Smite developers Hi-Rez today announced Smite Tactics [official site], a turn-based spin-off from their MOBA. Smite Tactics will combine turn-based combat with collect-o-deckbuilding card antics for both competitive multiplayer and a spot of singleplayer. No word yet on when - or how - it'll fully launch but a beta will come later this year.
Smite, if you're not caught up on your MOBAs, is the one which all characters are real-world gods and mythological characters. What does Tactics do with that? Here's the official word from today's announcement:
"Smite Tactics is a game of strategy where players will carefully choose which minions to deploy across the battlefield and which gods will lead them. Every unit has unique abilities and players will build their armies prior to battle using collectible cards. Players will be able to compete for prestige in 1v1 ranked competitive modes and experience various adventure modes versus AI."
You can see snippets of pre-alpha gameplay in this here announcement trailer:
Hi-Rez don't mention a business model, which does make me wonder whether it'll be free-to-play or not. You'd think so? All of their other games are free-to-play.
This is another reminder that the MOBA rush is over, that MOBAs are now established as just another type of video game - they're stable enough for spin-offs and even board games. Heck, maybe we're even nearing the end of a rush of hybrids smooshing MOBAs into other genres. The MOBA design vocabulary will sit seamlessly into the design dictionary, as has happened to countless other games and rushes.