SMITE: Demigods, Deities and Gods Explained is a column dedicated to introducing prospective players of SMITE to its massive backstory of lore. From the Greek to Hindu, each week we’ll look at two characters from a major pantheon and provide a quick recap of their history and in what capacity their digital incarnation will represent on the field of Hi-Rez Studios’ new MOBA.
Lore: Raijin, known more popularly in Western culture as Raiden, is the god responsible for the beating rhythm of a thunderous sky. The Japanese Master of Thunder produces his cacophony of booming bass tones through a myriad of drums he carries around. Raijin came to being after the creation of his homeland, Japan, by the divine pair Izanami and Izanagi.
Historical syncretism between Japanese folklore and nearby Buddhist beliefs have caused much of Raijin’s defining history to be lost to time. This includes the story of Buddha assigning eight lightning gods to protect the Dharma. Religious amalgamations aside, Raijin is long known to terrorize children, specifically their tasty abdomens. Upon his approach, Raiju, Raijin’s companion demon aids the God of Thunder in various acts, including his struggle against Fuijin, the Shinto God of Wind.
In-Game: Raijin’s defining feature, the noise of his drums, may elicit the potential for a support role like so many Civil War-era drummer boys. The design team at Hi-Rez Studios went a different way, putting Raijin in the same category as Zeus. As a ranged mage, Raijin focuses on driving his team toward victory. A heavy pusher with high mobility and scouting utility, Raijin leverages the power of thunder, lightning and Raiju to harry his opponents.
Raijin, unlike his Greek counterpart Zeus, is not a burst mage. Be weary of assassins or those that can pull you into the thick of battle. Raijin should play the straight man, setting up his teammates for kills by chipping away at health, scouting and damaging foes with Raiju or causing them to lose control. The Master of Thunder doesn’t inherently have high damage marks. Opt to increase them while focusing on the utility and sustainability of the mage to wail on the drums as long as as often as possible. Chronos’ Pendant and the Spear of Desolation are solid and aggressive openers, respectively. Follow up with a Spear of the Magus to help yourself and other mages before you grab mild defense like a Bancroft’s Talon. If you need help strategizing how best to build Raijin a little casual brain training with Flow Free may help.
Head over to SMITE: Demigods, Deities and Gods Explained for details on all of the playable characters.