In a genre quickly becoming saturated by middling clones and inappropriate acronyms, more than a little credit needs to be given to SMITE for doing its own take on a ‘third-person divine meat grinder’ ARTS, and having no small amount of success with it. Today’s announcement by Hi-Rez Studios, the guys that actually make SMITE, should then come as no surprise for anybody who’s been been keeping up with the professional scene that’s slowly been forming around the game.

The three day tournament will be held from January 9th to the 11th of next year, at Atlanta’s Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center, with eight teams from all over the world fighting for a chunk of the $600,000 prize pool. Speaking of the prize pool, Hi-Rez have plans in place that should help further fatten that number up, in the form of community contributions and exclusive content sales which will be announced at a later date. 

And if you’re worried about the long wait, they’ve got you covered with a series of smaller tournaments leading up to the big event, including the European and North American qualifiers both scheduled for November, with the Latin American and Chinese venues still to be announced. You can find all the specifics on the announcement here, and if you’ve not actually tried SMITE yet, I’ll just quickly remind you that it’s free and that it contains this: