Patch 5.5 brings the party to smite and balance

Balance

(patch note header. photo courtesy of smitegame.com)

Patch summary

Another week another update show, and this one brought some interesting balances with new passives coming in for two items. Patch 5.5 which is called the Time to Party patch is keeping up with the theme of birthdays as Hi Rez celebrates four years of Smite. In this patch we saw three items get new passives, some nice buffs and no nerfs. For gods we saw some much needed nerfs and a needed buff. But enough with the summary lets delve into the details of this patch.

Item Changes

First up on our list of balances are items. This patch gave three items new passives two of which i think will change the builds of some gods. The other is a new take on it. Our first item on our list that got a new passive is Malice. Back in patch 5.3 Malice was changed to focus on ability based gods that use crit. But that passive made it almost useless and very difficult to activate. For those of you who didn’t know Malice’s passive before required you to crit three times then on the next ability you cast it would do 35% more damage. This passive is much better and will certainly see it picked up by more crit based gods such as Ne Zha and Hun Batz. The new passive now activates on every crit and afterwards lets you deal 35% more damage with all your remaining abilities. This will make it easier to really dish out some damage.

Passive Changes

The next item is Silverbranch Bow. It increases your attack speed by 5% for every basic attack hit for a maximum 6 times and will last 3 seconds. This new passive certainly changes some attack speed builds due to its usefulness. It can increase your base attack speed by a full 30%. Paired with its relative low cost, this makes clearing a whole lot easier. Especially for gods such as Apollo, Artemis, and other gods that depends on attack speed to do the clearing.

The last item to receive a a somewhat new passive is Midgardian Mail. The reason it’s somewhat new is that it does the same effect where if an enemy hit with a basic the enemies movement speed and attack speed is slowed. But it does it in an entirely new way, instead of a 30% chance of this occurring it now activates on every basic that hits you. This stacks up to two times and only last for 2 seconds. This is a much needed changed as it now doesn’t depend on luck to activate making it a much better item.

Item Buffs

Now onto the actual buffs to items and a visual fx. Starting with minor buffs such as spike gauntlet now giving 5 base power to compete with the trans start. 8 pointed shuriken costing 1500 gold makes it easier for players to buy into the tree. Witchblade now gives a 100 more health to make it more oriented towards warriors and guardians. Finally there is the crusher now giving a visual fx for every time its passive activates on enemy gods.

The first item that is receiving a buff is Asi. The buff that this stable lifesteal item is getting is an increase to its attack speed by 5%. This change makes it a

Courtesy of Hi Rez

much more viable option for hunters to pick up. At the cheep price of only 1700 gold this item is the cheapest item for lifesteal and now provides a great boost for picking it up.

Our final item on the list is Ichaival as it is seeing a buff to its passive. Now instead of receiving 7 power per basic attack hit you will now receive 10. This is a nice buff to an item that under-performed. This is also a small revert back to what it used to be with its old passive being the same but with much more attack speed. This change will certainly have effects early games as this item is a great bridge item that you cal sell late game for a much better item.

God Balances

For god balances we got some much needed buffs and nerfs for gods and some changes too. The buffs we got this patch are towards mages primarily with a couple warriors in there and same with the nerfs. We got some adjustments such as Cabraken’s ultimate now showcasing the actual damage area. Then Sobek got the same treatment as Ao Kuang in the last patch where he can now be damaged during his pluck.

God Buffs

First up on the buff list is Isis. She received buffs to her movement speed by 5, her dispel magic got a cooldown reduction by 2 seconds and her ult received

Courtesy of Hi rez

buffs to the max charge damage and heal where it now starts at 2.5 and goes up by .25 each upgrade. These buffs were very necessary as they make Isis a bit more viable in her lane. Before she was slow, now she is a bit faster and more on par with the other mages movement speed. The buffs to her ult were really

necessary as it felt that her ult did nothing at all even when fully charged. Now it will pack a big punch and surely scare more enemies from ever entering it.

Next up on the buff list is Vulcan. The buffs he received this patch are backfire getting an increase of 10 for each rank. Inferno cannon received buffs to its power scaling by 5% as well as to enemies marked by backfire. These buffs are completely necessary due to when they changed Vulcan’s passive. This now gives him a lot more power when using his combo, as well as making inferno cannon a lot more viable.

We have a warrior next on our list with Sun Wu Kong. This buff is small and is to his wave clear. The magic cudgel now does ten more damage on each rank. As well as its mana cost now going up by five making it a lot cheaper to use. These buffs are small but make a great impact for Sun Wu Kong mains. His main wave clear now cost less and does more allowing him to stay in lane longer.

God Nerfs

On the nerf side of things we got some much requested nerfs to a god many found annoying. Before you even ask no Loki did  not receive any nerfs, the gods who did though over performed.

Up first is an assassin that we all hate to see, Da Ji. She received nerfs to the power scaling on both her torture blades and horrible burns. With the first scaling

Courtesy of Hi Rez

going down by 6% and the tick damage going down by 3% as well. The second one’s scaling targeted the burst damage she does with it activated as it is now going down to 35%. These nerfs are much needed as Da Ji always seemed to burst people down like it was nothing both early and late game. Once she got either hydra’s lament up or heart seeker all she seemed to do was two shot you. Now she feels a little less bursting and a lot easier to handle.

Up next on the nerf list is Discordia. Her ability erratic behavior received a cooldown nerf of 2 seconds. This nerf may seem minor but it has a trickle down effect considering what that ability does for her. This is her dash that she uses to get out of danger and most importantly reduce the cooldown on her first two abilities. So this nerf should balance her out as with a longer cooldown she won’t be hiding and lowering the cooldown on her abilities.

Last on the nerf list is Ao Kuang. He received a power scaling nerf to his Dragon Call ability. The main scaling got lowered by 12% and the per dragon got nerfed by 2%. This is a minor nerf that just slightly lowers the burst of Ao Kuang. Making it easier to handle him in the late game and not worry about him destroying you to bits.

A bit of both and changes

The following are a bit of both or just count as small changes. Aphrodite now is knock up immune when using her ult. This should have been the norm since she is completely crowd control immune when she uses it. Chang’e moonflower dance now lasts a point second longer and this is to just remove the dead zone caused when she is standing still. Cu Chulainn no longer has access to his three when he goes berserk, this can count as a nerf to many since it gave him an advantage but it’s a much needed change.

Last is Erlang Shen. He received both nerfs and buffs to balance him out a bit more. First we have the buffs to Expose Weakness and Pin. Pin got a scaling increase of 10%, while Expose weakness cooldown is reduce by one second per basic attack. The nerf was to his basic attack chain where it was more to make the speed match the cast time, it got a nerf of .10 of a second.

Conclusion

In the end these buffs and nerfs will certainly make a change to the some of the meta. The malice change alone will cause it to be picked up much more than it was in the past. The buff to Isis is suffice enough to make her a much more viable pick for the mid lane. Finally the nerf to Da Ji was a much needed one as she was outperforming greatly and will now be much more manageable by the players she is up against. This patch may have been small on the balance side but it will have some big impacts on the game. See you guys in two weeks time with the next balance breakdown.

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