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    PlanetQuake | Articles | Interviews | Big Fuzzy Focus: Tribal CTF
   

Big Fuzzy Focus: Tribal CTF
Tribal gets personal!
— by IceStorm and Pappy-R


 - click for full size image
Tribal CTF's new User Interface just add's to the glory.

Introduction

A new theme, a new game. Welcome to three team Capture The Flag (CTF). While almost all traditional team based mods feature two teams, normally red and blue, Tribal CTF adds to this mixture by adding a third team. Doing this completely changes the game style that one would imagine with three teams involved. There are also different game styles that are featured in Tribal CTF such as 'freestyle, roulette, and fixed'. Freestyle allows the capture of any opponents flags in any order while Roulette requires them to be captured in order. Fixed however is different. This style allows for any order of capture, but only for a set number of captures.

This is the second build of Tribal CTF. Most team based mods/games are distinguished by colors, with the exception of Tribal CTF. They have went further then just red and blue. They've added green. But it's more then colors. Each team is a "tribe" so to speak. The new green tribe is the Elementals, the red tribe is the Cyborgs, and the blue tribe is the Aliens. Each tribe has it's own special feature and it's base is completely different then any other. So there is no mistaking which base you're at. This is good as all the maps are huge and terrain based. Knowing which way to go is always a good thing.

I've played each test version, each internal build, and so far each beta. I've seen an idea come to fruition. And what amazes me the most is how the Tribal CTF team is able to take a game and modify in such a way that it seems to be a completely different game and not just a mod. The map's created by Adonis are amazing. The new textures and shaders he has created are just mind blowing. If you look around in some of the maps you'll see some of the easter egg's he's put in on purpose.

Each tribe incorporates its own power up or rune that only that team can use. The Elementals use a 'manifest' that strengthens the defenses of the Elementals which results in natural regeneration of taken damage. The Cyborgs use 'berserker' that deals an extra amount of damage which makes this an exceptionally capable offensive power up, and the Aliens use 'stealth' power up that brings the Aliens an increase of speed and agility and also makes less noise. While Tribal CTF needs a large amount of players to have a great game they've created a special feature just in case the teams are offset. This feature is called "Pool of Radiance" basically gives a out numbered team extra power making them harder to kill. However this effect is negated should their flag not be at their base.

Tribal CTF adds to the old version of just capturing the opponents flag all the while of instilling the same game play that has made it so popular throughout the years since Zoid got the idea. There are many other features not listed here that is best to experience on your own. Its a game and a mod that's guaranteed to make you smile. And even if you like playing team based mod's or not, you're sure to appreciate the talent in the coding and the skill in the mapping.

  — IceStorm

Interview

Pappy: Tell us a bit about the project.

Appendix: Tribal CTF is a large 3-team CTF total conversion based on the Quake 3 Arena engine. While 3-team CTF has already been done in the past for Q2, Tribal CTF definitely changes the approach to the CTF-concept in general. Instead of having standard re-colored teams like Red and Blue we've created three unique looking 'tribes' namely the Cyborgs, Aliens and Elementals. The general concept of 'the CTF map' has been dramatically changed. No longer are players going to run from their Red colored base into an identical Blue-colored base. Tribal CTF features large 'single-player' like Terrain maps (as seen in TA) with custom architecture for each tribe. The home base layouts are identical to guarantee fair play of course but the looks are unique to each tribe.

Adonis:Same as above and did I tell you that it's Cool :)

Pappy: Have you been encouraged by the Betas you've released or Alphas you've tested under a closed atmosphere?

Appendix: Sure! We've released the first version of our project about 6 months ago. We had already been working on the game for about 6 months before that release and expectations were high. Once we released it a number of bugs popped up which kept the game from taking off. Some of those bugs involved problems with logging onto servers so people were having a hard time getting onto the few servers we managed to put up. All in all the visual part of the game impressed the community but the game itself didn't run very smoothly. Basically things did not take off at all and we realized we needed to go back to the drawing board. In complete silence we started working on the new 2.0 release which after another 6 months is finally finished now. People must have thought we we're dead or something because of the sudden disappearance after the 1.1 release. The truth however is that we've been working our butts off since then to make this completely new version.

Adonis: Well the first version was kind of bad cause of all the bugs causing it to not run properly. But it did show us our strong and weak points. After that we knew what to work on and where to go. The first release was more of a learning phase. After that I've started to look for beta testers to test internally and it paid off. Sometimes it's hard to arrange tests but they really tell you if things run smooth or not.

Pappy: How long has the project been in development, and using this as a guide, how long do you expect it to take before it's a completed work you can sit back from and smile?

Appendix: We've been working on Tribal CTF for almost 2 years now. The first year was more or less a learning phase for us getting to know the new Q3A tools and the engine. Q3A had yet to be released when we started fleshing out our ideas and I remember Adonis already having some map designs and theories done when Q3A was not released yet. We had absolutely no clue if the engine was capable of what we had in mind. After that things began to shape up fairly quickly. The 1.1 release was an accomplishment on itself but it didn't take off as we had hoped. For the new 2.0 release of the game we've basically made all the content from scratch and there's little left in there from the first 1.1 release.

Adonis: Well officially tribal was born in November of 1999 but that was more a learning step. The stuff that's in this version right all came after our first beta release. All previous work has gone down the drain : (

How long? Good question, been asking that to myself quite a lot. Well the plan is this we still want to do quite a few things but I can't comment on all of them because they are still in an uncertain state. To start of:

  • We want to have custom weapons for all tribes with but with the same physics. We wouldn't want to unbalance the game.
  • A custom playermodel for each tribe with 3 different heads.
  • At least 4 maps for each tribe. The one's in this release are elemental themed. Next up are the cyborg themed maps. Already been working on that for a short while now.
  • A couple more special maps that have to do with some cool idea I have but it's uncertain.
  • Improvements in the information department relating to the gametypes
  • Other mostly small gameplay alterations and a couple of big ones.
  • As to when this should be finished. I hope before Christmas but I'm afraid it will be January. Making timeframes for a team that has to do things in their spare time is very hard. Especially when you know how perfect we want things to be. We give more value to quality then quantity. Talking about quantity if you knew how many brushes and curves went into these maps :) and how many designs got thrown away and how many of Appendix's textures have gone down the drain then we would have a lot more stuff but things need coherence!.

    Next: More from the Tribe


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