What We Learned Training for a Tribes: Ascend Grudge Match

So a few months ago, Hi-Rez Studios invited Game Front to put together a seven-player Tribes: Ascend team. Our (eventual) opponents: staffers from the SyFy Channel blog DVICE. You can watch AnarchyAO’s shoutcast of the match right here.

Here’s a little-known thing about games journalists, however — we’re kind of awful at games. Maybe it’s because we rarely get to stick with a single title for very long, or maybe it’s because our fingers lose their muscle memory from all the typing, but as a general rule, for people who play games for a living, it’s rare to find a games journalist that’s very good. Good example: One time, (somewhat before I was a full-time games journalist), I went to an Uncharted 3 multiplayer event where journalists were trying out the mode. I dominated every game I was in, having never touched Uncharted multiplayer before in my life. Maybe I’d had less to drink that day than everyone else; or maybe we’re all just sort of terrible, and I was having a good day.

Anyway, the point is, we immediately started training, because there’s no way we’re going to let anyone get the better of us (or at least, no way we’re going to allow ourselves to be embarrassed at their hands). We’ve been spending the last month or so improving our capture the flag chops and learning new classes and different roles. And along the way, we’ve learned some things that might help new players to the Tribes: Ascend world improve their game.

Ron Whitaker’s Advice

The three big things I would advise everyone:

1. Keep an eye on the bundles and daily deals. If you’re going to be dropping cash on stuff, you want to get the best deal you can.

2. Practice, practice, practice. It takes a while to get the hang of shooting at speed and compensating for the speed of you and your target. The only way to learn it is to keep doing. Don’t get frustrated, and keep skiing.

3. Communicate! The one thing lacking in Tribes: Ascend is the chat functionality. If you’re going to play with random folks, make sure you learn the quick chat codes. If you’re playing with a team, use voice coms. It’s totally worth the effort, and the return on it is HUGE.

Ben Richardson’s Advice

Technicians: Not every turret placement is created equal. Keep two things in mind: what can this turret fire at, and how easy is it to destroy it? Put a turret too close to the flag, and it’s likely to be destroyed by flag runners, Juggernaut mortars, and orbital strikes. Some suggested locations for maximum results:

On Raindance, put two turrets on the gentle slope leading up from the flagstand, away from the other base building. This gives them a good angle to hit incoming/outgoing flag-runners, and makes them hard to spot/destroy from afar.

On Arx Novena, put a turret at the back of the flagstand, facing away from the flag. This will hit outgoing flag-runners heading towards the aqueduct, and will also occasionally catch people fighting near the entrance to the generator room.

On Crossfire, put a turret on the back of the flagstand, on the corner closest to the conduit. This will hit outgoing flag-runners and also nail people trying to come up the conduit.

In general: Not all unlocks are created equal. Spend your initial XP on weapons and perks that will provide the most utility, both to a specific class and to the team in general. Examples include the Pathfinder Thrust Pack, the Infiltrator’s Jackal grenade launcher, and the Doombringer’s mines — crucial for flag defense because they’re not powered by the generator. When it comes to perks, Super Heavy is a key element of the Doombringer’s “Heavy on Flag” arsenal, and “Safety Third” will provide more utility with belt items for all classes.

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2 Comments on What We Learned Training for a Tribes: Ascend Grudge Match


On November 6, 2012 at 9:34 am

Excellent advice from all. Key points are from Ron – “Communicate!” and everything Phil said…seriously.
If your team is heavy on offense, go defense or vice versa…but pay attention and listen to what people are asking for in-game. If nobody is complaining about deployables, leave the enemy generator alone. If lots of people are complaining, then maybe someone needs to look into taking it out – and keeping it out.
I don’t care where I end up ranking in the final standings…. I rarely come out at the top, and if I ever do, then something obviously didn’t go right with the team, lol.
Watch for organized teams when you are playing on the public servers…. you can generally tell right off the bat when you are being pummelled from all directions before you can even get into position. This underscores how important communication is in the game. The “Alt” button will call out hostile players or deployables (as long as they are in your sights)…. sometimes you can help your team just by staying out of the way and calling out incoming enemies.


On November 6, 2012 at 4:15 pm

You forgot, hold tab when joining and make make sure you choose the team with the most winners from the last round.
Unlock all the bullet based / smg / plasma weapons, because they are all overpowered.
Save up XP for the patches so you can play with the new weapons added, as they are generally way over powered when added and they’ll be good for two or so weeks before they are nerfed.