I was cruising Blues this morning and saw this link to a Tribes2 map auto-downloader. This little gem of utility is a Visual Basic / Tribes Script hybrid that works as a sanity saver. When your client encounters a map you don't have installed, instead of booting you back into the menu, this app takes over and prompts you to download and install the needed map. Once you're armed with the right files, it politely asks if you would like to rejoin the server. In you go. Very nice, indeed.
Once again I congratulate the gaming community. How many games would have had the life span of a shooting star if it hadn't been for all of the post-release support of the rabid fans. And it's not just support in the "rah! rah!" sense. I'm talking actual blood, sweat, and code support. As a former Tribes player and competitor (Order of the Talon - Sway !OT!), I had a huge interest in Tribes2 as it was being developed. Yes, I actually built a brand new computer just so I'd be ready when it was released. I even went to the mall and bought a copy on release day even though I had pre-ordered a copy by mail. Sorry, getting distracted...One of the host of features that was mentioned during development that didn't seem to make it into the final release was a way to download maps that you didn't have from servers. Instead what we got was a polite kick in the seat of the pants and off the server every time a new map was rotated in that you didn't have installed. Deep in the lifecycle of a game this is nearly unbearable as nearly every server is running at least one new map. I tried to re-install and play a few quick games of CTF the other day and I finally had to give up because I didn't seem to have any of the current crop of maps.
While I probably won't be re-installing again just because of this announcement, I wanted to thank the developer(s) of this. Cheers to you and to all the fans who help make the games complete. Out of curiosity, do you readers think this kind of behavior encourages publishers to launch incomplete software, or do you think we would see this sort of development regardless?