Tribes: Ascend- A Preview of the Beta (Windows PC)
Posted by Pat Gibbons (RedCoatGunman), Mar 13, 2012 18:31
There are only a few game modes available in the beta currently. Of course Capture the Flag and Team Deathmatch are included, but each has it’s own twist. CTF is organized more like a base defense game. In addition to the flag, each team posses a number of useful items including turrets, a sensor tower, and a vehicle bay. All of these are powered by a generator, which the opposing team can knock out. This adds an extra challenge, as there is more to look after than just the flag. Players can upgrade their base defenses using credits, which they accumulate by helping their team. The game plays great, but I would suggest that spawn points be placed closer to the base, as generator camping is a problem. I also must question the decision to make the turrets placed by the Technician class dependant on the generator for power.
Ascend also attempts to spice up Team Deathmatch by throwing in a game of keep away. Players can earn credits and extra experience by holding on to a single flag that exists in the map. Credits can be used to call in a supply drop or an air strike on opposing players. This runs the risk of creating a Call of Duty style “rich get richer” situation, but these perks aren’t over powered by any means.
Two other game modes, Rabbit and Arena, have been recently rotated into the beta test. Rabbit is a king of the hill style game in which one player takes position of a flag while everyone else tries to take it from him. This is similar to game modes in previous Tribes games, and it makes great use of the skiing mechanics. Arena is a smaller form of Team Deathmatch. It is a 5v5 battle with limited respawns. Each team only has 25 respawns per round. Once respawns are depleted, each player will have one life to try and even the score. Maneuvering is especially difficult, as both available maps consist of a series of narrow ledges positioned over a very nasty pit fall. While it requires a bit more skill, Arena has proven to be an exhilarating experience, and some reviewers have suggested that it is well suited for competitive play.
All I can say is that Tribes: Ascend looks great. The gameplay is solid all around, and the graphics are simply stunning. At this stage, the game is virtually bug free other than some frame rate issues and the occasional graphical glitch. I did have problems with crashes early on, but those appear to have been fixed. Also, the premium system in this game is with out a doubt the best I have ever seen. For the first time, I actually want to spend money on a free-to-play game. Tribes: Ascend won’t be released for another month, yet it is a great experience even now. If I were to review it now in the beta stage, it would easily receive an 8 or higher. If you aren’t in the beta yet, then I urge you to sign up now and get in the game.
Rating: 0.0, votes: 1