During the PlayStation Experience press conference Epic Games debuted a cinematic trailer for their shooter/MOBA Paragon, then later released gameplay online.
Paragon isn’t necessarily a surprise. Epic Games’ announced their third-person shooter/MOBA at the beginning of November and have since released trailers introducing a handful of the game’s playable characters.
Today during Sony’s PlayStation Experience convention keynote Epic set out to give a proper grandstand introduction to their game. They debuted a big cinematic trailer for Paragon that definitely lived up to the Epic Games standard. However, there was still quite a bit of confusion regarding Paragon following the presentation.
The problem stemmed from just how unfamiliar many people seemed to be with Paragon. Epic focused on calling the game a MOBA over and over, which likely conjured images of League of Legends and Dota 2 in people’s minds. Having yet to show gameplay for Paragon likely only added confusion to the mix. Epic also didn’t mention that the cinematic trailer was made entirely in-engine, so viewers likely believed there was a disparity between what they were seeing and what the game actually would look like.
Post-show, Epic Games quickly solved all these issues. They noted that their beautiful cinematic trailer was entirely in-engine and they released a pre-alpha gameplay trailer showing the shooter at the heart of the MOBA. Additional details on the game were also shared on their website, as well as during a post-keynote interview on the PlayStation stream.
Without argument, Paragon is 100% MOBA. Epic Games doesn’t seem to be messing with the traditional format. The game’s map will feature 5 versus 5 multiplayer, a map with three lanes, a jungle, towers, base cores, and minions. Players will select a single character from a roster of unique personalities, each with their own set of what are essentially superpowers. What Paragon does differently is bring the camera down from the heavens, bringing the player close to the action.
Other MOBAs, including the upcoming Gigantic and also Gearbox’s Battleborn to a certain extent, are doing this third-person MOBA archetype as well. Epic Games is looking to add their own personal flavor to the experience, however. Their website states that they really want verticality to play a decisive role in Paragon, including different vertical tiers on the map which players can climb. There’s also a reference to a card and deck system in the game which adds strategic depth to Paragon. Epic will have to elaborate on that in 2016.
Obviously, it’s unfortunate that Epic didn’t have room for both the cinematic and gameplay trailers during the keynote, but since the game is likely launching late 2016, Epic still has plenty of time to tell gamers exactly what Paragon is and why it’s worth your attention. Heck, all it really takes is for a gamer to spend five minutes checking out the game’s website (which also has sign-ups for the beta live right now).
As a game, Paragon look absolutely gorgeous. Epic wouldn’t settle for less. But Paragon will be entering an already overly saturated market full of top-down MOBAs, third-person MOBAs, first-person MOBA’s, MOBA-likes, and even team arena games. Epic definitely has the pedigree to compete, but proving they’re more worthy of a player’s time than a dozen other impressive games is another matter entirely.
Paragon is currently planned for released on PlayStation 4 and PC in 2016. Paid early-access is planned for spring 2016, with an open beta to follow in summer of 2016.