It has been a few months since Respawn Entertainment announced cross-play support as an upcoming feature to Apex Legends, and at last, the highly requested feature is incoming to the battle royale on October 8. The implementation will be marked as a beta when it arrives next week, but all players across PC, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 are free to use it and will be enabled by default.
"Since the launch of Apex Legends, cross-play has been one of the most requested features from our players who want the ability to play with their friends on other platforms," said Apex Legends game director Chad Grenier. "During the cross-play beta, players will have full access to cross-play functionality while we collect data, test the feature at scale, and most importantly, listen to you, the fans, for feedback."
The new in-game friends menu can be utilized to squad up with players on other platforms, with in-game voice chat available for communications. Cross-progression is not a part of this update, though it may arrive with another update down the line.
As for how matchmaking works following this update, console players across Xbox One and PlayStation will now automatically match together, while the PC crowd will remain separate due to their mouse and keyboard advantages. Moreover, if it's a mixed squad with PC and console players, the squad will only matchmake in the PC servers. Cross-play can also be disabled entirely via an option in the settings menu, but the developer warned that queue times can get "very very long."
While the Apex Legends cross-play beta will only be available on PC via Origin (EA Desktop App), Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 for now, the upcoming Steam and Nintendo Switch versions of the battle royale will be gaining the feature as well. Alongside the cross-play update, Respawn is also bringing in the new limited-time mode Flashpoint to Apex Legends, with more details available here.