Hi-Rez Studios have announced that their free-to-play hero shooter Paladins will leaving early access on 8 May 2018. The game will be available on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, and it will award 200 Crystals to existing players.
Let's address the important stuff first - the free stuff. The free currency you gain for the celebration is equal to a £3,99 ; €4,99 or $4,99 microtransaction. You can get it if you log into the game before 31 May 2018. You can buy a skin that is a simple retexture for this money, but the good stuff costs twice as much, so if you're into quality, you'll still be 200 Crystals short. Here is a quick explanation of cosmetic costs.
That said, all of the game's champions will be available in order to try them out until 7 May 2018. This should either ease new players into the game or overwhelm them with new information.
Hi-Rez studios have stated that Paladins is now "a million times more polished than it was at the start of Early Access" but the official launch does not mean they will stop with the efforts. They also announced the team will keep polishing the game and fixing bugs while also putting out "awesome new content" on a regular patch cycle. This seems like the approach Riot Games took with League of Legends back when the game was on grass roots level. It sounds promising, but also remains to be seen if Hi-Rez can deliver.
Paladins had the bad fortune of entering the fray at roughly the same time Overwatch swept the world which lead to many copyright infringement allegations, the game being called "discount Overwatch" or "Overwatch for poor people" and even Paladins firing some shots back. Unlike Overwatch however, Paladins is looking to branch out into the battle royale genre.
Considering the game managed to attract about 25 million players during its Early Access stage, it might just have a chance to survive the over saturated market. That's the total number of players who ever played it, of course, but the actual concurrent player count moved between 15.000 and 20.000 for the past four months.