If you have been following along with Apex Legends these last couple weeks, then you have no doubt laid eyes on the upcoming content in Season 15, dubbed Eclipse. The upcoming Broken Moon map has been reveals, as has Catalyst, Season 15’s new Legend. She’s a defensive powerhouse, and I mean powerhouse. Respawn Entertainment and Electronic Arts recently gave me an early demonstration of the character, and Catalyst’s kit looks like it has the potential to change the meta when it comes to fighting in and around buildings, as well as out in the open.
Change the battlefield, change the rules
Catalyst brings a number of excellent things to Apex Legends’ roster. She’s the roster’s first trans representative, and was conceived by the team as a sort of “techno witch” in functionality. Rebellious as a teen, she ran away to join work on terraforming the moon of Boreas. Unfortunately, the arrival of the Apex Games brought chaotic calamity to her otherwise peaceful life. Now she joins the Games as Catalyst to defend her home.
Catalyst is a Defense category Legend. Her kit is all about entry, movement, and vision denial and it comes from her special abilities involving ferrofluid. Using this metallic goo, Catalyst can cut off enemy entry or exit to buildings, or block their site and force them into risky plays. It all starts with her passive, Barricade. Activating this near a door allows Catalyst to reinforce the door (or build it back up if it’s been broken), as well as making it so only she and her teammates can open or close that door. Doors made or strengthened by Catalyst are twice as strong as a normal door and will require more time, effort, and resources to destroy. With this, you can cut off a lane of offense and force your enemies to operate elsewhere, lest they attract attention trying to get through.
Her Tactical is the ferrofluid equivalent of a spike strip. With Piercing Spikes, Catalyst can throw out a lane of ferrofluid which bubbles into sharp spikes. Enemies that try to cross are damaged and slowed by the trap. Meanwhile, Catalyst herself is immune to both her own and enemy spikes (attunement to ferrofluid has its benefits). She can further deny space and entry points to enemies, making them hurt themselves if they want to get to her through a spiked route.
Finally, Catalyst’s Dark Veil Ultimate looks like a showstopper, literally. With this one, Catalyst shoots out a line of ferrofluid and raises a wall of the goop. The wall blocks vision, including recon abilities like Bloodhound’s area scan and Seer’s nanobot dome. What’s more, if enemies pass through the wall, they will be slowed and partially blinded. Once again, Catalyst can force enemies on offense to make hugely risky plays if they want to remain aggressive.
Her place in the squad
Catalyst, top to bottom, looks like one of the best defensive options to come to Apex Legends yet. Everything about her kit is about denying movement, sight, and overall offense of enemies. There’s a good chance her weaknesses will come from patient enemies that are willing to wait out her abilities, but those who play aggressive offense will likely end up frustrated with Catalyst able to reinforce and block doors, screen another pathway, and then lay down spikes where she thinks enemies will move. Playing appropriate defense around Catalyst may present teams with the opportunity they need to turn the tables on weakened, blind, and slowed enemies while keeping their backs safe with reinforced doors.
With all of these tools at her disposal, Catalyst seems like she’s going to be a perfect pick for squads that like to take it slow and let their enemies make mistakes. Apex Legends Season 15 - Eclipse is set to launch with Catalyst, the Broken Moon map, and more at the beginning of November. With that in mind, stay tuned for further updates and coverage leading up to the new season’s release day.
These impressions are based on a hands-off demonstration by the publisher. Apex Legends Season 15 - Eclipse will be available on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, and PC on November 1, 2022.