring in before anyone had given the nerfed Peacekeeper a try. And Mendo can get likes for saying basically anything. Still, it is useful to revisit the subject of why exactly the Peacekeeper is so feared and maligned.
Burst damage monster
The Peacekeeper fires very slowly, and it has the lowest DPS in the shotgun class. However, it hits like a truck, with a maximum damage of 110 with bodyshots, and 165 with headshots – until now, anyway. Frankly, it doesn’t matter how slowly it fires. A competent player could eliminate the wait between shots by dancing effectively or using cover. Plus, if you didn’t see the first shot coming and you only have basic armor, you aren’t really getting a second chance. In effect, the Peacekeeper could be aggravating for players struggling with the lack of counterplay.
This latest nerf seems like the right change, as it declaws the Peacekeeper while preserving its role in the Apex Legends meta. The rechamber rate reduction is nice, but the real benefit is that the shotgun will never mow you down instantly. That is, unless you have no armor whatsoever – and if you’re fighting without armor, the problem isn’t really with the Peacekeeper.
For the sake of the argument, let’s say that Mendo is right and this nerf is still not enough. What would be enough to fix a weapon that has limited range, low DPS, and unpredictable damage output? The only thing the Peacekeeper has going for itself is its point-blank burst, which is less effective now. Take that away completely and the weapon stops having any reason to exist. Which begs the question, did Apex Legends need the Peacekeeper to exist in the first place if it makes people unhappy by its sheer design? That’s something for players to figure out for themselves.