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Starsiege: Tribes

Saturday, January 01, 2000 by Shamino

Overall: 4
Graphics: 4
Interface: 4
Multiplayer: 4
Tribes is a game that Quake 3 desires to be. If you want this game, be sure that you enjoy multiplayer games because that's all that this one is. I don't have too much information on the background of this game except for I know it relates to the Earthseige series in some way. The plot aside, Tribes is a good piece of work. In the game you essential have two teams and you duke it out in a first person shooter style. (Sound famaliar) What they have added to the FPS concept is wide open maps, vehicles, and alot of voice commands rather than having to type to your buddies while getting blown away by some punk trying for a free kill. The weapons in Tribes are unattractive and plain. I still haven't had a chance to check them all out yet.


Don't expect this game to be the 3DFX wonder of the year because it is way off. While I like the open land maps and the buildings or bases, the graphics tend to be a bit bland. When you first go into the game you will think to yourself that the graphics are actually pretty decent. Play it for an hour and jump back into a CTF match in Quake 2 and you will see the difference in graphics big time. As far as I can tell, it only uses 3DFX and it flew just fine on my PII300/Voodoo II combo.


I flew a few vehicles in the game and found them to be quite cumbersome at first. Then I just played it till I got used to it and now the vehicles are a blast. Movement is pretty basic. Not as fast paced as Quake 2 but it makes for better warfare planning. It's a big difference from shooting the walls all around an opponent to get a kill and flying to the other side of the base in less than 20 seconds. In Tribes, it could take 5 minutes to walk from one side of the map to the other if you are loaded down with too much equipment. Controls are difficult at first but once you customize you are just flyin.

Multiplayer (if any):

Again I stress, Tribes is multiplayer only with the exception a training level to help you get your controls set the way ya like. You can play LAN and TCP/IP on the net and while I maintained a decent ping on most servers, the avg for most people using a modem is probably in the range of 200-300. Much like Quake 2. There is also a way to report to the Dynamix server that you are running a server so people will be able to join your server the next time they load the game. Good idea considering that if you use gamespy for quake you already know that new server would not show up unless you went and did a total refresh of all server listings. Who wants to wait a half an hour for that to finish ?


The whole concept to me is personally intriguing. Each team has a group or "team" leader. There are consoles in your base that allow you to get armor, purchase vehicles, and radar to show where the hell everyone is. The idea behind this is that the group leader or designated persons could effectively bark out orders to the rest of their team out in the field. If they were to actually follow the orders, it could prove to be quite a match up if you had two good leaders. Everything within a base can be destroyed or taken offline effectively shutting down a team from getting armor and other powerups. There are deathmatch and ctf matches available. I really enjoy being able to destroy the powerup machines and turrets in a base. Just playing with Pyro and Spectre and coordinating a team effort is awesome when it pays off. Sniping is something you really need to watch for as well. You never know when someone is looking at you because your dead before you know it. I actually really enjoy this game but to try and remain fair I've brought it's score down a bit. If I went on concept alone I would rate this game a 10. With the exception of the voice commands option the sounds in the game are actually a bit boring and of course the plain graphics bring the score down slightly as well. If you like a multiplayer based only FPS shooter then you should enjoy this one. I did.

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