Defend Ix Chel at all costs

The need-to-know guide for Smite’s Year 10: Season of Hope

A roadmap of upcoming updates for Smite. Via SmiteGame on Twitch.

A roadmap of upcoming updates for Smite. Via SmiteGame on Twitch.

This year, Smite celebrated its 10-year anniversary since its initial release on PC back in 2013. In each of the previous years, one or two update patches have been released to balance and adjust gods, items, maps and overall quality of life within the game.

At the beginning of its 10th year, Hi-Rez Studios and Titan Forge Games announced a road map for Smite this year, releasing four main updates that include both mid-season and bonus patches.

The 10.3 and 10.4 updates of the Season of Hope contain some of the main and mid-season scheduled patches. This update features over 150+ balance changes to gods and items, a huge overhaul to healing, adjustments to the conquest map and a teaser of the new playable character Ix Chel, the latest goddess to arrive on the battleground.

Here are all the important changes you should note to get you ready to dominate on the battlefield.

Over 70 characters and 80 item changes could rank these patches among some of Smite’s most drastic updates. The latest patch notes are always available on Smite’s official website for those who want to read detailed information on bug fixes, reworks, buffs and nerfs.
Healing updates were a main cause for the abundance of changes, because it was entirely reworked to scale off purely leveling and utilizing items instead of power. This major change inevitably affected a large portion of the cast and items in the game.

Healing was always powerful, even when healing was not perceived to be relevant to the current meta. A.J. Walker, current design director for Smite, felt that even though healing was greatly nerfed this seasonal update, healers’ pick rates have stayed either stagnant or grown in popularity. Healers apparently still have hope.

“All god healing from abilities will be decreased by roughly 30% … In most cases, we expect healing gods will be stronger overall but will heal for less,” Walker wrote.

Healing is reduced but characters are receiving buffs on their healing abilities to compensate for the widespread healing reduction. Current games are still heavily polarized with characters like Aphrodite, Anubis, Guan Yu and Hel and that will not change in these updates. People will never give up the hivemind feeling of W-keying with Anubis, especially now that he can walk during his first ability “plague of locusts.”

The healing changes are a healthy step in the right direction and hopefully these types of necessary changes will continue to be made to balance healing in the future.

From a lore point of view, Season of Hope follows after Surtr and his new ally Martichoras instructed chaos during the Season of Monsters.

A radiant newcomer, now known to be the Mayan goddess Ix Chel, will soon arrive to enact a counter-attack and challenge the mythical beasts. She currently has five abilities at her arsenal and was released to the public client on April 18.

Ix Chel, The Light Weaver, is a mage intended for the middle lane and was teased to also be viable in support and solo lanes as well. Her origin within mythology is not well known but this character was a constant mention within the community forums to be considered for release. She is Smite’s 126th playable character within the Moba.

(Rendered art of the new playable character Ix Chel Via SmiteGame on Twitter.

Ix Chel’s staff concentrates strands of spectral rainbow light for her to aid her allies and destroy enemies. She wears a colorful feathered headdress that depicts the serpent wind god, Kukulkan.

Ix Chel is a youthful woman who depicts a different style of beauty that was worshiped in ancient times, with some in the community describing her as having a motherly figure. The Smite community is audibly ready for her release.

Smite posted a comment thread detailing Ix Chel’s entire kit in a post which can be found on the game’s Twitter account to showcase this new character’s abilities for anyone who might have missed the patch notes.

Year 10 brought Smite its largest map to date. The conquest map has received more cosmetic changes to its jungle pathing and map design, as well as a new XP buff that spawns chests on the trailing team’s side, replacing the back XP harpy camps in between the support and ADC buffs.

The amount of XP harpies spawning at the left and right middle camps have reduced from three harpies to two. Two harpies will additionally spawn from these middle camps to roam the map, with the left middle harpies circling around the Fire Giant spawn and the right middle harpies circling the Gold Fury spawn. This allows more XP and Gold to funnel toward the solo and duo lanes.

There are now over 125 different gods, goddesses, mythical creatures and legends of folklore to bring into battle. Now with the release of Ix Chel, it’s a great time to catch up on the latest patch, party up with friends and play Smite.

See you on the battleground!