Why you should be playing “Paladins” instead of “Overwatch”

When Blizzard’s “Overwatch” hit the market in May 2016, it became successful overnight. With interesting heroes, engaging game modes and a large player base, “Overwatch” had a lot of promise at release. In the three years since then, the game looks almost the same as it did in 2016, with the addition of some new heroes and a few new maps. It still has a vibrant player base, but if you have ever had a long losing streak in ranked matches due to disorganized teams, the game might be feeling a little stale.

If you enjoy “Overwatch” but are in the mood for something that rewards you for personal skill instead of team play, consider playing Hi-Rez Studios’ “Paladins.” The game is a team based shooter, like “Overwatch,” and also features a number of playable heroes that you use to win pvp matches.

Yet unlike “Overwatch,” “Paladins” allows for more customization of these heroes and how you play them. Each hero has a set of cards that augment their abilities letting your Fernando (similar to “Overwatch’s” Reinhardt) be different than another player’s Fernando.

In addition to cards, at the beginning of every match you get to choose one of four overall buffs that further enhance the hero and as the match goes on, you earn points based on how well you play and are able to spend these points on more buffs that you can choose as the situation calls for it. For example, if the enemy team has a lot of shields, your damage dealers can purchase damage boosters that will tear through shields. Or if instead they have a great healer, you can purchase a debuff that reduces the effectiveness of enemy heals.

One difference in this game that “Overwatch” players might have trouble with  is that once you choose a hero, you have to play that hero until the end of the match. This forces players to better cooperate with each other because if a team has all damage dealers, they can’t swap them out when the match starts to go south.

Ranking is also done differently. Winning is not as crucial to a high score as skilled game play is. Though winning does give a significant boost to leveling up, if you get stuck on an awful team but do the most damage, heals, tanking or anything else, the game will reward you accordingly, making sure your efforts are not wasted.

If you’re looking for something new to play this semester, I recommend giving “Paladins” a try. It’s a great game to play in between homework and it is free to play so you can try it out before you put any money down.