How To Work As A Core with Trixtank, Qvofred and Hurriwind
Tue 8th Oct 2019 - 10:05pm
The core is a vital part of any team in Smite, and having a strong core (support, mid and jungle) can be the difference in a game of Smite. Each role brings something different to the team, from late game damage from the ADC or strong frontline presence from the solo lane, but the three roles that interact and spend so much of the game working around one another are the three roles in the core. With that in mind we got the chance to pick the brains of our DigSmite’s support Jeppe "Trixtank" Gylling, mid laner Tyler "Hurriwind" Whitney and jungler Anders "Qvofred" Korsbo for some insight on how to effectively work well as a core.
Dictating the Early Game
Each role in the core has its own responsibilities and job to do early to allow the team to get the advantage in and around the mid lane. With the core being vital to success from the middle part of the map, everyone needs to be aware of what they need to do and how they can find an advantage over the enemy core.
Qvofred mentions that, “Being at the right places at the right times. If you want to invade as a jungler, you would have to have your support and mid help you out by being in position to come with you or apply pressure on the other side of the map to drag the enemies over there and enabling the invade.”
Invading has always been the best way to get a lead and finding the right window to utilise this and push it to your favour is vital for getting those small wins that will lead into a big lead. Having the mid and support aware of what your intentions are as a jungler will make invading easier as they can either pressure the enemy team off of you so you can sneak off and invade their camps or come with you to ensure that the camp will go to your team. It doesn’t even need to be the jungler that calls for the invade! If the mid or support is able to apply pressure or push them into a different part of the map the camp can be easily stolen, so long as they attract the attention of the enemy core.
Using map pressure allows you to invade easily and use those windows to push an advantage
As far as finding the right time to invade or initiate, there always needs to be a shot caller or someone that is willing to start off the engagement/go for the camps, etc. This is vital early, as you want to make sure that you are getting as much farm as possible on top of trying to find windows on how to get the enemy team behind.
Hurriwind says, “I think that the pace is generally determined by Trix and Fred in the very early stages of the game. Their roles are dynamic in that they are not locked down to a specific lane to farm. As the beginner stages of the game pass, I will make a stronger effort to coordinate where we want to make plays on the map.”
It is more down to the support and jungler as to what the calls are. Are you going for the invade or just want to pressure them off the wave so you can get mid camps?, etc. The mid laner can help with this, but overall it is more down to the support and the jungler as their role allows them to fluctuate around the map as Hurriwind mentioned. With them being able to wander around the map early and basically be in any lane, when they link back up with the mid laner they will look to take the reins and call for invades or be able to engage when they see fit. Don’t worry mid laners! Later in the game when you start doing damage and having more influence on fights, you will be able to dictate it more as you know who you can one-shot and who you’re strong against. Just in the early game, it’s more down to the support and jungler as to who should coordinate what should be done.
The support and jungler dictate the flow and will be primarily looking for picks
Sometimes to make sure that the core is getting the most farm possible you do have to split up and take some individual farm. I know the support early doesn’t have the clear to do it alone, so they will need to go with either the jungler or the mid laner.
Qvofred adds, “You can split up fairly often, and the support goes with whoever needs it the most at the time.”
It depends on who need the help at the time depends who the support should split with. If the jungler is doing his back camps but mid is looking for mid camps, you should look to go with the mid laner to ensure that you get the control over these camps. It all depends on where the enemy team is as well. If you have no vision of the enemy team and you are splitting in the example given, the support needs to ensure that they are looking to zone for the mid laner at the camps or be ready for the enemy team to try and jump on you. Every time you split, you need to be aware of where the enemy team is and where they could be coming from. If you saw the support and jungler go right and your jungler is looking for his back camps, they could be looking to collapse on him there, so you need to aware of the enemy movement and what is known on the map constantly in the early game.
Looking to Rotate and Don’t Starve Them
The support and jungler need to stick around the mid lane to apply the pressure there and allow the side lanes to get as much farm as quickly as they can, but they do need to look at helping out those side lanes as well. Either to apply pressure there and look to try and give them a lead or to give those side lanes some help. You two aren’t fixed to a lane you can go where you want really (just don’t go too deep too early).
Hurriwind mentions, “Typically, the jungler and support attempt to be proactive in being somewhere specific to invade/defend against invades if not to exert pressure for the same purpose. These two roles typically work in tangent to make those things happen. As a mid player, I will rotate less often. This means that I only rotate when situation is very dire or when I have nothing immediate to farm around midlane.”
Hurriwind points out that the jungler and support need to be proactive across the map, so having them rotate across the map to invade the side lanes or defend against it can be as vital for getting farm or even trying to get picks across the map. With the roles working together in this way it can allow you to catch enemy teams napping and get a cheeky pick in the side lanes when the enemy is either out of position or is unaware that this is happening.
If the support and jungler are able to put pressure all across the map, it will open more windows to do objectives
With the support and jungler able to rotate around the map, it does allow the mid laner to get a bit of solo farm (which is a rare occurrence). With mid being a role that doesn’t get the same farming benefits that the side lanes get, it is important that you don’t starve the mid laner. The more farm they get, the sooner they get online.
Trixtank adds, “As of right now people try and split up so it is more 1-2-2. So either me or Fred are in a duo. This creates pressure onto the ADC, plus we split experience more efficiently, which also makes it so the mid laner is not starving!”
With the meta being the way it is, most of the time the mid does seem to get starved of plenty of farm, meaning that the support and the jungler will need to juggle this and make sure you aren’t spending the whole early game three-man splitting waves and camps. Shifting focus away from the mid lane can allow you to apply pressure across the map as well! If you’re able to rotate around and apply pressure on the side lanes either from the support or jungle side, it can give your team a huge edge over the enemy team as it will feel like to them that you always have the numbers advantage across the map. This also allows your mid laner to get plenty of farm early and get to his power spike, which you can then use to gain an advantage across the map. This doesn’t mean that you should never have the core in mid! The three do need to be there together as the mid laner is still a squishy mage that can get collapsed on, so they will need peel and a bit of help from time to time.
The support and jungler need to make sure they aren't starving mid, so you will need to take farm from other lanes
Wards are vital to success in Smite. If you aren’t warding your lanes or around the map, you will get caught out nine times out of ten. It’s not just a meme that they will save you for 50 gold; it is a fact. Warding around mid is even more vital as you need to make sure that you have vision on the enemy core to watch for them rotating, to work out their buff timers, etc.
Hurriwind says, “Wards should almost always be placed high on the map around where most jungle routes start. If you can see the enemy players early in the farm routes from base, it becomes rather easy to predict where they will go next. Wards that do this while also giving enemy buff timers will be of the most value.”
Placing wards high up on the map will give you a great chance to watch and follow the enemy teams’ rotations and look for windows to find an advantage, whether this be from invading camps or stripping other parts of the map. A well known saying in the SPL is “If you’re on time for a buff, you're already late.” With this in mind, if you can get vision around a camp and you know when it spawns, just making sure you get there early and can get there safely will allow you to push an advantage and gain a vital lead over the enemy team. Warding deep in the enemy jungle isn’t just important for following where the enemy team is going. It is also there to counter getting dove on, whether it be from gods that can dive from deep in the jungle or just getting CCed from the support and spotting the jungler is storming towards to follow up the engage.
Here are a few aggressive warding spots that will give you great visibility of the enemy core
Vision is very important if you want to look for the invade. Having vision around mid-lane and the enemy’s jungle can allow you to spot when it is worth going in for the invade.
Qvofred mentions, “Invades are usually dictated by the amount of pressure being on that side of the map. That can be done by vision or having people come over. The invade can be called by anyone having the lead and pressure to do so.”
Putting pressure on the enemy team can allow you the chance to look for those invades. A great way to put pressure on the enemy team is by using vision to your advantage. If you can see their every move, you can dictate the flow of the game and look to push advantages across the map. With you being able to see where the enemy team is going and what they are looking to do, you can apply pressure by showing your faces at buffs early or looking to poke them as they re-enter the lane. Sometimes letting the enemy team know you have vision on them can even apply pressure, as they’ll be limited to where they can go and not run the risk of getting punished.
With the amount of ward control on the duo side, the jungler can freely rotate and get picks without worry
Late Game and Playing from Behind
We’ve covered how to play the early game and how to put pressure on the enemy team but you can’t win every game from just the early game. When you get to the late game, knowing what you need to do can be as important.
Hurriwind mentions, “This [the late game] is typically more of a team effort. It’s a gigantic variable that depends on team comp and current situations. Ataraxia will be our person to go to when we are unsure of what team plays to make at any point in the game. Generally, everyone should be working together in order to determine where it is best. Everyone has unique access to information that is typically vital to making the best choices at any given time.”
The core can control the game early and help force the issue during the early game but in the late game they don’t stay as the out-and-out shot callers. It becomes a lot more of a team collective. Having someone on your team that can look at the overall big picture and has good decision-making skills and game awareness will make this easy, I know you won’t get that every game, but it’s nice to dream. Giving your team constant information in the late game will allow you as a team to work out what the best port of call is. Every player in Smite is looking for something to trigger that "okay, we’re going in" moment. For some, it could be knowing the carry’s beads are down, the Khepri used his ult, or something as small as the support used their Shell but yours still has theirs. These are little things that not everyone is going to know, so relaying this information to your team can allow you all to collectively work together to get the best outcome. Just remember that communication wins games more often than you think it does.
Communicating with your team and relaying information to each other will make late game fights so much easier
All of what we have covered so far is well and good, but I know what you're thinking. "What if I get behind? What do I do then?" Don’t worry, we’ve got your back, it’s not all doom and gloom. As much as a game can seem dead in the water and there is little way back in, but so long as you know how to still find windows to claw back into it, you won’t have to worry. You may be behind but sitting back a bit and looking at what you need to do to stay relevant is just as important.
Qvofred adds, “If you fall behind or have a weaker brawl in the middle lane, the best thing to do is to play around other lanes or find picks around mid-camps if vision is there for it.”
Just staying relevant will help you find your way back in and, like Qvofred mentioned, you may have to play through the side lanes a bit more to push the advantage there. If the mid laner is behind and you’re the jungler, look to pressure either duo or solo so they can get a bit more farm and even draw the enemy jungler away from the mid lane to relieve some of the pressure. This is just one example of how to find windows back into the game. This may not work in every game, but being adaptable and working around what is happening on the map will allow you to claw your team back into the game. The other bit of advice Qvofred gave does require the support and jungler to look around mid frequently for these picks,. The balancing act with this, however, is to make sure you aren’t just three-manning it in mid. Make sure you are around when the enemy core is around to look for those picks, but if the window is gone, look elsewhere for the farm and let mid get a bit of solo farm.
Even from behind, if you can find a pick and utilise this, you can claw your way back into some games
Few Final Tips
The core is a vital part of any Smite team and having one that understands each other inside and out will take a lot of time playing together and working together. Now in your ranked games, you don’t have that much time to do that but working out early what each of the core wants to do will make it easier to mould the three of you into a coherent team. Do you have an aggressive support but mid just wants to farm? You need to know how to work with these two to get a balancing act and make sure you all are firing together.
Trixtank mentions, “We have certain picks with which we don’t even have to talk because we just know what each other does. This kind of synergy is essential to the game so we can jump on the split-second opportunity once it presents itself.”
The Dignitas core has been playing together for long hours every week together, and so they know each other’s playstyles inside and out. Now, we know you don’t have the chance to play with the same four people every game and work together on how to improve, but just communicating with each other can give you the advantage over the enemy team. If you can organise what you’ll be looking to do in some situations, your team can look to help or say why they think another approach is better. Use the down time in the early game to work out what the best approach is and what each of your teammates is like in playstyle and how you can fit them into an overall plan. If that fails, just queue with a friend and play the roles that you can work well together. At least you know one person’s playstyle so you’re lowering the variables.
If you communicate with your team, you will get better results in teamfights. Sometimes, you can win the fight and gain the advantage
We’ve already covered the importance of communication. This isn’t because we’re lonely in our ranked games and want more people to talk to. It’s because the more information that is shared throughout a team, the higher chance that you can win the game. This is even more important with the core. Communicating how an engagement is going or who should lead the charge is vital and communicating this, so you are all on the same wavelength is vital.
Trixtank says, “It is very important to communicate with your core and set up fights properly. Who is engaging? Which CC chain are you going with? This will make fights super clean and you can go for a better trade than just kills if you do not blow your full health bar and actives!”
Having a good understanding with the core of how you want a fight to go and everyone hitting their mark when they are supposed to makes teamfights so clean. Just having that mutual understanding of how you need to set up the next fight will give you better results and allow you as a team to get picks more frequently. It can be as little as just telling your jungler they are a little too forward and needs to take a few steps back towards the team can help you in these teamfights. Fights in MOBAs can be won on the finest of margins, but these can become huge differences if they are used properly.
We hope this guide will help you get a better understanding of how to work in a core and hopefully allow you to work more efficiently with either a core you’ve been playing with for a while or one that you get thrown in in your ranked games.
Don’t forget to follow Hurriwind, Trixtank and Qvofred on Twitter and Twitch to keep up to date with everything Smite and Dignitas.