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Paragon: Early Access First Impressions

A refreshing take on a MOBA that looks and plays great. Paragon will hopefully do well when a full release is announced.

I’m pretty excited about Epic Games and their new releases. Especially Paragon, their new third person MOBA that's built on the new Unreal Engine. Paragon is still in pre-alpha, but it's pretty impressive. After playing through it in these initial stages, here are some of my thoughts.

The Graphics

Paragon is built on the Unreal Engine -- an open engine with decades of development behind it and huge following of developers. So needless to say, the game flat out looks good. The detail on the characters is fresh and follows the environment well. The environment looks great. The road you follow in each lane is done well, with notable attention to detail. The foliage, minions, surrounding buildings, and towers all show how much work the devs put into the game. I have a feeling that gameplay and graphics were equally important to the devs, and it really shows.

But to get the full effect, you'll have to have the power to support it. At the end of this article, you'll find a list provided by Epic that offers recommended specs and AVG FPS per piece of hardware.

Gameplay

Like your usual MOBA, there are lanes with towers that need to be defended and destroyed. You wait for the creeps to come, and then follow suit behind. But instead of a top-down view, you are in a third person view behind your champion. This is where things start to get interesting. This game isn't one where you can simply click your ability and you hit. You have to try and aim if you want to hit anything. There is a different set of skills needed. Think of it this way -- add The Division to Dota 2 and you have Paragon, in the simplest form.

Some of the champions use guns at range, others cast magic, and others are up close and personal. It doesn't matter which champion you use, because they all require some kind of skill in aiming and moving to avoid getting blown to pieces.

After you have chosen a champion, you need to choose your skills and your cards. Like Dota or LoL you choose equipment, but instead of actual equipment you have cards. These cards can be upgraded and will either be passive or activated as you play. As you kill creeps and players during the match, you get points that can be put towards upgrading cards or buying new ones. 

As with other MOBAs, you get to level up skills, which are activated by Q, Right Click, Left Click, E, and R. You also level by yourself, instead of as a team like in Heroes of the Storm.

All the champions are fun and each one have their own unique style.  Getting used to each champion is a challenge, but once you find one you like, try leveling that one up and sticking with it, so you can adapt to the play style. 

Content

As of now there is only one map with three lanes.  The main objective is to destroy the opponent’s core.  You can jungle a little, but be careful -- this will leave your lanes open and make you vulnerable to attacks from behind. 

As of now, this game is doing great for being in Early Access. The controls are smooth, everything looks great, and there is a decent player base to keep games going. There are some balance issues that need to be handled as your team levels and with certain heroes, particularly with TwinBlast and Rampage.

Overall I give this a B+ for being early access. Sign up for the beta here or purchase here for early access.

TwinBlast with Skill Tree

Recommended specs:

  • Nvidia GTX 660 or AMD Radeon HD 7870 equivalent DX11 GPU
  • 2 GByte VRAM
  • Core i5 2.8 Ghz
  • 8 GByte RAM
  • Windows 7/8/10 64-bit

Minimum spec:

  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 460 or AMD Radeon HD 6870 equivalent DX11 GPU
  • 1 GByte VRAM
  • Core i5 2.5 Ghz
  • 4 GByte RAM
  • Windows 7/8/10 64-bit

Epic Resolution

GPU

Avg FPS

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti

87

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980

85

NVIDIA GeForce GTX TITAN X

75

AMD Radeon (TM) R9 Fury Series

61

  

High Resolution

GPU

Avg FPS

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970

86

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Ti

79

NVIDIA GeForce GTX TITAN

73

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980M

71

AMD Radeon (TM) R9 390 Series

68

 

Medium Resolution

GPU

Avg FPS

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780

89

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 770

81

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680

78

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960

76

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M

71

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 690

70

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 Ti OEM

69

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670

68

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760

67

AMD Radeon R9 200 / HD 7900 Series

66

ASUS R9 280 Series

64

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950

64

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 Ti

62

AMD Radeon R9 200 Series

62

AMD Radeon (TM) R9 380 Series

60

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 965M

60

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 880M

59

AMD Radeon HD 7900 Series

57

 

Low Resolution

GPU

Avg FPS

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660

80

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 (192-bit)

80

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 570

76

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 Ti

75

AMD Radeon (TM) R7 370 Series

75

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750

70

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580

65

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560 Ti

63

AMD Radeon HD 7800 Series

62

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 470

61

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 650 Ti

60

AMD Radeon (TM) R9 200 Series

58

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560

57

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 770M

57

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680M

56

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960M

55

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950M

54

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 765M

52

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 860M

51

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 870M

50

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 650 Ti BOOST

49

AMD Radeon HD 7700 Series

49

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460

48

AMD Radeon R7 200 Series

45

AMD Radeon HD 5800 Series

45

AMD Radeon HD 6900 Series

45

AMD Radeon R9 M370X

44

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 850M

42

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 675M

42

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 650

42

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 745

41

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 550 Ti

41

AMD Radeon HD 6800 Series

39

NVIDIA GeForce GT 755M

38

AMD Radeon HD 6700 Series

38

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660M

37

NVIDIA GeForce GTS 450

36

NVIDIA GeForce GT 750M

35

NVIDIA GeForce GT 720

34

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760M

32

AMD Radeon HD 5700 Series

32

NVIDIA GeForce GT 640

31

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 560M

30

NVIDIA GeForce 940M

29

NVIDIA GeForce GT 730

29

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780M

28

NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M

28

AMD Radeon HD 7500 Series

27

NVIDIA GeForce 840M

27

NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M

23

Intel(R) HD Graphics 4600

23

AMD Radeon HD 6670

19

NVIDIA GeForce GT 745M

19

NVIDIA GeForce 820M

18

Intel(R) HD Graphics 4000

18

NVIDIA GeForce GT 630

18

NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M

17

Intel(R) HD Graphics 5500

15

NVIDIA GeForce GT 525M

14

Intel(R) HD Graphics Family

13

NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M

12 

Published Jun. 9th 2016

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