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Tribes: Ascend goes free-to-play

Buy loadouts to augment your character.

Tribes: Ascend will be a free-to-play game, Hi-Rez Studios has announced.

The developer took the decision to grow the potential audience of the science-fiction, multiplayer-only shooter.

"We want as many people as possible to experience it," Hi-Rez boss Todd Harris told Eurogamer.

"Free-to-play is a great way to grow the number of people exposed to Tribes gameplay. It's simply a great way to let a number of people try the game, versus a huge marketing spend or other techniques."

Ascend is, according to Hi-Rez, the multiplayer successor to Tribes 2 and the "re-introduction" of the franchise to the gaming world.

Hi-Rez will make money through the sale of load-outs, which determine your character type: light, medium or heavy, the two weapons you can carry, your explosive type and your character augmenting pack.

Players will buy them either with real world money or currency earned at a slower rate from playing matches. New load-outs will be added regularly to keep the game fresh.

"The game is role-based so the whole idea of having complimentary load-outs and more of a class-based approach is certainly a change and we think an innovation that will make the game a little easier to learn at the low level," Harris continued.

"You can come in with a more targeted role, but also keep things very interesting at the higher level because of its more class-based or load-out-based nature."

Tribes: Ascend is in closed beta, Harris confirmed. Beta activity should begin in July or August, with an autumn launch planned.

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Wesley Yin-Poole avatar

Wesley Yin-Poole

Deputy Editorial Director

Wesley is deputy editorial director of ReedPop. He likes news, interviews, and more news. He also likes Street Fighter more than anyone can get him to shut up about it.

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