Perilous Parabolas: Tribes Ascend

By Dan Grill on August 25th, 2011 at 3:00 pm.


Roving reporter Dan Griliopoulos has left Alec in Cologne and is heading deeper into Europe, writing up what the best of GamesCom as he goes. Next up is Hi-Rez Studios’ Tribes reboot, Ascend.

Switzerland may have been condemned memorably by Orson Welles as having “five hundred years of democracy and peace – and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock”, but (aside from the cuckoo clock actually being a German invention – Pedant Ed) these days the most vertical of European countries is better know for its winter sports. As we rattle through its tunnels and stare up at its mountains, though, I’m thinking of a very different kind of skiing; I look at the 80 degree slopes of the Stelvio pass and think “you’d pick up so much speed on that and then you could jetpack off that glacier and…”

Hi-Rez studios, developers of Global Agenda, were showing off the latest iteration of the Tribes multiplayer jetpacking-skiing-shooting trope at GamesCom. They’ve certainly got the right credentials, having worked action multiplayer shooters before, and they’re pretty up front about their ambition; “We wanted to keep the spirit of Tribes – the fast gameplay, the emphasis on individual skill and teamwork – but we also wanted to evolve and change some things,” says Todd Harris, CEO of Hi-Rez. “We’ve got fans of the old games on staff, but none of the original teams.”

Getting hands-on with the game was definitely exciting; old fans of the series will be absolutely satisfied with the key mechanic, that combination of right mouse button jetpacks and ‘skiing’ – that is, sliding down declining surfaces to pick up speed as you move around the world, with momentum maintained as long as you hold down the space key – and as long as it lasts. Like in previous iterations, it just works; It’s not realistic, as such – “it embraces it’s a game” as Harris puts it. Once you’ve got it down pat, the game makes the parabolic movement dynamics second nature.


The single level ‘Crossfire’ we played looked like a drowned golf course, with gentle curving hills rising out of a sea, with a floating battle barge at either end, with the traditional saturated, bright colours of the series. Players had to capture each other’s flags from the front of each barge, in a classic capture-the-flag mode. Each barge has automated defenses and can be further fortified by the engineer class. The normal game is 16 versus 16, but due to the very limited space at GamesCom, we could only play 5v5. The game will release with four maps, including this one, which was relatively small. Despite this relatively small size, we still managed to spend a while trudging around its lakes and hillocks, having not quite got the knack of the skiing yet.

The class system has changed substantially. Where before you chose from light, medium and heavy armour, now players pick one of the fifteen classes (only nine were available in the version we played; the other six will be released each month after launch). Each class still matches those armour-classifications, but also has a special power, a grenade type, a sidearm, and a special weapon. For example, the infiltrator has can go stealthy, has standard grenades, a silenced pistol and an SMG – the first ballistic weapons to be introduced to the Tribes series. The classic Spinfuser will be employed by the standard soldier class – the only class that will be available to free players, to start with.


Players spawn in their battle-barge and accrue in-round currency (which is new) as they damage and kill enemy players, capture flags and so forth. This currency can be used to upgrade your base or buy vehicles from a podium tucked away in the battle barge; when you do, you’re teleported straight into your newly built vehicle. The three vehicles we saw were the Shrike (a murderously efficient fighter / gunship), the Gravcycle (a nippy but mostly ineffectual single-person transport) and the Beowulf (a biiigg tank). Obviously, this purchasing power means the violence of the gameplay escalates significantly as a game progresses.

Similarly, you can buy more ammo or change weapons at podia inside the barge. However, should an enemy penetrate to the barge generator, they can take down both the turrets and the various podia, until a player trudges back inside to repair it. At the moment, I’d argue that the podia and generator are curiously inaccessible, relative to the ease of accessing the flag; at one point, I had to flee back to the barge, with no weapon to speak of (having run out of ammo on my sticky-grenade launcher and having replaced my sidearm with a repair tool), but was simply unable to find my way to a working ammo point.


Between matches, Hi-Rez have introduced character progression – players can earn both additional levels, such as badges that give purely aesthetic prestige, and perks that give minor in-game benefits – increasing your run speed or manoeuvrability say. Players can also unlock additional classes through playing but, knowing this model from Team Fortress and so forth, we’d estimate that the vast majority of unlocks are going to be through real-money purchases.

With real money transactions you can also buy new cosmetic skins for your classes and XP boosters, to increase your levelling rate. As I’ve heard Harris say many times and heard him say again here; “It’s very important to us that there’s no pay to win – anything that affects gameplay can be earned by just playing the game.” It’s refreshing to see a company being so upfront about RMT; so many companies we met at GamesCom, including favourites like Planetside 2, were refusing to talk about how they were going to make money because they’re scared that the media won’t talk about their game if it’s free-to-play. Tribes show that we will, if they’re good enough.

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63 Comments »

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  1. Rii says:

    Did you get around to asking why the guns are so bloody huge?

    • Mr_Day says:

      The pictures are so pretty, yet the gun on the right is so obnoxiously placed. It’s like Gunther took holiday snaps but put his thumb over the lens every time.

    • GEN3RIC says:

      The Field of View is TOO DAMN HIGH.

    • LionsPhil says:

      T…too high? You’re complaining that you have too much peripheral vision, and it’s designed for you to sit too near from your display device (like sat at a desk with a monitor vs. couch and telly)?

    • caicaiaa says:

      Good online store:
      Welcome to: http://bit.ly/mKuTNF
      In the best happy shopping mall, this is your best choice this season!

    • cafe says:

      I don’t understand what the problem with the big guns is? If it’s the same for everyone playing the game then you won’t have any disadvantage anyone else doesn’t have… I like to see the big guns as part of the game and sometimes elements like this can lead to interesting situations in battle.

    • Kdansky says:

      Yeah, that bothers me a lot too. They take up about 20% of the whole screen, which is ridiculous, especially compared to Tribes 1, where you could hide your own gun completely. I also dislike the fact that they add hitscan guns. Totally not Tribesy.

      And character progression? Do we really need to force that into every game, even if it does not make sense and only makes getting into the game harder, without any clear benefit? The better player is going to win anyway, why add unfairness into a shooter?

    • TotalBiscuit says:

      I spoke to the Hi-Rez guys after the play session and attempted to impress upon them the need for either a gun-size slider or the ability to remove the guns from the screen entirely for competitive play. They asked if I felt the guns impeded my ability to play, I said not in 5v5 but it would be a huge blindspot in 16 v 16 etc. They seemed receptive to the concern so I hope they act on it.

      Otherwise the game is pretty damn fun.

    • notjasonlee says:

      am i the only one who hates it when the gun is too small and too far to the right? it doesn’t look right at all and kills some of the immersion for me. give me a big ole gun right on my virtual shoulder, please.

    • Griddle Octopus says:

      I didn’t – they didn’t seem that big when I was playing though.

  2. Eclipse says:

    wow screens are really pretty. too bad this is a free2pay game

    • xavdeman says:

      Why?

    • arienette says:

      Yes, personally I hate not having to pay.

    • Davee says:

      Personally I hate the pay2win-games many of them become. But not all f2p do and so I hope this one will be one of them. They say it will stay away from pay2win, but I’m just going to wait and see. ;)

    • Gnoupi says:

      Global Agenda became free2play, and it had no influence on the core gameplay.
      The only change is that you have the possibility to pay with actual money for cosmetic items, or for regular items that you can easily buy without grinding hours.
      You can buy boosters which are doubling your money, XP and item rewards at the end of missions, but that’s all. All you buy in the end is time.

      So I’m quite confident that Tribes Ascend will be good on the F2P point of view.

    • Dominic White says:

      Over the past few months, I’ve noticed a whole lot of people in the RPS comments who refuse to even LOOK at a game the moment it’s mentioned that it’s (at least initially) free to play. Isn’t that cutting off our nose to spite your face?

      I mean, sure, some games handle the cash shop badly. But if you TRIED the game, then you could judge for yourself whether it’s one of the good or bad games. Refusing flatly to even find out for yourself is rather daft, no?

    • DiamondDog says:

      Maybe he just doesn’t want a free toupee.

    • Squirrelfanatic says:

      Team Fortress 2 is free to play and not pay to win as well. Still a great game, very little (if any) damage done.

    • AlexV says:

      It’s not the not-paying which is the problem. If it was a genuinely free game, made and released purely for the joy of creating something fun for people to play, then that would be fine. That’s not generally going to be the case, these games are produced to make money.

      If you aren’t paying for them directly, then they are going to be making money off you some other way, which usually means they are going to try and irritate you into spending money with them. Either by directly advertising it to you, or worse, by making the game less enjoyable or more frustrating to play if you don’t pay.

      The design goal to obtain a revenue stream from your players (as opposed to a revenue stream from your customers buying the game) makes games worse (from the players point of view) than they would have been without it.

      Depending on your point of view, putting up with a little irritation is a fair trade for a free game, but personally I would rather pay my money up-front and know that the in-game experience itself is squarely designed for my enjoyment, not to obtain money from me.

    • Xzi says:

      Agreed. I’m going to be pissed if there isn’t an option to just pay like $50 and unlock everything (other than player levels). Generally a F2P model means that you can spend several hundred dollars and still not see everything the game has to offer, which is bullshit.

      That’s not how previous Tribes games worked, and that’s not how this game should work. Then again, given how effing terrible Global Agenda was, the whole thing might just tank regardless of payment model.

    • mwoody says:

      AlexV hits the nail on the head. The difference is the motivation of the developers: if you pay for the game, their goal is to make the game as good as they can so you’ll join on. If you pay for items and abilities, their goal is to design a game that makes you want to pay for those items. No amount of professed good intentions gets around their core business model being to annoy you until you, exasperated, break down and give them some money.

      I’d pay $60 for a game that doesn’t try to sell me things, even if buying everything it had to offer cost less than $60, because the fact that they want to sell you things means the game experience itself will be all about opening your wallet. Even the oft-mentioned TF2 falls afoul in this regard, with those obnoxious “here’s a crate! Pay money to find out what’s inside!” bullshit.

    • Brise Bonbons says:

      I think TF2 actually has been damaged by the addition of the cash shop. I think it has exacerbated the fact that there are simply too many new weapons being added, because “if you’re impatient you can always pay to unlock a weapon you want”.

      But aside from creating the false impression that it’s OK to keep adding weapons, it also creates a perverse incentive for Valve to add even more – irrelevant of what is best for the gameplay. New weapons not only create a direct incentive for players to unlock them in the store (just to get that new shiny for their class), it also makes it increasingly unlikely you’ll get what you want as a drop, making purchasing the items that much more appealing.

      Now, I’m happy to buy a hat or other vanity item in order to support Valve for all the work they do. But I refuse to spend money on weapons that should be either unlocked to begin with, or very easy to acquire through play. I remember back before the Mann Co. Store when a big update would come out, you’d be confident that all the new weapons would drop naturally in the space of a few weeks. If you really wanted it right now you could even craft it. That felt fine to me. But these days there are so many possible drops, that the only hope you have to get the new weapons is to craft away what little you already have, or try to trade with other people who are also hording weapons for crafting.

      Tribes: Ascend looks like it will suffer in the same way to me. These sorts of FPS games are built around the idea that you can freely switch your build on the fly; that adjusting to the state of the game is part of the strategy and fun. It fundamentally breaks the experience to dangle that versatility in front of us with a price tag on it.

      This is very different than a game like League of Legends, where by its nature you only need a handful of champions that suit you to be unlocked. If I can never realistically unlock every champion by playing the game, that’s fine – I could never realistically learn to play them all competently, either. But in TF2 or any other FPS, there is invariably a situation where you want to switch to a weapon you don’t have; hiding them behind a collection/RMT system damages the strategy and depth of the game.

    • DazedByTheHaze says:

      Psst don’t speak too loud about this stuff. Riotgames will put a number on your head. Like “2 million price money, bring him dead or alive”… ;)

      And don’t try to tell me Riot isn’t on the same fucking lane (see what I did there?) like every other P2W game. I play it and I find myself thorn between spending my IP I earned on Champions or Runes. You can’t push both at the same time. The only workaround you get from Riot is spending real money on Champions and keep the IP for runes.

      I know the runes make no significant diffrence for a casuals, but for all the theorycrafters and numbercrunchers out there it’s a mental thumbscrew.

      And you all should know what P2W is about, the big fishes, the wales, the hardcore nerds that spend hundreds of dollars on stuff. FarmVille leads the way…

    • Gnoupi says:

      One advantage of the F2P for online shooters… It helps a lot to avoid the “woops, nobody plays it anymore” case.

      Because paying 50 euros for a game which is essentially multiplayer, if no one plays it in 3 months is a bit pointless. F2P in this case allows some “more exotic” shooters to have an active community.

  3. pakoito says:

    So….Firefall or Tribes?

    • ran93r says:

      At the moment it’s looking like Tribes for me. The footage I have seen of Firefall is decent but these guys had me at Skiing.

    • TheDreido says:

      Firefall looks too much like Global Agenda to me.

      I am sure there are differences that someone more knowledgeable than me will point out, but from the videos I saw of game play at Gamescom (such as TB’s videos) they look almost the same.

      Thus… I am more interested in Tribes.

    • Brise Bonbons says:

      I guess I’m the odd one out – I think Firefall looks better at this point.

      Surprisingly, Firefall actually looks like the faster game. What I’ve read and seen for Tribes: Ascend actually looks like they’ve slowed the game down way too much. Well, too much for my tastes, at least; whether it will feel like a proper Tribes game is another matter.

      Furthermore, Firefall looks to have the more interesting gunplay. In the TB video we’ve seen health-leeching mediguns, medics with cool grenade launchers, shotguns that bounce off walls to fire around corners, all sorts of neat toys. T:A seems to have way too many (read: “any”) bland SMGs and ARs for a Tribes game. And the proper Tribes weapons like the spinfuser and the mortar just don’t seem to work right based on the video and hands-on reports I’ve found. This could be a mistaken impression, though…

      Lastly I really don’t like the business model for Tribes: Ascend. It feels like they’ve undermined the gameplay in an attempt to make buying classes appealing. Hell, it doesn’t feel like the game design would call for classes at all if it used a different business model. I don’t actually know enough about Firefall’s business model to say it’s better for certain, but what little I’ve heard makes it sound like they detached the strategic and tactical choices from the cash shop. But again, I could be wrong here.

      Anyway, they both look like games worth giving a shot. Honestly I just think I’ll wind up sticking to RO2 over both of them, but perhaps I’ll be pleasantly surprised.

    • aethereal says:

      I say look at both!
      But you cant compare Firefall to Global Agenda. I used to play Global agenda for a long time, and I tried the Firefall demo at PAX East. Firefall is much faster (more in line with a normal UT-ish FPS) and the controls feel significantly less floaty and frustrating. The jetpack isn’t anywhere as powerful as in GA, but it feels significantly more effective (probably because it doesnt draw from your weapon ammo pool and you have abilities that synergize with it.

    • Premium User Badge

      Sinomatic says:

      And we can’t play both because…?

    • TheDreido says:

      @aethereal Faster and better controls than GA? Hmm, colour me interested then.

      And yes, you all have a good point, we can try both; but we can also be more interested in one than the other. ;p

    • Griddle Octopus says:

      As much as I liked this; Planetside 2.

  4. rayne117 says:

    DON’T: Use the name “Crossfire” anywhere ever again.

    Take my word game developers.

    • TsunamiWombat says:

      CROSSFIRE! You’ll get caught up in the- CROSSFIRE! CROSSFIRE! CROSSFIAAARRRRRRR~

      Sorry, you’ll get the reference if you grew up in the US in the 90’s and watched alot of commercials like I did >_> That damn jingle goes through my head every time..

    • squareking says:

      YOU’LL GET CAUGHT UP IN IT!

      *HUOU*

      Also, this looks quite nice. Lamenting the hewj guns and mildly Halo’d aesthetic, but it’s pretty. I didn’t spend much time with Tribes, so I might not froth and foam at the changes; like almost every other game, it’ll come down to hands-on experience.

    • Fiatil says:

      I’m pretty convinced that the CROSSFIRE! ad campaign was the most successful ad campaign in history. Almost every guy that grew up in the US around that time seems to have that same thought jump into their head anytime someone says crossfire.

  5. Squire says:

    I can’t believe how often I used the low gravity and quad jump mutators with warfare maps in UT3 just so I could jump around and snipe from the sky when the whole time I should’ve just been playing Tribes.

    Awesome tho, looks great fun for free.

    N.B. – Dan whenever I see your name I think of blackened chicken on a bbq, just sitting there, sizzling. Whats the origin of your name if you don’t mind me asking?

    • mbp says:

      Dan’s surname is actually of Greek Origin. The Griliopoulos is a hill where the Athenian Gods used to hold barbecues.

    • edgeblend says:

      ^ Nice

    • Griddle Octopus says:

      HA! My surname is Greek, kind of. I’m told my Greek great-grandad didn’t think it sounded Greek enough, back when Greece got independence from the Ottoman empire, so added -opoulos on the end.

  6. killmachine says:

    for me its gonna be both firefall and tribes. but anyways, you cant compare them. firefall will be much more than a competetive shooter. you also have a coop mode with a huge open world. firefall also has a persistent world while tribes is just a regular shooter. nothing wrong with that though, but i wouldnt compare them.

    i actually never played tribes, but i am a hardcore shooter fan who played quake and i miss these shooters nowadays. i dont care about all the cod’s and battlefield’s. actually i dont like them at all. so, its refreshing to see shooters that go a different route than the military shooters.

    • sakmidrai says:

      Exactly this for me too. I am going to try both Tribes and Firefall but so far I like FF a lot more. I want something more than just a shooter.

      I’ll have enough time only for one those two though because I want to play some (a lot) Guild Wars 2 too.

      Its really nice that they are both F2P and we can try them any time.

  7. LuNatic says:

    15 classes is a lot. What’s the class change interface like? Is it overwhelming, or have they pulled it off?

    • phosgene says:

      It’s very easy. Press one key, I think N by default, then a screen comes up with however many boxes, each with an icon, each representing a class. When you mouse over it, you are presented with loadout details, graphs showing speed, range, damage, etc, and some general information on the role the class plays.

      You click the box for the class you want to play, then you become that class the next time you respawn.

      Very intuitive, very well done.

    • Griddle Octopus says:

      Yeah, it seems very simple. Game is bad need of a tutorial though, there’s lots of stuff that’s not mechanics but not intuitive, like finding the right buttons or podia or fixing the generator.

  8. Howard says:

    This could not sound worse if it tried. A skiing mechanism that relies on you just having to push a button like in Vengeance? Did they learn nothing from that total failure game? All character classes bar 1 locked unless you pay? So its not even VAGUELY F2P. The Spinfusor crippled by a 10 second reload time? Kinetic guns? Removal of the customisation in favour of predefined classes so the brainless kiddies don’t get confused? Also, could the movement be slower and more pedestrian? Halo with jetpacks then I think…

    Seriously, no true fan of the Tibes series made this game or will go within a thousand miles of it. I really should have known better than to get my hopes up about this.

    • celewign says:

      9_9

    • Premium User Badge

      BathroomCitizen says:

      And don’t forget the 2-weapons limit for each class.

    • phosgene says:

      Please, allow me to retort.

      1. A skiing mechanism that relies on you just having to push a button like in Vengeance?

      A: Because tapping jump (like in tribes 1) is so much more pro that holding the button down.

      2. All character classes bar 1 locked unless you pay?

      A: Please correct me if I’m wrong, but I haven’t seen this confirmed anywhere and the sales guy I spoke with at Quakecon said that “most” of the classes would be available to non-paying customers.

      3: The Spinfusor crippled by a 10 second reload time?

      A: It is slightly slower than the previous Tribes iterations, but it is definitely not 10 seconds. This is mainly to punish inaccuracy. How do you complain about one mechanic being too easy, then complain about a weapon change making it too hard. Sounds like you’re just scraping for things to complain about.

      4. Kinetic guns?

      A: You mean hitscan? Yeah, those are fine.

      5. Removal of the customisation in favour of predefined classes so the brainless kiddies don’t get confused?

      A: You can still alter the loadout of the class somewhat, and from what I understand you can pay to be able to create your own class. Though I haven’t seen that confirmed either.

      6. Also, could the movement be slower and more pedestrian?

      A: If you’ll recall, tribes 1 and 2 weren’t exactly fast either, unless you were skiing etc. This game can be quite fast if you line your ski run up nicely.

      7. Seriously, no true fan of the Tibes series made this game or will go within a thousand miles of it. I really should have known better than to get my hopes up about this.

      A: This is incorrect. I probably put over 2000 hours into Tribes 1 and 2. I played this game for about 2 hours at quakecon, and I was very very pleased. I’m going to play the shit out of this game.

    • Howard says:

      Then allow me to counterpoint:

      1.A: Because tapping jump (like in tribes 1) is so much more pro that holding the button down.

      If you think that T1/2 skiing was just tapping the key its been too long since you played and you have forgotten it. The “press button to ski” thing is abortionate and they should be ashamed. Skiing is a skill you learn and hone over time, not an out-of-the-box feature.

      2. A: Please correct me if I’m wrong, but I haven’t seen this confirmed anywhere and the sales guy I spoke with at Quakecon said that “most” of the classes would be available to non-paying customers.

      The article above states that only the Soldier class will be available.

      3:A: It is slightly slower than the previous Tribes iterations, but it is definitely not 10 seconds. This is mainly to punish inaccuracy. How do you complain about one mechanic being too easy, then complain about a weapon change making it too hard. Sounds like you’re just scraping for things to complain about.

      No I’m not. Watching those videos (and other gameplay ones) the reload time for the Spinfuser is approaching 10 seconds, crippling the rate of damage it can do and utterly changing the pace of the game for the worse

      4. A: You mean hitscan? Yeah, those are fine.

      That’s not an answer.

      5. A: You can still alter the loadout of the class somewhat, and from what I understand you can pay to be able to create your own class. Though I haven’t seen that confirmed either.

      More hearsay then? I have spoken to many people who have played this game (I admit I have not) and they all reported that the classes are not modifiable (par something unimportant like grenade type). Part of the joy of Tribes was the custom loadouts meaning you were never quite certain about your opponent. This is just dumbing down for the 360 generation and if you think paying for a modifiable loadout is a good answer then I need to stop talking to you now as that is just ludicrous.

      6. A: If you’ll recall, tribes 1 and 2 weren’t exactly fast either, unless you were skiing etc. This game can be quite fast if you line your ski run up nicely.

      I am speaking about the speed of the skiing. I have seen people walk faster. Go play T2 again and refresh your memory of how fast Tribes should be. This is pedestrian

      7. A: This is incorrect. I probably put over 2000 hours into Tribes 1 and 2. I played this game for about 2 hours at quakecon, and I was very very pleased. I’m going to play the shit out of this game.

      Well that is your choice. If you wish to play a Freemium game with a bunch of console-kiddies that inexplicably has the Tribes logo on it, you go nuts. Freemium games are always, without exception, total shite and that fact that Tribes has fallen into this idiocy sickens me. Just produce a game that is worth and actual price tag and let me pay you for it FFS! Leaching money of my week by week is NEVER gonna fly.

      (Oh and BathroomCitizen: thanks – I forgot about that. 2 gun limit on Tribes? Hysterical. Just plain fucking hysterical. =) These morons have no clue what they are doing at all.)

    • TsunamiWombat says:

      My opinion falls somewhere in the middle. The idea that skiing is something you should master over time strikes me as DOTA style elitism- people want to pick up and play the game and have fun. The movement speed over all looks fairly similar to the original tribes games – assuming medium-heavy armor. Air speed, based on that short snippet posted, seems the same.

      Kinetic weapons aren’t a first, thats a fallacy in the article. Tribes had the well loved chaingun, which admittedly was firing exploading flechettes and not true self propellant ammunition, but it was still a kinetic weapon. As was the spinfusor. Which I have not seen footage of in use, so I cannot gauge it’s speed. I assume they’re trying to go for an RPG feel for it, which makes sense considering the Spinfusors traditional detonation radius, though in previous games this was mitigated by the fact that everyone was flying all the time.

      The Two Weapon Limit is concerning, I remember usually using three in Tribes (a long range, a mid range, and a shortrange, or a mid range short range and repair gun). Three would be nice but I understand the design decision.

    • Spectre-7 says:

      In Tribes 2, you could hold down the button to ski.

    • aethereal says:

      Howard, I think you misinterpreted. You will only have one class available initially, and you will unlock more as you level up/etc. At least thats how I interpreted it. And Hi-Rez is good enough at f2p games to not lock 90% of the content behind a paywall. That would be a total failure.

    • Brise Bonbons says:

      I seem to recall reading that there will be a rotation of free classes to pick from.

      Not that I think that’s an appropriate way to do things in an FPS that allows you to change classes mid-match. It’s… sort of fair enough in a game like LoL, but I think an FPS really demands a different model.

      Who knows, it might change before launch anyway.

  9. celewign says:

    I’m excited about this game. I hope you have the option of quake style config editing to modify your hud and whatnot… I’m looking for a good substitute for QuakeLive since no one plays QL in my area and other games MOVE. SO. SLOWLY.

  10. MFToast says:

    “For example, the infiltrator has can go stealthy, has standard grenades, a silenced pistol and an SMG – the first ballistic weapons to be introduced to the Tribes series.”

    Not true, both Tribes and Tribes: Vengeance definitely had ballistic chainguns, among others I believe.

    This looks freakin’ awesome.

  11. CaspianRoach says:

    Is that… is that lasers moving at the speed of light I see? Damn, that’s new for video games, lasers usually fly like turtles in most of them. Star Wars, for example, always had me wondering: why do they use these slow flying laser rifles when simple ballistic machinegun would do the trick much better?

  12. Gothnak says:

    Do most guns in the future have a BIG NUMBER on a screen to tell the soldier how many bullets they have left? Halo, and Bulletstorm and Section 8 all have a very similar design. I would have thought that when you have technologically got to the stage that you are firing lasers, it’s probably a small task to have an auto-reload function on the gun so fast that until you ultimately completely run out of bullets it’s like you have a single magazine.

    The number of people that get killed while reloading, i’d assume this is the first thing the military are trying to fix, rather than adding massive numbers to the readout…

  13. gwathdring says:

    Oooh. I like the understated UI and the vertical gameplay.

  14. DOLBYdigital says:

    Looks great, I’m very excited being a long time Tribes player… I keep meaning to get back into Legions Overdrive too but just don’t have enough time :(

  15. KBoogle says:

    That last bit in the video, where they are all attacking some base from the sky with green neon stuff or something…that looks terrible. Makes it look like the game is all about spamming AOE rather any skill.

  16. fartron says:

    This looks like they gathered a team of developers who really wanted to make the next Halo and told them to make a sequel to a game they’d never heard of.

    Sub-machine guns and assault rifles are useless at the kinds of ranges and speeds that Tribes took place at. To accommodate this many of them the maps must be much smaller, the players slower, or the bullets super powered. Or all three.

    All the coverage I’ve seen is quick to point out “they have skiing!” as though this were enough to prove its pedigree as a true Tribes game. Skiing is an emergent part of a game with jetpacks and hills. Removing it from a physics engine takes some effort, and its inclusion should be taken for granted.

    The only real question about any Tribes clone is whether the weapon projectiles inherit motion from the player. From what I’ve seen in the video and comments my guess is they do not. The fact that it is going to be Free also enforces this, as players who paid nothing are less likely to be interested in climbing a skill curve.

    The fact that they’ve gone from a 3 class system to a 15 class system further enforces my suspicion that they have no idea what made the original so great.

    Yes, this is all speculative.

    • Griddle Octopus says:

      I can’t comment on the other bits, but I did play the infiltrator class and his SMG is only useful at extremely short ranges; he’s a sitting duck in the open.