I’m not going to say that I’m a video game reviewer, or a developer. And since the game(s) I’m going to talk about today aren’t out yet take what I say with a grain of salt yes? The games might be amazing, spectacular, worthy of praise. But we shall see, turn your jet pack on and walk through the door.
One of the first games I ever played for PC was Starsiege: Tribes, I believe the first was more than likely Starcraft.
I played, and forgive my french “the ever loving shit” out of this game. I remember sneaking down at night after I was supposed to be in bed to play with all the friends I had made in the game, to me this was my first MMO. And I say that because games with 200+ people on a server call themselves MMO’s, Tribes did it back in 98 with 250 people servers. The sheer insanity of maps with 250 people was staggering and awe inspiring. Tribes 2 did it as well but we’ll talk about that later. The server I played on was the comp shop and we were amazing I played with some of the best players I’ve ever seen. My brothers in arms, we were united under a single banner: Grandpimp, Carrion, Tornado, LittleMissTornado, Moosekiller, Kong. There are others but thats just a handful of us. The fact many of us moved off Tribes once The comp shop was shut down was a testament to not only what we meant to each other but no other server or mod could compare.
I eventually moved onto Tribes 2, and was fulfilled for a time. I never found a permanent server on Tribes 2 one that I could call my home, and I suppose thats really where my dilemma with it ends. It was an amazing game with all the weapons and options that surpassed the original in my opinion. Dynamix really outdid themselves and honestly I do think 2 expanded and was a better game than the original, the problem was I got there to late. There really isn’t much to say about it, but know I was playing the Tribes games well into my high school years. There is my resume for this shit okay? I played “the ever loving shit” out of every Tribes game. And yes…that does include Vengeance.
Vengeance was …. “different” I would say. They tried to take some of the more rampant complaints about Tribes and abolish them. For one thing you couldn’t leave the “map area” like you could in it’s predecessors. Another was a problem with my main area of expertise, the sniper rifle which used to have infinite shots had limited ammo and a maximum range that was less than most of the other weapons. A lot of the weapons were messed up to be honest, the “flame thrower” who’s actual name I don’t remember could kill lights very easily with a single shot AND it had infinite ammo. But really to top it all off pretty much as soon as the game came out all support for it was pulled and it pretty much died soon after.
Now I hear about not one but two new Tribes games? I’m not going to mix words, I found Vengeance to be a catastrophic blow to the franchise, and the stigma still surrounding it is something I would worry about.
The first I want to talk about is the MMO. Tribes: Universe as it will be called. My heart is aflutter thinking about it. I imagine it to be like planetside but hopefully without being as big of a resource hog. I could actually see this working well…a little too well. If it played similar to planetside it would be incredible. I can see it now!
Heavy Personnel Carriers flying in formation dropping people off as a massive ground war goes on underneath for a floating fortress. My favorite memory of Planetside was a battle I was in where literally a army moved to attack a forward base I imagine it to be like this, except with more flying and disk’s flying in the air, more shazbots being yelled as I lift my arm into the air. I do have high hopes for the MMO because if it’s good and it feels like Tribes I could see my life being absorbed by it, but in a good way, like a man loves a woman…or vice versa.
Next up is Tribes: Ascend. It seems to look good so far and I’m glad they’re focusing on multiplayer and not singleplayer. It is as it should be. Now lets move into rant mode about Tribes shall we?
Tribes, I’m not sure exactly how one manages to screw up Tribes, but obviously it can be done ala Vengeance. Now I’m not saying Vengeance was a bad game, just…it wasn’t Tribes. you basically just need to lift Tribes 2 and put it in a new engine, undo the restrictions put on weapons and maps by Vengeance. Nothing needs to be taken away or put in, if you feel the need to put things in test them, I’m not gonna say V didn’t but well…it certainly feels like they didn’t. It’s not exactly rocket science, the reason tribes 2 worked was because it took everything, EVERYTHING, Tribes was and expanded upon that. I think it’s possible to do it again, in fact I want Hi-rez to do it again, I’m literally on my knees begging them to not completely mess up. Don’t try to beat the heavy players in the game industry, don’t make it some Call of Duty wanna be, just please, PLEASE make it Tribes. If you make it people will goto it, people will buy it I know I will.
I really want a new game that I love and feel like it becomes an extension of who I am, like a samurai and his katana. I realize I’m probably just kicking around in the dirt but I honestly do hope that the game is a success. I really hope that it’s good, and please show off some of the other Tribes as well, like the starwolf. It doesn’t just have to be about the Diamond Sword and the Blood Eagle.
I guess that’s it, I guess thats all I wanted to say. I’m sure you’ll see me rage about these games in the future or heaping praises upon them, let me put it this way: It will definitely be one or the other. As a bonus if you stuck around have some Firefall. It’s basically a spiritual successor to Tribes. Please let this be good too, but seeing as it’s going to be freeware I don’t know how to feel about it, and since it’s single player there a lot more that can go wrong. I hope I’m wrong I really do.