* When you start out your gladiator will be extremely fragile. Pick Apollo as your patron deity to avoid death until your equipment improves. His HP regeneration execution will save you quite often and the slowdown focus attack is a great offensive weapon.
* Unlock the God Rewards as quickly as possible (Apollo will probably unlock earliest due to his great execution bonus. However once you have some more survivability, try to unlock Jupiter and Diana's rewards as they are the best pair of Tier 1 weapon and shield to use overall.
* Increase your bonus XP as much as you can without sacrificing other bonuses. The additional 5-10% may not seem like much, but that's 2,500 XP per completed round and if the bonus is higher so is the reward.
Crowd Bonus - Provides a bonus to the end amount the crowd pays out at the end of a round. However it is raised in increments of 5% so unless your bonus raises it to the next stage it is wasted. Relatively useless.
Bonus XP Gain - Should be the bread and butter of your equipment. Raise it as much as your equipment will allow without taking negative effects. The 5 or 10% may not seem like much but 2,500XP or more adds up when there are 100 levels to advance through.
Health Regen - Increases the amount of life regained after each successful execution. Important early on, especially if you aren't using Apollo to gain his HP executions. Still a nice stat to have though as it can passively help you out the whole match.
Health Amount - How much health each health capsule contains. Passively useful and handy if you are having survival problems but otherwise bump up other stats instead.
Health Capsules - More useful on the whole than most of the other health stats as it adds whole capsules to your health bar. Similar to the crowd bonus though it only applies in increments so if the bonus doesn't reach the next cutoff, it isn't any use.
Focus Gain - Increases the amount of focus gained after a successful execution. Handy if you have a more offense inclined deity power (Apollo's is pretty useless). If you aren't practiced enough against tougher enemies or want to rack up ridiculous combo lengths, increase this and equip Jupiter to spam focus everywhere.
Focus Amount - Increases the amount each focus capsule is worth. Handy to passively have if you use focus attacks, especially when combined with Jupiters focus regeneration abilities.
Focus Capsules - Increases the amount of focus capsules available. Handy to passively have if you use focus attacks as it increases your maximum available, especially when combined with Jupiters focus regeneration abilities.
Focus Time - Increases the amount each time focus is active. Handy to passively have if you use focus attacks, especially when combined with Jupiters focus regeneration abilities.
Inventory - Allows you to carry pila (pilums or spears) with you in battle. Not normally useful except for a few rare cases. Far better to increase your experience gains by comboing and executing enemies instead. Increase other stats rather than this one.
Jupiter - Allows impressively long focus combos thanks to quick focus regeneration, also handy when dealing with tougher enemies. Most useful focus power and the focus regen executions combine to make this a great endgame (after all god rewards gained) deity.
Mars - Increases damage after successful executions and burns enemies around you when activating focus. Unfortunately the increased damage doesn't last long enough to be very useful and will constantly throw off your combo expectations (when you expect enemies to be staggered and ready for execution). The fire nova focus is good against large groups but against strong enemies requires two or three blasts to clear. After getting his reward weapon, avoid using this one.
Apollo - Best early game god. His HP regen executions are the best answer to problems staying alive. Works great in dual fights as well as it passively heals your ally whenever you execute an enemy. His focus attack is just as good as Jupiter's and is great to have on hand. Use Apollo until you can survive without him essentially.
Diana - The XP increase is useful all the time (as you would expect). Unfortunately her focus attack is the least useful in the game. It just knockbacks all enemies around you and stuns them for half a second. Can be useful if you are surrounded in a dangerous area as you can knock enemies into hazards. She is the other endgame deity to use if focus attacks don't really appeal to you or fit into your playstyle.
Rewards of the Gods:
God rewards are obtained by finishing rounds (completing, incomplete rounds don't count). As you complete these a bar will appear underneath the reward picture on the select god screen and begin to fill up. Once the bar is full the item is unlocked and placed in your gladiator's inventory.
Thunder Of Jupiter
2% Crowd Bonus
2% Bonus XP
20% Focus Gain
Measure of Mars
30% Focus Gain
15% Focus Time
Canopy of Diana
4% Bonus XP
+3 Inventory Size
Strength Of Apollo
1% Crowd Bonus
1% Bonus XP
+2 Inventory Size