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Smite World Championships begin in Atlanta with $500K first prize

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The Smite World Championships begin today in Atlanta, with a prize pool of $1 million and a first prize of $500,000.

Ten teams from around the world are competing in the team-based third-person MOBA, in which a variety of godlike characters fight one another as well as environmental enemies to control territory.

European champions Paradigm and North American champions Cloud 9 get a pass to the last eight of the contest. The other teams are Enemy, Epsilon, Fnatic, Avant Garde, Pain Gaming, Isurus Gaming, Oh My God B and Qiao Gu Reapers.

Smite publisher Hi-Rez generally makes new announcements at the World Championships, and this year is no exception. Changes include the introduction of Daily Quests and a a 3v3 Joust League. A new Japanese pantheon of gods has also been unveiled, starting with Amaterasu, the Goddess of the Sun, who is playable starting Jan. 12 on PC and late February on Xbox One. The company released a cinematic trailer (above) to promote this year's tournament, which is being streamed on Twitch.

You can find out more about Smite by reading our recent feature.