Unreal Tournament has been an important franchise to the industry. It is known to gamers as both a very fast-paced, arena shooter and a tech demo for the Unreal Engine. Unreal Engine had the first Unreal Tournament, Unreal 2 had Unreal Tournament 2003 and now the Unreal Engine 3 has Unreal Tournament III. Unreal Tournament III carries on the unreal tradition of pairing the engines with the tournaments, but can it keep up the quality? Or will it fail to stay Unreal?
Unlike the previous Unreal games, there is a story here. A warrior named Reaper and his crew fail to protect their planet from an invasion. They were spared and saved and are given the chance to get revenge. That's about it, the campaign is basically practice for the multiplayer so I'll be leaving it out of the scoring.
The gameplay remains the same, for the most part. You zip around the battlefield and pick up weapons, ammo and power ups while shooting at your enemies. It's pretty simple, but it functions extremely well. There are plenty of weapons, but there is nothing new to speak off which is disappointing but they all play well. The main focus of the game is the multiplayer and it's modes. You can play with AI as well as other players and it's great fun. There are only a handful of modes; Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, Vehicle Capture the Flag and Warfare among others. All of these modes are enjoyable and the maps are designed really well.
You can also play with Mutators, basically cheats that affect gameplay, which can add a crazy twist to the gameplay. Everything is great and everything controls as well as you'd expect. I think it's safe to say that it's the perfect old-school shooter and it's pure fun, despite being incredibly simple.
The music in the game is great and the voice work is goofy and fitting. The single player voice work is great as well. Overall, the game sounds great, from the music to the sound effects.
The visuals make this game what it is; a tech demo for the Unreal Engine 3 and it definitely shows it. The textures look great, the character models look fantastic and the environments look amazing. This is what an old-school shooter should look like. Bottom-line, it's amazing looking.
- Fantastic gunplay
- Amazing Visuals
- Fantastic music and voice work
- Fast-paced, balanced gameplay
- Fun weapons
- Plenty of modes and maps
- Pure and simple
- No new weapons
- Story is a glorified tutorial
- Pure and simple
Overall, Unreal Tournament III is the definition of both a tech demo and a pure shooter experience. This review might be a little short, but it's all that I have and need to say about this amazingly fun game. It might not be as good as previous games in the series, but it's a mile more fun than the shooters being released today and it's the best shooter of the seventh generation so far.