Trifecta shock eUnited in SMITE whilst Na’Vi remain strong in Paladins

Day one of the Hi-Rez Expo has wrapped up. So ESI has provided a brief recap event-by-event of what happened, including some pre-esports announcements.

This year, the event features four esports events – with three world championship titles on the line. There’s two in SMITE, and one in Paladins and a lot of money and prestige on the line in both titles. You can read more about the overall event in our comprehensive preview. All of the action is going down at DreamHack Atlanta as HRX expands this year. 

With a number of big announcements at the pre-show, some dominant displays and a major upset, day one of HRX lived up to the hype and expectation plus plenty more.

Full day VODS for both SMITE and Paladins can be found on the links.

The Announcements

As with every expo, there was several announcements made throughout the day for fans of Hi-Rez titles to feast their eyes upon. There were more SMITE Gods announced as well as huge cross platform support for all Hi-Rez titles and various other snippets that will have made the hardcore smile. You can find a full list of announcements with links below: 

  • SMITE was announced for Switch
  • SMITE Gods 99 and 100 announced
  • New SMITE Arena
  • Paladins cross-play and cross-platform progression
  • Paladins 40th Champion revealed
  • Realm Royale closed beta out on Xbox with PS4 to follow soon

SMITE World Championship 2019

Fighting it out in a best of three format. The first set of Quarterfinals saw Dignitas take on Spacestation Gaming and Splyce take on Obey Alliance. Dignitas made it through in a 2-1 series, although given that they were tipped to be one of the favourites, they might have expected an easier first series at HRX. Their Semifinals opponent Splyce made light work of Obey Alliance, who were disappointing considering they would, in many people’s eyes, been expected to beat Splyce. Splyce waltzed through them by 2 games to 0. 

On the other side of the Quarterfinals bracket, we saw 2018 champions eUnited take on Trifecta and NRG take on Team RivaL. Much like Dignitas before, eUnited went into their Quarterfinal matchup as huge favourites. Trifecta had other ideas, however, as they took the series 2-1 and made a huge statement to the SMITE world. This was a result that no one, and we repeat no one, expected to see happen but it has certainly swung the whole competition wide open. The final Quarterfinal was a battle the battle of Europe, with second seed NRG and fourth seed Team Riva duking it out. The result saw RivaL edge it, taking the series 2-0 and moving on.

SMITE Console World Championship 2019

Sticking with SMITE, we had the first Semifinal between NA Xbox first seed Astral Authority v NA PS4 first seed InControl Gaming. It was a fairly convincing game series by Astral Authority who swept the series 2-0 setting up their Grand Final bought with either EU first seed Team RivaL or fellow Xbox and NA second seed Flash Point eSports. It wil be expected that Rival sneak through and we see a NA versus EU final, although, as with the PC bracket – stranger things have happened and we’re not counting out another underdog story. 

Paladins World Championship 2019

Day one of the Paladins World Championship 2019 was busy, the best of five single elimination format meant very little room for error could be had. No series went the distance in the first day of competition, leaving us longing for some nail-biting contests come the latter rounds. With the size of the organisations left in the competition, we’re sure to see some epic action to conclude the Hi-Rez Expo weekend of Paladins. 

2018 champions Na’Vi got the action underway with a 3-1 victory against fellow CIS organisation Virtus.Pro. Their semifinal opponent was to come from either Fnatic or G2, with the former taking the series in a 3-0 clean sweep setting up a Na’Vi v Fnatic semifinal. On the other side of the bracket, we saw Team Envy crush Kanga eSports 3-0 and Spacestation Gaming come out 3-1 victors against Ninjas in Pyjamas.

Paladins Console Wars 

Day one action saw Onslaught take on Vexed Gaming, much like on PC, the Console Wars used a best of five format. The event saw a confident performance from Vexed Gaming as they overcame the curse and made it into the grand final of HRX. They will await the result of the second semi-final before playing in the all-important title match. 

Check back tomorrow for a full recap of day two of the HRX action.