Since Respawn Entertainment released Apex Legends, battle royale fans have been abuzz about the game’s thoughtful communication options. With the press of a button, you can simply look at an object and tell your Apex teammates exactly what they need to know about their environment without needing a microphone at all. And now Fortnite’s got it too.

Early this morning, Epic Games launched Fortnite’s pirate-themed season 8, which includes map updates such as new locations, as well as another mode of transportation — volcano vents. Epic also teased players that there are a variety of secrets hiding in the update. So far, that’s all stuff that fans can expect from a new season. But the most surprising inclusion has got to be a brand-new feature that will look familiar to anyone who has played Apex Legends.

As showcased below by YouTuber TmarTn, you can now point at areas or objects of interest on the map and highlight them for teammates. Appropriately, the season 8 cinematic trailer has characters pointing to all sorts of things.

The ping system is going to be a god send in modes that require teamwork, obviously, but there’s still something surprising about the timing and speed of this new mechanic. Apex Legends hasn’t been out for that long, and it’s already influencing the competition.

Then again, Fortnite is largely here because Epic Games borrowed heavily from games like PUBG; the game has never been shy about its influences. Fortnite has managed to stay on top because it’s also a highly reactive game that gets new content at a pace no other developer has matched. What we’re seeing here is the natural progression of a living game — if there’s something the audience wants, why not give it to them right away?

It’ll be interesting to see how Respawn Entertainment reacts to this. Will Apex Legends also continue to evolve meaningfully enough that this turn of events won’t matter in the long run? Or will Fortnite consume all the competition?


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