Hello all, HiRezChris here. I’m the new Executive Producer for Paladins and was, until very recently, the Executive Producer of SMITE. My first month on the team has been busy to say the least!
I wanted to loop you guys into some changes that we are working to implement as fast as we can, based on your feedback.
I’ll talk first about Cards Unbound, then about Battlegrounds, and then about where we want to take Paladins in the future.
Let’s start first with the elephant in the room: Cards Unbound.
Looking solely at the metrics, the Cards Unbound system introduced in OB64 has actually been successful in increasing our overall player engagement and new user conversion, while at the same time helping increase our revenue per player.
However, we are not blind (although some of the recent MSPaint troll posts on the Paladins reddit have perhaps made us wish we were - lol).
We know this system has angered many of our most loyal fans and become a point of continuous contention in the Paladins community (and even inside of Hi-Rez). Your voice has been heard loud and clear.
Our team will be working over the next major release cycle to remove Cards Unbound from the game. We will be replacing it with a new system that I believe the community will be really excited about -- including the re-introduction of the deck building point system, and a method for obtaining cards that will be way less grindy.
We want the focal point of the card system in Paladins to be about fun ways to customize your champion to your favored playstyle. We also want to unify the COMPETITIVE and CASUAL experiences with the card system so that we use the same system for both (no more separation of bound vs unbound).
We are still working out the details of the new system, but the rough outline of our current thinking is as follows (NOTE: Subject to some change, but hopefully this communicates the general direction we want to head):
The release plan is to start testing this new system as soon as we can on PTS (hopefully, next week). Your analysis and participation will be very important over the next few weeks as we work the kinks out of this design and deliver the best possible product to you in the next update.
Thank you so much to everyone that has been helping us test Battlegrounds over the last few weeks -- first on our public test server, then starting yesterday in a larger scale Alpha running in the main game client.
The job our team has done on this mode in such a short time is incredible -- and I first want to give a huge shout out to our employees that have really rallied around and embraced this new way to play Paladins under seemingly impossible deadlines.
After seeing the results of our recent external testing and some exciting internal tests of additional changes to the mode, we’ve decided to make a few big changes in regards to Battlegrounds:
Why make this change?
In short -- we think that the things that are necessary to make Paladins Battlegrounds great and amazing are in conflict with the things that will make the OG version of Paladins that we all know and love great. Right now, we are in a spot where the changes we need to make to each mode are in conflict with what the other mode needs. We think that having separate teams focus on separate games will produce a greater result. We also don’t want users to be confused about what Paladins is and should be: Paladins should be the best damn hero shooter ever made -- and we want the Paladins team focused on that goal. We’ll aim to do the same with the Battle Royale game and the team working on that.
If you missed the patch notes show earlier this week in which I introduced myself, let me reiterate our goals for Paladins in 2018:
We made great strides with SMITE over the years while I was on that team focusing on these goals. And I know that we can catapult Paladins to the next level doing the same here.
I believe the changes detailed above will move us very positively in this direction. We want to make Paladins as awesome of an experience for our players as possible and thank you again for sticking with us and being passionate about the game!
Oh, before I forget, we have really been enjoying the art that you all have been producing and posting on the Paladins subreddit and it has inspired us! We have some great artists among our players. We should do some sort of community vote and get some of the best art pieces into our game as sprays!
Just a thought, let me know what you think in the comments below.
Tune in tomorrow at 1PM, we will be going over more details in the Dev Insight show. twitch.tv/PaladinsGame
You can follow me on Twitter: @HiRezChris