Are you prepared? Hopefully so, because one of the coolest mobas around, Smite, is having their world championship this weekend.
The event is being held from January 9-11 at the Cobb Performing Arts Centre in Atlanta, Georgia. The two best teams from North America, China, Europe, South America are competing for their shot at the nearly 2.6 million dollar prize pool. That’s some good money kids! It doesn’t compare to the massive dollar bills being given out to the winners of The Internationals of Dota 2, which had a whopping prize pool of $10 million, but it does compare to League of Legends which had a prize pool of $2 million total for the World Championships of 2014.
For the sake of perspective, Smite is still one of the most recent mobas to exit beta into a full release. It is free-to-play with an in-game economy used to unlock characters, or you can drop $30 to snag all of the gods. Smite differentiates itself from its peers by disregarding traditional RTS-styled movement and combat for a unique, over-the-shoulder camera angle. The combat is heavily influenced by skill-shots, including basic attacks, and the change in perspective gives the game a sense of immediacy and fast-paced combat that isn’t really seen in other mobas. The dazzling particle effects mixed with wild acrobatic maneuvers of characters during the movement-centered fights is a wonder to watch, and even more exciting to play. And for the lore buffs, all of the champions are not merely called “gods,” they are gods, all taking deep inspiration from international mythos, using everything from Norse mythology to Aztecan creation lore.
While younger pedigrees in the moba genre like Heroes of the Storm are still in their early stages, Smite has officially launched to the public as a “finished” game, now only being fine-tuned and added to rather than altered from a fundamental level. There are no stats available for concurrent or peak player count, but it’s estimated to be somewhere between 40k-60k. Smite is typically within the top 20 games on Twitch, and has a very active e-sports community.
The great prize pool that Hi-Rez Studios is offering in Smite’s world championship is a testament to how far the game has come. For those who are not inclined to math, the winning team will receive around $1.2 million, which equates to $259,614 per every player on the five-person team. Yeah, a quarter of a million dollars for playing at the highest level. The losers of the tournament will be doing pretty well themselves, as the 5th-8th place teams will get a $32k check for their tribulations; that’s $6,490 per person.
Hi-Rez Studios will be streaming all the events live on Twitch for everyone’s enjoyment. You can catch the action at their official Twitch page. Want to know when your favourite teams are playing, or when to tune in to actually catch the action? You can find the Smite World Championship schedule here. And don’t worry, if you’re not 100% familiar with Smite and don’t want to embarrass yourself when cheering with your friends, we’ve got you covered with the official Smite World Championship cheat-sheet giving you all the lingo, player roles, lane structures, and team line-ups.