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Starsiege: Tribes, more commonly known as simply Tribes, is a long-running series of multiplayer-focused First Person Shooters found mostly on PC, with a few exceptions. The original game bears the Starsiege title because it is in fact a sequel of sorts to that game and represents the continuation of the Earthsiege franchise as a whole.
In the distant future, humanity has spread amongst the stars. Beyond the edge of space controlled by The Empire, in a region called the Wilderzone, are various tightly-knit Tribes, who live a harsh frontier existence but otherwise free of Imperial authority. The disparate tribes battle one other for control of planetary territory and resources using Powered Armor and advanced small arms.
The first game in the series, Starsiege: Tribes, was developed by Starsiege developers Dynamix and released in November of 1998. It established itself as a unique multiplayer shooter with several key differences from its contemporaries, such as sprawling outdoor maps and movement centered around the use of a Jet Pack. Known for one of the great Good Bad Bugs of gaming, which allowed players to abuse the physics engine to "ski" down slopes, so pervasive that it was implemented as gameplay feature in every sequel to follow.
The big damn sequel, Tribes 2, was released in March of 2001 and on Linux in April of that year. It was bigger, badder and came with its fair share of bugs, but it was loved all the same. It received a PlayStation 2 port in the form of Tribes: Aerial Assault in 2002.
Two years later, in October of 2004, developer Irrational Games released Tribes: Vengeance, a Prequel to the earlier games that featured a story-driven campaign in addition to the signature multiplayer. The first two games were released as Freeware to hype its release, but Executive Meddling and cessation of official support barely a year hence gave this installment a short lifespan. It was critically well-received, but never enjoyed the same fan support as the earlier titles.
Many of the games have since had their offical master servers shut down: Starsiege: Tribes in July of 2007, Aerial Assault in November of 2008 and Tribes 2 in November 2009. However, Tribes 1 and 2 now have multiple community-run master servers, and continue to have strong player bases to this day. Aerial Assault, being a PlayStation 2 game, was not so lucky.
In October of 2010, it was announced that Hi-Rez Studios, creators of Global Agenda, were working on a new installment, this time an MMORPG called Tribes: Universe, and a traditional multiplayer FPS called Tribes: Ascend. Hi-Rez promises an experience much like the older games and have stated they are using Tribes 2 as a frame of reference. Key differences will be vastly expanded battlefields and player counts. Character progression is stated to be based around "diversifying options in combat" rather then making you "inherently stronger." At present, this installment is on hiatus while they work on...
Tribes: Ascend is free to play with microtransaction character classes (Each class has some customization - like swapping out a SMG for a shotgun or a shield pack for a sensor jammer, but each class has a clearly defined role). Access is simple, all one needs to do is register an account and download the client. There are several game types, all of which revolve around conflicts between the Blood Eagle and Diamond Sword tribes.
For tropes specific to individual installments, visit their respective work pages.
- Abnormal Ammo: Perhaps the most notable is the Spinfusor, also known as the Stormhammer, a weapon that fires glowing blue explosive discs. There's five of them in Ascend: Light (Pathfinder), standard (Soldier), MKD (Juggernaut), heavy (Brute), and stealth (Infiltrator). The stealth Spinfusor shoots red disks, while the MKD shoots green discs and has an increased splash radius relative to the Soldier's version. The Juggernaut can also unlock a Spinfusor as a type of grenade used by manually throwing the disk at people's faces.
- Also rather lovingly known by players as "the exploding frisbee launcher".
- Air Jousting: This doesn't really happen due to the imprecise nature of the flight mechanics, but two players flying head-on at each other brandishing Spinfusors comes damn close. As of Ascend, this trope can be played straighter with melee attacks.
- Alien Sky: Most of the maps in Ascend, but especially "Bella Omega".
- Arch Enemy: The Starwolf and Blood Eagles hate each other's guts, and as of Tribes 1 have been fighting it out for a good three centuries. The Children of the Phoenix have long attempted to mediate between the two with varying degrees of success. The Diamond Sword tend to stay neutral.
- Diamond Sword and Blood Eagle seem to hate each other in Ascend - one of the voiceovers for the Diamond Sword announcer is "The butchers have our flag".
- Also, a couple lines from the Blood Eagle Announcer mentions a treacherous act committed by the Sandrakers.
- The backstory of Ascend seemingly had a truce mediated out between the Blood Eagle and Diamond Sword tribes, but Diamond Sword broke the agreement and declared war after some unknown event, probably the same one that caused them to refer to Blood Eagle as butchers. This is why the Blood Eagle announcer refers to Diamond Sword as "The betrayers"
- Diamond Sword and Blood Eagle seem to hate each other in Ascend - one of the voiceovers for the Diamond Sword announcer is "The butchers have our flag".
- Artificial Brilliance: The bots in Tribes 2 will usually pay attention to the player if you use a voice menu command while looking at them. For example, if you look at a friendly bot and say "[VDM] Cover me!", the bot will usually follow you around, attacking anything that attacks you. Or they'll just tell you "No." if they're busying doing something else, like staring at a wall.
- Artificial Stupidity: The bots in Tribes 2 do not understand how to ski, and they tend to be extremely oblivious to what is going on around them.
- Ascended Glitch: The "skiing" bug of the original Tribes was so widespread and loved that it became a game play feature in every game to follow, even when the series left Dynamix's hands. Tribes 2 mentioned it in the manual and had brief a tutorial on it, while Tribes: Vengeance and Tribes Ascend gave it a distinct bind and more unique handling, leaving the jump key to be merged with the jetpack key.
- Ascended Meme:
- In a late Beta patch of Ascend, a Secret Code function was added to the menu. The most popular cheatcode, by far, is GOTTAGOFAST. What does it do? It replaces kilometers per hour for SANICS in the speed measurements.
- The video for the Brute update is called "Staying Alive", in reference to the Fractal Grenade's Fan Nickname "disco grenade".
- Awesome Backpack: Jet Packs for everybody! On top of that, you can equip one of several packs with a variety of effects, From simply extending your energy meter or ammo supply to cloaking or repairing things. Ascend features additional types, such as a turret-scrambling "Jammer" pack.
- Awesome but Impractical: Most of the weapons aren't designed for air-to-air combat, so you must compensate by leading your targets and generally having damn good aim. Of course, you could just use the Mortar... From a Backstory standpoint, Starsiege's HERCULANs have become this, leading to the rise of highly-mobile infantry in Powered Armor as the favored combat medium.
- The Juggernaut in Ascend has a Spinfusor disc as a grenade. He'll hurtle the disc at an enemy like a discus, where it'll explode on contact. It's inaccurate, not particularly strong, but very badass.
- Backpack Cannon: Usually present in Tribes 2' mods. Taking one will allow you to press your pack button to fire, allowing you to use essentially two weapons at once (Backpack + hand weapon).
- Backstory: A considerable amount, following on from Starsiege. After Prometheus' defeat, humanity began to expand beyond the reaches of the solar system. as of Tribes: Vengeance, The Earth Empire has all but destroyed the few remaining Cybrids, and enjoys great power. This doesn't sit with some Tribal outcasts called the Children of the Phoenix, referring to Harabec Weathers. A force of Imperial Knights called the Blood Eagles were sent to suppress them, but have since come to enjoy the frontier life and have become Tribals themselves. Splinter factions of both emerge, creating the gaggle of warring tribes seen in Tribes 1 and 2.
- Base on Wheels: the mobile base vehicle in Tribes 2, which when deployed features a Sentry Gun and an inventory station.
- Barbarian Tribe: Played with. The Empire sees the Tribes as this, but to be fair the Tribals share the same level of technology but lack the resources and political clout to have their position heard. They are essentially just wayward colonists trying to eek out an existence of their own free from Imperial oversight. As time goes on, technology improves- but civility does not.
- BFS: Diamond Sword soldiers in Ascend all have large swords on their back, which they use in melee combat. Their Heavy armor has a what looks like a claymore on their back, with a blade that's longer than their upper body.
- Boring but Practical: Most of the automatic weaponry in Ascend
- Bottomless Magazines: In the tradition of old-school shooters, no weapon need be reloaded (until Ascend), instead relying on a flat pool of ammunition. Said pool can be expanded with the Ammunition Backpack.
- Blood Knight: The Blood Eagles, or "Beagles".
- Call a Human a Meatbag: One of the insults available to Bots. Inefficient Meat Bag.
- Canon Discontinuity: Vengeance has been deliberately ignored by Ascend. The e in Ascend's title also resembles a backwards 3, indicating that HiRez at least considers Ascend to be Tribes 3.
- Character Customization: Players can customize their load-out to the nines with a choice of three armors, a variety of weapons, grenades, mines, deployable items such as turrets and sensors, and so on. Ascend replaces this with a Class and Level System, giving each class a specific armor, set of weapons and equipment, and the use of Experience Points to purchase upgrades.
- Color Coded for Your Convenience: Blood Eagles are red, Phoenix are yellow, Starwolf are blue-on-white, Diamond Sword are gold-on-grey, and the non-tribal Inferno and Storm teams are yellow and grey, respectively. Imperials are deep blue in Vengeance, the only installment in which they appear.
- Cool Plane: All the games feature some type of high-speed, VTOL aircraft. The ones in Tribes 1, 2, and Ascend actually look like planes, and come in one-man scout and troop transport sizes. Vengeance has a weird flying ball of doom.
- Worth noting that in Tribes 1 and 2, despite looking like planes they fly like hovercraft. Sideways? No problem. Backwards? Hard to see where you're going but sure. Straight up? They can do it until the thrusters run out. In Ascend and Vengeance, the Shrikes behave more like VTOL jets than hovercraft, alas.
- Cool Starship: The "Crossfire" map in Ascend features low-flying ships hovering in place, as opposed to a static or floating base.. The "Drydock" map has ships flying around in the background, blasting at each other and the ground - sometimes one will slowly hover by the battlefield and block out the sun.
- Crew of One: Utterly and thoroughly averted for vehicles like the hovertank (which needs a separate gunner) and bomber (which needs a bombardier who controls the underbelly turret and actually drops the bombs)...until Ascend made the hovertank's cannon driver-controlled, though it leaves the chaingun for the gunner to control.
- Damn You, Muscle Memory!: Tribes 2 defaults to ESDF for movement, not WASD, which Starsiege: Tribes, Tribes: Vengeance, and Tribes Ascend default to (not to mention damn near every FPS ever). There is a bundled WASD configuration in Tribes 2 for those who can't adjust, however. In other cases, people convert to ESDF and then get pissed when games can't be remapped from WASD.
- Tribes is one of those games that has so many controls the ESDF configuration is actually a decent choice, it puts 4 additional functions in range of your pinkie, where with WASD your pinky can only hit Tab and maybe Tilde. Ascend has rectified this somewhat by simplifying the controls... you can no longer drop items, for example.
- Deadly Disc: The Spinfusor, a hand-held frisbee launcher. Frisbees that glow blue and explode.
- Death From Above: Orbital strikes can be called down in Ascend.
- Difficult but Awesome: Sentinels (snipers) in Ascend. Extremely difficult to use at any distance due to the low zoom, low damage, and the fact that players are zipping around at 200+ SANICS, but it is unmatched at killing flag carriers and lights.
- Doomsday Device: In 3610, either the Starwolf or Blood Eagles (they continue to argue which) deployed an "ecocidal" weapon on the planet Ganges III, turning it into a Death World. Such weapons are later banned by a joint Tribal treaty in 3641.
- Elaborate Underground Base: If a base isn't floating, chances are it will be mostly underground.
- Emergency Weapon: Ascend grants players a melee attack. The Blood Eagles have wrist blades, while the Diamond Sword have... well, swords. Shaped like their logo.
- A recent update gave the Infiltrator 2 new skins, along with a new melee animation. Said animation is just a Zangeif-style green punch.
- The Empire: The, er, Empire. At least, much of the Tribes see them this way.
- Energy Weapon: Many, from the basic blaster to the plasma gun to the Laser Rifle.
- Largely averted with Tribes Ascend, which mostly opts for ballistic weapons. Even the melee weapons have gone from short-ranged lightning rods like the Shock Lance to mundane swords - the only energy weapons that remain are the Plasma Turrets, possibly the Shrike's blaster, the Wildcat hovercycle main weapon, and the Sniper's Nova Colt pistol (which resembles the Blaster from Tribes 2, though it now has a revolver magazine and must be reloaded). A later patch added a secondary sniper rifle, which draws power from the Sentinel's energy pool.
- Enemy Civil War: The stress of the war with the Blood Eagle tribe combined with internal struggles within the Children of the Phoenix resulted in the birth of the Starwolf tribe.
- Everything Sensor: Large sensors found in bases as well as small deployable ones. They reveal all enemies, vehicles and structures in their radii on your minimap.
- Everything's Better With Spinfusors
- Executive Meddling: Suit-wearing types don't seem to like this series much, between shutting down official servers, terminating official support for the games (right before a patch was set to release, in Vengeance's case) and generally being dicks. The Big Bad is of course Vivendi SA and their then-Mooks at Sierra Entertainment, both of whom the average Troper may remember from their dealings with Valve prior to the later going solo a few years back.
- The Faceless: Everybody, at least in multiplayer. Some of the lighter armors have a RoboCop-esque appearance with a visor over the eyes and exposed lower face, but that's about it. The Diamond Sword don't get that much.
- All the base skins in Ascend. One of the Infiltrator skins, the "Assassin", has a visible face, though he wears a Vader-style rebreather.
- Fragile Speedster: Light armor. The only armor that can equip the Laser Rifle.
- This is typified by Ascend's "Pathfinder" class. He can have a recharge pack for quick energy recovery, or use a boost pack for quick acceleration boosts.
- The Future
- Game Mod: Tribes 1 and 2 were built from the ground up with the Torque engine and designed to be extremely moddable. Sure enough, a staggering array of mods have sprung up over the years, some of which change the games so completely that they cease to be Tribes.
- Gatling Good: The chaingun, though it's compact, about the size of a sub-machine gun. It has a generous ammo supply and is often used as a backup weapon by damn near everybody. It's role in Ascend is occupied by a more mundane assault rifle, while it's been upgraded to BFG status and used by the "Doombringer" class.
- Grenade Launcher: Comes in several flavors.
- The basic Grenade Launcher, present in every iteration up to and including Ascend. Big splash, spammy, grenades bounce everywhere when firing at close range. Ascend's is an unlockable Raider primary.
- The Thumper, which looks like a M79 grenade launcher with an ammo readout on it. Detonates on contact with anything, but explodes in air after a certain distance. Available as a Soldier secondary and a Technician primary.
- The Bolt Launchers, which are crossbows that shoot grenades. Available as primaries for the Pathfinder and Doombringer.
- The ARX Buster, the Raider's default weapon. Uses three-shot magazines of grenades that stick to any surface and detonate after a short delay.
- The Jackal, a new weapon for the Infiltrator. It functions like the ARX Buster except that it's grenades are detonated manually.
- Hand Cannon: The Nova Colt and Nova Blaster in Ascend
- Heal Thyself: You always have a stash of health kits on hand, usable with the press of a button, and you can loot more from fallen players, or you can don a repair pack to heal yourself at any time as long as you have energy; the repair pack had almost zero energy drain, so players could ski away from danger while constantly repairing themselves. Tribes Ascend did away with health packs in exchange for Regenerating Health but since it's very delayed, there's a perk which enables you to gain health from ammo packs.)
- In addition, if you have the repair pack, you can heal yourself with it if there is nothing else repairable in its range.
- Hey, It's That Voice!: Is the commander of Ascend's Blood Eagles Alex Louis Armstrong?
- Heroic Lineage: Part of what holds the Children of the Phoenix tribe together is the common belief that they are descended from Harabec Weathers, the fallen hero of the last Cybrid war. They speak of his actions through a scripture called the "Tenants of Harabec."
- High Altitude Battle: This can occur, what with floating bases, air vehicles and everyone having jetpacks, though it can be hard to hit your opponent, especially with non-Hit Scan. When this happens, it's usually pretty awesome. Some servers even have a special kill message for mid-air, direct hit Spinfusor kills.
- Made official in Tribes: Ascend, where you receive a Blue Plate Special reward for a direct-hit Spinfusor kill. Also applies to more mundane explosives, granting the "Special Delivery" bonus.
- Hitbox Dissonance: The Raider's Plasma Rifle, before the bullet hitbox got reduced by 40% to the size of the actual shot. Shooting under someone jumping and still hitting them was really, really common.
- Hit Scan: The Sparrow pistol, Eagle pistol, and the Sniper Rifle in Ascend. All the other weapons are projectile based. Tribes 2's only hitscan weapons are the Laser Rifle and the Shocklance
- Hover Bike: In Tribes 2 and Ascend.
- Humongous Mecha: HERCULANS. Present in the back story, but they may yet make a return in Tribes Ascend, based on some of the voiceovers present in the game's files.
- Hyperspace Arsenal: Each player can carry a lot of stuff. At the bare minimum, you can have three weapons, a backpack, a supply of grenades, mines, and health packs, and a deployable item such as a turret or inventory station. Ascend cuts this back a bit, giving it's pre-configured classes two weapons, a backpack, and some form of explosive like grenades or mines.
- I'm a Humanitarian: Two of the Bioderm voices in Tribes 2. One claims that humans taste like chicken, the other claims that they taste like fish. Players usually end up saying "Humans taste like... shazbot!"
- Invisibility Cloak: The cloak pack. Careful though, it's an energy hog.
- Jack of All Stats: Medium armor. The "Ranger" class in Ascend fits it perfectly - good speed, armor, and firepower, but not excelling at any particular task.
- As of the Feb. 2012 overhaul patch, the Ranger has been phased out, with the Soldier inheriting his AR and Thumper as the defualt loadout (with the Soldier's usual Spinfusor and Eagle Pistol becoming earnable with Experience Points or Gold), making him the new all-rounder.
- Jet Pack: A core gameplay mechanic. It operates via a short but fast-recharging Mana Meter.
- Joke Weapon: The Sparrow pistol in Ascend. Pathetic damage and a semi-automatic. Its entire purpose seems to revolve around slowly trying to plink an enemy to death - its only useful function is stopping health regeneration, but you'd be better off just spraying wildly in the enemy's direction with an automatic weapon.
- Much like the Soldier's Eagle Pistol, it's a hitscan weapon, meaning it can instantly damage enemies at longer ranges, making it very useful for finishing off targets at a distance.
- Land Mine Goes Click: You can carry a bunch of these and deploy them anywhere, most often near objectives.
- Lethal Joke Character: Infiltrators, once you unlock the Stealth Spinfusor. They are entirely worthless at actually infiltrating because everything counters them (1 point of damage will always reveal them, and 3 classes have area-of-effect packs or abilities that allow them to reveal Infiltrators without warning), but they make for amazing cappers, as the Spinfusor basically turns you into a Pathfinder that can turn invisible, allowing you to stealth-grab the enemy flag, or fade out from combat if you're damaged.
- Magic Tool: The Repair Pack. Fixes everything, even players! These can often be found in bases, so players can quickly grab one and make repairs. This is vital in Ascend, as most of the classes don't spawn with one.
- Mighty Glacier: Heavy armor. The only armor that can use the deadly Mortar cannon.
- This underplays the sheer POWER of the Heavy armor. The aforementioned Mortar cannon can destroy a base from far away, kill anyone trying to get out and rape the base all without the Heavy breaking a sweat. And if 5 heavies ram into your base and completely rape your defenses and slam your generator against a wall, have fun using anything less than 50 grenades to get them out.
- Missile Lock On: Happens when using the missile launcher against a vehicle or a player with too much heat from jetpack overuse. It will not fire without a lock, making it primarily an anti-vehicle weapon.
- Money Grinding: In Tribes Ascend, hoo boy. When you play, you get two different kinds of exp. Experience points that you get to level up, which is purely aesthetic and permanent, and a currency that can be used to buy stuff. To elaborate, let's say you earn 500 exp per match.
- Upgrading any equip for any class ranges from 1,200 to 4,000 to 6,200 exp. Each of the nine classes has several equips that can all be upgraded multiple times.
- If you want to unlock another class, the prices range from 7,200 to 14,000 to 18,000, and there are six classes to unlock.
- Let's say you do not like the default weapon(s) of a class. You probably will, since some of the weapons are downright useless. The most common price for an alternate firearm (as opposed to grenades and perks) is 100,000 exp.
- Unless, of course, you buy the things with gold.
- Ominous Floating Castle: Nearly every map features floating stuff, from simple platforms all the way up to this trope, with both teams' entire bases being in the air. Good thing you've got a Jet Pack.
- One Bullet Clips: In Ascend, which has weapons that need be reloaded. The Spinfusor plays this literally, only holding one disc at a time.
- Our Weapons Will Be Boxy in the Future: If it's not a box, chances are it's a tube. Ascend takes this to new heights.
- Painfully-Slow Projectile: The plasma gun's blasts don't go anywhere fast, so it's best used at medium-to-close range. Careful though, as they cause splash damage.
- Nova Colt projectiles in Ascend. Imagine the pea-shooter discoball firing Blaster from Tribes 2, but in revolver form.
- Path of Inspiration: The Diamond Sword tribe appeared from nowhere in 3630, claiming to follow one of these under "The Enlightened Master" - according to the fluff, they're big into ancient East Asian philosophy and their derogatory nickname of "Sand rakers" refers to the Zen practice of meditating by raking a plot of sand.
- Poor Communication Kills: Jeez, Daniel, you think you could have waited a bit before you jammed a wrist-dagger into the King's skull? On a grander scale, the war between the Empire and the Tribes is largely due to this, with some manipulation from Olivia and Seti.
- Powered Armor: Tools of the trade for the Tribals. In the Backstory, it's stated that these have essentially replaced HERCULANs, as the parts and knowledge to repair them have become very scarce, while individual armors are far easier to maintain.
- Real Time Strategy: There are the faintest hints of this in the form of a "command map" that allows players to get an overview of the entire battlefield and issue orders, and there's more to manage then just killing the enemy, such as base defense and recon. In practice, a lot of this stuff gets ignored.
- The original game had the "Command Map", teams could be set to have limited resources (better plan-out who's buying a vehicle, so you don't run out!), and there were "beacon" deployables you could use to mark targets for teammates. Generally, servers were set to infinite resources, the command map was only used to remote-control turrets (and only then by noobs), and beacons were wholly unused except for certain mods that appropriated them for some other use.
- Recursive Ammo: The MIRV Launcher in Ascend, a variant of the classic Fusion Mortar. Instead of one green football of doom, it launched a smaller, weaker mortar which will explode into multiple small mortars after about a second in the air. It's extremely effective at shelling groups of players, bases, and tanks, but cannot deal any real damage to enemies close to the firer.
- Regenerating Health: In Tribes Ascend, to compensate for the loss of health packs. However, the delay before it kicks in is much longer than most other modern FPSs, especially without perks to reduce the delay, thus it cannot be relied on in combat. Taking any damage will reset the regeneration timer, and holding the flag will stop all health regeneration. The inventory station technically don't even heal you directly, they just make your regeneration start immediately.
- Robotic Reveal: Imperial general Albrecht is, in fact the Cybrid assassin Mercury.
- Rocket Jump: There are several weapons which give a speed boost with explosions. Since there are jetpacks and skiing, rocket jump is more useful to gain horizontal speed.
- Sentry Gun: Big ones found in bases that can be repaired if destroyed, and smaller deployable ones.
- Samus Is a Girl: Some of the randomly selected death cries in Tribes: Ascend are female, implying that some of the soldiers are women, they just don't look any different while wearing armor. In spite of this, all the voice commands are male.
- Sawed-Off Shotgun: One of the weapons available to the Technician in Ascend. Pathetic range, but very powerful up close.
- Short-Range Shotgun: Shotguns in the series have very low range.
- Sibling Team: Daniel and Jericho.
- Single Biome Planet: The frontier worlds are usually this, such as frozen Ymir and the jungle world Charybdis.
- Shoulders of Doom: Present in Tribes 2, but Ascend takes it to a whole new level.
- Shout-Out: Shazbot!
- Ascend has quite a few sly ones:
- - One of the post-game wrapup's player stats include a statistic for a kill from long distance called "What The I Don't Even".
- - Killing a flag carrier earns you an accolade with a medal depicting the Holy Hand Grenade. . . which makes it even funnier when you're playing in the "Rabbit" gametype.
- - Grabbing a flag at ridiculous speeds in Ascend nets you a "GOTTA GO FAST" accolade. Also used as a "secret code" in the updated version of the game to turn your KM/H value into "SANICS".
- - One of the Infiltrator class' loadout animations has him doing a very familiar strut.
- Sniper Rifle: The Laser Rifle, featured in every game until Tribes Ascend. It's capable of killing enemies from across the map with a few well placed shots, but leaves a bright red trail that easily reveals the shooter's location. In addition, it drains the user's energy entirely per shot, with more damage at full energy. Tribes: Vengeance adds an additional limitation in requiring limited ammo in addition to energy for extra damage.
- Tribes Ascend reverted to a more traditional sniper rifle with a Team Fortress 2-style "charge while scoped" mechanic, though you can unlock an energy-based sniper rifle which doesn't require you to zoom in to deal max damage, but requires a full store of jet energy to deal max damage, like the Tribes 2 Laser Rifle.
- Spiritual Successor: Fallen Empire: Legions, created by Garage Games (Formerly Dynamix, the creators of the series) is this to the original Tribes. In addition, former elements of Dynamix are helping to create Firefall, an upcoming MMOFPS which bears many similarities to the series, such as the extensive use of jetpacks. It is not an MMORPG like some people call it.
- Stuff Blowing Up: Hoo boy. Between the Spinfusor, Grenade Launcher, missile launcher, hand-thrown grenades and the mortar cannon, there will be much blown to hell by the time a given match is done.
- This is usually because the players are zipping around so fast and changing direction quickly enough that explosive splash damage is the only reliable way to hit them.
- Tastes Like Chicken: Courtesy of the Bioderms. "Hyoomens taste like... chicken"
- The War Sequence: Tribes 1 and 2 represent this. In the former, it's all the tribes at each others' throats in 3940, and in the latter, it's all the tribes versus the Bioderm Hordes.
- Unstable Equilibrium: Brought in on Ascend, thanks to the free-2-play model. Only a handful of classes are available at the start, unlocking extra classes costs EXP gained in combat, and after unlocking the classes, there is a further skill tree for each class that provides straight upgrades for more EXP. The alternate weapons and perks are ludicrously expensive, but they play a significant part in the gameplay by opening up many tactical choices. In a nutshell, new players must try to scrounge all the EXP they can while older players beat on them mercilessly on their way to the next unlock... unless you blow your hard-earned money in perks and weapons.
- Very much balanced out as of the February 2, 2012 patch - three classes (Ranger, Jumper and Scrambler) have been nixed and their weapons and gear integrated into other classes' loadout selections (which have returned); Soldier, Pathfinder and Juggernaut are available to new players from the start, with many other classes becoming inexpensive to unlock; and class-specific experience and Tokens are gone, making everything available using either a single Experience pool or Gold (the currency you buy with real money), with the straight upgrades of weapons only available via EXP unlocking - Perks are now universal, and the various classes' talent tree upgrades are now attached to upgrading weapons, armor and gear. It still costs large amounts of Experience to unlock some weapons and Perks, but giving players more experience per match to compensate helps a lot.
- Wide Open Sandbox: The various Construction mods for Starsiege Tribes and Tribes 2. Combat is (usually) gone, and players instead will build objects out of variable-length beams and walls. Some of the mods, like Combat Construction, allow players to build a base, then go to battle, or fight off zombies.
- Zombie Apocalypse: The Combat Construction mod for Tribes 2 has a gamemode for fighting off a zombie invasion. You first build your base, then swarms of zombies attack. The "zombies" have several variants designed to bypass your defenses, like phasing through thin walls, flying, or just tearing the walls down with acid attacks.