paladins Kinessa Serpent screenshot

SMITE developer Hi-Rez Studios has announced this week that its team-based hero shooter, Paladins, has now transitioned to Open Beta today.

Following its announcement last year, Paladins, has been testing out its mechanics with a select handful of players in a closed beta. During this time, Hi-Rez and the community have been working to create something they hope is unique, and now everyone can jump in and give it a whirl.

While the game may seem a little familiar (cough, Overwatch, cough), Paladins hopes to stand out from the crowd by blending fast-paced first person shooter gameplay with character customisation through collectable cards. You can get a taste of some of the gameplay in the new open beta trailer below.

“Since the start of closed beta late last year we’ve been refining the core gameplay and the overall user experience”, said Todd Harris, COO and co-founder of Hi-Rez Studios. “Paladins is a team shooter with a fantasy setting, a sense of humour, and a high degree of customisation and strategy. Paladins is now and always will be free-to-play and with our move to Open Beta anyone can download the game from the Paladins website or Steam. We look forward to continuing to shape and improve the game with an even larger community.”

Since its initial launch into Closed Beta, the Open Beta sees a number of changes including a new user interface, a new match lobby, a third map called Enchanted Forest, as well as the ability to mix head, body, and weapon skins on each champion. There’s also a new ranked Competitive queue with leaderboards.

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The Paladins Open Beta is available to download through Steam for free right now. It’ll include Steam Achievements as well as an exclusive Team Fortress 2 Engineer skin which can be unlocked by playing the champion Barik five times through Steam.

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