01 Sep 2021 1:42 PM +00:00

NICKMERCS, ImperialHal, and Other Apex Legends Pros React to Tap Strafing Removal

Apex Legends players have been reacting to the removal of tap strafing from the game, a move which will put mouse and keyboard players at a severe disadvantage from Season 11 onwards. Tap strafing will be removed in the next patch, so keep your eyes on the patch notes to see when the skill is cut for good.

Tap strafing is a vital part of high-level Apex Legends gameplay. For PC players who are Apex Predators or compete in the Apex Legends Global Series, the movement mechanic is crucial for making yourself more difficult to track and getting out of sticky situations.

If you've never heard of tap strafing, don't feel bad. If you play on console or use a controller on your PC, you won't even be able to do it. To put it in simple terms, the technique involves turning quickly in mid-air and spamming the 'w' key (or binding move forward to your mouse wheel), which allows you to turn as much as 180 degrees without losing momentum.

For a more comprehensive guide, check out this video by Hector 'Dazs' Felix. While the guide is useless now that tap strafing has been removed, it gives you a great idea of what the technique can achieve:

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The advanced technique gives mouse and keyboard players a distinct advantage when it comes to movement, but that is mitigated by the aim assist controllers receive.

Many pro players and top streamers are annoyed at the change, and have taken to social media to voice their grievances. Lots of players point out that Respawn's reasoning that it "lacks readability/counterplay" is hypocritical after the introduction of Seer just weeks ago, whose passive offers more information than any other Legend's full roster of abilities.

TSM player Philip 'ImperialHal' Dosen offered a sarcastic quip in relation to the news, saying on Twitter: "Another skilled Mechanic removed from the game again to favor the casuals why am i not surprised ! [sic]"

Timmy 'IiTzTimmy' An, who recently solo queued from Bronze rank all the way to Apex Predator in one stream and is one of the best tap strafers in the game, started a hashtag to "Save Tap Strafing," along with a clip of his best strafing moments.

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Another pro player and iconic streamer, Shivam 'ShivFPS' Patel, pointed out that Respawn's priorities seem to be out of order. "Aimbotters and cheaters also lack readability/counterplay, and are exacerbated by speedhacks. But you still see me trying to kill them in ranked after 8 seasons straight."

Cheaters are rife in the Apex Legends ranked ladder, especially at the highest level. While there is no easy fix for the cheating issue, it needs attention and the best players are infuriated that movement mechanics are being removed before addressing aimbots and speedhacks.

One of the newest Apex Legends content creators on the block, NICKMERCS, plays with a controller so the changes won't impact his gameplay too much. But he still had a say on matters:

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We'll wait to see just how the changes affect players. With the ALGS Year 2 kicking off soon, we might see more players moving to controllers to make the most of aim assist.

However, a few movement mechanics still remain in the game, like bunny hopping and wall bouncing. If more are removed, however, we could see the best players move to other games.