Apex Legends is one of quite a few Battle Royales that has a major focus on in-game cosmetics for monetization. Just like Fortnite skins, you can pick up Apex Legends cosmetics to show off in-game. The title is a little behind the competition when it comes to embracing esports in its cosmetics though. Some recent information has been made public that might shed some light on why. Apex skin revenue sharing seems to be a real area of contention for teams and EA.
Apex Legends Esports Skin Revenue Sharing Wasn’t on the Table
Lots of games like get competitive players and brands into the game themselves. There are titles like Fortnite that design entire characters after popular streamers. Overwatch has skins representing teams. Apex Legends has been a bit slower with all that though.
It seems a reason behind that, and possibly some slowing down of orgs in Apex also, is that publishers EA are slow with funding and sharing revenue.
EA and Respawn decided to offer teams a flat fee for their skins appearing in Apex Legends, $60,00 for licensing. There would be no Apex skin revenue sharing, just a one-off fee. This is considerably below the kind of money a major org would bring in for similar efforts, and far below an actual sponsorship deal. Many of the teams who received the offer collectively rejected it.
The Counter Offer
They suggested that they needed Apex skin revenue sharing. This letter countering EA’s offer was signed by 14 of the 20s orgs in the discussions. 100 Thieves, Alliance, Cloud9, Complexity, DarkZero, FaZe Clan, Fnatic, G2 Esports, NAVI, NRG, Sentinels, Spacestation Gaming, Team Liquid, and TSM all signed. They instead suggested a 50/50 revenue split for the skins.
EA then replied with yet another offer, but still kept revenue sharing completely off of the table. It seems that EA has very little intention of sharing skin revenue with esports teams. This comes as there are increasing questions being asked about Respawn and EA’s commitment to Apex esports, and bugs in the ALGS are becoming a common problem. A lot of the ALGS’s issues are more long-standing than just bugs though, the problems with Apex skin revenue sharing demonstrate this just as clearly as problems in-game.