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How to support! ~ S6 (Gameplay, tips, tierlists and more!)

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Welcome!



Hi! Welcome to my first non-god guide in this website. In this guide, we will be covering all supports (guardian and non-guardians) in SMITE, a support's functions in the game, playstyles, each god's pros and cons, abilities, and much more! So let's get it started!


ADVERTISEMENT: This guide is specially made for you if you have in mind your support god abilities, and playstyle. You might want to read a guide about the god you want to learn (or if you want to learn them all, informate about them all) before starting to read this guide. Recommended guides about gods in this support guide are for your disposal here.



If you wish to go straight ahead to a certain point of the guide, choose one!
Gods and guides - Functions - Initiation and peeling - Healing - Crowd control - Map awareness - Warding - Building - Tierlists - Conclusion.


What do they do?

Supports are meant to be the strongest part in the team when it comes to defense. They are able to take high ammounts of damage for their teammates, tank objectives such as fire giant and gold fury, tank minion waves or jungle camps, or towers / phoenixes / titan. All of this is because of their high protections and health. Supports have a variety of hard and soft CCs, combined with low scaling but high base damage abilities (most of them).
They are also recognized for they capabilities of initiate teamfights with their CC abilities, and peeling for their allies with their abilities. Some of them can do other utile things like healing teammates, buffing them, debuffing enemies, reviving allies, negate damage, displacing enemies, and more.


It's very important for you as a support to not buy damage items (or if you want damage, don't exceed it). Usually the support isn't looking to damage the enemies. As all the supports have good crowd control, that's their main strenght. They almost always have high base damages, and their abilities don't scale. For example, we can see Solar Flare by Khepri with only a 30% magical power scaling. A few reasonable damage options are listed in the building chapter some chapters below.







Essential strenghts:

Initiation and peel



What are those?



Initiating is refering to the ability to start a fight. Initiation must be done with an ability that contains crowd control, if possible. Any kind of crowd control that an enemy can't avoid without using Purification Beads or Magi's Cloak enters in this category. If you can't afford initiating with crowd control, do it with a strong zoning ability or a leap - dash ( Circle of Protection, Throw Back, etc).


Example of INITIATION:


You're Serqet support. The enemy team and your allies and you are all around the fire giant, trying to zone each other out. None of them, neither none of you are willing to fight, because the team that loses the fight might lose the game.


As serqet, you have 3 ways of initiating. These being:


> Cobra's Kiss. Taunting the enemy is always effective when it comes to initiation. You can pick two enemies in madness (to attack each other). If you afford to do this, most of the times with help of teammates, these enemies will die.

> Last Breath. This one is very simple: pick mostly a backliner, reduce their healing to 0 and pull it to your team. Easy food for your children!

> Ambush. Jump on the enemy to create chaos in the battleground. Be sure to be followed by your team, so they can catch up your following moves.



Peel is the skill to separate an enemy for your team's benefit. This is everyone's job, but our guardians will do it better since their kits are designed for that. Peeling is a little bit harder for non-guardian supports, but it's possible with the correct mind-set and perseverance!



Example of PEELING:



You're Discordia support. Your allied ADC, Rama, is getting dived by Bellona, a high damage character, very tanky, and casually his biggest counter with damage reflect and disarms. Chang'e, the enemy support, used Waxing Moon over him, and he is about to die. Rama can't do anything, since he dashed away from them, but Bellona used Eagle's Rally.


As discordia, you have 3 ways of peeling:


> Golden Apple of Discord. This ability will cripple bellona, and will help Rama to runaway, since the intoxication in this ability will make bellona strive from side to side like crazy. This will give enough time for Rama to come hide behind you, or walk away / dash away if his cooldowns are ready again.

> Strife. Use your root (or madness if possible) in Bellona. if she is catched alone, she will receive a high ammount of damage, and be separated from Rama for a short time, but the time is enough for him to escape. If you manage to catch Bellona and the imaginary enemy support, Chang'e, this ability will progress in CC and damage, causing Bellona to be far away from Rama, and most of the times do enough damage to put her in a threat if she doesn't retreats.

> Erratic Behavior and Unruly Magic. This will make Bellona think twice about diving into the ADC, since she should expect you to deal a high ammount of damage. It can't be as useful as the other two options for peeling, but it's possible when your other abilities are on cooldown. Dealing damage is a good way to stop an enemy (Peeling).



The main resource for initiation and peel is abilities.

We can see a lot of abilities have a good initiation and peel potential, but only our supports have the best of them. Playing as support, most of the times makes you a frontliner (Even though gods as Chang'e or Aphrodite aren't such frontliners but can take some damage for teammates and be on the front line situationally). This means that you're the one to make the first move in any fight.

Let's put two examples:

Vicious Barrage can't initiate or peel.


Why can't Vicious Barrage initiate or peel?



Vicious Barrage belongs to the projectile class.

Most of the times, projectile are not an effective tool for these two situations, less even if these projectiles have no CC included. Vicious Barrage is an example of this last category.



Often, the initiation and peel tools we will find are:

Hard CC
Confound
Frost Breath
Strife


Soft CC
Life Tap
Hook Slam
Solar Flare
Displacement
Abduct
Back Off!
Charge Prey


Area attacks
Earthen Fury
Sentinel of Zeus
Wrath of Terra



Monolith can peel and initiate.




Why can Monolith peel and initiate?


Monolith belongs to the area attack - ground target class.
This ability has all you need. A solid root, some damage, and what's more important, covers a very big area.
It can lock in place a lot of enemies in only one simple move.



This can allow your teammates to do things such as:

Aim better
Death Gaze
Taiko Drums
Astral Barrage


Hitting channeling
abilities
Plague of Locusts
Valkyrie's Discretion
One Thousand Cuts
Basic attacking





Escaping succesfully











Other secondary strenghts:

Healing



What is healing?



Healing is the capability of regenerating a portion of your own health or your allies' missing health. This can be done by multiple ways, but in this category we're judging supports by their capability of team healing with abilities.



The supports that can heal allies are:


___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___

___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___

We differenciate these gods in two groups: healers, and gods with healing.

The trinity of healers contains Aphrodite, Chang'e and Hel. These three goddess, are mainly recognized for their capability to heal insanely constantly and by a high ammount, denying the enemy damage and being able to survive longer in fights and lanes. These gods have mana problems, since their basic attacks are irrelevant; they have to be constantly using abilities, which means a big drain of mana.

The gods with healing contain healing in their kit, but these are situationally used. Some of them have an area where you have to stand to be healed, such as Isis. Then, you have situational healing, which can be healing when you damage an enemy, like Baron Samedi or Artio, or normal healing, like Guan Yu and Horus. These gods aren't recognized for their healing capabilities, but they also can heal, which boostes their performance in the support role.




What are the fortitudes of healing?

Helping gods that need
constant healing
Artemis
Anubis
Arachne


Ignore high damage
abilities
Expose Evil
Razor Whip
Overflowing Divinity


Kill objectives easily







Surviving longer









Crowd control




What is crowd control?


As the word says it, crowd control means controlling crowds. Crowd control are actions that limit or block the enemy gods from doing determinated things such as moving, basic attacking, casting abilities, healing, etc.

Also known as CC, crowd control is essential for a support. The ability to help your team to kill someone or the ability to peel is the first thing that you need to be able for support.




Crowd control types (ordered from least to most powerful):


__Slows___


__Cripples__


__Disarms___


___Roots__


___Silences__


_Mesmerizes__


__Polymorphs__


___Stuns___


__Taunts__


__Madnesses__


__Knockbacks__


Knockups__


Pulls & grabs__











Now, crowd control is used for a lot of things, but it's main usage it's keeping an enemy in a bad position. This, also heads us to the next quality a support needs:



MAP AWARENESS





Before giving you any defition of what map awareness is, i want to see how prepared are you for this chapter. Let's do a little test:



You are Artio. You were always known for having an insane ammount of damage in such a tanky character. You're heading to mid lane, where you find Ra. Ra hasn't wasted any of his abilities yet, neither his relics, but he is attacking the tower, in an awful positioning. As relics, Ra has Purification Beads and Aegis Amulet. You have Blink Rune and Horrific Emblem. Their jungler, Bastet, isn't nowhere to be seen, and Set, your jungler, is ganking the duo lane, with the help of your ADC Sol. Bastet killed your mid laner, Discordia, several times, so she has the timers of all the camps in the game, except for the blue buff from your solo laner, Erlang Shen.


What do you do?


A) You blink in the Ra and stun him with Ferocious Roar. Followed act, you dash with Heavy Charge, cancel it and use Maul Prey. You swap to druid form, and smash all your abilities until he dies.

B) You start Life Tapping the Ra from behind, until he gets rooted. You cripple him and throw Horrific Emblem, then you swap to bear form and stun him, and you use Heavy Charge to finish him off.

C) You blink on the Ra and use Horrific Emblem. After this, you cripple him, Life Tap him and switch to bear form to stun him with Ferocious Roar. You Maul Prey him to finish off.

D) You use Heavy Charge heading to lane and next, Ferocious Roar, cripple him with Entangling Vines, use horrific emblem and then you use whatever ability is up.

E) You dash in the Ra, then use all your damaging abilities and you tower dive him with your crowd control, smashing all keys in your keyboard.


Think about it, tricky one

I still don't get it. What the hell is map awareness?

Map awareness is knowing the map as the palm of your hands. You have to constantly be looking to the map to calculate where the enemy can be, or where you can rotate in time, or whatever you want to do. Map awareness in the support role is more important than in any other role, since you're the one to protect your teammates. Map awareness englobates tracking your enemies' position and tracking your allies' position.


Map awareness and invading go together as one. To invade, for example, a void camp, you must know where the enemies are. NEVER invade if you have no vision of the mid laner or jungler. It's too dangerous, and if the enemy jungler has a good early game, like Serqet, Erlang Shen, Ymir, between others, you and your ADC will most of the times die. In any terms if the jungler has a bad early game is still a bad idea to invade, because you will get outnumbered and all junglers can kill someone with a support's help. If you really want to invade, call your allies. Your jungler, your mid laner. Invade and leave. Teamfighting in the enemy jungle so early can be a problem.



Let's see an example of how to invade + having map awareness.





Situation: You're Terra as support.
Thoth, your friendly mid laner, is clearing the mid harpies. Apollo, your ADC, is clearing minions in the duo lane. Susano, your jungler, helped Baron Samedi to back to base, clearing his minions in the solo lane. He is getting poked by Zhong Kui, but nothing to worry about.

You're about to invade the enemy damage camp. You really want that for the advantage of your team, but... There is 1/5 enemies in the map.

But what does this mean? I can invade fast and run away! I'm a genius! hehehe.

Well... no. You put yourself at a high risk. There are way too many possible situations. You have no track of Isis, which means she can be rotating to whichever lane, she can be about to take a fight against Thoth for mid harpies, or even worse, she can be at the damage camp, with her jungler King Arthur.
Then, aside from that, Jormungandr, the enemy support, and Neith, the enemy ADC are nowhere to be seen in this map. They can be in base as much as they can be clearing the void camp or helping Isis in the damage camp.
ALSO, King Arthur is also missing in the mini map. He can be directing towards any of your allies, which means you're in an extremelly stupid position. You could be around Apollo for his safety, or helping Thoth to clear the mid harpies.

What can you lose from failing the invade?

1) You can miss the last hit and all the rotation has been in vain, and you might put yourself a little behind. Very simple.
2) You die to Isis. Now, she has more gold than Thoth, situation that is very bad for your mid laner because Isis has fabulous pressure, damage, and crowd control. Now she has a lead in XP, kills, and as i already mentioned, gold. She has more items than Thoth, and can get a solo kill on him, Susano, or Apollo.
3) You die to King Arthur. He now gets a lead, and potentially a new item. Your jungler, Susano, a squishy-as-hell character, can now be completely destroyed by King Arthur. Also Thoth has the same chances of dying in King Arthur's hands. Or even you can lose a gold fury, which can lead to lose a fire giant, which can lose to lose a titan.
4) You get 4-man ganked. Neith, Jormungandr, Isis and King Arthur had that zone warded, and as you can see you have poor vision in the map. They all go in and you try to run away, spamming help in the VGS chat and pinging the map. This might bring Thoth and Apollo to help you, but you're still out-numbered, which means you can easily lose the teamfight, give the enemy 3 kills, a free gold fury and a middle tower.



As you can see, no one of those options actually happened, but Isis and Neith leveled up at the same time you just walked from oracles to damage camp. This means you're now behind, and you need to farm more.


That's why you need map awareness. You have to be here and there, help your mid laner escaping from the solo laner, help your jungler chase an ADC, help your ADC clear the gold fury faster... You need to be up for everything all the time! Lack of map awareness is the main reason why people think support is boring or they just don't want to play it.








Map awareness conducts us to another point recquired:


WARDING



___ ___

Warding is very important as any character, but support warding is mostly important overall. Some people, altough we're already in season 6, still think warding is only a support function. Everyone has to ward! But you're the only one rotating all over the map constantly, so it's very easy for someone like you to ward.


How do I know where do i have to ward?


If you have no idea where to ward, let me tell you that you can ward in barely any place, but if you want more specific ideas, don't worry friend! I have all the answers for you here.



Warding from ahead



Warding from behind



Warding from even (Tied)









How to build your support

Building




Learning how to build correctly is essential for being a good support! Building is very hard, because each god has strenghts and weaknesses and different playstyles. Some of them are more agressive, some of them are more utility based, some of them are healers... But here, there are builds for everyone! Open the spoiler for the god that you want to build.




Warriors and assassins




Healers (Aphrodite, Hel, Chang'e)




Guardians + Baron Samedi, Discordia, Isis, Nox










Tierlists

Tierlist based on this guide



Tierlists are subjective. Each person bases on different points of view over each god to make a tier list. I made this tierlist with my opinion and nothing else. I'll leave SPL and experienced player's tierlists down this one.





Legend


Comment on every single god respectively to their placement



EmilZy's Support Tier List for Ranked


Wraithyn's Support Tier List for BEGGINERS


Weak3n's General Support Tier List


TheOtherFrost Tier List for Guardian + Hunters










Conclusion

Thanks for reading! This guide will be updated over time with more information, like gameplay in early game, mid game and late game... But i was excited to publish this exact guide for you all, so i hope you enjoy it for now! Kisses for every1.


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Original Odin | September 13, 2019 1:31pm
This is an awesome guide and frankly, smitefire needs more guides like this. I would absolutely love to see guides like this for each role. I especially like the part in warding about playing from ahead, behind and even. So many players have no idea how to make adjustments when ahead or behind and play the game the same regardless of the situation. I only gave it a cursory read but can confidently say this guide is a breath of fresh air.
2
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CafPow | August 29, 2019 4:37am
you mention Hel later with Chang'e and Aphro. Yet she's missing in the "Main Lineup" at the very beginning. Accident or Purpouse?
Yet a very helpful guide, i kinda love guardians cause i live longer. (i'm to stupid for Hunters and Assassins, so i go with the tanky boys/girls). I'm sure this helps me a lot.
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[-]
FootFetish (3) | August 29, 2019 9:07am
hi! yeah, it was a mistake :/ i'm on it rn. supports r the best bbbeettcch
2
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Branmuffin17 (287) | August 28, 2019 2:15am
Holy hell, you did a lot of work, Fetish. Very nice.

I will hopefully have some other comments soon, but as I speed-read most of your guide, I'd say you did a solid job overall. Long guides take a lot of dedication.
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[-]
FootFetish (3) | August 28, 2019 6:14am
thank you very much bran :) i appreciate it
2
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Branmuffin17 (287) | August 28, 2019 3:26pm
Alright, some further feedback:
  • Why is Chang'e listed? Yes, she can help pressure wave with her 1, heal a bit and anti-heal with her 3, and has solid CC in her ult, but traditionally, I think she's used less than, say, Hel, who is not listed. Any reason for that? I guess the question is, how far out of meta do you want to go? Because you also list Hades, who at this point is also not a common one to use.

  • Rather than just have the block of all gods, you might consider separating Guardians, Warriors, Assassins, and Mages into their own groupings.

  • In your summary of a Support (what do they do, 1st box), you say tanking due to high protections. Although that is the majority of it, I think mentioning the combo of protections AND health is better. You might also emphasize that, due to the utility of their abilities, they often also want some some CDR for more ability use.

  • In your section talking about initiation, I think not mentioning Blink Rune as an initiation tool is a major oversight. Sure, not all Supports can use it well, but for those that don't have a quick mobility ability like a leap/dash, this can often be their way to start a fight.

  • You say that being a support usually makes you a front liner. I'd argue that as being too general. There are plenty of supports that have a playstyle that's either sticking close to the teammate, or only sometimes being the frontliner. Or I dunno, maybe I'm thinking of this differently than you are.

  • You say Piercing Cold can't peel. You do mention it has a slow, but that it's hard to hit. Being hard to hit doesn't mean it can't peel. Technically, a slow is a form of CC that can help peel. Basically, I don't like this example.

  • You can also purchase Gem of Isolation and give your abilities higher capability to add some peel/control.

  • In your examples of tools, you call out specific abilities. Personally, I'd prefer calling out a specific type of function, like under Hard CC using Stun, and then in parentheses giving an example of an ability that provides that CC type.

  • In your CC section, you say ordered from most to least powerful, but it looks opposite, as you have slows listed first, and pulls/grabs, knockups etc. last. Also...you list protection reduction as CC, and that's not CC.

  • If you want to get further in-depth on warding, you might also include warding locations when towers are down and you're warding closer to the bases in some cases.

  • Emilzy has a newer tier list you might want to use instead.
Anyway, again, good job. I like that you give example situations and explain things. I'm not going to comment on your own tier list, as that's subjective.
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1
[-]
Gulfwulf (64) | August 27, 2019 6:25pm
Quoted:
Piercing Cold belongs to the Proyectile class.

Proyectile class? I know it's a typo, but it's still funny. ;)
2
[-]
FootFetish (3) | August 27, 2019 6:42pm
wait what? what's funny about that? is my grammar that bad? XD
2
[-]
Gulfwulf (64) | August 27, 2019 6:59pm
It's spelled projectile with a j, not a y.
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3
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xmysterionz (47) | August 27, 2019 10:16am
Hello Foot,

First of all, congrats for your new guide, I glanced it and it seems to be very good, with a lot of details.

I would just recommend you put some footnotes to navigate through the guide, like there is in my Cupid guide, to help people navigate.

An Example:


Here is the code if you want:
click to see the code

I won't talk about what is written because support is my worst role so, you know, I won't talk about something I am not sure.

For last, thank you for recommend my Cerberus guide <3
1
[-]
FootFetish (3) | August 27, 2019 5:40pm
Hi Mys!

Thank you very much! I did tried to add everything that came to my mind. Thanks for noticing it :)

I did put the navigation tab in the first chapter XD, i guess that you haven't seen it because it has no rulers between... i'll add them so it's more visible. Thank you!

Your Cerberus guide is flawless! no need to thank me!
2
[-]
xmysterionz (47) | August 28, 2019 4:16am
Yeah, I saw, but I was trying to say that you should include it on every chapter, at the end.
Load more comments (1 more replies) →
1
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Gulfwulf (64) | August 27, 2019 9:49pm
Sure you'll mention his Cerb guide but won't mention my Kuzenbo guide. I see how it is. :P
Load more comments (2 more replies) →
1
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Kriega1 (85) | August 27, 2019 7:15am
Discordia can be a support???

Also,

>"How to Build Support"

"Assassin/Warriors:"

"Rangda's Mask."

This must have been a mistake. Then again it is listed under offensive options. Also no Lono's Mask for assassins and the support mages that aren't Hel/Chang'e/Aphro ?

>" Achilles: But really, he has poor peel and no initiation, "

No initation? Just pickup blink and 1 a squishy. Unless you meant group initiation, like Sylvanus/Geb have with their ult.
1
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FootFetish (3) | August 27, 2019 7:31am
Hi kriega,

Yes, Discordia can be a support. It has been tested several times with the correct building by not only me but SPL players and players of the minor league too.

Rangda's Mask... yeah, i meant that to be only a warrior option, not assassin, but thank you. i'll ad a note down there.

Achilles has some single-player initiation, but yes i meant group initiation.
1
[-]
Kriega1 (85) | August 27, 2019 8:05am
FootFetish wrote:

Rangda's Mask... yeah, i meant that to be only a warrior option, not assassin, but thank you. i'll ad a note down there.


No what I meant was, why are you building Rangda's Mask on a support? It's a pure damage/selfish item that doesen't even give defensive stats, and makes you squishier. It's more of an item for a warrior or guardian jungle.
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ThePerfectPrism (52) | August 27, 2019 7:11am
Hey Foot! I hope you find success in your endeavors with this guide! Thank you for mentioning my Athena and Terra guide, I do feel quite honored. Now, moving onto some feedback:

I've skimmed through part of the guide, but I did pay more attention to the areas you've put more BBCoding in, and there are some grammar issues (Challenged Abilities, I think you meant Channeling or something like that) but they're easily overlooked. Overall, your information looks solid where it needs to be solid, and I think you can improve on the BBCodimg of this guide. Something more polished, with more tables and such. Nevertheless, you have my upvote and a cheers from me!
1
[-]
FootFetish (3) | August 27, 2019 7:34am
Hi prism!! first of all, thank you so much for your upvote. It means a lot to me.
Your guides are great and complete! don't thank me, thank you!

BBCoding is still somehow hard for me, since i always need to have tabs with BBCode help opened. I'm kinda new to the site and i don't know all the commands, but i'll try to add more emphasis in what is more important.

I do have some spelling problems, since english is not my birth language. I learned mainly because i listen to a lot of music in english and it's cool to know more than one language. Also smite as a game and this site helped me to learn more english. But i'll check it :D!

Thank you again!!
2
[-]
ThePerfectPrism (52) | August 27, 2019 7:40pm
Hey I can't criticize you friend, English isn't my native tongue either
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League of Legends Build Guide Author FootFetish
How to support! ~ S6 (Gameplay, tips, tierlists and more!)
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