Development on Smite Rivals, a card-battler based on the free-to-play MOBA Smite, has been halted.
This news comes from Kotaku, who claim that work has halted on the project in order for Hi-Rez to focus on the original Smite and first spin-off, Smite Tactics. Rivals debuted only two months ago, with a playable build being shown off in Atlanta at the Hi-Rez expo in January. It had a similar vibe to mobile hit Clash Royale, with players creating a deck featuring minions and champions from Smite and then using the cards in a three-lane battleground against their opponents.
Kotaku heard the news from a source "close to the game’s development" but then reached out to Hi-Rez studios, who confirmed the announcement with a statement.
“We made a decision this week to put Smite Rivals on hold. While we are still excited by the general concept of Smite Rivals, it was clear after early testing that the game needed significant additional development before releasing. With Smite Tactics, our turn-based strategy game set in the Smite Universe, performing well, we have decided to focus our energies on that for the time being.”
With just a two-month gap between the game’s public debut and work halting on the project, it’d be easy to speculate about reasons for the game’s cancellation, but it’s most likely that the "significant work" mentioned really was substantial.