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Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Third-party developer resurrects Paragon with help and permission from Epic Games

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WTF?! The success of Fortnite and Overwatch left a few similar games in their wake, which were subsequently pulled offline a few years ago after failing to gain traction. One of those projects is getting a second chance in a roundabout way with the help of Fortnite developer Epic Games.

Users surfing through Steam or the Epic Games Store for free-to-play shooters may be surprised to see Paragon reemerge. Developer Netmarble F&C is reviving the name to launch a new, very similar game this fall. It’s unclear how much its gameplay will follow or differ from the original.

For those who don’t remember, Epic Games released a free-to-play MOBA called Paragon in 2016 for PlayStation 4 and PC. Unlike the isometric camera angle League of Legends and DOTA use, Paragon employed a third-person perspective, not unlike Epic’s Gears of War series. The choice made Paragon seem at least superficially similar to hero shooters like Team Fortress 2 and Overwatch, the latter of which also launched in 2016.

As Overwatch grew, Paragon struggled until Epic shut down the game’s servers. Gearbox’s Battleborn and Boss Key’s Lawbreakers suffered similar fates around the same time. Fortnite’s domination in 2017 was the final nail in the coffin for such games.

However, when Epic took Paragon offline, it released all of that game’s assets to Unreal Engine developers for free. Since then, pieces of Paragon have emerged in other games.

Epic eventually let Netmarble use all of Paragon’s assets along with the logo and title “Paragon: The Overprime.” The game already has pages on Steam and Epic Games.

Overprime uses characters from the original Paragon, and its gameplay description sounds similar. It’s a free-to-play game where players pick a character from a selection of a few classes, then level up until they can reach and destroy the opposing side’s base. Over the last few months, only closed beta participants have been able to see how Overprime might stand out from other multiplayer action games.

Netmarble hasn’t revealed Overprime’s final public launch date but will hold a final beta test in November. Those interested can apply to participate by tweeting about the game per the directions on Netmarble’s website.

The system requirements for Overprime are relatively modest. It only needs 12GB of storage space and will run on an Intel UHD Graphics 750 at the low end. However, Netmarble recommends a GTX 1060 or RX 560 for better performance.

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