With the first week of SPL wrapped up and the second week underway, some clutch moments and game sets are already surfacing as amazing moments in SMITE’s history. From the fall-from-grace NRG, Season 3’s World Champions, to the surging victory of In Memory of Gabe, there are a lot of things to look at.
On EU side, the most notable set was between NRG and Obey Alliance, the two world championship contenders for last year’s HRX. It may just be my bias and affection towards the team of Obey, but it seemed the lack of respect NRG had for Obey was the reason they’d fallen. Obey drew first blood before the first minute with EmilZy’s Amaterasu and Ataraxia’s Ullr. Soon after, Obey’s duo lane had secured all the pressure and control on their side of the map. Obey snatched two Gold Furies from NRG before the 15 minute mark, and Ataraxia started the game off with a 500 gold lead on Emilitoo. This set the pace for both games in the series as NRG lost for the first time since Season 2, over a year ago.
Although Obey member ManiaK took some time off from SMITE, his re-entrance couldn’t have been more grand. ManiaK played a stellar solo, harassing and giving Dimi a good run for his money. EmilZy, the new support for Obey after Pandalike was released, played breathtaking peeler and damage-sponge in both of Obey’s games, and it felt as if he and Ataraxia had been playing for years together -- their synergy was beautiful.
As for the rest of the sets, most teams played as expected. Dignitas, whose new team roster looks strong, ended up taking two games off of CycloneGG. Valance Squad managed to 2-0 Sanguine eSports, the latter of which seemed weaker on paper than Valance. Novus Orsa, the new home of Pandalike (he changed his name to Frezzzy) went 1-1 with Elevate. Both were run-backs from Relegations, so the split seemed fair and predictable (yay for FP!).
On the other side of the ocean, the NA teams had some interesting sets as well. In Memory of Gabe performed magically, taking a 2-0 victory off Allegiance after they had swept their way to victory in the open bracket weekend. Hurriwind especially was fantastic in mid, giving Allegiance’s new mid Metyankey quite a hard time. Surprisingly, Allegiance seemed exceptionally disoriented from lack of communication in their sets. Hopefully once they shake off the rust they can perform like they did at Worlds.
Luminosity against FlashPointGG was an interesting one. FlashPoint was formed out of free-agent survivors from the roster changes leading into Season 4. Xenotronics, who was let go from Luminosity (tweet) in his old mid role, is the new ADC for FPG. Incon, the notorious “problem” of Allegiance according to ALG Jungler Weak3n (tweet), was the mid for FPG. The rest of Flashpoint’s roster was fairly new as well with Mirage in the Jungle role and Aquarius in Solo. No one could quite anticipate how FPG would do. Unfortunately, they showed they aren’t quite where they could be; as Luminosity went 2-0 against them.
For SoaR Gaming and EGR, it didn’t seem as if SoaR had recovered from it’s lack of energy and synergy that had affected their gameplay at quarterfinals in Worlds (where they were 2-0’d by Obey). While the players themselves were great on their own, it was their inability to work together in the games that lead to their defeat. EGR claimed a clean 2-0 victory against SoaR. We can only expect more wonders from EGR as the season goes on.
Enemy proved to be a more difficult match for Noble eSports. In their matchup during the second week of Relegations, Enemy had already wiped the floor with Noble. This could be due to Enemy having more time to prepare as a team. Noble, unfortunately, had only a few days to scrim with their new mid-laner MLCSt3alth, it was not expected to go in their favor.
There is more to look forward to in both regions for week 2. We’ve had another surprising split from Valance and NRG on Thursday; we’ve seen another poor showing of gameplay from Flashpoint GG in their matchup against EGR on the same night giving EGR another 2-0 victory.
Hopefully our SMITE viewing experiences will reward us with gems and Fantasy Points aplenty this season!
Katie Luo is an aspiring writer and avid gamer. You can find her on Twitter: @lucifers19 or In-game as ‘wardenmahariel’.