SMITE: Shockingly Enough, There’s a Story
As someone who’s always aspired to be a writer, I always took games with no real plotline or story less seriously than those that could offer an engaging story. I thought SMITE was just another MOBA using ancient Mythology to bolster its ranks of characters, but there’s more than that.
SMITE’s first foray into lore was a series of five digital comics from Dark Horse. While the lore here does not completely line up with what we’ve seen in-game, it is interesting nonetheless. The Gods were fighting a mighty war, as one side believed that humanity needed to be punished for attempting to overthrow the gods, while the other wanted to bring peace back to the world.
After nearly destroying the world, the Gods of the Elysian Uprising, represented by the Chaos team in SMITE, drew borders between the pantheons to avoid further conflict. Each pantheon would handle its own individual rule. This temporary peace was shattered when Zeus was killed by Hel and Ao Kuang. Hel convinced Ao Kuang that they could help each other. Hel desired the lightning bolt of Zeus in order to free her trapped brother, Fenrir, and initiate Ragnarok, the mythological Norse apocalypse. Ao Kuang agreed to help her if she helped him steal Sun Wukong’s magic cudgel. What would follow was total chaos, as they managed to frame the murder on the Egyptians, leading conflicts between the Greeks and Egyptians.
Ultimately, Hel succeeds in initiating Ragnarok.
The Dark Horse comics seem to sort of lead up to what we have in SMITE itself, but some things are mismatched. In the comics, Ares killed Ra during an invasion into Egypt, but in the current SMITE lore, Ra is one of the major players in the newly formed Council of Gods.
The lore that appears in-game first appeared with the Divine Uprising event last year. The event was designed as a way to introduce three new pantheons to the game, Polynesian, Slavic, and Voodoo, each of which to this day still only has a single God. In the Divine Uprising lore, some things are made clear in the beginning prologue.
First of all, Zeus is dead, Hel has succeeded in a careful plan to initiate Ragnarok, and Hades desires power enough that he shifts the balance. The Lore mostly follows Bellona, Roman goddess of war and conquest, as she attempts to stop the already in-progress events of Ragnarok, coming face to face with the likes of Pele, Baron Samedi, and Chernobog. In their plight, Bellona and Pele came together to face Hades, where he revealed his master plan: Create a world without life and death, combine the worlds of Living and Dead into a world of simply existence.
We would not see more lore until that September, with the release of Hera’s Odyssey. The next step in a series of annual events, this time the Odyssey had lore attached to it. The lore told the story of Hera searching for something terrible that was to follow Ragnarok, gathering the likes of Thor, Odin, and Ra on her journey. The force which was to pass was none other than Jomungandr, the World Serpent of Norse myth, he who would devour the world in an instant. In order to defeat him, Hera, Ra, and the others worked together to open a portal to summon forth two mighty heroes, King Arthur of Camelot and his loyal mage-advisor Merlin.
Almost immediately afterward, the Legends of Camelot event revealed how the new heroes teamed up with the Gods in order to defeat Jormungandr using ancient secrets revealed to Merlin. A major subplot of the story was Arthur’s spite towards the Norse gods, their worshippers being the ones who had brought ruin to Camelot, his lands, and his people. The heroes and the Gods barely managed to defeat Jormungandr, forcing him to retreat, although they did not kill him.
Following the defeat of Jormungandr in the Legends of Camelot, there was now the Council of the Gods. Hera attempted to create some sense of normalcy and peace between the Gods, gathering the likes of Thanatos, Bellona, Pele, and her allies from Ragnarok to negotiate a peace among the Pantheons, but something sinister was afoot.
Ra, feeling something terrible, left.
And that’s it! Hopefully you enjoyed this rundown of the lore behind this amazing free-to-play game.