Epic set Paragon assets free for Unreal Engine games

Parts of Epic’s third-person shooter MOBA Paragon will survive after the game shuts down in April. Epic today released thousands of Paragon’s character models, map props, textures, voiced lines, and more free for all Unreal Engine 4 games to use. If you’re prototyping or could use a few bits to spruce your game up, hey, have a dig. Epic say it cost them over $12,000,000 to make these assets, and I’d say it’s certainly better to re-use them to support and promote Unreal Engine than let them sink with the game. I suppose if you’re mourning Paragon’s impending death you could also create your own unofficial fan game, you funny little thing.

The initial Paragon asset blast includes 20 characters (with their models, textures, animations, effects, and dialogue, plus an animation Blueprint for one fella) along with over 1,500 environment assets created for two maps. Many of the characters look like weird 90s Image Comics castoffs, which limits how widely they can be used, but there is a lot of stuff that could be used for a lot of different games.

Epic say they plan to release more Paragon assets across spring and summer of 2018.

You can find all the assets on the Unreal Engine Marketplace. More instructions in this forum thread too. Epic do specify that these assets are only licensed for use in Unreal Engine 4-based games (which Epic takes a cut from, of course, if a game sells well). Open would be nicer, but I suppose I don’t begrudge them limiting this to their own engine when they’re blasting so much for free.

I’m always delighted to see more fancy free asset packs. Games built on these are extensions of the old modding spirit, using asset packs and public engines rather than Quake, Half-Life, or whatever the “everyone owns this” foundation game of the day was. They let people make games they otherwise wouldn’t be able to, and that’s great.

10 Comments

  1. BobbyDylan says:

    That’s nice.

  2. Neurotic says:

    12 *million*, holy space cow udders, that’s craaaazy! For bloody Paragon??

    • Premium User Badge

      Ninja Dodo says:

      Contrary to popular belief, making games is expensive. Crowdfunding (which often only represents partial budgets), indies and self-styled YouTube ‘experts’ have distorted perception of what it actually costs to make big games.

    • Excors says:

      link to zbrushcentral.com lists about 70 people on the Paragon character art team. Average artist salary is apparently around $75K, so that’s $5M/year just on salaries. Maybe double it when you add other costs (office space, equipment, admin staff, health insurance, etc). And that’s just for characters; environmental art is extra.

      It takes an awful lot of people to make a game look good enough that 95% of the potential audience won’t say “that’s like PS1 graphics, I’m not going to buy that no matter how great the gameplay is, when I could buy this other game that has great gameplay *and* great graphics for the same price”.

      • MegaTiny says:

        But it only takes one good art director to stop a main character from looking like Nathan Drake stole Han Solo’s evening wear.

  3. NuclearSword says:

    The strongest part (some would say the only good part) about Paragon was it’s art, so here’s hoping this move leads to some great things in the future. Games people actually want to play, hopefully. Though I suspect someone will just “pull a Fortnite”, make a Battle Royale with these characters, and instantly gain far more players than Paragon ever had :P It would be great if they dumped out assets from tech demos like Infiltrator too….

    Though I will admit, a part of me is a little bummed out because this just further muddles up whatever Epic Games’ current identity, as if Fortnite, Paragon, Battle Breakers, and “Unreal Tournament 20XX” aren’t already disjointed enough. Cohesive, they are not… not anymore. And now other people will be making games that look like Epic Games, y’know? I mean, there’s clearly interest in a move like this – it kinda makes you think why doesn’t Tim Sweeney just turn a chunk of the studio into an art house doing outsourcing for other people?

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