As we alluded to briefly in the last F2P Cast, Paladins has changed up how players acquire and improve their cards — which themselves improve the abilities their characters use in game. Troy gave it an A-bomb and it appears he’s not the only one who’s less than enamored with the new system, which is currently on the public test server.

As I only lightly dabbled in Paladins, over a year ago, I’ll mostly crib from Kotaku’s explanation of the old and new systems. In the current system, players have to obtain cards in packs or via crafting (the currency for which comes from trashing duplicates), which they then equip on their characters. Under the new system, called Cards Unbound, players receive base versions of all cards, and duplicates will instead “rank up” existing cards, making them more powerful.

The problem(s) seems to be that, under the old system, once you had a card, that was it — no more progression/grinding necessary. Under the new system, you’ll need multiples of the same card to achieve the best possible build in the game. That means you’ll need to open more RNG packs, which you can earn in game, but are also (of course) available for purchase. Also, you can’t craft cards any more.

Some are drawing direct lines between this system and Star Wars: Battlefront 2’s Star Cards, which also rank up to improve characters’ abilities, and you know where that road leads. At least the system is only in place for quick play and not competitive matches in Paladins, but it would seem to be a detriment to casual players who aren’t interested in competitive.

The page announcing Cards Unbound says that Hi-Rez has “been listening to our players” who want “an epic experience that’s even more over-the-top than Paladins is today, unconstrained by the more cumbersome aspects of deckbuilding and point limits” in quick play while reducing grind and “having to unlock cards” in competitive play. We’ll see if the backlash, which is all over the sub-Reddit, will make Hi-Rez listen to its players more.

And if you’re a Paladins player, leave us a comment and let us know what you think of the changes in Cards Unbound!


  1. I stopped playing paladin a while ago (since last patch)

    But it’s sad to hear the news about them moving onto P2W aspects… sad that companies now are moving toward more Loot Box oriented gameplay instead of progression and skill based gameplay.

  2. Yea not to mention that you can already buy special keys with crystals that will guarantee 1 legendary card for a specific role while opening a chest.

  3. Ive Been playing Paladins since 2015,the new system thats getting implented in the next 2 weeks is not NEW.Its a recycled mechanic they tried back in CB, with this being said this new idea has been good, I can support this from the hours i spent in the PTS for Paladins.The people who are complaining haven’t touched the PTS and wrong about what they are thinking. The P2W complaints people have dont exist as they removing Gems from the chest and then converting Essence to Gold at a 1:1 ration, Now there are special class keys you can buy for teh chest but they have been in the game for a awhile and it just guarantees you get a LEGENDARY for that Role(Support,Flank,Damage and Frontline).Also each champion has its own chest you can earn by playing the game and that chest only gives you cards for that champion.Ultimately this more effects the Casual modes as you can have 5 Maxed cards + maxed Legendary however in Comp everything is set to level 3 and you cant raise or lower the levels for Comp, with that being said its still gonna be Skill vs Skill as i have a smurf i use for the PTS i took level 0 Champion (that i main in the rreal server) and played game against players that are higher level with max cards, I out performed them and scored maority of the players, But i am in Daimond and Masters so my skill level is alot higher than some players i play against

  4. Done with ill informed peoples comments if you gettin so butt hurt and its game breaking quit the game no one makes you play makes you spend your money or time so quit hm.

    • If you’re getting so butthurt over the comments, then click the big X in the corner of your screen. Nobody is forcing you to read them. Moron.

    • This is EXACTLY something a “Royaloyal” gamer of a specific game would often say, it’s an extreme “Denial” of blind-side to the other player with the same gameplay experience of it, these kind of people denied that “something off” is going on with their game. WAKE UP.

  5. Oh come on, everyone complaining here that they removed the crystal purchase form the Radiant Chest completely ignores, that THEY SAID IT’S JUST TEMPORARY. They will rebalance chest prices, so they locked the purchase for now. They said it damn.

    The problem here is, that Casual games are a wreck, since people ignore any communication or teamplay. Obviously, since that’s the only place to practice new champions for Ranked. Creating a hole that large between Casual and Ranked is a terribly bad idea.

    Not to mention, that many paid real money just to use specific cards in Ranked. Now all that is obsolete, money well thrown out of the window.

    Paladins is already struggling. The developers are following a few trending Reddit posts INSTEAD OF THEIR OWN F*CKING FORUMS. Come on, officials on the forum say, that ideas on the forum have potentially zero chance to get to the game.

    Nothing good will come to this game, each time one thinks they learned something, the devs show, that not at all. I can’t decide whether I should cry or laugh, the gameplay experience is down the drain and still falling. They are throwing away all their potential, and outright ruining the game.
    Neither player feedback, nor statistics seem to have any effect on their path of “development”.

  6. You guys are idiots they removed the pay function from the crates you can only get them through gold and play time now so its not pay to win people who dont listen or look at the chest price make this mistake its not your fault but the cards can only be earned through game progression the crystal price tag has been removed

      • Are you saying you want the game developers to go broke and you complain about the grind but get mad when there are options and get upset because the only free way is to actually invest your time ima free user and i have 400k essence and over 800k gold you get more then enough of both with the quests level bonus and ammount given from games its ridiculous that your people cry so much if you dont like it quit the game plain and simple

        • Are u saying that game devs go broke while there’s lootboxes in-game? Telling me devs will go broke LUL when YOU yourself don’t spend a single cent. U think 800K gold essence will help u get all the cards? I’ve seen a thread doing calculations on how much gold a new player will need to unlock all cards with max level and it easily goes to around 73 Million gold. Yh good luck with that buddy.

    • NO, are you an idiot? Because you will be able to buy those chests with real moneythe patch after. And good luck grinding cards with gold, to get all the cards maxed out for your champions that you like you will need to open like 100k chests. And you know how long it will take you to buy 100k chests with gold, months. So good luck with that. You obviously didnt even try the PTS, its a mess.


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