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Have You Played... Tribes: Ascend?

Wheeee--

--eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee--

--eeeeeeee.

I was so chuffed with how fast I could go in Tribes: Ascend that I forced my friend to sit down and watch. The basics were easy: hold down the ski button, and you'd ski. Every slope was an opportunity, every valley brimmed with potential momentum. All the soldier classes needed to know how to ski, but for the Pathfinder it was paramount. That was usually me.

There are two kinds of people in the world: those that want to pinch flags, and those that want to stop them. Tribes: Ascend had other modes, but their existence was periphery. Those flags were everything, and the maps were built around routes that let skillful cappers swoop by at 400km a second. I remember researching and memorising those routes, dedicating myself to speed by way of preparation and practice. I just watched somebody's old highlight reel, and felt my hand twitching along with every disk jump. The satisfaction of improving is why I play many of the games I do, and raw speed is a fantastic metric for success.

I'm using the past tense, because, tragically, Tribes is no longer officially supported. You can't search for it on Steam, and it's been removed from the Hi-Rez launcher. And yet it lives! Apparently, you can still leap into a game by following these ten simple steps.

You should do that. Even though you'll be torn apart by the people who've been playing for years.

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