The TechJunkie mailbox has been bulging with Apex Legends questions of late thanks to our extensive coverage of this brilliant new game. One theme that keeps coming up is about lagging and performance. To answer some of the most common questions, I have put together this guide on what to do if Apex Legends keeps lagging.
First up, there is a difference between actual lag and game stuttering and it isn’t always easy to tell the difference. Lag is caused by latency on the network between your computer or console and the game server. It has many causes and many of them are out of your control.
Stuttering is more localized and will likely be something on a computer causing it. Stuttering is rare on consoles but not unheard of. Usually a reboot is enough to clear it on console whereas a PC may need more attention.
One test is to use voice comms in Apex Legends. If your game stutters and voice doesn’t, it could be your PC. If the game stutters and voice does the same or becomes broken up, it could be the network. Your approach should reflect what you experience.
The other test is to access the secret menu to see what data centers are pinging slowly.
- Open Apex Legends but don’t access the game.
- Wait 90 seconds, hit Esc and then Cancel.
- Select the new Data Centers menu option at the bottom of the screen.
- Select your data center to see if it is lagging or not.
- Select another and test it by playing a match.
If things improve, it was lag. If it doesn’t, chances are it’s either your internet connection or your PC.
Fixing lag in Apex Legends
If you suspect network issues may be causing Apex Legends to lag, there are some things you can do locally to try to fix it.
Check what else is using your network
If you share your property with others, log into your router to see who is connected and using bandwidth. You could ask too. If other people are using the internet, streaming music or a movie or playing their own games, it could be internal network congestion slowing things down. You will have to address that congestion in the best way you can.
Reboot your router and/or modem
If you don’t suspect others are using your network, a reboot of your router could work wonders. The same as rebooting a computer, a router reboot will empty the cache, reload the firmware and have everything running like new again. If you use a separate modem, reboot them both at the same time for maximum effect.
Check your network speed
Even though you may know how fast your connection is, there may be planned work or an outage affecting your headline speed. Perform a quick speed test here  to see if your download and upload speed reflect what you should be getting. If you’re not, follow up with your ISP.
Fixing stuttering in Apex Legends
If you think your problem is more about stuttering than network lag, there are things we can do there to help you along too.
Check background processes
One common cause of stuttering in games is having too many other things going on at the same time. If you’re using Windows, check Task Manager to see processor and RAM utilization. If they are high, order them by use with heaviest use at the top and close programs down. Obviously leave Apex Legends alone but if your browser is using up a lot of RAM, shut it down. If you have other programs using processor or RAM, close them and see if it makes a difference.
Check your game settings
Apex Legends does have modest requirements to run the game but you still have to meet them if you are to get the best out of it. Check your computer specs against the minimum requirements and make sure your hardware is up to the challenge. If you are borderline, check the graphics settings to lower the quality a little to see if it improves.
You could also switch between fullscreen and windowed mode to see if things improve. This can often make a difference to game performance.
If that fails, try turning down Anti-aliasing, Shadow Quality, Texture Quality and Virtual Sync. All of these have a processing overhead that could be causing the stuttering.
Update your graphics drivers
You should always run the latest graphics driver for your card as they are often optimized for new releases. Check for driver updates and install any new driver that is available. Reboot your computer and then retry.
Repair your installation
Finally, try a repair if all else fails. Origin has a game repair system built in and it’s worth trying a repair if nothing else has worked.
- Select Apex Legends from the Origin app.
- Select the cog icon under Play in the center.
- Select Repair.
The process will take a while but will repair any file or corruption issues it comes across. If nothing else has fixed game stuttering, that should!