4 February sees the beginning of Season 4 of Apex Legends, the popular multiplayer game that was surprise launched on the same date in 2019 as a rival to Fortnite.
The game quickly revolutionised the Battle Royale genre with a grittier presentation that continues to appeal to a slightly older demographic of players.
But what does Season 4 bring to the game, and what do we know about the new Legend, described as a "walking nightmare of steel and vestigial flesh"?
The theme of this season is "Assimilation", and here's everything we know so far.
How has the map changed?
The biggest addition to the map is the Planet Harvester (Image: EA)
Much like Fortnite, a new season in Apex Legends usually brings with it some big change to the layout of the game's map.
Season 4 is no different, and some big new additions to the virtual playground make some large-scale changes to the way the game is played.
Jason McCord, Design Director on Apex Legends, explained that the main goal for a map update is "to get players to make new decisions."
Perhaps the biggest addition to the map is the Planet Harvester, a huge new machine in the centre of the play-space that's being used to gather precious metals from the core of the planet for reasons unknown.
It's large central beam is designed to be visible from the entire map, giving players "a better sense of directionality and understanding of the center of the map."
Not only is it an imposing structure, but once you're inside, its large, multi-level design is intended to encourage self-contained fights between squads.
Capitol City has been split in two, causing giant lava-filled faults to rupture (Image: EA)
The Harvester's arrival has also split Capitol City in two, causing giant lava-filled faults to rupture.
The division of one of Season 3's biggest points of interest was taken to allow "teams some breathing room to control one side after the drop, reducing the risk of running into 3rd parties from the other side of the city".
The large fissure can only be crossed in two locations, and the original design had players drop to their death if they had the misfortune of missing a jump, but "a fatal fall felt too punishing," " explained McCord,
Now if you jump into the fissure, you’ll slowly be carried back up and allowed to coast across and land on the other side.
This might sound kind on players, but you travel very slowly - in third person - while moving in the updraft; "you are essentially a flying loot pinata for any nearby enemy players."
Who is the new Legend?
Season 4 also introduces a new playable character to the game for players to get to grips with.
Each of Apex Legends' characters (known in the game as 'Legends') has a unique set of abilities, meaning each has pros and cons when working as part of a team.
While they all have the same basic skills, they also have special 'Ultimate' abilities which can really help out a team in a pinch in a number of ways.
Revenant is 'a walking nightmare of steel and vestigial flesh' (Image: EA)
While not much is known on just how Revenant might play when they become available in the game, developers Respawn did share a character bio on the PlayStation blog.
"Revenant used to be human," it begins. "He was the greatest hitman the Mercenary Syndicate ever had. He used to look in the mirror and see his human face looking back.
"But time changes everything, and when his programming finally failed, he saw what he had become at the hands of the Mercenary Syndicate and Hammond Robotics: a walking nightmare of steel and vestigial flesh.
"His masters resurrected him as a simulacrum, snatching him from death’s embrace again and again and programming him to forget.
"Centuries later, all he wants is revenge. Of course, he doesn’t mind eviscerating a few of the Legends along the way. He used to need a reason to kill… but he’s not that man anymore."
Are there any new weapons?
The Sentinal is a 'fast, accurate, and surgical' bolt-action sniper rifle (Image: EA)
A new weapon will be introduced in Season 4 in the form of the Sentinal, a bolt-action sniper rifle described as "fast (for a sniper), accurate, and surgical".
"The Sentinel lets you remove your enemies from the battlefield with cold-blooded accuracy," say Respawn.
"Ideal for medium-to-long range combat, the Sentinel is particularly devastating to shields. Consume a shield battery from your inventory to charge your shots for an extra, incisive punch.
"By the time your opponents figure out where you are, it will be too late."
How does the Battle Pass work?
If you’re familiar with Fortnite’s way of doing things, you’ll know how Apex Legends’ Battle Pass is going to work, as they’re essentially the same.
But for those who aren’t up to speed, players have the chance to level up through 100 tiers of the Battle Pass, each unlocking a new reward.
Buying the Pass is optional, and you’ll still have access to most of the new content brought along by the Battle Charge season and a handful of rewards, but you won’t be able to get your hands on the 100 other, premium in-game prizes.
Should you choose to opt into a Battle Pass later in the season, you’ll automatically unlock all the items you should have earned at your level.
When will Season 4 go live?
The fourth season of Apex Legends is expected to go live at 6pm GMT on Tuesday 4 February.
That date has special significance for the game, as it will mark one year since Apex Legend's was first unleashed onto the world.
This article originally appeared on iNews