Epic Games’ multiplayer online battle arena Paragon enters open beta today, letting anyone and everyone join the fray. Built from the ground up, Paragon is a third-person action MOBA that pits a team of five players against an opposing team on a large-scale map. Players must work with their team to outmaneuver and outplay their opponents, making their way through the map destroying enemy structures, eventually making their way to the enemy base.
Paragon was first revealed during the 2015 PlayStation Experience keynote. The game has been in early access for the PS4 and PC since March 18. Since then, it has undergone several stress tests open to the public and closed testers to see how the servers and the game would perform when it officially launches.
Paragon was designed to work as efficiently on consoles as PC, where MOBAs are commonly played. Epic Games Executive Producer John Wasilczyk said the team was given the opportunity to “make anything” allowing them to sculpt the game with third-person shooting in mind.
One of the big differences Paragon has over competing MOBAs is the card system that replaces traditional item purchases in the game. Created with the intention of simplifying the game for newcomers while also offering unique strategic options, players assemble a deck of cards for each character, which they will select before entering a game. Throughout the match, players will earn credits known as Amber through either killing enemy players, taking objectives, slaying neutral jungle monsters or last hitting minions. They will then have the option to buy cards using the Amber they’ve earned to fill one of six card slots.
Paragon is expected to launch late-2016, complete with a retail version of the game called the Essentials Edition, which comes with over $160 value of in-game goodies. Although the game will be free to play, players can get a leg up on the competition with the Founder’s Pack, Challenger Packs and Master Packs, each containing cosmetic items, boosts, and additional upgrades.