NOWWA, the indie studio behind the upcoming third person hero shooter BulletVille, has made a rather strong accusation against Respawn Entertainment and EA. NOWWA has sent out a press release stating that Apex Legends’ newest character, Fuse, is a ripoff of BulletVille’s main character Hunter.
You can see the two in a side by side image above, and below are two more pictures showing the characters off:
Nicola Maglio, communication manager at NOWWA, points out several similarities between the two if they weren’t clear from the pictures above. This include the eyepatch, a skull belt, a mechanical arm, a moustache, “biker attire”, leg holsters and many others. Again you can see these similarities above. Added to the above there’s the matter of explosives. Both Hunter and Fuse use rocket launchers.
In terms of when these characters were made available to the public Fuse was only just unveiled as part of Apex Legends’ eighth season on 18th January 2021. Hunter, on the other hand, has been around for much longer. The press release sent out by NOWWA claims that Hunter has been public knowledge for years now.
To prove this we spoke to Yohami Zerpa, CEO and lead developer at NOWWA. The CEO points us to concept art published to Twitter on 7th May 2019, and a full 3D model (complete with 360 degree turnaround video) on 10th June 2019.
Aside from the above what’s even more interesting here is that EA has interacted with NOWWA directly in the past. Zerpa tells us that EA approached NOWWA in early 2020 as part of the EA Originals publishing program. Representatives from EA playtested BulletVille with NOWWA in October 2020.
We have requested comment from EA about this matter, but at the time of writing, have not received a reply just yet. We will update this story if / when that happens.