Well this past weekend was a great one for me, not only did the premier league kick off again and my beloved Liverpool get all 3pts in a very commanding performance, but Paladins had a free champions weekend, unlocking everyone for all gamers to enjoy.
Now, despite Paladins having been out for some time, I only really started playing it a few weeks ago when it was released on the Nintendo Switch. Since then, I’ve been on it non-stop. From when I get home from work I boot it up right away to do my daily quests, and even at halftime during the football I snook in a quick round of team deathmatch. I think I may have found a new love in my life. That, or I’ve got myself an addiction problem.
Anyway, since I refuse to pay for coins or gems to get me anywhere, and want to progress in this game purely from my mad skills and hard work, this weekend was a welcome one as it allowed me to test the water with all the champions. Some experiences were good, others not so much, but what it has allowed me to do is come up with a plan of which champions I will buy when I earn myself enough coin. And following on from that I thought I’d share my five favourite champions with you all in case you were stuck on who to pick.
Proving that you don’t have to buy the most expensive champions to compete Ruckus (and his robot Bolt) is free from the off and is probably my favourite champion of the lot. He’s a Frontline class meaning he’s ideal for holding ground in modes like Onslaught and Siege, but he comes in handy for so many other reasons. Packing 200 bullets into his machine gun hands, you’ll not often get cut short when unleashing hell on opponents unlike some other champions, and if that wasn’t enough, he’s also packing rockets which are great for breaking up a crowd and work fantastically long range as you approach your target. Ruckus also has a pretty decent shield which can be improved with the right build, but I find a better build is something more balanced and that allows you to heal when you make use of his advance ability which allows you to get out of a dangerous situation with a quick boost.
Koga is the newest champion to arrive on Paladins and you will find a lot of people fighting over him. In fact, I’ve had people in parties refuse to select a character as someone is already Koga and that’s who they wanted to go, which then means waiting around in a queue again for a new game to start (extremely annoying). But there is a reason why he is so popular. His balance of agility and the damage he can dish out, in the form of SMGs and his Wolverine-like claws, allows for you to take Koga into a battle and get back out again before you even get hit. And this is ideal for a Flank class because the whole idea is to make your way around the map, take out the enemy from behind and get back to your support for a little health top up. It was actually a surprise I liked him as much as I did because I genuinely hate all the other Flank champions, it’s probably more that I’m no good with them, but I just can’t bring myself to play as a Flank class unless it is Koga. And if you do choose to go him and you aren’t racking up eliminations left, right and centre then you may want to think about changing champion as you’re clearly not worthy of him.
Pip is probably one of the cutest characters in the game, but don’t let his fluffy exterior lead you into a false sense of security. Sitting in the Support class, Pip is an excellent healer but also great for inflicting damage from a far distance. Equipped with a gun much like a grenade launcher, you can launch small vials filled with explosives across the map and toward your enemies, dealing a whole bunch of damage each time. Alongside that, you also have a fireball you can launch which temporarily slows enemies down and also a health vial which you can throw toward allies in trouble to give them a nice health boost. But the icing on the cake is his ultimate ability which sends a potion that upon contact with enemies turns them all into chickens with a lower health than the max health of that champion, making them sitting ducks (or chickens in this case). The only downside is if you use it on enemies who have near enough no health left, it actually gives them more health as a chicken to be able to try and escape but used in the right way and this can be very effective.
Ying is another Support class but offers you a different style of gameplay to Pip. A mid-long range type player, Ying uses her magical mirror to shoot crystals into the direction of her enemies, whilst casting illusions of herself which can heal nearby allies, act as a decoy to draw enemy fire away from them to or be turned into a suicide bomber essentially as you command your illusions to track down enemies and self-destruct dealing 500 damage. I didn’t think that I’d actually want to continue playing as Ying following my completion of one of the battle pass challenges I needed to use her for to complete, but she’s surprisingly well-rounded. Plus, her ultimate ability allows her to cast a spell healing all allies on the map for a short time. Great when defending an area from heavy enemy fire.
Equipped with a light machine gun that you can look down the sight of for better accuracy, Vivian has to be my favourite of the damage class. She is able to dish out damage, take it with the help of her deflector shield and also support the rest of the team by placing sensor drones around the map that identify if enemies are in range, making it easier to plan your attacks. If that wasn’t enough she can call on her ultimate Sentinels which are essentially two drones that pop up above both her shoulders firing charged energy shots at your enemies. And unlike most ultimates, this doesn’t disappear until you die, so once you activate it you’re packed with extra firepowerto take on large crowds of enemies. Be careful though, as despite dealing large damage, her health isn’t fantastic, but if you have decent support on your side, she can be a real force to be reckoned with.
And that’s it, our top five champions from our experience at playing over this past weekend with all of them being unlocked. Why not let us know who your favourite champions are in the comments below.
And if you want to see another top five of ours, why not check out our top five couch co-op games by clicking HERE.