SMITE: Demigods, Deities and Gods Explained – Kumbakharna

SMITE: Demigods, Deities and Gods Explained is a column dedicated to introducing prospective players of SMITE to its massive back story 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: The difficult to pronounce Kumbhakarna is a jovial, pious deity twisted by his warrior’s code. A core part of the Ramayana, one of two revered Hindu epic poems, he is a giant of a man that routinely feeds, even on monks if only to showcase his power. Brothers to Ravana and Vibhishana, he often fights for the side of evil out of family loyalty to Ravana.

After performing a particular moving yajna to Lord Brahma the brave Kumbhakarna was rewarded with a blessing. Goddess Saraswati acting on behalf of a jealous Indra cursed his tongue causing the intelligent giant to slur ‘Nidraasana,’ or sleep, instead of the anticipated ‘Indraasana,’ or seat of Indra, which would have endowed him the realm and title of Lord of Heaven. Tricked, Kumbhakarna became the Sleeping Giant setting the mountains to rumbling with his snores.

His brothers came to his rescue convincing Lord Brahma that the boon was actually a curse. Trickery of a jealous god. Sympathizing with the story Brahma compromised, reducing the Kumbhakarna to resting for six months of the year. Still feeling the insatiable hunger he did before his imposed hibernations he eats everything in the vicinity upon awakening, humans included.

But the siblings didn’t rescue their brother out of altruism. Ravana the tyrant needed his bravery and revered fighting skills to wage war. Doing battle with Rama, Ravana had been humiliated. His only recourse was to wake Kumbhakarna with a thousand elephants and hope the giant joined the battle without contemplating the justifications. One of the most complex gods of the Hindu mythology Kumbhakarna attempted to convince his brother to end the war upon learning the reasons yet continued the fight, after imbibing in drink, out of loyalty. Perhaps to drown his deeper feelings.

In-Game: Kumbhakarna is one hell of a guardian in SMITE. A melee magical tank with long range abilities, good movement and agonizing crowd control his hunger for battle is strong and resilient. Heck, he doesn’t even die outright, requiring multiple basic attacks after reaching 0 HP before finally succumbing to death. Let’s reiterate that, basic attacks are what finish him off.

Featuring high defense natively, numerous CC options and good movement, Kumbhakarna doesn’t need to reinforce as much as other guardians. Abilities only obtain limited bonus from magical power, relegating his build to one focusing on a combination of sustainability and harassment. Grab items like Breastplate of Valor to fulfill both paths, core guardian item Sovereignty and the life-saving Bulwark of Hope that will effectively double his passive effect to maximum tanking. A guardian that incredibly fun to play.

Further reading:

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Head over to SMITE: Demigods, Deities and Gods Explained for details on all of the playable characters.