Unreal Tournament III Review
- Posted January 10th, 2008 at 01:21 EDT by
- 49 Comments
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This game is without a doubt one of the premier online experiences on the PlayStation 3, and is one of the few must have titles of 2007. It may falter a bit when played offline, but the support of user created mods and maps provides this game with an infinite amount of play time. If you love shooters, pick this one up.
- Gorgeous graphics
- Great online play
- User created content provides endless replay
- Single player campaign leaves much to be desired
- AI is predictable in certain game modes
Epic Games is widely known for creating the Unreal Engine, one of the video game industry's most widely used tools for game development. This engine is named after one of the longest running first person shoot-em-up franchises out there. The Unreal series has been running strong since 1998, when the first title released on PC. Throughout the course of several titles, Unreal quickly became known for being one of the fastest and most over the top violent shooters available.
Unreal Tournament III is the first game in the series to hit next-generation consoles, releasing on PS3 and PC in late 2007, with an Xbox 360 version trailing into mid-2008, and for the first time, user created mods and maps are available on a home console. However, we'll discuss this a tad later.
Beginning with what is ultimately the lowest point of the game, the single player campaign feels very redundant. Throughout the mission, you play as Reaper, leader of a squad of rough and ready combatants who are in a conflict against the Necris, an evil alien race that aims to destroy everything. Instead of a linear, point to point style mission system, UT3 opts to take you directly to each new battleground for a single round mission which is little more than a single player quick match against bots. These rounds are loosely tied together around a series of spoken dialogue explaining the importance of capturing certain flags or defending specific territories.
The games AI sometimes makes little sense, and in certain Capture the Flag maps, entirely too predictable. The prime example that on certain maps, the enemy will camp in certain spots waiting for you, and is always parked in the same spot until you pass by. While this doesn't necessarily break the game or reduce its difficulty, it just nails in the fact that the single player campaign was given little thought.
Although the game lacks real depth and the sense of emotional attachment, it looks fantastic. It runs at 720p at a very steady frame rate and is home to some of the best looking textures on any game out there. Part of this being attributed to the fact that it is running on an engine that is named after the game itself. Unreal also boasts some of the craziest sound effects out there, with intense explosions and fighting that will make your speakers proud. This is one of the best looking games to hit the PS3 and definitely shows what the system is made of.
The beauty in this game comes from the grunge look of the environments as well as the amazing detail given to the textures and weapons. Each gun is intricately detailed and has two different modes of fire, each with a highly detailed animation. The guns in this game are on par with what we've seen out of Insomniac, which is quite the compliment.
There are also several vehicles making their way into the game, including several models from both the human and Necris factions. Each vehicle has a specific use and its own strengths and weaknesses. Also notable is the hover-board, which is very useful in certain situations as an alternative to hopping in a vehicle.
As for controls, there are several methods that can be utilized, giving the player incredible flexibility in how the game can be played. Using the controller works surprisingly well for a shooting game of this speed, and can be used either with or without Six-Axis functionality. The biggest surprise to me was that the lack of rumble didn't seem to bother me as it has in other games; however, the rumble does work with Dualshock 3 controllers, not yet available here in America. As for those gamers who prefer the keyboard and mouse setup, the game fully accepts most USB setups, and does so very well.
For veterans of the series, the lack of true single player comes to no surprise, as the games multiplayer has always been its selling point. This is where any Unreal game shines. The game doesn't stray into new modes, but is ... (continued on next page)
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- 8:28pm EST - January 9th, 2008
ZOMG FIRST COMMENT!!!1!!!1111!!!!!
I enjoyed the review, however, my nose is brown.
- 8:30pm EST - January 9th, 2008
whoa whoa whoa!!?? no headset support? my blue-tooth works fine with it, and it DOES have rumble and leaderboards!!! and yes its the PS3 version u suck PSU PSN ID : TheKingpin
- 8:35pm EST - January 9th, 2008
Relax, kiddo. He never said it didn't have rumble, he said the lack of rumble didn't bother him. Meaning, he is using a standard Dualshock controller. Calm down.
- 8:42pm EST - January 9th, 2008
Headset support wasnt fixed until after the game release in a post-release patch
- 8:43pm EST - January 9th, 2008
and this reveiw was released TODAY, tho i remember only a 1.1 patch for the PC version which i also have, and i used my headset on day one.
- 8:48pm EST - January 9th, 2008
The game DOES have leaderboards. It always has lol. The fact that this game is the first and only console game to support free user created content should make UT3 an automatic 9.0
- 8:51pm EST - January 9th, 2008
I played through the game and found that the AI was pretty bad. Or at least my team mates AI.
I thought the games graphics were somewhat decent and the online modes were fun. But lack of Co-Op and poor AI drops this for me.
I would probably give Unreal a 8/10 or 7.5/10.
- 8:53pm EST - January 9th, 2008
theres online co-op. its the only way i can play the campaign mode and have fun doing it. about the AI. play it with god bots and tell me the AI sucks. if you can then your a FPS master
- 8:54pm EST - January 9th, 2008
Has anyone downloaded and tried mods yet? I have tried a few of the new maps and they are pretty cool.
- 8:54pm EST - January 9th, 2008
Tom and Jack, I apologize for the errors. We've updated it accordingly.
- 8:55pm EST - January 9th, 2008
the mods rock. i think theres 22 altogether available for the ps3 version at ut3mod.com
- 8:56pm EST - January 9th, 2008
Yeah, but I wish there was offline splitscreen Co-Op, I much rather play with my friends at my place, and it doesnt lag.
And I'd have to agree with you that the campaign is pretty boring by yourself.
- 8:57pm EST - January 9th, 2008
i bet this game would have gotten rave reviews had it launched with full mod support. i mean it would have been much easier to overlook the lackluster campaign with new maps every week.
- 9:00pm EST - January 9th, 2008
daveW.....who are you buddy, are you some sort of authority figure around here.....loved how you puckered up those great big lips...."solid review dusty, i loved reading it".....brownnose.....i read some where you an aspiring psu editor, well i hope you bring more to the table than those other incompetent psu editors such as Mr. Sarad Jackson, who just keeps re-hashing old news
- 9:00pm EST - January 9th, 2008
@NUM... I believe Epic was looking into having splitscreen patched in. Even so it would only be 2 player split but thats better than nothing. This is weird but, I'm waiting for the X360 version of UT3 to come out because if it has splitscreen, then we're definitely gonna see it patched into the PS3 version.
- 9:05pm EST - January 9th, 2008
Thanks for the link.
- 9:07pm EST - January 9th, 2008
Saso, I did enjoy reading the review, because I haven't had the opportunity to play the title as of yet. This along with Folklore have caused me to decide to just go ahead and pick up my PS3 this Friday/Saturday. I'm already an editor with PSU, so I have no need to kiss anything. However, thanks for the semi-moral support.
- 9:09pm EST - January 9th, 2008
hey Dave don't forget to pickup Uncharted too.
- 9:12pm EST - January 9th, 2008
Well, I'm for sure buying Folklore and UTIII.... Uncharted I think I could beat in a rental period, so I'm kind of hazy about buying it.
- 9:34pm EST - January 9th, 2008
Dont get ahead of yourself DaveW, Uncharted aint no short game les you sit there for hours on end, the combat is fairly challenging, the puzzles wont kill you (les you are a retard), but dude raider has a good amount of length.
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