Players are formed into two teams, with three or five players to each team. All players begin at opposing sides of a map at their team's 'fountain'. Before the players enter their respective lanes, they are granted 1,500 gold to buy starting items. These items consists of special abilities that enhance their gods. There are three continuous 'lanes' running from one side of the map to the other. Each lane is defended by a 'Phoenix' which is accompanied by a pair of extra defensive towers. Phoenixes and towers deal a large amount of damage to any enemies that come too close. The players are also accompanied by 'minions', these minions spawn at the Phoenixes every thirty seconds and run along their lane until they meet opposition and attack immediately. Minions will not only attack players and other minions but towers, Phoenixes and the Titan. Defensive positions will prioritize enemy minions over players, allowing players to attack a tower without receiving damage. Once nearby minions die the tower will fire upon the enemy player. If a game is going badly for a certain team then they can decide to surrender, though this requires a majority of the team (4 to 1) to agree.
Players have to choose a god to play, this is akin to champions in League of Legends or heroes in Heroes of Newerth and Dota 2. Currently players can choose between 55 gods from seven different pantheons, Chinese, Egyptian, Greek, Hindu, Roman, Mayan and Norse mythology. Two players on the same team cannot choose the same god (with the exception of specialty matches which rotate daily), although they are free to choose gods from the same mythology. The player controls their god in a third person perspective, which is a unique characteristic of this multiplayer online battle arena game, as other games of this genre are typically played from a top-down perspective. Each god has a basic attack and four spells with varying effects, such as area of effect damage, crowd control, buffs and many more. These spells are acquired and upgraded when a player's god levels up by gaining experience from being in range of creeps when they are killed, taking down towers or phoenixes and killing enemy players. The maximum level is 20 and each successive level is harder to reach. Gold, which is used to buy equipment that increase power, defense, and passive effects, potions, wards and abilities, is accumulated through standard periodic income, by gaining experience, or by selling owned items.
The large areas between the lanes make up what is called the 'jungle', where computer-controlled monsters periodically spawn at specific locations distributed symmetrically across the map. Killing certain monsters in said jungle causes a 'buff' to drop on the ground, where it can be picked up by a player. This buff grants the player one of the following buffs for a limited time, depending on which monster was killed: mana (mana regen & cooldown reduction bonus), damage (basic damage & power bonus), or speed (attack & movement speed bonus). There are two special neutral monsters who spawn less frequently, the Fire Giant and the Gold Fury. When killed, they grant the entire team who killed it a powerful damage buff for a medium length of time or a set amount of Gold, respectively. There also exist monsters which do not offer a buff, only experience and gold
Source: Wikipedia, "SMITE", available under the CC-BY-SA License.