On November 23, 2016 Thanksgiving came a day early for the Community of Paragon. Epic Games treated us to their most cranberry jammed, stuffing filled turkey of an article with their Monolith Update. On December 6th Agora as we know it will change forever. The bullet points for the Monolith Update are as follows:
- Smaller Map
- Faster action based gameplay
- Every Hero gets updated
At first glance this looks and sounds amazing but if you were to glance through the comments on the forum posts you’ll see a community concerned and questioning the direction of Paragon. As I see it now Paragon is a slow crawl strategy based MOBA. I prefer and enjoy this pace immensely.
Back in Action?
Epic Games is promising “faster movement speed, ability and attack execution speed, and overall game lethality.” Last time I checked Paragon wasn’t titled Call of Duty: Advance Agora.
From Here to Where?
Monolith will deliver a smaller map compared to Legacy. And with the smaller map our movement speeds will be increased. This doesn’t make sense to me at all. Epic Games has minimized the arena and made our Heroes faster for the sake of what? They’re claiming “Once mastered, the new, faster move speeds will prove easier for players to understand in terms of which engagement ranges are safe and which are likely to land them with a free trip back to their core.” Isn’t that what Legacy provides now? I think so. I can understand faster movement speeds in a map the size of Legacy. It would allow for faster lane defense and reaction times to enemy lane pushes. But with the smaller map of Monolith I fear the increased movement speeds will allow Khaimera, Khallari, Kwang, Greystone and Countess to reign even more supreme. Yay! My dreams have come true. (Read with thick heavy sarcasm, like a whipped cream for your pumpkin pie but not sweet at all.)
Do the Math!
The “IT’S JUST MATH” and “DAMAGE CONTROL” sections of Epic Games Monolith Update is stating that they’ve “changed the way damage, armor, health, and mana work.” They’ve changed it so much that they can’t discuss it in this update and that they will detail all variances in future updates. The way I see Paragon now is that for the most part damage, armor, health and mana are pretty well-balanced. Sure a few Heroes need to be nerfed and other Heroes could use a buff or two but nothing as major as complete Hero updates.
Epic Games is also simplifying damage as they’ve removed “Physical” and “Energy” and replaced this tried and true concept with “a unified “Power” stat to increase their (your Hero) basic attacks or their abilities.” What was wrong with “Physical” and “Energy”? Nothing. As it stands now Paragon is pretty close to perfect in my opinion. Everything makes sense in this complex strategic game.
Rest In Peace not RIP IN PEACE CDR
The Cool Down Reduction mechanic in Paragon was glorious, strategic and allowed for timed precision execution of your combos. By reducing the reduction you’ve increased our functions while we push lanes and engage in junctions with heavy battle combustion. I wrote that last sentence because I had a “School House Rocks” moment. But seriously, why does Gadgets Sticky Mine time need to be reduced by half? It doesn’t. Or what about Iggy & Scorch? They don’t need a reduction on their already over used and abused Flame Turret. And I’m sure all the try hard one finger gamers out their need a faster Unleash for Khaimera. I can’t wait to feel what Ned Beatty felt in the movie Deliverance.
Mana Makes a Comeback?
Last time I checked Mana was still out touring and continuing to be the successful Mexican Rock band. So I’m not sure what Epic Games is saying here.
The current mechanic with Mana is well-balanced and adds to the strategy and complexity of Paragon as it currently runs. Epic Games is stating that “abilities with faster cooldowns will now be gated more by mana than usage of time.” Isn’t this how it currently is? Heroes use up their mana and then return to their core to replenish. We either build a support build or we build an ability build. Nothing changes here as far as I can tell.
It isn’t about You, it’s about Me
Then the Monolith Update sections “BUT WHAT ABOUT MY MAIN?” all I read is “Blah, blah, blah!” Epic Games has “rebalanced every Hero in the game with an eye toward both faster speeds and faster kill times.” Insert Michael Scott from The Office yelling “NO! GOD NO!” Kill times as they stand right now are perfectly fine. I don’t want a faster game I want the complex strategy game that Paragon is now. I want to play Chess, not Checkers. Paragon is about the objectives. About strategy. Not about faster kills.
Heroes in the Mist
Monolith is promising the removal of the Shadow Pads and the inclusion of Fog Walls. I think this is a great addition. It makes going into the Jungle even scarier than it already is.
Legacy will be Legend
Epic Games has been very straight forward and open with how they’re continually updating, changing and fixing Paragon but what I fear is that they have their heads in the clouds with the Monolith Update. Paragon was my introduction to MOBA’s and I don’t want it to change. I’ve watched streams on Twitch of DOTA2 and League of Legends and those type of MOBA’s just don’t do it for me. It’s as though Epic Games is trying to lure in the community of these other games. And by doing so they’re alienating their die-hard loyalists. Is Monolith a cash grab? I would hope not. I’ve currently spent close to $200 on Paragon and it’s a free game. I can’t say that I won’t spend more money but I’m going to be hesitant when Monolith comes out. I would like to think that the rest of the community has spent their hard earned money on Paragon because they love it just as much as I do. I thought November 8th was stressful and tension filled but December 6th is shaping up to be just as stressful and tension filled. I hope that Epic Games doesn’t ruin Paragon. Only time and match after match will tell. I hope that our Heroes won’t have to protest in the lanes of Agora. If Monolith doesn’t deliver Epic Games next free Hero better have an ultimate title “Make Agora Great Again!”