When you hear the word "support" in SMITE you think of setting up kills for your team, laying down crowd control in team fights or ganks, and being a front line tank for the team. Even some nontraditional supports like Guan Yu, Odin, or Fenrir can fall into this category. However, some supports play a different role and Khepri is one of those supports. As a support, you need to know the difference between peel support and front line support. With a peel support, you are someone that, on team fights, stays close to his carries and protects them from whatever may come their way.
A front line support is someone that doesn't need to stay as close to the carry, mostly because there's no real way of protecting him, but rather stay closer to the frontline and initiate and set up poke for the team. Now, of course, most supports can do both, but fit better into one of the two. It is also key to know when you need to swap between the two.
Khepri falls into the peel front line and does not really fit the front line support that well. He has distinct transitions from early game to mid/late game. Let's look at Khepri's abilities and how each one fits into the different aspects of the game.
This is Khepri's initiation and it is very lackluster. He doesn't bring a multi-person taunt like Athena or giant AOE ult like Geb. So in the early game, you are looking to pluck the enemy in lane and set poke up for your carry. As the mid game transition comes into play you want to rotate with your carries and look to pick off players that are out of position. Khepri's abduct is great in cases like this where you are with a carry and find someone by themselves. Having wards around buff camps and boars will help Khepri rotate and get picks with his team.
End game is where you peel. Khepri on the front line engaging hurts his overall utility for his team. We will cover why with his other abilities later in the article. Using abduct when you can see the entire enemy team works well. When you can't see the entire enemy team you have to be aware of someone trying to backdoor your carries. Being ready to abduct someone looking for a quick kill is a great way to turn the fight in your favor.
This is the ability most often not utilized to it's maximum potential. It's often used on enemies in team fights to remove the enemies protections. While this is great for a team fight, the true power comes in the damage reduction this can provide for your team. If you use Rising Dawn on a carry that has not built protections you are removing a negligible amount of protections. Yet if you use it on your teammates you are allowing them to take a full 30% less damage for 3 seconds in the fight regardless of their protections.
This is another reason Khepri fits into the peel role where he can offer protection to not those he is peeling for. Being in this position also allows him to use this ability from behind his teammates giving them the reduction and also having the chance of hitting the enemy, giving them the protection debuff. This is the optimal use of Rising Dawn when you can have it pass through friendlies and enemies to provide maximum benefits for the team. Rising Dawn is used the same way throughout the entire game.
This is a root and like any other root in the game, it can be used to help peel for your team or to help initiate. Using Solar Flare then following it up with Abduct is a great way to pick someone off if you are not comfortable with a raw Abduct. Khepri's root really doesn't change from early/mid to late game fights. You will use the ability the same way throughout the match. A properly placed Solar Flare can allow your entire team to disengage from a fight or catch a running team.
Khepri's ultimate is one of the best ultimates in the game but it can easily turn into a waste of an ability. You place it on an ally and if they die within 5 seconds of you placing it they will be revived at your location with the buffs listed above. The timing of when you place his ultimate and your positioning is key. This is the main reason a front line Khepri is tougher to pull off and he is better as a peeler.
When you engage a target you become the focus of the damage dealers. Many times you will see a Khepri front line and his backline squishy gets dived on and killed before Khepri has time to ult. Come end game, the potential for an assassin to kill your backline in under 3 seconds is high. By the time you turn around your carry is dead or you are hit with crowd control and can't use the ability. The worst place to use Khepri's ultimate is when you are front line. Cast a successful Scarab's Blessing and suddenly your teammate is revived on the front line and instantly dies again. Being a peeler and watching the fight unfold allows you to revive an ally and get far away from the fight so that they will be out of harm's way.
The early and mid game ultimates are a lot easier to hit then the end game ultimates. Once the burst damage begins reaching a point that a correctly timed combo will instantly kill someone your ultimate's window of opportunity gets smaller. In the early and mid game, you can try and time your ultimate for when your target is below 15% health. If you wait that long during endgame they will die before you can get it off so you need to use it closer to 30-40% threshold.
If the enemy team has the discipline to wait out your ultimate begin using it earlier. By using it when your ally is at 50% health it stops the enemy team damage and allows your teammate to get 5 seconds of free walking/escape time. Knowing when to use it in this way is key. In the video above you see a Khepri ultimate used to perfection to get his Arachne out of a tough spot. Khepri's positioning is key in getting Arachne safely away with no enemies able to re-engage after the revive.
Last is Khepri's passive which provides his team with a shield. This is a great way to save a death from dot damage but it comes down to pure luck if it procs during that time. It's one of the better passives for supports in the early game.
Overall Khepri is a support that has a unique set of skills. While positioning is key in SMITE for all of the gods, it is especially important on Khepri. Bad positioning could negate a great ultimate or could leave your team in position to take more damage then they should have. Khepri is also a God that can be easy to play but hard to master. Getting a few great ultimates in the game will have your team praising you but many will not notice the great uses of Rising Dawn to allow that 30% damage reduction.