Leader Of The (Jet)Pack: FireFall PvP Trailer

Red 5 Studios’ jetpack-based free-to-play shooter Firefall is making me sing with excitement – and look at this previous coverage for judgement, not this trailer – and no less after watching this new PvP trailer. While I am most interested in the scale of the world and co-op play vs monsters, this player combat (although entirely staged) looks like it might have some Tribes-like value to it. Also: class-based. Hmm! Go take a look.


  1. Dzamir says:

    Medic with healing ray and “supercharge” ability is so much tf2 :-D

    • RaytraceRat says:

      Medic with healing ray and supercharge ability and A CUSTOM HAT is so much TF2 ;)

    • mda says:

      Yea was gona say: Tribes Fortress?

    • Spider Jerusalem says:

      Tribes + TF2?

      Not seeing the problem with that.

    • mda says:

      Who said there was a problem?! :D

    • Droopy The Dog says:

      Since tribes already had a heal (well repair) gun I’d say it’s just plain old tribes rather than tribes fortress.

      Honestly, TF2’s becoming the WoW of FPSs, everyone loves to credit it with inventing tropes that are older than the wheel.

    • valru says:

      Scott Youngblood was Lead Designer on Starsiege: Tribes and Tribes 2 for Dynamix, Inc. He then worked at Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) where he was the Lead Multiplayer Designer on Syphon Filter: Dark Mirror. In April 2007 he joined Red 5 Studios, where he began designing FireFall.

  2. baby snot says:

    Unfortunately this trailer makes the game look terrible regardless of whether it is or not.

    • RaytraceRat says:

      I will second that. First trailers looked way better and made me pretty interested. This one makes the game looks very clunky.

    • BrightCandle says:

      The first trailer and the game demo they had all looked fantastic. This looks terrible. A lot of the F2P games seem to end up this way however, its part of making them “accessible”. Less skill more stats, charge for the stats boost.

    • Springy says:

      I’m not sure what trailer you lot were watching, because it looked fun to me. I mean, it was all staged, but I didn’t see anything that looked terrible.

      I did, however, like the way the white team fired up their jet packs all at the same time at one point.

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      When saying something is terrible it helps if you add what’s terrible about it. Otherwise you might come off as a bit of a dick, you know…

    • Amun says:

      The character design looks terrible. The textures are muddy. The animations seem jerky and unnatural. The effects look last-gen. The level design looks boring. The weapons are unoriginal. There doesn’t seem to be a reason to play this over unreal tournament or TF2.

    • tomeoftom says:

      Dances: you have a lovely name, but I must disagree. At this stage in the development process it’s far too late to make any real changes, so it probably wouldn’t be worth the effort to elucidate further.

    • Felixader says:

      @Amun: Sounds like an MMO to me, alrigth. ^_^

  3. CMaster says:

    Yeah, got to say as much as the idea sounds good, that didn’t look like a good FPS.

    • Daniel Rivas says:

      I thought the little bit of actual play right at the end looked fine. Looks like team deathmatch.

    • AlabasterSlim says:

      Agreed. The whole trailer was pretty bad, but the FPS footage at the end was promising

    • Spider Jerusalem says:

      Well that’s good. Because it’s the bit at the end that is the actual game.

      Not sure why Red 5 went the awful staged route with most of the trailer, though. The gameplay is very good, they’d be better served just showing that in the future.

    • Felixader says:

      I am pretty shure we can credit the PR team for that, and my idea about the PR team is a bit… let’s say there is a reason why there are trailers like this wich are often seen as stupid by gamers and still they keep coming..

  4. MasterBoo says:

    Why every game I’m interested in looks awesome in the first trailers and then looks so much underwhelming and stupid in the others?

  5. Quaib says:

    The Shangri-Las?

  6. heretic says:


  7. BathroomCitizen says:

    Where are the open spaces?!?!?!?

    Oh, Tribes, I’m missing you :(

    • Wulf says:

      The open spaces are in PvE! Check out the videos I’ve linked below.

  8. ADarkHorse says:

    It looks very Unreal Tournament 2k3 IMO

  9. Tei says:

    This looks good, I don’t see any engineer or buffer class, so I will probably play the recon one.

    Pvp in this game will be probably another extra thing and not the main meat, and for a extra thing this thing look really flehsed out. So this is a awesome indication this game is going to be a good one.

  10. Rii says:

    You know what would’ve been awesome? If the Cryo-shot had frozen the guy completely, and then someone had butted him with a rifle, causing him to shatter into a thousand pieces Jason X style.

  11. Soender says:

    Yawn. Looks generically boring. Looks like any other classbased shooter only with cartoon shading. Thumbs down.

  12. Jim Rossignol says:

    I don’t see any *free* game that comes in vaguely close to this.

    • tungstenHead says:

      Global Agenda.

    • Baka says:

      Reminded me very much of Global Agendas PvP. (especially the “meh, its okay I guess-clunkiness”)
      Although I paid for that back then…
      Have to agree with Daniel Rivas that the last part in ego looks “fine”. Maybe the third-person fake-style was a bad choice. If nothing else, it at least works as a class presentation. I hate Recons already.

    • BunnyPuncher says:

      Legions – much faster paced and loads of fun with the unique skills it demands.

      link to legionsoverdrive.com

      Sadly the jetpacks in this game didnt actually look very meaningful and combat looked wooly. Maybe its just a poor trailer but it didnt excite me at all.

    • Amun says:

      link to cgi.ebay.com

      Assault mode in UT is only $3.50 away.

    • DOLBYdigital says:

      Have to agree that Legions is a great game, haven’t played it in a long time since it was apart of instant action site but that game had great jet pack controls and reminded me of tribes with its tricky aiming/shooting/flying mechanics. Highly suggest playing that game, I should actually get back into it since it seems to be its own entity now and not apart of instant action site.
      Thanks for the link and reminding me about that one :)

    • DragonSix says:

      Tribes Next is free.

  13. Tei says:

    I feel sad no one has made a Sony joke about the “class action” in this game.

    • theleif says:

      This trailer makes me want to get in a hot class action suit right away.

  14. tungstenHead says:

    That would have been a great trailer for a Saturday morning cartoon; for a shooter, it falls flat.

  15. Stick says:

    Cute. In a rather Borderlands Fortress Agenda kind of way.

  16. kyrieee says:

    Why is Dustin Browder in the game?

  17. Shadowcat says:

    “Fire Fall”? This should obviously be titled “Free Fall”.

    • Wulf says:

      If that were the case then I’d be constantly comparing this against the hard science misadventures of Sam Starfall and Florence Ambrose, and it would probably not compare favourably, so I’m glad it’s named Firefall. :p

  18. ran93r says:

    I didn’t think it looked too terrible, some of the class abilities looked interesting, although I’m concerned that at 0.19 there is a man blowing me a kiss.

    How can they create a decent female recon model but fall down flat with ugly man-face.

  19. goodgimp says:

    I wouldn’t say anything there looked TERRIBLE individually, but the lack of absolutely anything that looked fun at all leads me to continue to believe this is going to be a pretty terrible game. Not god-I’m-going-to-claw-my-eyes-out terrible, just something you fire up once because it’s free, then forget about 5 minutes later.

  20. paterah says:

    The video looks clunky…And to think it actually uses the Project Offset engine….

  21. shagen454 says:

    Who cares? It seems to me that it is a balanced yet tacked on deathmatch to the core game. The core open-world game looks pretty awesome, that is unless they’ve changed it into just a class based team deathmatch game?

    • Spider Jerusalem says:

      They did not. This is a (poorly done) look at one of the PvP modes.

  22. Penicillin says:

    This looks absolutely nothing like Tribes, save for the fact that characters have what appear to be jetpacks. Tribes was all about rocketing across vast landscapes at breakneck speeds, ramping high into the air, and then raining plasma disk death down upon your enemies.

    This game seems to me like something that the pre-school children in the Tribes Universe would use as training for the real deal.

  23. Brise Bonbons says:

    I have to agree that this makes Fire Fall appear to be another bland-but-competent Global Agenda-type shooter. There are two big reasons for this:

    Firstly, like GA, the guns all look generic and one dimensional – that is, mostly hitscan automatic weapons, with a couple splash-damage heavy guns tossed in. What TF2 does so well – and which no other class based shooter seems to understand – is giving each class a very unique shooting experience. Whenever you get bored, you can switch to a class that will provide an entirely different feel, and require entirely different shooting skills on the player’s part.

    Secondly, like GA, the developers seem to have decided that Tribes was amazing because of jetpacks, in the process forgetting “minor” things like grenade or rocket boosting and skiing. This leaves movement also feeling bland and undifferentiated (I have this same issue with Brink, actually). Again, for comparison, in TF2 some classes have very distinct movement advantages or limitations which must be learned or worked around. As well as being fun skills to develop, these unique movement mechanics (i.e. rocket jumping, double jumping) allow players with less raw shooting talent to level the playing field a bit – i.e. by learning to reach ambush spots which are typically not accessible.

    Simply having a button for “jetpack boost”, with no mechanical skill to learn on the player’s part, means there’s no way to really distinguish yourself or utilize that movement in a novel way.

    I’m still watching Fire Fall, but I’m afraid it will be very boring as a shooter when compared to games with properly diverse shooting mechanics. Although, who knows, maybe they just haven’t shown us the interesting guns yet…

    • Warskull says:

      While Global Agenda was very much trying to ride Tribes sentiment to trick people into playing their terrible game, I don’t believe this game is trying to be Tribes. While the freedom of movement and unique weapons Tribes had were awesome, they were also had an insane learning curve. Weapons inherited velocity, battles were frequently air-to-air, and you have the movement of the jetpack to master. That is certainly too much for any PvE game and would scare off a ton of players for your PvP portion.

      If you go into games expecting Tribes you will pretty much always be disappointed. The only game that has come close to staying true to Tribes is Legions and it isn’t doing very well. There have been good multiplayer shooters other than Tribes and I see the potential for one in this game. The jetpack is just move of a short movement boost here instead of the main method of transport.

    • FD says:

      Warskull has it dead on here, I played Firefall some at PAX and talked to the devs (in marked contrast to some other booths the Firefall guys were very willing to talk to people about Firefall or FPS design in general). One of the first things they said was, we love tribes, some of us worked on tribes but we aren’t trying to make another tribes. They mentioned that “Tribes was a speed game” and that speed games while fun have really terrible learning curves and that isn’t what they are going for.

      On the role of jetpacks, they are very limited (15 seconds max) and recharge really slowly, 30 seconds to a minute from empty to full. They feel more like Jump Jets from Mechwarrior, a situational tactical tool not a defining combat mechanic.

    • Brise Bonbons says:

      Thanks for the thoughtful responses. To be honest I was never any good at Tribes myself, so I certainly understand the desire to make a more accessible experience.

      My initial post came off a bit more negative than I intended, anyway. Fire Fall looks like it should be a pretty solid game, based on the little we’ve seen, and I really like a lot of the design and aesthetics. It’s just not the kind of game I’m looking for personally.

      For that matter, the complaints I have about the game are quite easy to design away, if they desired to: Add a good indirect fire weapon like a mortar or grenade launcher, and my quibbles with the gunplay vanish. Give one class the ability to rocket jump, and my movement complaints dry up…

      Or, of course, they might decide such things don’t fit the design, in which case I just don’t play. My loss is probably some other fellow’s gain, right?

  24. jwfiore says:

    Why can’t they just make another Tribes game? Isn’t that all anyone really wants?

    • BathroomCitizen says:

      Well, luckily, we have not one, but TWO Tribes titles in the making:

      link to tribesuniverse.com

      Tribes Universe is supposed to be the MMORPG version of Tribes, while Tribes Ascend is gonna be the classic Capture The Flag experience… all of this by HiRez, Global Agenda’s devs.

    • valru says:

      Unlike HiRez and Global Agenda which has a terrible track record with anything, this game is being designed by the original Starseige Tribes developer, Scott Youngblood.

  25. Springy says:

    I need to stop reading the comments threads at RPS. They make me sad.

  26. Chemix says:

    Pros- Classes, which all seem fairly adept at fighting other classes, which is saying something with only 3 classes, which usually comes out rock, paper, scissors, in it that if you are ‘R’ and see ‘P’ you’re not completely screwed, and if you are ‘R’ and see ‘S’ then you can’t be completely confident.
    Interesting visuals, though somewhat generic, the visuals are at least colorful and vibrant, offering alternatives to many games that feature 3 colors: Green, Brown, Grey
    Jet Packs, self explanatory
    Cons- Combat seems a little clunky, in it that it doesn’t seem to flow beautifully like a TF2 match, though the staging of the video may have played into that a bit, but the movement does feel, like the armor, heavy and off balance with moments of floaty
    Non-attractive male characters; I want to see a character with my fair skin and feathered hair damn it

  27. porps says:

    looks fun to me

  28. Derpington Hurrrrrrr says:

    I never really enjoyed MMOs, but Firefall might change that. I have a strange feeling about this game.

  29. Felixader says:

    A big “Sigh” at the female armor.

    Altougth some of the male here aren’t much better.

    • Wulf says:

      Normally I’m against scantily clad armour, but if the men are just as scantily clad, then it doesn’t bother me as much.

  30. TsunamiWombat says:

    What happened to this game? Remember when this game was about a psuedo open world, mining for minerals and fighting Star Ship Trooper style bugs?

    When the fuck did it become an even poorer mans Global Agenda?

  31. Wulf says:

    I’m still mildly excited by the PvE element of this, anyway. It’s colourful, it looks cheerful, it seems to be based around fun rather than grind, and it encourages teamplay without the nonsense of groups and click-target heals (the bane of past MMORPGs, I’m so glad that Guild Wars 2 is helping to kill that). That it’s FPS-ish is just a bonus on top of that.

    I also have to say that I really love the art style. I’ve never been able to figure this out, but I really enjoy alien landscapes, I can’t tell you why. I loved it in Uru, I loved it in Darkspore, and this has a lot of that going on. It just feels like I’m exploring something really new I suppose, rather than just visiting the same old place that I’ve been to a billion times before. Yes, I know this is earth in Firefall, but it’s definitely not earth as we know it, right? It’s been invaded, and not just by extraterrestrial fauna, but flora too!

    That and the technology is… fascinating. Those jetpacks, the thumpers, and everything else has a unique look to it, sort of somewhere between Western and Japanese animation. It looks like a very clean form of technology, almost like Portal in some regards.

    There’s a lot about this game’s visuals that appeals to me. I won’t PvP. I can’t PvP. But I will be giving this game’s PvE a look.

    • Wulf says:

      This is how I tend to remember and think of Firefall:

      If GLaDOS built spaceships, that’s what they’d look like.

      Edit #1: This video is also worth linking…

      …if only for the “MOAR BEER!”, “Meh, you wanna whicky-whacker.” scene. Which is very… uh… o_O

  32. Xerian says:

    To me this game looks like a mix of TF2, GA and some borderlands-like graphics… Looks interesting :p

  33. Frye2k11 says:

    The moral of the video : if you choose to be a healer, resurrect your teammates and buff them up then they will just run off and leave you to die. What’s not to like?

    Can’t wait for this title.

  34. Chaz says:

    The “Stella Ponies” sounds like something a group of 12 year old girls would call themselves.

    Not so interested in this PvP, the maps look to far to small to be anything Tribes like, I want epic scale 128+ player sized battles not piddling 8v8 matches. Oh and where’s the vehicles? The co-op questing stuff still interests me though.

  35. passingstranger says:

    Design aside, it certainly doesn’t help that it consistently looks like these people are using controllers for aiming whenever it’s in first person. The movements are so sweeping and imprecise. But… why?

  36. wazups2x says:

    I hate Free2Play games, more like pay2win.

  37. Surgeon says:

    The open world/dynamic events/PvE side of FireFall looks really interesting and on a decent scale, so this first look at the PvP is a bit disappointing in contrast.
    I hope Team Deathmatch is just one facet of the PvP and they can offer some thing equally grand in scale like PlanetSide.

    There’s a live broadcasted event planned for the 6th of May if anyone is interested…

    Next Friday, May 6th at 6pm PDT we will be doing the first ever live broadcast of Firefall to the world on Justin.tv. We’ve invited a group of e-Sports broadcasters to the studio to not only provide their insights into the game and help us tune the competitive side of Firefall, but they will also be broadcasting an internal dev match live. Be sure to join us at link to justin.tv

  38. Personoic says:

    At least the environments looks nice even if the gameplay looks lacking.

  39. littlewilly91 says:

    Oh after looking at the animation of brink and rage (and the story business of the former and the graphics of the latter) I am ruined for what would have been ejoyable tribesy manshoots.