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Unreal Tournament was one of the most intense, electrifying games in the history, and it was nothing less than a wonder among the First Person Shooters. But the sequel to the game went the other way, as it could offer nothing more than some better graphics. We have the next offerings in Unreal Tournament 2004 and 2007 which is to be released soon, but Unreal Tournament still stands as a void between two outstanding titles. Well, it does look better, but it doesn't give a good feeling, nowhere close to the original and its sequel. Epic games and Digital Extremes could have just avoided this title and gone for Unreal Tournament 2004, but this title has managed to stay due to the fame of its predecessor.
SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS Processor: Pentium III or AMD Athlon 733MHz processor (Pentium or AMD 1.0 GHz or greater recommended) Memory: 128MB RAM (256MB RAM or greater recommended) Hard Disk: 3 GB HDD space required Sound Card: Windows compatible sound card (Sound Blaster Audigy series recommended) Graphics card: 3D Accelerator card with 16 MB VRAM (32-128 MB VRAM recommended) 16 MB TNT2-class DirectX version 6 compliant video card (NVIDIA GeForce 2/ATI Radeon recommended) Operating System: WIN 98/ME/2000/XP 8X CD-ROM or DVD DirectX® version 9.0b (included in game disc) Multiplayer: Internet (TCP/IP) and LAN (TCP/IP) play supported Internet play requires a 33.6 Kbps or faster modem.
ANOTHER ONE OF THE TOURNAMENTS The only area where the game scores well is the graphics itself, where it seems too good. The game's graphics is nothing less than its marvelous sequel and far better than its great predecessor. Even if the game looks unrealistic upto an extent, the game is just too beautiful, and the gamer just can't take his eyes of it. The best level in the game should be the one called Inferno, which gives more of an impression of a level in the hell itself, with the skulls and lava all around. Those forests, ancient ruins and those military bases, nothing lets the gamers down at any moment. The movement and fighting are also the same as the previous version, as the concept reains the same - kill or be killed.
Unreal Tournament 2003 features a number of game modes. Deathmatch: The most popular mode involves the player killing eachother to earn frags which can be said as the points after reducing the suicides from the total kills. This game mode is the most intense among all, without any doubt. There has been absolutely no changes to this game, and I consider it as a good factor because they could have made it worse with any changes applied to it. The maps of Deathmatch looks great too.
Capture the Flag: The classic Capture the Flag game mode is still there, but the huge maps and more teleportation portals make it harder to get to those flags and capture it. Once the enemy flag is captured, we are to bring it to out base to score points. At the same time, we will have to take care of our flag too, which makes team work very essential in this game. As long as you know the map very well, there won't be much problems.
Double Domination: One of the best game modes in the original Unreal Tournament, known as Domination is now Double Domination, in which we have to keep two control points under our control for ten seconds to score a point. The fact tha we have to control two points at the same time means that more time will be wasted, and the last second save by the opponents can be too annoying. The original Domination could have done a better job here.
Bombing Run: A new concept from Unreal involves getting a ball from the middle and taking it to the enemy goal post. This one is more like football as it also involves passing the ball to your team mates. The player will get seven points for toucing the goal post with the ball, and three points for shooting the ball through it. Once yo have the ball with you, there will be no option to shoot, as you will be equipped with the ball launcher, and will be only able to shoot the ball.
Last Man Standing: This one works almost as the reverse of the traditional Deathmatch. Here, players start with a certain amount of lives, and the one to be left alive with atleast one life is saved. This means that we can use stealth more effectively unlike the other game modes. Still, you won't be able to do anything as good as Thief or Deus Ex. The number of suicides play a bigger role in this mode too. So better watch the step and how you use the weapons.
Mutant: Here, the first person to score a frag will be awarded with lots of abilities and he will be called the mutant. The other players will have to hunt him, and the one who kills the mutant will become the next mutant. There is nothing too interesting about the game, and it is nothing much different from a simple mutator which can make simple changes to the game. But being a mutant is still a great feeling, if you can manage to stay alive.
Invasion: This involves teaming up against a wave of aliens, and this time you will not be able to respawn in the middle of the game once you are killed. So better be prepared with everything available in the level and also try to keep your team mates alive, the better they are, it is the better for yourself. This is not too bad a mode, but I would still prefer to have the Assault mode back instead, as it would have opened the door to some more interesting gameplay.
NOT TOO SHORT OF OPTIONS There are wide variety of weapons in the game to choose from. We have the usual Tournament weapons like Flak Cannon, Rocket Launcher, Bio Rifle, Mini Gun and Shock Rifle, but new weapons like Shield Gun, Link Gun, Lightning Gun and the Ion Painter are added. There is also the destructive Redeemer and the multi-purpose Translocator which can serve as weapon and teleporting device at the same time. InstaGib death matches can bring the Enhanced Shock Rifle for the single-shot kill too. But we miss the sniper rifle this time.
InstaGib is just one of the mutators to be used, there are a few others too, which includes the Vampire mutator which replenishes the health of a player when he kills some one, and Big Head, which increases the player's head's size according to his performance in the game. These mutators help in making the game interesting, but it is still nowhere close to the original. But, I will have to accept the fact that the music is really good, and too good to hear. I don't think that there is any need to mention the multiplayer options, as it is well-known and there are lots of people playing this one online too.
I am really doubtful if a true Unreal Tournament fan would like this one. As Unreal Tournament 2004 is here, and Unreal Tournament 2007 is almost here, it isn't too great to talk about this game. But if you want to get some features of Unreal Tournament at a less price, you can go for this one. Otherwise, just go for the others, but we know that there is no sequel to Quake 3 Arena, so the options available will be very less right now.
Have got the original Unreal for the PC which must be about ten years old now, and have Unreal Tournament for PS2 which I quite liked, though I think I'll stick with them and TimeSplitters 3 for now - top review :) tom
mrten_8 04.07.2007 14:28
Nice review. Never been a huge fan of First Person Shooters, but I do like the Timesplitter series very much! Ten