Tribes 2 Multiplayer Showcase: Day Three

We examine capture and hold in our continuing coverage of the game's multiplayer modes.

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Day Three: Capture and Hold

All this week, we've been showcasing the various multiplayer modes you'll find in Tribes 2. We've already examined capture the flag and siege. The third multiplayer mode being showcased this week is capture and hold. You can find this style of gameplay in many games and mods, and Tribes 2 is the latest to include it. Like capture the flag, this game mode is also team oriented, and members will most likely play both offensive and defensive positions throughout the game. On the map, there are locations that have control switches - when a team touches a switch, it owns that particular location. After the first 12 seconds, a point is awarded to both the team and the individual who captured the location. Points are again awarded for every 12 seconds that the team retains ownership, but points are not given to the individual player. The goal of the game is to reach the score limit before the other team.

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Click for full size image

In capture and hold, every map is different from one another, like all other maps in the other modes. Some maps, like firestorm, have only one capture point. Firestorm's map is very small, and the lone control switch is on an island in the middle of a lava lake. The two teams' bases are in direct view of each other, so combat can get vicious on firestorm. Most maps have multiple capture points, but even these maps can vary. Equinox has four capture points, for example, but these are spread very far apart in the four corners of the map. And there are no bases in this map - the only way to get supplies is to use the inventory station at a tower that your team controls. Jacob's ladder has seven control towers that are fairly close to each other but separated by deep ravines. This map also has a main base for each side, so even if your team lost control of all the towers, it could at least mount an offensive.

Finding control switches is very easy with the navigation. Triangles - green ones for your team and red for the opposing team - point out specific objectives and locations. When you get close to the control points, a holographic image of the holding team's icon is displayed above the structure. Gaining control of the capture points early can be imperative. The other team will be denied use of inventory stations at these locations, and the turrets at the location will go online to attack enemies. Once again, vehicles can be a winning factor on maps that allow them. The fast grav cycles and scout flyers bring you to locations fast, and the transports can carry juggernauts to defend the newly captured areas. Transports are fairly slow, but they can take many hits before they're destroyed. If an enemy is able to dig in heavy defenses around a capture point, a team can bombard the enemy position with the thundersword bomber. The pilot and bombardier are required to pilot effectively, but a tailgunner can be added to help protect the vehicle against enemies. They can shoot missiles at other vehicles or drop flares to distract enemy missiles.

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Click for full size image

A team should leave a few scout armor players running around the map in case an enemy manages to take control of a location. Since points are not awarded until after 12 seconds, you have this time to regain control to deny the opposing team a point. Depending on the map, juggernauts and assault players could set up defenses around each capture point. Insalubria is a very large map with four capture points between the bases, each with a couple of plasma turrets associated to the location. In this case, you may want to swap the barrels for missile turrets to stop flying enemy vehicles. Also, strikes at the main enemy bases may prove to be effective because the enemy will be forced to recall its attackers to defend the base. The capture and hold game mode is very straightforward in gameplay, and even when teams are unbalanced in skill, this mode can still be fun for both sides.

Tomorrow we'll be looking at two multiplayer modes, rabbit and hunters, so be sure to check back.

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