Posts Tagged ‘Hi-Rez Studios’

Wizard Battle: Smite Adding First PvE Mode This Week

You’ll have noticed the “No more than nine wizards at a time” handwritten sign in the corner shop window. It’s common knowledge that ten wizards together will inevitably brawl over some Ancient, Nexus, Titan, pick ‘n’ mix, or goodness knows what. Here’s a secret: five wizards are just as unsafe, as they’ll group up on an ‘epic quest’ and wander the neighbourhood to fight something, anything. ‘PvE’, they call it. A bloody nuisance, I say. Last night I found five steaming wizards tangled in my washing line shouting e.g. “It’s casting Root!” and “Watch the adds!” while swatting at the peg bag.

Citizens, be alert. Smite [official site] is adding its first PvE mode this week, and the five-wizard arena battles of Xing Tian’s Mountain will only encourage that rabble.

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Smite World Championship 2017 Dates, Paladins Invitational, Spiralized Potatoes

The dates for the Smite World Championship have been announced for 2017: 5-8 January. This time around it will be taking place alongside a Paladins Invitational as well as the existing Xbox version of the professional Smite [official site] scene.

In fact, all the accompanying bells and whistles mean developers Hi-Rez are referring to the Atlantan shindig as the Hi-Rex Expo rather than the Smite World Championships nowadays.

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Susano Storms Into Smite’s Playable Pantheon

Smite’s [official site] pantheon of playable gods continues to expand apace with the addition of Susano, God Of The Summer Storm. He’s from Japanese mythology and is the brother of an earlier addition, Amaterasu.

In terms of sibling rivalry, they seem like quite the handful. One account I’m looking at describes the fallout from an argument about who wins a creation challenge. Apparently Susano destroys Amaterasu’s rice paddies, smears poop on her palace walls and “throws a flayed pony through the roof of her weaving shed”. I think the pony was sacred to Amaterasu so the gesture is even more provocative, although I’m just going to put it out there that if my brother chucked a flayed ANYTHING into my weaving shed I’d be pretty narked.

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Jing Wei, The Oathkeeper Flaps Into Smite

Jing Wei, The Oathkeeper is the latest god to join the pantheons of Smite [official site]. I’m now trying to find out where I put the Smite public test realm on my hard drive. Wait – it’s live on the actual servers! WELL. While I update the client I am watching videos to learn more about Jing Wei and her oaths…

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I Am The God Of Hellfire, And I Bring You A Tribes Map

Hi-Rez Studios stopped updating Tribes: Ascend [official site] in 2013 as they shifted focus to their MOBA Smite, but they have recently returned to the free-to-play jetpacking FPS. Following December’s ‘Out of the Blue’ update and another patch in January, last night Hi-Rez released version 1.3. This latest update has brought more balance tweaks and a new map named Hellfire.

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Tribes: Ascend 1.2 Patch Coming Later Today

Tribes: Ascend [official site] is receiving another update this evening. Patch 1.2 will bring sweeping balance changes to the gotta-go-fast jetpack FPS, increasing heavy armour there, reducing blast radii here, making it so pressing ‘Q’ selects your previously held weapon, that sort of thing. There’s a full list of changes in this Google Doc and a chart of new weapon values in this here spreadsheet.

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Paladins: “More Characters, Not Just A Lot Of Variation”

When I was out at Hi-Rez Studios earlier this month the developers gave a presentation about Paladins [official site]. At some point during the presentation CEO Erez Goren crashed the stage and joined in the Q&A (which then turned into an impromptu game dev meeting). As part of that I asked for a bit more information about how flexible the team see the in-game champions as being. The answer touches on character identity and how the players currently approach variation – they want more characters with narrower skillsets and not jacks of all trades.

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Smite World Championships 2016: Grand Finals Day

It’s the grand finals of the Smite World Championship 2016 later today. Half a million dollars is on the line for the winning team (plus you get a massive trophy with a detachable hammer) and, as of yesterday’s semi-finals, the matches just got a lot more tense and interesting. Before the final kicks off let’s take a look at the mindgames and the comebacks which have led two teams to the brink of Worlds victory. Spoilers ahead!

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Smite World Championships 2016: Semifinals Day

The Smite World Championship 2016 contenders have been whittled down to four teams. So far the tournament has involved possibly the fewest upsets of any esports event I’ve attended (precisely zero). But today is where the uncertainty starts to kick in as the final four bring highly skilled players with very different team personalities to the world stage.

Here’s the story so far [with proper spoilers after the jump]:

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Smite World Championship 2016: Day 2

With the placement round out of the way eight teams remain in the running for the Smite World Championship 2016 crown. Now it’s time for some meatier matches in the form of the quarterfinals best-of-3s. To get you up to speed let’s take a look at the story so far and THEN what’s on the cards for today’s teams:

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Smite World Championships: Day 1 Preview

The Smite World Championship for 2016 kicks off today at the Cobb Energy Centre in Georgia. I’ve already written a guide to explain what the event itself is but there are a lot of matches happening on day one thanks to the tournament’s double elimination format. I’ll be going along to watch and report back (after I’ve opened my birthday cards – IT IS MY BIRTHDAY and I’m the sort of person who brings cards with me on a trip) but so you don’t feel lost if you want to watch, here is a helpful intro to the eight teams who will be playing and their basic storylines.

BIRTHDAY.

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Smite’s Pet Treant Goes Solo, Joins Paladins Roster

“Gonna wash that man right out of my hair.”

This is both a fantastically useful response to a) a failed relationship and b) to being a long-suffering treant in Smite who has spent their entire time having to carry an elderly god in your branches and have now decided it’s time to go it alone in Hi-Rez’s FPS game, Paladins [official site].

[Translation: A Smite character’s mount is joining the Paladins roster as a standalone hero.]

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Amaterasu Leads Smite’s Japanese Pantheon

Smite [official site] developers, Hi-Rez, have been teasing their Japanese pantheon for a while now but they’ve been keeping tight-lipped over which deities they were working on. All president, Stew Chisam, would tell me a few months back was that we could expect a goddess.

Amaterasu, a sun (and universe) deity from the Shinto religion, was a common guess and today’s announcement officially confirmed her as the seventy-second addition to the Smite roster. Reading an article in the official Smite magazine, it also seems like the Japanese pantheon in general will be mostly Shinto deities but with scope for some other figures from Japanese mythology. But who is Amaterasu for a Smite player, how does she work and what the heck does Guan Yu have to do with her ultimate?

Read on:

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Smite World Championship 2016: Everything You Need To Know

New year, new esports event coverage! And by that, I mean let’s have a look at the Smite World Championship 2016 [official site].

Here’s what you need to know about Hi-Rez’s annual Smite-a-thon from the teams to the $1m prize pool:

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Let’s Spin Again: Tribes Ascend V1.1 Released

Hi-Rez Studios gave up on Tribes Ascend [official site] for a couple of years, but a few months back made the unexpected announcement that they we working on a big ole update for their F2P jetpacking FPS. And they did release it! The ‘Out of the Blue’ update (or version 1.1, if you have no romance in your heart – if you wouldn’t pash with a plasma rifle) arrived last week, with new maps, new weapons, exploit fixes, and a whole hovershedload of balance tweaks.

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Paladins: When A Shooter And A CCG Have A Baby…

“It’s a card game but it’s a shooter but it’s a MOBA but it’s kinda not and there’s characters… JUST MAKE IT WORK!”

Rory “Drybear” Newbrough is laughing as he talks to me about the process of creating Paladins: Champions of the Realm [official site], Hi-Rez’s shooter where in-game progression comes comes via a collectible card system. I’ve been trying out the closed beta and had a whole heap of questions about where the game came from and where it’s going. Lead designer Newbrough (and studio president Stew Chisam) were on hand to answer:

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Smite Super Regionals: Deicides And Deciders

“FUCKING END THE GAME!” Jeppe ‘Trixtank’ Gylling was roaring as his team, Paradigm, bore down on the opponent’s titan – the beefy glowing final objective you need to destroy to win a game of Smite [official site].

It was the European and North American LAN event known as Super Regionals and on the line for Paradigm and their foes was a place at the Smite World Championships in January. Five teams would be making it through to the competition: two from North America, two from Europe and the winner of a match between the NA and EU third placed teams.

Spoilers after the jump if you haven’t seen Sunday’s finals:

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Paladins Is Now In Beta, With Multiple Ways To Join

Paladins: Champions of the Realm [official site], the next from Smite devs Hi-Rez, is now in closed beta. It’s a 5 vs 5 shooter in which you must capture control points, escort siege engines, and destroy your opponent’s base, but where the real twist is that your character levels over the course of a match, allowing you to choose from a selection of cards and build a deck of skills as you play. You can apply for closed beta access the traditional way or get in immediately by buying a Founder’s Pack version of the game.

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