By Jason Parker (Ragachak)
The latest God/Goddess from Hirez’s SMITE is a member of the Roman Pantheon! And she’s kind of a big deal. Terra, Grandmother to Jupiter – she’s basically the Earth taken shape. She is the trees, the rivers, mountains, and plains. Everything that is, is her. She fell in love with Ouranos, the Sky, and their children, the Titans, would up get buried deep in the Earth. AWK. WARD.
This starts a pretty horrific chain of events, where Saturn would rule, fear that one of his children would usurp him, and wound up destroying them by eating them. His. God. Damn. Children. Like a shark! Mythology is weird, folks. But entertaining! It’s like Jerry Springer for Gods. Anyway, Terra is a Guardian in SMITE and is represented by a She-Hulk style figure, taller than many of the Gods, a firm, muscular frame. Certainly bigger than many characters, but not in a way that will be awkward to deal with, Terra fits the build of a Guardian well.
She’s got it all: Strength, mobility, disruption, and a damn global ult that can really make someone have a bad day if they aren’t ready. It’s not game breaking but it sure is vexing! And one of the most beautiful things, you don’t just have to build tank items! There are some terrific options for her, like Mantle of Discord for the stun, the various healing items if you’re going to be in a duo lane, et cetera.
She’s listed as a “Hard” God, and I can definitely see that. She’s 100% about positioning, preparation and understanding the terrain. Oh, this one’s gonna be filled with gags, I can see it. Options? She’s got ‘em. Yeah, baby, she’s got it. What? You guys don’t like Bananarama? Moving on. The Pros and cons are always opinions. There are lots of good and bad things you can say about a God. These are just the ones that stood out the most to me. For example: she’s melee with only one escape, and her CC can be avoided with awareness.
+ Utility: Absolutely ludicrous levels of compatibility and utility. AOE heal, the Stones can stop people as well as offer a ricochet off of them. Her ult is global, and she can double dash in the right situations.
+ CC: As long as a Stone is up, she can apply a slow. Proper use of her “2” can stun whole teams at once. I’ve gotten four at once. She is the embodiment of the wombo-combo dream. Pair her with people like Fenrir for hilarious results.
+Damage: Not only that, but it’s a TON of area damage. Breaking her “3” does AOE damage, dashing through stones creates a cone of damage. And it’s solid, serious damage if you build even a little magical damage. Unlike my favorite Guardian [Ares], you have a lot of freedom in what you can build. I wouldn’t forsake tank items for damage items, but her area of effect cannot be ignored.
- Placement: She requires a LOT of attention to detail. It’s hard to land basically all of her abilities. If you aren’t paying 100% attention, you’ll whiff abilities, people will just exit areas of effect and in general, it will just be a bad time to be you.
- Her 2: God, it pops so slow. The activation time feels like a second or more, so it is pretty simple to avoid if you aren’t deep between the stones. This is one of the hardest parts of being Terra. But there are great ways to use it.
- CDs/Costs: Costs are pretty solid all around but her minimum Cooldown is 15 seconds. If you misplay that dash and don’t hit a stone to dash free? You’re in a bad spot my friend.
One of the beautiful things about Terra is you don’t really have to put her in the duo lane. I can absolutely see her being in the solo lane if the opponent is also melee’. Again you have to be aware of what the other team is doing. But she will no doubt shine in the duo, but if you leave her alone, she can ult your duo lane, helping that kill lane be all the more efficient. I would, however, avoid pitting her against serious ranged damage in any capacity by herself. Between her cooldowns and being melee, they will eat her alive and no amount of early game tankiness will save her. There will be a temptation to build her with a pure damage/bruiser build: AVOID. THIS. FASCINATION. I absolutely cannot see this going well unless you have another tank and even then I would avoid this like the plague. Her AOE is impressive, but she’s not going to replace Bakasura or Kali anytime soon.
One of the best things to pair her with is more Crowd Control (and goes without saying, coordination with a teammate). You can use her stun to set up new crowd control/kill combinations with say Fenrir, prepare Odin’s ult so they can’t get away. You can also throw up her walls to stop people from running and let your team catch up. The name of the game with her is position and team composition. No matter where she is, she’s a threat once she has access to her ultimate. Someone’s being ganked and they need an out? Slap that ult down to turn the tide, but don’t use it willy-nilly! I’d avoid using it for just one person, but in a dire emergency, do what must be done!
I can see her being efficient with many of the Hunters in the duo lane, but so far my favorites are probably Artemis or Skadi. With more crowd control and hefty single target damage, you can set up a lot of unfavorable positions with the roots, slip-and-slide ice patch, and walls. It all spells a really unfortunate lane for your foes if there is teamwork and positioning. If you cannot be aware of the range of your skills, exactly what they do when out/when smashed with her dash, you cannot be effective. Practice, Practice, Practice.
Passive: Standing Stones [Buff]:
When you activate any of Terra’s abilities, it creates a Standing Stone, a rocky outcropping. As long as any Standing Stone is up, she is Knock-up Immune and her basic attacks will slow enemies [30%]. The buff remains for 3 seconds post shattering. This can make a few ults absolutely worthless if you see them coming and can drop your Monolith. You can also use the Standing Stones with correct positioning to stop people from dashing and grabbing [Looking at you, Khepri]. If they can’t finish the run, they can’t snatch you up! You can use them to retreat from a fight, to set up wall bouncing powers, and most important: You do not have to break them! Sometimes it’s better to have the buff than wasting it trying to dash and do damage.
1: Force of Nature [Dash]:
Terra dashes forward, doing damage to enemies she passes through. She doesn’t stop at enemy Gods, and just keeps on dashing; not a super long one, though. She can use this to dash through Standing Stones, and if she does she can dash again within three seconds. The damage of the dash is not impressive, but it’s also your only initiate/escape, so be aware of the 15-second cooldown. Shattering stones with it also can activate other brief buffs.
2: Crushing Earth [Ground Target]:
Terra raises a pair of flat standing stones equidistant from each other. Enemies between them are slowed by 20% as long as the stones stand. You can activate it again, smashing anyone caught [50/85/120/155/190 +35% of Magical Power] as well as stunning them for 1.5 seconds. It’s very hard to land this from a distance and can be pretty hard to stun people with it if they see it coming. If you dash through these walls, it creates a cone of damage [60/110/160/210/260 +35% of Magical Power]. You can, with a good distance/angle shatter both stones at once, doing quite a lot of damage to anyone unfortunate enough to be standing there. You can stun as many Gods as can stand in the space between the stones. It’s also a tremendous way to set up combos for other Gods. My favorite way to use it is to pop 3, dash through it, root everyone, then drop 2 since nobody can escape. Too easy for people to casually walk away from the stun. It’s also worth mentioning that you can put it in someone’s run path and catch them with the slow. As long as it stays standing you can keep slowing them with punches.
3: Monolith [Ground Target]: Terra summons a Standing Stone in the shape of a Monolith which radiates healing energy. The monolith heals [5/10/15/20/25 + 5% of Magical Power] nearby allies every .5 seconds. You can also shatter it to root the enemies in the field for 1.5 seconds and creates a damaging area [15/20/25/30/35 +5% of Magical Power per tick] for 5 seconds. This is her highest cooldown outside of her ultimate, and a fantastic thing to drop in a team fight.
Ultimate: Terra’s Blessing [Global Buff]:
Terra sends a wave of earthly power throughout the arena of battle, casting her blessing upon all of her allies. While active, Terra and her allies gain Movement Speed [30%], Reduced Mana Costs [100%], and Reduced Cooldowns [20/25/30/35/40%]! She and her allies also gain four floating stones around them and if they take damage four times, they pop and heal [100/200/300/400/500% + 30% of Magical Power]. Let’s say the key of this again: 100%. Reduced. Mana. Costs. I do not believe it will crack the CDR cap, but it will reach it if you aren’t there. There are so many damn uses for this ult, and yes it has a 110-second cooldown; you can surely see why. It’s a game changer if you activate it at the right time. It’s easy to waste though, and I in my greed/paranoia have done just that.
Speaking of skills, I tend to start 1, 2, then 3. I start leveling my 3 first, then 2. I don’t worry about leveling my Dash until much later in the game. Of course, every time you can level your ult, you should absolutely do it. You don’t get to lower cooldowns by leveling, so it’s all about what damage/healing buff you need more. If you need the heal more, focus on 3. Otherwise, maybe you’ll want to level her 2 instead.
Items are pretty damn important for her, though, but at least you have options. You have so many of them! One of the most core items for me is Bulwark of Hope, followed likely by Lotus Crown. Anything that can keep me in a fight longer is something I want. The Bulwark shield coupled with Lotus Crown’s defense bonuses during a heal will make her 3 a greater threat than before. Ritual Dagger is a good choice but not one of my core “must build” items. The bonus to Relics is nice, it has a lot of useful stats like Movement Speed. My favorite Relics for her though are Purification [if they have heavy CC], Shell, Sprint or Curse. I have to say that my favorite, must-builds for her are:
- Bulwark of Hope
- Lotus Crown
- Mantle of Discord [AOE Stun? YES. PLEASE.]
And yes, boots. Boots are important. Boots of Focus are probably your best bet, and the last two spots I build with whatever I need. If I’m really ahead and feeling tanky I might grab Rod of Asclepius or Ethereal Rod, but it’s more likely that I’ll pull Sovereignty, Spirit Robe, or maybe Dynasty Plate Helm. I love it and I won’t apologize for it. Look at whoever is doing the most damage and build around it. Maybe grab some health instead if you’re feeling cocky/in the lead, or your enemy mage and carry are getting fed equally.
Being able to be at the right place at the right time is what makes Terra so scary. She can disrupt most peoples’ plans, make most dashes worthless, and completely ruin a few ultimates. But she’s not without weakness. There are Gods who can absolutely ruin her day and shut her down with a keystroke. Like Ratatoskr, my least favorite God! I wouldn’t even bother trying to catch him with a stun or a root. He’s just going to giggle that satanic, evil giggle and dash away for free. Nox is infuriating because of the root, pinning you where her friends can stomp on you. Susano and Jing Wei are also in this camp. If they can move quickly and suddenly, I’d not waste my stun with Terra, unless you’re 100% sure they can’t get away.
Conversely, pairing her with other Gods with slows, walls, or stuns is a godsend. Sure it’s not a great idea to have two Guardians in many cases, but I’d love to see Terra and Ymir on the same team, making someone’s life miserable. Plus Ymir can pack on the damage too! Be aware of your surroundings – don’t be afraid to throw up Monolith or Crushing Earth in a tight space to prevent movement or to force your foes to move where you want them to be. The bottom line is that Terra is powerful and very disruptive. She’s a force of nature for any map or mission; and the best part? You can’t nerf her into the ground. Huh? Huh? Okay, I’m done.