Caustic has taken a hit from the patches in the last five months, but rumors of Apex Legends' toxic trapper getting a massive buff have surfaced after Respawn realized how hard the match statistics tanked.
While his win rate hardly fell from 5.1% to 5%, Caustic's pick rate plummeted to 2.6% from 6.5% after the end of Season 8. His close-range potential was essentially mowed over by the toxic gas nerfs in recent updates, removing one of the biggest reasons Caustic is played.
Apex Legends' Public Service Announcement For Caustic's Toxic Resurge
One of the first signs of a buff that Respawn revealed came by means of a Reddit post comment by Lead Game Designer for Apex Legends, Daniel Z Klein, stating how they noticed that Caustic's gas lacked a fear factor. They wanted to ensure that players bolted away from the toxic traps.
"We're thinking about what to do with him," supports a decent change, and after explaining how hard the play rate tanked, this change points to a significant buff. Klein stated that "only Caustic mains stuck around after the nerf," explaining the dip in the trapper's pick rate.
Unfortunately, Respawn hasn't given players much information on how they plan to buff the Apex Legends trapper, but the options are limited given the line by Daniel Klein: "The goal is that people should be terrified of your gas and try to leave ASAP." While boosting trap damage is an easy fix, this has a low chance of happening due to how Caustic can tear through teams with sheer power when Respawn let him run unchecked.
A general gameplay change could come with a buff, focusing on non-damage outputs in the game. Caustic's presence will likely force other players to have a deeper respect, and he may be able to zone more effectively, creating bottleneck situations with proper trap placement. Apex Legends is a fast-moving game, so giving Caustic the chance to slow the pace and manipulate the battlefield isn't hard to picture.
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The damage nerf in Season 8 of Apex Legends scared players who kept Caustic as a backpocket pick. This dip in his power leaves a massive vacuum for Respawn to pump a buff into, so players can expect a "terrifying" update for Caustic. It's on its way, and the designers are hinting at such a change as if they've made the decision already.