No Apex Legends Mastiff Nerf Because Who Needs Balance

Apex Legends Season 8 is less than a day away and it’s bringing a number of big changes to the game. Along with the explosive-loving Fuse, this season will introduce large alterations to the northern part of the Kings Canyon map. Along with this, various legends, weapons, and Hop-Ups received tweaks or were outright removed from the loot pool. While there was a ton of speculation surrounding the Season 8 patch notes, many hoped that certain weapons would receive nerfs due to their absolute oppressiveness.

The key offender in question is the Mastiff. Formally a Supply Drop weapon, the Mastiff was reintroduced into the normal loot pool a couple of seasons ago. Since then it has been one of the strongest guns in the entire game. This is due to the unique spread pattern of the pellets when you fire the Mastiff while aiming down the sights. Instead of just a normal shotgun spread, the pellets release in a figure-eight pattern. This makes it extremely dangerous since you can deal an absurd amount of damage by just hitting an enemy in the chest.

Despite receiving a very minor nerf earlier in Season 7, the Mastiff is still a must-have weapon for both casuals and pros alike. It’s a gun that almost everyone has to run, as no other close-range weapon even comes close to being this much of a powerhouse. This makes the Season 8 patch notes so deflating since the Mastiff didn’t receive a single change or get stuffed back into the Supply Drop where it belongs. Below are the only weapon changes coming at the start of Season 8:

Fully Kitted Rotation

  • Removed: Wingman, Sentinel, Havoc, G7, Alternator
  • Added: R-301, 30-30 Repeater, Mozambique, Longbow DMR, Spitfire


  • We are removing the Gold Barrel from the loot pool

Hop Ups

  • The Double Tap hop up will be removed from the loot pool
  • The Anvil Rounds hop up will be added into the loot pool


  • Bullet damage decreased from 16 to 15


  • Bullet damage increased from 15 to 16


  • Bullet damage increased from 18 to 19
  • Reload speed increased from 2.8 seconds to 3.2
  • Empty Reload speed increased from 3.33 seconds to 3.8


  • Fire rate increased from 2.0 to 2.1

Instead, the EVA-8, a shotgun solely used by sadomasochists and people who hate metas, only received a minor buff to its fire rate. But it’s really not much of a buff because the Double Tap Hop-Up is getting vaulted, reducing this gun’s burst damage potential. The Volt SMG and Alternator also received minor tweaks to their damage values, neither of which will be enough to impact the Mastiff’s stranglehold over the game.

Look, I get that it’s easy to say “get good” and learn to play around the Mastiff. Players should absolutely take time to adapt to dealing with this weapon in close-range fights. You really won’t have the luxury of ignoring it. But one weapon shouldn’t define a player’s entire loadout. The Mastiff is simply too strong in its current form regardless of what rank you are or what legend you’re using. Players shouldn’t need to worry about getting a Mastiff when they land or having to only deal with this weapon when you close the gap. Even though I don’t expect this gun to get tweaked until at least the middle of Season 8, I am deeply hoping Respawn is willing to acknowledge and address just how unhealthy the Mastiff is.