When Fortnite released its take on the ‘battle royale’ formula to the world, it blew up completely, fast becoming the most-played game on the planet.

Since then, other franchises like Call of Duty have attempted to emulate that success by releasing their own takes on the formula, but none of them have come close to matching Fortnite‘s astonishing player counts – until now.

Born from the ashes of what was to be Titanfall 3, developer Respawn Entertainment unleashed a surprise on us this week with the sudden release of Apex Legends, a free-to-play shooter that sees 60 players face off in teams of three to outlast the rest.

And boy have they hit the mark, with publisher EA revealing that 10 million players having tried the game in just 3 days – a mark that Fortnite took around 2 weeks to hit. Meanwhile, it’s also accrued 1 million concurrent players, making for a very promising start.

The title takes place in the same universe as the Titanfall series, and for now takes the place of what would have been the next direct sequel. Instead, we now get a Titan-less experience that bears more resemblance to the current crop of shooters than the well-received but commercially under-performing Titanfall and Titanfall 2.

The launch trailer for Apex Legends shows off a similar art style to Fortnite

“In 72 hours, over 10 million players have jumped into Apex Legends and we’ve breached 1 million concurrent players!” Respawn Entertainment’s Vince Zampella told fans in an EA blog post.

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“This has been a truly incredible journey. We tested and tweaked. We argued and agreed. We got to a point where we felt some magic. We knew it would be risky to take the franchise in this direction, to go free to play, and do a surprise launch. But we fell in love with Apex Legends and wanted, needed, other people to play it too.

“We hoped you’d love it as much as us, but never in our wildest dreams could we have expected the outpouring of support and positivity we’ve seen. From all of us at Respawn, thank you for giving us and Apex Legends a chance. Thank you for joining us on this journey. This is just the beginning! We have so much more in store for you this year.

“See you in the arena!”

Apex Legends is available now on the EA Origin storefront on PC, as well as Xbox One and PlayStation 4 – free to play. It features 8 classes to choose from, from the standard soldier class, to trackers, tanks, and even an ‘Interdimensional Skirmisher’ named Wraith.

Head to the official Apex Legends site to check it out.

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