Persephone, the wife of Hades and the queen of the Greek underworld, is receiving a rework in Smite, and the new abilities for her will be available in May 2021. The rework is meant to focus on many of Persephone’s abilities, to give her them a series of new definitions, and to enhance them for more balanced gameplay. Developers Hi-Rez has noticed that, while Persephone is among the most banned gods in ranked games when a player chooses to play her, she has one of the lowest win rates. We can expect the Persephone rework to release to Smite in the Monstercat battle release, which we’ve learned will likely happen on May 18.
Persephone’s passive and her ability two, harvest, will be receiving the largest reworks. The passive ability was frustrating for players because, after defeating Persephone, she could continue to fight even after death as a ghost and use her abilities. Previously, Persephone’s passive is she earns Pomegranate Seeds whenever she users her Harvest plant ability, and she can hold up to 100 of these seeds. For every 25 she has, she can resist death when she dies, appearing as a ghost that does reduced damage to enemies for a short amount of time. When all of the seeds are gone, she returns to base, and she can sell these seeds back at the fountain.
The reworked passive for still has Persephone resisting death, but she cannot attack other enemies. Instead, she can move around the map and place plants that she can use when she revives for her harvest ability. She can still sell the seeds when she returns to base.
For Persephone’s second ability, Harvest, she still places down a skull that blossoms into a flower, but it happens much more quickly. The flower is also more aggressive, and the player controlling Persephone can better angle their flower attacks to cut off enemy escape routes. When a skull explodes, it produces more skulls, adding to Persephone’s potential garden, rather than forcing her to consistently fire off this ability to create more skulls and flowers on the field. The reworked ability will provide more depth to Persephone’s combat skills, and the way to counter this as an enemy is quite simple: stay away from the plants and the skulls.
Those are the two major ability highlights that will be in Persephone’s rework. The first ability, Bone Rush, is also going to be given longer distances, but it doesn’t damage a large AoE. Instead, it’ll focus on a single god. The third ability, Flourish, still allow Persephone to dash away, and it does damage. However, it does not pre-germinate a skull into the next stage. The final ability, Persephone’s ultimate, Grasp of Death, has it, so a player’s movement speed is reduced when attempting to escape, but no long restricts this the closer you to the center of the attack. It makes the attack feel less crippling and provides an ample amount of escape.
These changes will go the playtesting phase. The new content will be releasing alongside the Monstercat update, and that’ll be closer to the end of May. That should give players plenty of time to try out Persephone, and see what new builds work for her.
Here’s the overall rework that Hi-Rez is looking to do for Persephone.
Passive: Pomegranate Seeds (Rework)
- Persephone now enters the Death Realm upon dying. She can no longer damage, see, or interact with any active entity on the map when in this state.
- Instead, for free, each time she dies she can roam the map placing seeds that will spawn when she respawns. This will allow her to respawn with Plants immediately available for her to use.
- Persephone still accumulates Seeds from her Harvest Flowers and can still sell them to the fountain.
- Goals: We want to reduce the frustration around Persephone reviving but still want to give Persephone a way to actively impact that map upon her revival. This will also help Persephone be able to contest things quickly after she revives by having a garden already prepared.
Ability 1: Bone Rush (Heavy adjustments)
- This ability no longer caches aim when fired, allowing Persephone to re aim it up until the point it starts charging.
- This ability no longer topples over damaging enemies in a large AoE. Instead it charges forward a larger distance, stopping on the first god hit and slowing them.
- This ability still places a skull, but it will place the skull where it stops.
- Goals: Reduces the frustration from being poked at an incredible distance while also making this ability feel better to use as the Persephone player. The long delay and buildup time combined with cached aim meant it functioned very differently from other similar abilities.
Ability 2: Harvest (Rework)
- This ability no longer places skulls on a charge based cooldown.
- This ability now does damage in an area after a brief warm up. Once the area explodes 3 Skulls are placed around that area at once.
- Goals: Provide Persephone with a way to more quickly set up her Garden at once while also giving her more immediate impact in a fight.
Ability 2: Harvest Plants (Rework)
- The Harvest Skull and Plants have also undergone some heavy changes.
- The Sprout (Stage 2: Exploding Plant) has been removed.
- The Skull now immediately transitions to the Flower state after 4s.
- When Persephone Basic Attacks or uses Flourish on the Flower it will charge in the direction it was attacked or the direction Persephone was facing. It no longer attempts to lock onto targets.
- The Flower will attempt to bite anyone that gets too close at a set interval.
- Important Note: This ability does still have protection from multiple bites happening in rapid succession.
- Goals: The use cases and the counterplay options for all parties involved should be much clearer. Persephone’s can try to lead opponents and cut off their escape paths with well aimed Flowers while enemies can clearly see the counterplay (don’t get too close).
Ability 3: Flourish (Balance adjustments)
- This ability now deals damage on takeoff.
- Since the Sprout has been removed, this ability no longer Pre-germinates a Skull.
- Goals: Give Persephone some extra offense to enemies diving her now that her Sprout no longer provides that quick burst of damage upon landing.
Ability 4: Grasp of Death (Balance Adjustments)
- This ability no longer restricts your movement the closer you move to the center. You are only prevented from moving outside the max radius of this effect.
- Instead, players moving away from the center will have their movement speed reduced.
- Goals: Give players more flexibility with how they fight against Grasp of Death. Before it was difficult to help a trapped teammate as you heavily restricted your movement. This was on top of making it very difficult to dodge Persephone’s incoming attacks.