Hi-Rez Studios has announced that team Pittsburgh Knights has won the 2021 SMITE Pro League World Championship, taking home the $400,000 first prize after a year of intense competition.
This Season 7 of the SMITE World Championship (SWC) was contested by a global roster of incredible professional, semi-professional and amateur teams competing together across both PC and console for a chance to win a piece of the $600,000 prize pot.
This year’s SWC finals – held entirely online – saw Ghost Gaming, Radiance, Pittsburgh Knights, Radiance, Renegades, and Sanguine Esports duke it out for the final crown. With Pittsburgh Knights and Ghost Gaming progressing through the quarter and semi finals, the stage was set for the grand showdown.
Pittsburgh Knights took an early lead from Ghost, winning the first two matches with some clever strategy and skillful reactive play. In an incredible show of fortitude Ghost rallied and won the next two matches, tying both teams 2-2.
The momentum of the epic final match went back and forth, with both sides stealing the lead throughout. However, it was Pittsburgh Knights who managed to secure victory, with Paul notably making a stack of huge plays. Pittsburgh Knights gave an outstanding display of team play to win 3-2, making them back-to-back SWC winners.
Season 7 of the SWC was only one feature of what has been the best ever year for Hi-Rez Studios’ incredibly popular mythical MOBA. Announced at last week’s Hi-Rez Showcase event, SMITE’s Season 8: Dawn of Babylon will be even better, with an all-new evolving Babylonian pantheon Conquest map (first in 3 years), new Gods (including Tiamat and Gilgamesh), new battle passes, new collaborations and plenty more esports action throughout the year.
Season 8 will also usher in a new era of the SMITE Pro League, with Hi-Rez Studios revitalising the structure by bringing all eight Pro League teams in-house. This will give teams and players many more opportunities for direct sponsorship and increased revenue. Among the updates are:
Teams will have all-new names and branding.
Player & coach salaries will be completely standardised and will increase significantly from the base salary requirements in Season 7.
Teams / players will have the opportunity to secure their own sponsorships to further supplement their base income.
Hi-Rez will also offer 100% revenue sharing to the players on all sales of merchandise or in-game items for their team, effectively cutting out the “middle man” and allowing players to reap the full benefits of their promotional efforts.
“This year’s SWC has been the most popular yet, with viewership rocketing 180% from 2019 to 2020 thanks to intense rivalries, dramatic personal stories and epic gaming moments,” said Stew Chisam, Hi-Rez Studios CEO. “We congratulate Pittsburgh Knights on their huge achievement and thank all the incredible teams and players for delivering an incredible season of world class esports”.
For the final rankings and all the action from the SMITE Pro League World Championship please visit www.smiteproleague.com.
To catch up on all the announcements from the Hi-Rez Showcase, including a schedule of panels and announcements, please visit www.hirezshowcase.com. The ‘Hi-Rez Presents’ keynote address can be re-watched on each title’s official Twitch channels:
Rogue Company: www.twitch.tv/roguecompany
SMITE is the online Battleground of the Gods, a mythology-themed action game for PC and consoles. Since launching in Europe and North America in March 2014, SMITE has quickly established itself as the #1 MOBA on console, with over 30 million players. Themed around gods of mythology and offering a third-person camera and more game modes than any other leading game in its genre, the game provides a unique, action-packed experience that puts the player in the thick of the action. SMITE is free-to-play on PC through Steam and the Epic Games Store, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Switch. For more information on SMITE, visit www.smitegame.com.
About Hi-Rez Studios:
Based in Alpharetta, Georgia, Hi-Rez Studios is an industry-leading video game publisher and developer at the forefront of the games-as-a-service industry. Hi-Rez Studios’ games have been played by more than 70 million people worldwide across PC, Xbox One®, PlayStation®4, Nintendo Switch™, iOS and Android. With multiple games regularly among the Top 10 free-to-play games on Steam, Hi-Rez Studios is one of the few Western developers to have successfully launched multiple, multi-platform games-as-a-service titles to a large audience. Having won multiple awards and accolades for innovation and technology, Hi-Rez Studios has also been recognised for its company culture, leadership and diversity as an employer. More information about Hi-Rez Studios can be found at: www.hirezstudios.com.