Top 5 Smite Best Duel Gods

Are you brave enough to go head to head with a single opponent in SMITE's Duel mode?
Are you brave enough to go head to head with a single opponent in SMITE's Duel mode?


    When you inevitably get to the point in SMITE where you want to strangle every teammate you are placed with and have become utterly convinced of your overwhelmingly superior skill it’s time to turn to Duel. Duel is SMITE’s 1v1 mode and in it you will either shed the anchor of your less than stellar teammates and ascend to greatness or have a reckoning with your own much more mediocre than you thought skills. Duel is even more isolated and strategic than the Solo lane in Conquest since you will have an entire map to manage on your own, constant positioning and pushing against your opponent, and no teammates to bail you out.

 

    To be successful in Duel you must strike a strategic balance between resource management, camp awareness, aggression and positioning. Where once Duel was a simple head-to-head lane push it has truly blossomed into its own independent mode and with the new map introduced in Season 7 clearing lane minions and camps is just as, if not more, important than poking and killing your solitary opponent god. Being able to clear fast allows you to gain incremental advantages on your opponent and, more importantly, scorch your way through their lane defenses whenever you are able to put them on respawn. 

 

    Unlike all the other rankings we have provided, this list is perhaps the most susceptible to dispute since success in a Duel match rests wholly on a single player’s shoulders. This means that the god you keep  in your back pocket and have a thousand mastery stars for could easily excel over gods that look more potent on paper. Knowing a god in and out, and specifically their matchup strengths, plays a massive factor in Duel. But all things being equal if you want to give yourself the most competitive advantage you can you would do well to make the following gods your choice and master them well.

 

5. KALI: KALI-MA! KALI-MA! KALI-MA!

Kali Reveal Trailer

   Did you get that Indiana Jones reference? Did you? Much like the priest in Temple of Doom, Kali, if played correctly, can utterly rip out your opponent’s still beating heart and squelch it before their very eyes. Kali was designed to be the original, and ultimate, single-target god melter and this talent makes her incredibly potent in Duel. 

    Why Kali is great for Duel:

  • Her passive gives her an immediate arm up on the competition (as if she doesn’t already have enough). Marked for Death allows Kali to select a target god (well there’s only one in Duel) and have enhanced penetration against that god plus a bonus gold drop whenever she kills her target. This means you have an immediate advantage and increase that advantage exponentially every time you best your opponent. 
  • She has fast and potent burst damage. Kali’s 1, Nimble Strike, is the fastest jump in the game and it heals her for some of whatever target she strikes health. When followed up with her 3 then 2, Incense and Lash respectively, she can stun then strike her opponent with a significant DoT attack plus follow up with several rapid auto attacks. New players will be astounded with just how quick this god can jump, drop her whole kit on you, and send you to the respawn screen. Nimble Strike and Lash is also very good at clearing waves and camps.
  • She can be temporarily unkillable. Kali’s ult, Destruction, is notable for allowing Kali to drop to 1 health but be unkillable for up to 4.5s. There’s little need to explain how useful this is in Duel. Perfect for escapes. Perfect for tower diving. Perfect for objective kills.

 

4. HEIMDALLR: ALL-SEEING, ALL-KILLING

Heimdall Reveal Trailer

    Heimdallr is the newest Hunter in SMITE and he is likely one of the most dominant Hunters ever introduced. Even after almost 10 rounds of developer nerfs he still sits head and shoulders above almost all other gods in damage. He embodies the ideal Duelist in that his answer to all situations is damage, damage, damage, and more damage. On top of his damage he lives up to his godly title of “the Vigilant” by being one of the most ungankable gods in the game due to his vision perks.

    Why Heimdallr is great for Duel:

  • Damage. That is all. 

    • Heimdallr’s auto attacks are slow but very damaging, hitting for 1.25/1.25/1.5x damage of a standard auto attack with the first two dealing AoE damage when they strike. This allows for quick lane clear and punishing boxing matches so long as you hit the slowly-timed shots.
    • His 1 allows him to launch the revealing sword to a target location up to a very long range and although slow to hit can cause devastating damage (310+85% of your physical power)
    • His 2, the Gjallarhorn, is a long range cone ability that ticks 5x and ends with a knockback blast. If you hit everything on this ability it can deal insane damage (370+180% of your physical power). It is also key to note that while enemies that are hit are slowed, Heimdallr is not and it has a range just longer than the standard auto-attack range in SMITE. This means against an enemy god you can apply much of this damage from outside their range.
    • His ult, Through the Realms, is one of the most damaging abilities in the game and very easy to hit on a single target. Heimdallr dashes forward and smacks an enemy into a portal to the Norse realms. As long as you hit the dash the ability deals ludicrous damage (830+145% of your physical power). It also reveals where the enemy will land upon returning allowing you to prepare any of your previously mentioned high damage abilities for a vulnerable enemy, if they are still alive (which most of the time they won’t be). The ult can also be used to dash to safety or, for the quick fingered, can be flicked to place the return location backwards towards your teammates or your own towerline.

 

3. IZANAMI: ZOMBIE BOOMERANGS FTW

Izanami Reveal Video

    Izanami, aside from looking as though she stumbled right off the set of the Grudge, is one of the slipperiest gods in the game and a nightmare to escape. Due to her double-hit auto-attack mechanic she will always be unparalleled in her lane clear and can be utterly devastating to towers and objectives. This combined with the rest of her burst kit allows her to be one of the most effective Duelists.

    Why Izanami is great for Duel:

  • Her auto-attack mechanic is the best in the game for wave clear. Izanami’s auto-attacks shoot out and return back like a boomerang and damage enemies on the way out and in, passing through them entirely. This allows her to strike every minion or NPC in a camp twice with every auto-attack if she is positioned correctly. This amount of clear can become oppressive against an inexperienced opponent who does not poke you.
  • She’s slippery as a girl who just crawled out of a well. Her 3, Fade Away, is one of the better movement abilities in the game. Although it has a long activation time (relative to movement abilities) it allows her to jump to a target location and become stealthed. This allows her to have some of the safer escapes in the game and set up for some of the most devastating ganks as it pairs well with her burst damage.
  • Her burst damage comes with strings. Her 2, Spectral Projection, is a wide, long, skill shot that deals significant damage and slows her target. This slow becomes heavier and heavier for each enemy she kills in the match while slowed. Her ult, Dark Portal, is a large diameter circle that deals heavy damage and silences an enemies hit, leaving them extremely vulnerable to further damage. Both of these abilities become even easier to hit when approaching enemies while stealthed. This allows her to have some of the most devastating and confirmable damage in the game.

 

2. HE BO: USED SPLASH… IT WAS SUPER EFFECTIVE

He Bo Reveal Trailer

    He Bo is one of the last pure and simple gods to be designed and put into the game. His abilities have no caveats, no wordy descriptions or lengthy effects. They are just pure, straight forward damage. And sometimes that’s all you need. 

    Why He Bo is great for Duel:

  • As stated above damage and minion/camp clear are tantamount in Duel and He Bo washes gods and minions in an onslaught of damage. I won’t even go into heavy detail, his 1, 3, and ult are all very fast activating, easy to-hit, massive damaging abilities that he can spam incredibly quickly due to their short cooldowns. Competently employing these while dodging as many attacks as you can will allow a savvy player to bully their way to victory in no time.

 

1. ANHUR: THE REAL LION KING

Anhur Reveal Trailer

    Anhur has one of the most fun and aggressive kits in the game with a heavy emphasis on single-target damage. He has very useful CC, heavy damage per shot, and significant wave clear. Masterful use of his CC allows him to trump almost any other 1 on 1 god if deployed properly and can give him a brief 1-2s window where he can punish his foes with his debilitating auto attacks. He has sat at the top of the Duel pyramid for a long time, and for good reason.

    Why Anhur is great for Duel:

  • Using map geometry he can trap you in a world of hurt. Anhur’s 2, Impale, is a long-range, high damage, skill shot that will knock back any god’s hit which can allow him to wipe minion waves and knock away attacking gods but its real utility comes from its stun. If Anhur hits an enemy into a wall or other map geometry they are stunned allowing him to easily tag them with several follow up auto attacks. His 1, Shifting Sands, summons a pillar and an AoE slow onto the map, while the slow helps during a pitched boxing match (especially since it increases the damage of his auto attacks) this ability can be used by expert players to trap fleeing enemies, absorb incoming auto attacks, and provide a pillar against which Anhur can impale his enemies. 
  • He has an aggressive jump. Anhur’s 3, Disperse, although somewhat slow, is excellent for setting up attacks. On most Hunter’s their dash/jump is preserved solely for escaping danger but Anhur’s can be used as another setup in lane. When he lands it damages all nearby enemies and knocks them back directly away from him. Due to this a skilled Anhur can knock enemies away from an escape route or simply into the air and set himself up for an easy impale, auto attacks, or a full-scale ultimate barrage.
  • His spears H U R T. Due to Anhur’s passive, Enfeeble, his auto attacks automatically reduce his targets’ protections. This coupled with the enhanced auto attack damage in his 1’s radius make each of his thrown spears absolutely lethal. And if by some miracle you survive the onslaught of his auto attacks he can fry you with his ultimate, Desert Fury. Anhur rapidly spews eight spears that can deal up to 1370 damage  (+240% of your physical power) if they all strike.

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The only challenge I like more than scraping my way to a battle royale mode victory is taming my lazy retired greyhound. I'm an absolute sucker for in-game lore and mythologies.
Gamer Since: 1992
Favorite Genre: FPS
Currently Playing: SMITE and Call of Duty: Warzone
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