Assault

The development of this map began when many of our streamers started making rules and hosting “All Random, All Mid” matches using Smite’s regular Conquest map. This player-driven mode had […]

The development of this map began when many of our streamers started making rules and hosting “All Random, All Mid” matches using Smite’s regular Conquest map. This player-driven mode had a few simple rules: players could only travel the center lane- no jungle or side lanes; once a player left the spawn area, then the shop was not allowed to be accessed again until the player’s death; recalling was not allowed; several stacking items weren’t allowed to be purchased.

In essence, and like with many other MOBA games, the players had developed their own mode. I was simply providing a specialized map for them to play it on.

This map was relatively easy to create. The framework was in place already from the older conquest map. For the first few tests, I had simply cut out the “extra” areas of the world, and re-arted the new single-lane map. Despite the scale being the same as the original level, this single lane experience made players feel as if the lane was too long. Trying to keep line-of-sight blocking and distances in mind, I went back and truncated the middle  to cut the lane size down. Additionally, I adjusted the bases to be smaller, so that players spawned closer to the fighting area than they usually would in the Conquest mode.

More playtesting showed that the original lane-widths too felt too narrow to have 10 people constantly fighting. Characters with AOE attacks felt more powerful than their non-AOE companions, and characters without leaps or escapes felt underwhelming in the suddenly cramped space. Once again, I revisited the map to expand the width of the lanes to make these instances feel less frustrating for players.

I also was responsible for adjusting player respawn times, deciding at what level and with how much gold players should start , and deciding how quickly gold spooling would happen. In this I worked closely with the programmers to make adjustments, aiming to make most matches play between 15 and 25 minutes. I also worked with the programming team to make sure that the item shop would be disabled after a player leaves the spawn area- even if he or she managed to find a way to leap back in.

When the gameplay was in a polished state, I finished working on the lighting, set dressing, and post process for the level. In some instances, I worked with the art team to develop new and more optimized materials, to try and help the level run better on low-end machines.

Update:
Assault received a visual overhaul as SMITE continued to develop its art style.