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  1. #1
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Hypernetic's Avatar
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    How not to do F2P, a rant about Tribes Ascend.

    I originally played the beta when it first came out and came back to it again because my friend kept bugging me to. It really feels like a good game ruined by a crappy payment model. It's a lot like world of tanks in that you start off with really shitty weapons/classes and get owned by people with better stuff and the grind to get the better stuff is a LONG one. Unlike WoT, however, you can flatout buy EVERYTHING with cash.

    It's pretty much pay to win even though everything can be unlocked without paying a dime, it simply takes forever. After a few hours of playing I'm only 10% of the way towards unlocking a spinfusor for the soldier class, which starts with some super crappy assault rifle. The assault rifle is so out of place in that game it's not even funny. People are shooting spinfusors and other various weapons at me for 500+ damage a pop and I'm trying to pluck them with pot shots from an assault rifle that hits for 75 damage...

    I'm not against F2P games, I love LoL, but this kind of crap is way too centered on getting your money. The entire game is setup to make you say "fuck it" and spend some cash to get better stuff. LoL solves this problem by rotating the free champions every week. If LoL had the Tribes payment model you would be stuck playing Ashe for 3 months before you could buy a second champion.

    tl;d: Decent game is ruined by crappy f2p model.

  2. #2
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    The stuff you start off with isn't really shitty compared to the unlocks, actually. The lack of upgrades does hurt a bit, though. Also, pay-to-win is usually seen to meant "pay lots of cash for game-breaking advantages" - whereas here it's "pay lots of cash or time for slight advantages and more options". That's not really good, either (forget about being on equal footing with everyone), but not as dreadful.

    It's like 20 days to unlock the most expensive guns if you have the VIP bonus, so it's not literally 3 months, either. XP prices aren't that horrible (considering that you can get the full game that way for free), but gold prices are indeed wacky. $130 to get everything, if you buy the largest gold packs.

  3. #3
    Network Hub Bleekill's Avatar
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    Idk I kill a shit ton of people playing as pathfinder without spending a dime...almost always at the top of the team.

  4. #4
    Network Hub Miker's Avatar
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    To begin, I agree that Tribes: Ascend's XP and GP prices are a bit too high. If you don't have VIP status (permanent 1.5 times XP boost from spending any amount of money on the game, minimum $10), it can be slow to earn XP towards new gear. That said, Hyperkinetic's post seems to be a pretty knee-jerk reaction that isn't really that accurate.

    After a few hours of playing I'm only 10% of the way towards unlocking a spinfusor for the soldier class, which starts with some super crappy assault rifle. The assault rifle is so out of place in that game it's not even funny. People are shooting spinfusors and other various weapons at me for 500+ damage a pop and I'm trying to pluck them with pot shots from an assault rifle that hits for 75 damage...
    ...Right. Thumper/AR beats Spinfusor/Pistol in versatility, all day, err'y day. I prefer fusor/pistol myself, but I know that it's the less versatile loadout, and that the spinfusor is a crutch for my shit aiming with both the thumper and AR. In fact, the Soldier AR is widely regarded as one of the most game-breaking weapons so long as you're good with automatics. People do complain that the AR is "out of place," in that once you get good with it, it makes projectile weapons like the spinfusor look silly in an oudoors fight.

    And you're 10% of the way towards a 42K weapon after a few hours of playing? Strange. From the numbers I've seen, you get about 2.5K XP if you play for an hour, win half your matches, and end up scoring middle of your team. If you win one match in that hour, you get the first win of the day bonus for another 1.2K, so it should be about 3.7K XP for your first hour of playing. Now, like I said above, 2.5K XP per hour is still pretty low, so I agree with you on that.

    Now, here's my own experience with the game's business model, in addition to what I've said above:

    I'm VIP (paid $10), and I've played for 20 hours since the profile patch that keeps track of your playtime, and I've earned over 200K XP so far. With the new badges (achievements) system they've added, you get sizeable bursts of XP when you first begin playing and earning the lower-level badges, which is a great way to get the more basic gear for your classes.

    Although I do think that the 100K weapons are ludicrously priced, I have to say that at least the classes are evenly priced. The most expensive class is 18K, I think. Honestly, I would much rather it be cheap classes/expensive weapons than the other wary around. Another thing about weapon prices, though -- there's still not that many weapons in the game. I can understand why Hi-Rez wants to keep weapon prices somewhat high right now because if they were lower (say, 100K weps lowered to 42K), a lot of people would have unlocked everything. As much as I balk at 100K, I would say it's better to judge it a month or two after it releases when it has more content instead of a month before release.

    As far as balance goes, though Hi-Rez isn't quite as fast as Riot in terms of changes, they've shown a commitment to keeping the weapons balanced. There are a few classes that are marginally better with different gear (Jugg with LMG and thrown disc comes to mind), but nothing that crazy. Just last week they nerfed the Path's (unlockable) bolt launcher so it can no longer one-shot light classes.

    And one last thing -- Tribes: Ascend is actually pretty damn generous in the purchased bundles, mainly because there's not that much stuff to unlock right now. If you buy the $30 pack, you get 30 days of boost (3 times the XP), and 3000 gold, with which you can buy a 90-day boost. That's 120 days of boost. If you play, say, 1-1.5 hours a day, you'll be getting one 100K weapon each week, give or take. I've seen people who have everything they want unlocked with hundreds of thousands of XP saved up to spend on future weapons for their favorite class.

    Basically, $10 is great value if you plan on semi-regular playing, and $30 is fantastic value if you play regularly.

  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Grizzly's Avatar
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    Great caution should be taken when calling unlockable weapons overpowered. The thing is not that most unlockable weapons are overpowered, but rahter that the people that use those weapons are just better at the game then you are, due to them simply having spend more time with the game.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grizzly View Post
    Great caution should be taken when calling unlockable weapons overpowered. The thing is not that most unlockable weapons are overpowered, but rahter that the people that use those weapons are just better at the game then you are, due to them simply having spend more time with the game.
    Now that's a great point. In my opinion Tribes Ascend don't have such a crappy business model as OP suggested. Unlockable weapons are not overpowered and most unlocks for armor/weapons are meaningless. Even if someone has 20% more damage or 5 ammo more, it doesn't mean he will be able to kill me before I kill him. I spend some time on the game and (I think) 5$ (so I have VIP and access to VIP servers later on). It was enough to fully unlock Pathfinder, Soldier and Brute. And when I was playing, I never felt like I'm grinding XP for unlock (not like in LoL).

  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Lukasz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bleekill View Post
    Idk I kill a shit ton of people playing as pathfinder without spending a dime...almost always at the top of the team.
    which is not relevant or important :) :)
    are you actually beneficial to your team or do you just keep killing everyone while your team loses because you do not do anything useful?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lukasz View Post
    which is not relevant or important :) :)
    are you actually beneficial to your team or do you just keep killing everyone while your team loses because you do not do anything useful?
    Seconding this with the power of a million shazbots.

    Also, ontopic: I've played about 40 hrs in total, payed 10$ and spent them on the new infiltrator weapons, and I currently have 3 classes (pathfinder, infiltrator and juggernaut) which I'm quite confortable playing. Of course some more tweaking can be had in order to maximize efficiency, but I never feel "owned" by overpowered weapons.

    In tribes, skill > loadout all the time.

  9. #9
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    Loved the beta, paid for the unlock pack and still love playing this for a few hours every day even though it is a bit repetitive. The weapons you start off with really aren't that underpowered. They feel like it when you start but after a while you get use to them.

    I played the scout class constantly when I began playing. I didn't focus on kills at all just gaining momentum and going in for flag captures, the game was still amazingly fun without ever shooting.

  10. #10
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Unaco's Avatar
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    I have to agree. The unlock, pay2win nature of the game was the final nail in its coffin for me. I don't want to grind for hours just to get the 'basic' loadout, that should be available at the start. There's too much locked away, and the initial offerings are weak. The time/grind required to unlock things is excessive as well.

    That wasn't what put me off the game though... like I say, it was just the straw what done broke the camel's back. What put me off was that it's nothing new to me. It's like 2/Venegeance with shinier graphics, a pay2win model, and loads of people saying Shazbot constantly. Nothing new or interesting added to the formula... nothing to hook me in and keep me playing.
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  11. #11
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    From what I'm reading it seems to be working as designed - you can try out a bunch of classes for free, figure out which you prefer to play (once you've given them all a decent go, you can probably afford one of the locked ones if none appeal) then you chip in 10 or so for decent weapons for the one you like. I mean, is this really not a 10 game?

    By all accounts once you're bored of that class you'll either have enough XP for trying different load-outs or properly equipping another class. Let's face it, Tribes doesn't have the huge mass appeal of a lot of F2P franchises. It needs to monetize early on as monetizing 1 in a 100 players probably won't cut it.

    I think it's a fairly neat system actually, and I much prefer a game that asks everyone for a little bit of cash early one (once they know if they like it or not) than one which gives you tons of free stuff then nickels and dimes the high-level competitive players for 100s

  12. #12
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Berzee's Avatar
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    I haven't unlocked any new weapons yet -- I've gotten all of the classes and some of the armor / pack upgrades for classes that I like. Having fought against some of the unlockable weapons for a while though...I really don't think they are that much different in power from the basic ones, and some of them appear to be weaker in general situations.

    I haven't spent a dime on it yet (not yet sure where I would put the money if I did spend it...they should probably give people a slowly-recharging 10-minute free trial with each weapon, so people can try them and realize they adore them, and then buy them) but when I lose a battle, I usually assume it's because I'm awful and not because my enemy is rich. =P

    That being said it's certainly a game that lets you pay for small advantages (less the weapons, more the armor stuff, though that's pretty cheap XP-wise).
    Support for my all-pepperjack-cheese food bank charity drive has been lukewarm at best.

  13. #13
    Lesser Hivemind Node Scumbag's Avatar
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    Spend money on gold and XP boosts
    Only use Jug with Fusion Morter

  14. #14
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    Tribes is awesome.

  15. #15
    Network Hub Dead Herald's Avatar
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    I played in Beta and I tried it after it went live. TBQH, I don't think it's that good a game. I haven't played Tribes 2 and everyone tells me that's much better, but it seems like Tribes: Ascend suffers from terrible class imbalance, coupled with a terribly schizophrenic game structure mechanic.

    It seems that skiing is the marquee mechanic in the game, aside from Spinlosers who somehow can hit a Pathfinder in midair going 250/km with a slow moving dumbfire explosive, (That sounds you just heard was my brain leaking petrol.) It seems that if you're not playing a pathfinder, skiing is terribly ineffective, difficult to learn, and seems to lose it's zip on a map filled with badly placed peaks and valleys. Actually even if you are a pathfinder, skiing is still a pain to learn.

    The notion of having the flag sit in wide open space also makes no sense. Oh, yeah it's guarded by autoturrets, which aside from being piss stinkingly inaccurate are easily disabled by having half of an armory pour into the generator and take it off line, which is piss easy because no one ever defends the damn thing. If you pick technician and try to defend the generator? Gonna have a bad time... So essentially, there is no defense for the flag which is easily gangbanged by 5 or 6 pathfinders.

    Where is my team when all this is going on? FUCK IF I KNOW!?

    Obviously they're doing the same thing, but doing a bad job of it because for all the emphasis on throwing offense, no one ever seems to cap a flag. Meanwhile I have an army of juggernauts, raiders, infiltrators and magic laser shooting grenades teabagging my corpse.

    Ok, admittedly I'm so terribad at Pathfinder, it made sense for me to take Juggernaut, Technician or Doombringer and just hold for "D". Apparently "D" is an afterthought in the very game design, which makes me wonder why even have a CTF mode to begin with? Not that any of the other modes make a damn bit of sense. They're either 5-Man KotH which is technically the same, Rabbit, which is mobile CTF which is the same, or Deathmatch, which somehow Pathfinders still dominate because they all mastered the Spinloser.

    I really hate Pathfinders. No, I'm not gonna give this game a second chance like I did SCII. SCII is a game with a rich mythos and an elegant strategy that I just have trouble picking up. Tribes Ascend is just a douchey attempt to knock off TF2 with a plate of bullshit and microtransactions.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dead Herald View Post
    It seems that skiing is the marquee mechanic in the game, aside from Spinlosers who somehow can hit a Pathfinder in midair going 250/km with a slow moving dumbfire explosive, (That sounds you just heard was my brain leaking petrol.) It seems that if you're not playing a pathfinder, skiing is terribly ineffective, difficult to learn, and seems to lose it's zip on a map filled with badly placed peaks and valleys. Actually even if you are a pathfinder, skiing is still a pain to learn.
    So having a learning curve makes the game bad?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dead Herald View Post
    The notion of having the flag sit in wide open space also makes no sense. Oh, yeah it's guarded by autoturrets, which aside from being piss stinkingly inaccurate are easily disabled by having half of an armory pour into the generator and take it off line, which is piss easy because no one ever defends the damn thing. If you pick technician and try to defend the generator? Gonna have a bad time... So essentially, there is no defense for the flag which is easily gangbanged by 5 or 6 pathfinders.

    Where is my team when all this is going on? FUCK IF I KNOW!?

    Obviously they're doing the same thing, but doing a bad job of it because for all the emphasis on throwing offense, no one ever seems to cap a flag. Meanwhile I have an army of juggernauts, raiders, infiltrators and magic laser shooting grenades teabagging my corpse.
    I don't know where you play, but I want in there. Most games I play, it's 1-3 guys on offence and the rest of the team clusterfucking in our flag/gen.;)

    PS: And to the OP, I wouldn't swap my Soldiers assault rifle for a 100 spinfusors.
    Last edited by Poppis; 26-03-2013 at 07:58 PM.

  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus pakoito's Avatar
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    "No, no, but you can get everything by playing"

  18. #18
    Network Hub Dead Herald's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poppis View Post
    So having a learning curve makes the game bad?
    That really wasn't what I meant. Hard learning curve? Okay. Batshit insane learning curve that can only be surmounted by shoe people? Shoe people who will be shoeing you to death while you learn? Yeah, I take issue. But that wasn't my major point.



    I don't know where you play, but I want in there. Most games I play, it's 1-3 guys on offence and the rest of the team clusterfucking in our flag/gen.;)
    Clearly not where you play. But for the record it was mostly pubstomp.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grizzly View Post
    Great caution should be taken when calling unlockable weapons overpowered. The thing is not that most unlockable weapons are overpowered, but rahter that the people that use those weapons are just better at the game then you are, due to them simply having spend more [MONEY ON] the game.
    Is all I can hear...

  20. #20
    Lesser Hivemind Node Scumbag's Avatar
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    Not sure why this thread got bumped from about a year ago, but Tribes has changed a lot and its pricing system got re-hauled a few times. The really expensive stuff is now... pricey still I guess? Its not the $8-a-gun situation as was on launch, but its still about $3.50(?) for the expensive stuff. They at least now have a single payment option to get everything unlocked instantly.
    Grind has also been cut in half. I don't play much now, but when I do I unlock a cheapish weapon every other session.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dead Herald View Post
    I haven't played Tribes 2
    Just say a lot of old players considered T:A to be a dumbed down, no-skill game compared to the Tribes 2.

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