The shooty third-person MOBA Paragon [official site] has entered its free open beta, taunting Overwatch and Smite loyalists to come see what all the fuss is about. It’s been in early access since March but has cast off the $20 entrance fee for now. Oh, there’s also a cinematic trailer with a man pumping you up and goading you to be aggressive, like a psychopathic future cheerleader. Be aggressive! Be! Be! Aggressive.
Paragon follows the rules of the genre closely, with a bit more gunplay. There are three lanes down which your team and their automated minions struggle, fighting off the enemy and destroying towers with a cast of heroes wielding different abilities and strengths – tanks, rangers, fighters, assassins, casters and support. There are 20 heroes right now with Epic heralding the arrival of a new one every three weeks. I like the character art for some of these folks, but can’t help but look at others and just see characters from other games. Robot ranger Grim.exe, for instance, is a particularly Bastion-like entity, right down to the little flying mascot, albeit only in appearance.
There’s also a card system which allows players to collect and equip sets of cards for each hero, determining what extra buffs you get going into the fight – extra critical damage, for example.
Pip, resident MOBA empress, played a bit of Epic’s foray into this scene back in February and while she had reservations about the limitations of the card system and the promise of cross-platform play between PC and PS4, she still had some fun with it. But you can join the open beta and see for yourself by heading to the official website.