Free-to-play games are governed by their own laws - in order to make money on these "free" titles, developers fill them with a mass of optional micropayments. In Apex Legends distributed on the basis of this business model is similar, but developers from Respawn Entertainment clearly exaggerated, because the community has long complained about the high prices of cosmetic elements. In a recent AMA (Ask Me Anything) session on Reddit, Ryan K. Rigney, communications director for the American developer, explainedwhy you have to pay for skins in Apex so much.
Rigney admitted that pricing these things is difficult and the game designers are constantly considering changes in this aspect. Statements were also made that "content creation costs money" and that "the business needs to make a profit". The full statement reads as follows:
"As much as people think we can turn cosmetics out easily because our competition outputs content at a high rate, our team is much smaller and spends more time on our skins. The part of the equation people miss is the expense side of the people we have working on these things (...) It’s more expensive than people think in terms of number of people and hours because people don’t factor in tons of back and forth on concept, QA, ideation, creation, etc. As mentioned, we think about this constantly and it’s tough because we want Apex to be around for a loooooong time. (...) There’s a lot players want from the Apex Universe, there’s a lot we want to give, but we can’t do that unless we’re a healthy business at the end of the day. (...) Knowing not everyone can pay these prices, that’s why the Prize track system was created so that we can give away pretty high value rewards for just playing." (via Dexerto).
Though lengthy and rather understandable, Rigney's explanation met with mixed reception from players. Some have outright admitted that such answer is no answer at all. It's hardly surprising to see such a reaction when we know that Electronic Arts, the publisher of Apex Legends makes a lot of money on microtransactions and online services. Considering that at the start of Season 9 - and despite the problems with the servers - a record-breaking 314,000 users played the game on Steam alone, and you have to pay1800 Apex Coins, which corresponds to 18 dollars (in reality 20) for a single premium skin, it's impossible not to admit that those who complain are right.