Unreal is a complete package, all the action, graphics, gameplay and fun! It's all here!

User Rating: 8 | Unreal Tournament III X360
Let's get one thing straight, it's very unlikely you'll come across an Unreal Tournament game that doesn't deliver. In 1999, Unreal Tournament had 'Game Of The Year' stamped on it, Unreal Tournament 2004 was also given a huge praise and got a 'Editor's Choice' award. Now 10 years later and Epic release the long awaited Unreal Tournament 3 for the Xbox 360, but does it still have it's touch? As we all know, it was released a year back for the PS3 and to make up for the delay to the 360, Epic Games have thrown in 5 excusive maps, more selectable characters, and my personal favourite; 2 player split-screen! Yes, this means you can invite a friend over and play Xbox Live split-screen! It also has a sneaky look at the Gear Of War 2 multiplayer gameplay, which is a good thing for those fans of Gears.

Unreal Tournament 3 has it's instant action mode, multiplayer and a rather cool Campaign. The Campaign tells the story of James 'Reaper' Hawkings whos home village get's destroyed by the Krall and the Black Legion leader Akasha. Angered by this attack, Reaper want's revenge and seeks out Malcom, who we've all come to know and love from the previous games, to help him get back at the Black Legion Necris. Now the thing is with making a Campaign with Unreal Tournament is that they can't step away from the whole 'Arena' style gameplay, they'll have to keep it like Unreal is meant to be. And suprisingly enough they get around that by saying that there are these things called 'respawners' that allow enemies and team-mates to respawn unless they've reached a certain goal. For example, if it's a Capture the Flag game, if you successfully capture all the flags of the other team, their respawner stop so they will no longer... respawn... you get it, right? Ever played Star Wars: Battlefront 2? Think of it as the Galaxy Conquest from there on, you go to different parts of the world, battle the enemies, and that area is taken care of, so you move to another part. It's pretty simple. There are some cutscenes as you proceed to explain some more of the story (which looks amazing by the way) and you will occasionally hear your team talking to you about the mission or something. Speaking of the team, throughout the game you will always have the same crew with you, unless the game you're about to play is 2 on 2 or so an so. There's Othello (who resembles Cole from Gears Of War), Jester (Reaper's sister) and Bishop (a religious guy). Even though they only really talk through the cutscenes and sometimes in-game, you somehow get to know them... strange. Finally, once you've completed the Campaign you'll unlock some things and you should be trained up enough to kick some ass online.

What's that? You don't have Xbox Live? Well don't fret as Unreal Tournament 3 gives you 'Instant Action' which allows you to play with up to 16 bots, you can choose any map or mode you wish to play, and you can even fiddle around with the Mutators and settings to suit your needs. There are a lot of maps to choose from and they're all brilliantly designed so you won't be thinking 'Eww, what a horrible map'. Now then, about the game itself, the gameplay, the new stuff, what makes this game so god-damn amazing? Well let's me just start off by saying how great the graphics are, i mean you liked Gears Of War's graphics, right? Well with Epic Games being the creator of this game, what more can you possibly expect but perfect, smooth and mouth-watering graphics! No, i'm not joking, they're some of the best graphics you'll see on the next-gen console. Sure, they might not be Call Of Duty 4 style which are amazing, but they're some of the best i've seen. Now of course, graphics arent everything right? But the gameplay is, and Unreal Tournament 3 has highly addictive gameplay, so be warned! If you've played Unreal Tournament 2004, it's basically the upgraded version of that but with a few fixes here and there. There are six modes for you to play, Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, Vehicle Capture the Flag, Duel and one of my favourites, Warfare. Now unless you're completely new the FPS genre altogether, you should know what Deathmatch and Capture the flag are all about. In Deathmatch you kill your enemies till you reach the score limit, and Team is basically the same but with some allies by your side. Capture the flag requires you to capture the enemies flag and return it to your base, this can only be done in a team, no solo CTF. Vehicle CTF is basically the same thing except you have vehicles on the map and the maps themselves are quite big. Duel is in all honesty, quite a pointless mode as it's just deathmatch but with 1 v 1... seems strange, but nothing to whine about. Now the Warfare mode on the other hand requires a lot of team work, there's no chance in hell you can do this on your own. Warfare is very similar to Onslaught on 2004, you have to capture all the nodes and link them together till you can destroy the main base, but this time you can pick up these 'Orbs' which if taken to an enemy node, you can just take over that node without having to shoot it, capture it and use the Link Gun to put a shield around it, this Orb basically does all that for you. However, if the enemy has their own Orb, they can do the same, and if they succeed, you'll find all your nodes quickly becoming the opposite color to your team. But not all hope is gone, if you hear 'Orb Runner Incoming' all you need to do is find this Orb Runner, kill him/her and she/he will drop the Orb, then all you need to do is walk up to it, press X and you'll destroy it... along with yourself... yes, it's like a live grenade, you basically have to sacrifice yourself to save your node from being over-run and although you might have the attitude of 'I'm not gonna kill myself!', you'll find yourself having to do before it get's picked back up again. You'll be a hero doing so, or you could just wait till the timer above it expires... but by that time the enemy could blow you up and run off with it... so think about what you need to do.

Ok, so that's the game modes sorted out, now as for the weapons, vehicles and tools in the game, you'll find yourself with some really interesting and useful stuff. The weapons are the classics that have been through all the tournaments but with a new look. You have your Pulse Rifle, your Sniper Rifle, the Rocket Launcher, the Link Gun... y'know the works. The new gun models look so much better though and the vehicles look great too. You might also recognise some of the vehicles from UT 2004 too, but they've been updated and there are some new ones too. The Necris vehicles are awesome, some resemble the War Of The Worlds Tripods but they're called 'Darkwalkers', where as some are just so much fun. One of the Necris vehicles known as the 'Scavenger' is similar to the Darkwalker but smaller and can morph into a ball (Samus Style) so you can roll around the map squashing anyone in your way... such fun. Each vehicle never feels weaker or superior to the other because each one has something unique about them. For example the Goliath Tank is strong armoured and the Axon Manta is weak, but the Manta can jump over things and is fast wheras the Goliath can fire rockets but is slow and cannot jump to save the world. So you'll never think 'Awww, i get stuck with the weakest vehicle'. Now one of my favourite new things in the UT3 game is the hoverboard, yes you read correctly, just a simple press on the X button and you'll find yourself on a hovering board and with this board you can get to your desination quicker and can do a few tricks if you wish... no it's not like Unreal Tournament's Pro Hoverboarding, you can only press the right trigger in the air to grab your board or the left to do another, it's just a little gimmick that Epic stuck in there. Although the board can get you to places faster than on foot, it's not mega fast so you don't feel any need to use a vehicle, and to make it so you're not Mr. Invincible, one shot, even the slightest shot of the enforcer knocks you off your board... meaning you'll have to be careful if you see a load of enemies coming your way, so it's best to get off your board. No, you don't die when you fall off your board, you just go into ragdoll physics and you have to pick yourself back up, however, if an enemy is nearby, i'm sure he/she won't mind shooting you while you're down, so be careful. You cannot shoot or use any gun whatsoever while you're on your board, so you'll have to get off to kill an enemy, but you can however grapple on to friendly vehicles meaning you can tag on to a vehicle he'll give you a lift! Yaay! But just remember, you can be shot off.

So what's the verdict? Was Unreal Tournament worth the wait? I think yes, it was worth every penny and i look forward to the next Unreal Tournament!