Apex Legends maps: Kings Canyon's secrets revealed
October 18 2021
Legends, welcome to Kings Canyon. The original hunting grounds for the Apex Games, Kings Canyon is one of the three current battle royale maps in Apex Legends. It holds many lore tidbits and secrets, in addition to all the great spots to eliminate opponents at.
Kings Canyon was the only map in the game until World’s Edge was introduced in Season 3 and like all the other maps, it keeps evolving throughout the seasons. In this article, we’re going to take a look at Kings Canyon’s history, along with Kings Canyon’s zones and points of interest.
Being a huge island, Kings Canyon brings along a lot of questions. Like where is Kings Canyon? What is Kings Canyon? Wait, I’ll do you one better. Why is Kings Canyon? Is there a certain scary murderbot residing underneath its surface? Wait a minute, isn’t this place where Wraith arrived at the end of the Voidwalker animated short? These and many more questions keep me awake at night. So let’s start learning about Kings Canyon to navigate it better and find victory regardless of the zone we choose to drop in.
Kings Canyon, before everything changed for the worse. (Image: Respawn Entertainment)
What is Kings Canyon?
Kings Canyon is an island—in this dimension, mind you—located on the planet Solace. It’s known to be near Solace City, one of the biggest cities on the planet. Solace is the home planet of Gibraltar, Mirage, Revenant, and Wattson; which is why each of them has a history in or around Kings Canyon.
Kings Canyon used to be a simple settlement, dating back to the first expeditions to the Frontier. Gibraltar’s family settled on Solace around the time it was first colonized, for example. After nearly a century, IMC chose Solace as a hub for research and development. This suddenly made the planet very busy, increasing the traffic of people visiting. This hub included an airbase, a water treatment plant, and many other facilities that we now see in Kings Canyon. One of those facilities was built to research Phase Tech, leading to the creation of Wraith. While IMC conducted experiments on dangerous things like Phase Tech and Simulacrum armies, their investment in Solace made a big part of the planet’s population happy because of the job opportunities it brought.
Of course, IMC’s arrival on a planet meant also the arrival of many IMC soldiers. The soldiers stationed on Kings Canyon got bored at some point and decided to hold gladiator-like combat tournaments called the Thunderdome Games. Kuben Blisk is known to have built himself a reputation in this tournament. Thunderdome Games went on to have 123 seasons, only to be reinvented by the Mercenary Syndicate with Blisk as the commissioner. The new tournament, Apex Games, was named after Blisk’s mercenary group, Apex Predators.
I’d hate to be the one to clean that up. (Image: Respawn Entertainment)
When Kings Canyon was being rebuilt for the Apex Games, the Syndicate decided to leave the Thunderdome zone as it is, as a tribute to the tournament where everything began. But around Season 5, Loba Andrade accidentally triggered a chain explosion while trying to kill Revenant and caused the Thunderdome to collapse, along with fan-favorite Skulltown. Most of these zones have been excavated by the Syndicate.
Being a desolate island for many years, Kings Canyon had a variety of wildlife which posed a problem for the Apex Games. This issue was solved by installing the Repulsor Tower, which functioned as a repellant, emitting a sound that can only be heard by the wildlife creatures. Of course, this didn’t last long and Crypto made his entrance by detonating an EMP in the Repulsor Tower, disabling it. This caused the wildlife to wander into the hunting grounds, disrupting the Apex Games. After that, one of the fan-favorite dropping zones, the Cage, was built as a precaution against the wildlife. While the danger caused by wild creatures was averted, continued attacks caused the games to be temporarily moved to World’s Edge on planet Talos.
Points of Interest in Kings Canyon
Airbase - Loot Tier High
Airbase is located on the westernmost side of Kings Canyon. While it has a lot of opportunities for high ground and defensive combat, Airbase also has a lot of open space where you’ll be an easy target, especially during the endgame. Two big runways are separated by a chasm that has a zipline above it, which is likely to make you a ziplining duck for your opponents. A good spot to drop, but a bad zone to have low ground in the endgame.
Capacitor - Loot Tier Mid
IMC’s Archaeological RESearch Division has built this Capacitor, protected by steel walls on the south, east and north sides. Scattered around the zone are medium-sized buildings, which make combat very arduous. The best thing Capacitor zone offers is three Charge Buildings where you can charge up your ultimates and an Explosive Hold that can be opened by inserting an explosive into the login screen. Opening doors the old way.
Artillery - Loot Tier High
Artillery is located at the northernmost side of the map, along with the Crash Site. Artillery contains tall buildings that are mostly open on the sides, which creates strong flanking options, especially for Legends that can move vertically such as Valkyrie and Pathfinder. Most of the fighting is between high ground and low ground, so don’t underestimate your opponents. Through Artillery’s northern hangar, you can access the Crash Site.
Behind: Crash Site, burning. Front: Someone definitely not related to said incident. (Image: Respawn Entertainment)
Bunker - Loot Tier High
Ah, the Bunker. Every Caustic main’s favorite place. The Bunker is a tunnel located around the center of the map. It has three supply bins near the entrance of each side. Inside, there are multiple small rooms containing high-tier loot and endless opportunities for close combat. Legends that excel at fighting in tight spaces shine the most here. Caustic, Fuse… and that’s all of them. But seriously, you should always be careful while turning around the corners and entering rooms in the Bunker. Especially if the room contains an absurd amount of loot on the ground. That’s not loot, that’s a Caustic waiting for you to enter so that he can trap you and post the video on Reddit.
The Cage - Loot Tier Mid
The Cage, not to be confused with the legendary actor, is currently the tallest structure in Kings Canyon that you can navigate without going out of bounds. It’s basically a big tower, with several floors of loot and a terrace-like top floor where you can drop onto from the Dropship. The Cage is one of the most popular places to drop in Apex Legends, so remember to check your surroundings while dropping. Because you’ll likely have a lot of competition for the loot upon landing. The Cage is surrounded on the north and east sides with tunnel-like corridors, which also contain lots of ground loot. If you happen to find a Kraber during mid-game, the Cage is a great spot to position yourself to engage opponents from afar. But it can also easily become a death trap for you if you let opponents approach, or fail to leave the Cage before the Ring arrives.
Caustic Treatment - Loot Tier High
The place that used to be the Water Treatment Plant is now taken over by Caustic, hence the name. Caustic Treatment is another confined space where Caustic mains can work their magic but is generally not a popular drop point for players. Caustic Treatment contains cages that will yield high-tier loot when opened. You should be quick to grab them because, after a while, they get locked once again and release noxious gas. There is also a secret room that can be accessed only by Caustic and Wattson (due to the close relationship the two have) where you can learn that Caustic is aware that Victor Maldera is onto him. Caustic also mentions that he wants to expand his field experiments beyond the Apex Games and to Solace City itself.
Crash Site - Loot Tier High
The IMS Thermopylae, a ship that was a part of the fleet escorting the IMS Draconis to the site of the Fold Weapon in Titanfall 2, crashed on Kings Canyon. IMS Thermopylae was the ship that carried Viper, Valkyrie’s father, during the Frontier War where he clashed against Pilot Jack Cooper and lost.
The zone contains several ECHO outposts which contain high-tier loot. Especially after Season 8, Crash Site became a popular dropping zone due to its increased access to other points of the map. The crashed IMS Thermopylae itself also contains lots of loot if you choose to drop there.
Containment - Loot Tier Mid
The Creature Containment zone is located near the center of Kings Canyon, just north of the Bunker. It was created after the Repulsor Incident which caused wildlife to enter the arena. While containing (pun intended) mid-tier loot, Containment is a very popular spot for a lot of players, mostly due to the large amount of potential loot and easy access to a lot of the popular zones in Kings Canyon.
One thing you need to look out for when walking around the Containment zone is the creatures in cages. They make a lot of noise which can mislead you into counter-actions that will signal your position to opponents. You can shoot and kill them, but only if you want to carry murdering a caged, helpless beast on your conscience, you monster.
Map Room - Loot Tier High
Crypto’s Map Room was added to the game after he made his entrance by disabling the Repulsor with an EMP. Fittingly, Crypto’s Map room is placed near the Repulsor, right to the south of it. The Map Room has a unique function where you can scan the entire map for opponents, which they will also be alerted about. You can learn the current positions of all Legends on the map with this function, along with the building's screens showing the number of nearby Legends. The map scanner also shows you the Ring’s next location, saving you some trouble.
Crypto’s Map Room is a popular dropping zone, containing good loot and functions that could help you get to the endgame safely. It’s a round building with multiple floors, so be careful while scanning the area: scanning the entire map only to learn that your opponents are right behind you is not a fun surprise.
Containment Zone, waiting to trap you. (Image: Respawn Entertainment)
That One Town Between Bunker and Airbase - Loot Tier High
Also known as the High Desert, this town is quite popular especially if it’s in the final rounds of the Ring. With many short buildings scattered around, this town has two parts that are connected by a bridge. The buildings here are also small enough for you to utilize explosives and close combat Legends.
The higher part of the town also has a tower that’s very useful for recon and sniping opportunities, but it’s open enough to be bombarded easily. So use the tower for recon rather than camping there.
Hydro Dam - Loot Tier Basic
Hydro Dam works like a hub between popular drop spots. It contains basic tier loot but makes a good spot to retreat to after having a bad first fight. It connects the Cage, Singh Labs, Repulsor, and Swamps to each other and is a frequent place for the Supply Ship to dock. Honestly, your best chance of getting good loot out of Hydro Dam is having the Supply Ship there. Other than that, while it contains lots of supply bins and a Respawn Beacon, the Hydro Dam is not a place you’ll want to spend a lot of time.
The tunnel leading to the Dam from the Cage also has a lot of potential if you want to utilize close-combat abilities and Legends. While it’s a big structure itself, the tunnel contains a lot of tight spaces where you can trap your opponents or force them into difficult situations until you can position yourself.
The Relay - Loot Tier High
Located on the northeastern side of Kings Canyon, the Relay is currently broken and thus called the Broken Relay on the map. Overall, it’s not exactly connected to the rest of the map other than being close to the Rig, which is a trouble to navigate in itself. While having lots of good loot options, the Relay mostly sees action if the Ring chooses to close over it. Unless you find a particular G-Loot competition that works well there, I don’t recommend it.
Marketplace - Loot Tier Mid
Also known as the place where half the lobby dies, the Marketplace (named simply “Market” on the map) is one of the busiest zones in Kings Canyon. It doesn’t have a great loot variety, but the level design of this building just pulls you in for skirmishes. Located south of the central point of the map, Marketplace always has traffic due to its position. It has two floors, having multiple rooms on the second floor, and ground loot everywhere.
There are also 2 zip-lines that will bring you immediately to the roof of the building, where you’ll be shot down by opponents... probably. Be careful while navigating through the Marketplace, because chances are you’re not alone. Despite being a place where a lot of players die, Marketplace also doesn’t have a Respawn Beacon nearby, which makes it an even more dangerous spot to fight.
Octane’s Gauntlet - Loot Tier Mid
Welcome, amigos, to the Octane’s Gauntlet! The entire place is designed for maximum mobility, with built-in jump pads everywhere. There’s even a ring of fire in the middle that you can jump through, which contains at least an Epic tier loot. Since the overall loot quality is not very high in this zone, most people will immediately rush towards the ring of fire upon landing, and believe me, there will be a lot of people there.
Octane’s Gauntlet is one of the most popular landing zones in Apex Legends. It’s one of those zones where 10 teams land and one team gets out alive, increasing the chances of that one team a lot. A lot of people want to risk dying there for a chance to be the best. I’m sure Octane would be very proud.
Crypto’s Map Room, with a giant satellite that can scan the entire map. (Image: Respawn Entertainment)
Offshore Rig - Loot Tier High
The Rig is one of those zones that are not very popular and until you’re forced to go there, you’d rather not. It’s a complex place where getting the high ground might earn you the win or make you an open target, it's pretty much 50/50. It’s a high-tier loot zone but once again, being very far from the other points of interest, the Rig is not usually preferred by most people. The best thing you can do there is to loot the place and use the Jump Tower to move towards a more central area to find yourself a fight.
Reclaimed Forest - Loot Tier Mid
This is not a place marked on the map anymore, but I wanted to mention it because it’s the place where Wattson’s experiment failed, causing Wraith to save her life. Wattson used to call it the Glass Forest, because of the leaves being semi-transparent. After her failed experiment burned the forest down, it was aptly named the Shattered Forest and now it’s the Reclaimed Forest. It’s located between the Singh Labs and the Capacitor.
Repulsor - Loot Tier High
Repulsor was the structure keeping the wildlife of Kings Canyon at bay, after Crypto destroyed it with an EMP, it now lies broken. It’s located in the southeast region of Kings Canyon, between Hydro Dam and Crypto’s Map Room. Repulsor has multiple buildings and an open layout so again, spending much time there is not recommended.
Runoff - Loot Tier High
Runoff is located north of the Airbase, containing several tall buildings and zip-lines to navigate.
Runoff is also directly connected to the Pit and the Spotted Lake, which makes it a good landing spot if you want to spend time on the western side of Kings Canyon.
Singh Labs - Loot Tier High
This is where Amer Singh and his partner Renee Blasey used to conduct experiments. It has a prototype phase tunnel projecting up towards the sky, which is one of the most popular landing zones in the game. If the Dropship is near it, you’ll almost always see multiple teams heading for the phase tunnel’s entrance, which teleports you to the inner main room of the labs. The labs can also be accessed normally from ground level, so use that to your advantage. Whoever makes it out of the labs alive has a chance to be very much wounded due to fighting against multiple opponents recently.
The phase tunnel can also be accessed from the inside, which will once again teleport you back to the top spot where you’ll be gliding as if you just used a Jump Tower.
I’m not sure if Caustic is aware of OSHA regulations, or any regulations for that matter. (Image: Respawn Entertainment)
What to Look For in Kings Canyon
Kings Canyon has some unique mechanics such as the Supply Ship, which will also be moving when the match starts towards a predetermined location. You can land on the Supply Ship while it’s still moving. It contains mid to high-tier loot.
Another unique feature Kings Canyon has is the Loot Tick, which will make a unique robotic sound when you’re near it. You can shoot or punch it to break it for loot which will be mostly high-tier.
Flyers, as I mentioned, came into Kings Canyon after the Repulsor Tower was destroyed. They hold deathboxes with their talons, which will show the name of one of the players on your friend list. As with all deathboxes, you can determine the rarity of its content by its color. You might not want to shoot down a flyer for a blue (rare) loot, for example, at the cost of announcing your position to nearby opponents.
One last important feature in Kings Canyon is the Explosive Hold. They always spawn around the same spots (the Cage, Hydro Dam to name a couple) and can be opened by inserting an explosive on the door panel. They always contain good loot, including weapons with their ammo and high-tier attachments.
Spotted Lake is named after the spotted shapes the water took after being contaminated from the leaking fuel of the crashed ship. (Image: Respawn Entertainment)
Kings Canyon is a core place in Titanfall and Apex Legends lore. It’s where Wraith met Wattson. It’s where Revenant lives while not participating in the Apex Games. Well, he lives under the surface but he’s a Simulacrum so I don’t think he minds. He hates everything anyway.
Kings Canyon is where Kuben Blisk made himself a living Legend and now it’s your proving grounds. Thunderdome, Apex Games... Name of the game might change, but Apex Legends will be known and remembered throughout the galaxy for years to come. So get out there, compete in G-Loot competitions, and claim the victory with your knowledge of Kings Canyon.
See you on Kings Canyon, Legends.
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