Re: What are you playing right now?
For the last few months, the main game I've been playing (recent X-Com overloads notwithstanding) has been Tribes: Ascend.
I haven't played any game in the Tribes series before, so I don't know how well it compares to the classics, but I can confirm that the new version is fantastic for new players (at least for the first 120 hours or so).
It's a team based person shooter (like TF2), but it's just different enough from standard first person shooters to make it feel like a completely different game. With just a little practice, players can easily ski/fly around the map at over 150 kilometers per mile (and really good players are often seen traveling at over 300 kph). Meanwhile most of the projectiles in the game travel much slower than those in other FPS games, and trying to hit fast moving targets with slow moving projectiles can be a lot of fun. It's surprising how quickly leading targets becomes second nature.
I'm going to have trouble going back to slower moving FPS games.
It's also Free to Play, so there's no reason not to try it. The Free to Play model works perfectly for this game as well. As a new player, I felt like there was always plenty of stuff available to play with and figure out, and never felt like I needed to pay money to unlock the "real" game. Once I realized I had already spent enough hours with the game to justify a full purchase, I had a lot of fun slowly spending 50 dollars on the daily deals and unlocking new weapons and classes to play around with as time went on. And if you're cheap (like most of my friends in the game are), you can still unlock everything in the game without paying anything, if you're willing to work at it.
After 120 hours or so, I'm beginning to worry about the overall balance of the game. I've fought my way into some of the higher leagues, and flag runners at this level can grab your team's flag and then zoom across the entire map in seconds, too fast to chase. My two favorite things to do in this game (chasing down flag runners and knocking the flag out of their hands with impact grenades, and sneaking around as an invisible infiltrator assassin using smoke grenades to evade the enemy) just don't seem to fit in this more competitive atmosphere. A lot of really neat stuff seems pretty useless in light of some of the strategies high level players have discovered.
Still, even if I never can learn how to love the game at a more competitive level, I've had a ton of fun playing as a newbie. And I still do have a lot of hope for the game as a long term competitive game as well.
In my eyes this is a definite Game of the Year contender.
Last edited by Zanbatou; 11-02-2012 at 06:19 PM.