Smite has a new guardian that is coming in patch 4.14, and while a new god is released every month, this time we’re seeing a return to the stance-switching archetype that hasn’t been seen since Ullr. The new god, Artio, is a druid who changes into a bear and each of her stances highlights a play-style: druid form is focused on crowd control and healing, while her bear form focuses on damage.
To begin, her passive enables her to weaken enemy protections by 3% for every ability she lands, stacking up to eight times. This allows her to be a truly offensive guardian, who can excel in the rotation-heavy meta that has emerged. Her first ability, Energy Surge (Druid) allows her to heal her allies depending on how many enemy gods she hits. In bear form, this ability, Maul, allows her to swipe twice in a cone for a sizable 340 + 35% magical power.
You can check out her god reveal trailer below.
As previously noted, Artio also wields crowd control abilities such as an AOE cripple, a stun, two slows, and a root. Her passive on her ultimate, her stance switch in this case, allows her to gain stacking MP5 and movement speed up to eight times, encouraging Artio to get into the center of a team fight and try and disrupt as many enemies as possible.
To me, her kit seems a little bloated, though if they can keep her damage in line with that of Ymir or Fafnir, then she should be a joy to play with or against. Additionally, I fear that her amazing kit will see Terra being picked less often.
Smite is a free-to-play MOBA that is available now on PC, Xbox One, and PS4. You can check out our interview with Hi-Rez Studios and their creation of the newest Paladins content here. You can also read about Hi-Rez Studios’ announcement about Smite and Paladins coming to the Xbox One X in 4k and 60 FPS here.