Four months down the line and 360 owners have finally been graced by the presence of unreal tournament 3 on their consoles. Arguably one of the best FPS games ever to grace this earth but has it been worth the wait, are these steroid bunnies any bigger/better than their counterparts? Can epic justify the extra 4 months taken by giving us something the others don’t have or is it going to be a rehashed version?
It seems epic does care and this version brings with it a few exciting features and a few disappointing features. The addition of five exclusive maps and the DLC maps from ps3, along with split screen go a fair distance to make up for the lack of one of the features that the UT series has become synonymous for, the ability to add user mods. Another area where it seems the 360 version falls short is in the lack of keyboard and mouse support however you soon come to realise that it really isn’t something you miss.
Usually the singleplayer of unreal is something to do while you wait for your buddies to come online to play some multiplayer however this time it seems that quite a bit of effort has gone into improving the singleplayer aspect, one of the first things that become apparent while watching the really good looking opening cut scene is that Marcus Fenix and co. are all making cameos under different names. The action is the usual bot filled games on the various multiplayer maps, it seems as though great effort has gone into the story behind why you’re killing these bots or capturing those flags. All in all though it serves as a good pre-cursor to the multiplayer side of the game and also allows you to tweak the sensitivity which invariably needs tweaking. The game is still as fast paced as ever albeit slightly slower than the pc version presumably to compensate for the use of a control over the regular mouse and keyboard. You are never left feeling as though the control is inhibiting your play or that the bots are too quick for the control. There is also the sensation that there is more gravity in this series as your jumps don’t go as high and your feet seem to be very heavy in comparison to previous games. None of the changes take anything away from the singleplayer campaign and in fact add to the experience making it the best singleplayer of the series.
Multiplayer is what most people buy UT for and although the singleplayer is decent the multiplayer is everything one has come to expect and more. The same fast paced action with no apparent drops in frame rate, the re-inclusion of the stinger mini gun and the addition of more vehicles. A lot of work has gone into the vehicles, new and old. The mantra is back and as gruesomely good as ever, The Darkwalker is the latest vehicle to cast fear into your opponents, sitting way above them picking them off at your will. The old modes are back in Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch, CTF and vehicle CTF, versus and a completely new and innovative warfare mode. The objective of warfare is to capture nodes and as simple as this sounds with the addition of orbs that have a the ability to either do great damage to opponent nodes or repair your own nodes, the balance of the game quickly shifts and you get the see saw effect the entire game, keeping you on the edge of your seat the whole time. The introduction of hover boards in certain game modes also help you get around the vast maps quicker but they do take a bit of getting used to due to the 3rd person view you get while riding them, something which is completely different to what UT fans are used too. The co-op campaign is also a nice way to quickly go through the campaign as it supports up to 4 players and provides some practise providing the bots are on the right level. As with all things this game has its flaws, one of the things I found annoying was that for voice chat, you have to hold right on the dpad making it virtually impossible to talk and fight at the same time, something very minor that is easily over shadowed by the good things but something that was annoying nonetheless.
For such a fast paced game, UT3 has very good graphics, the details in the weapons and the cars, the smoothness of the environments and I hardly ever experienced a drop in framerate. This game is beautiful and the sound compliments it perfectly, hearing the splatter of blood after blowing somebody apart with a rocket launcher, the classic â€œrampageâ€ voice keeping you informed as to your awesomeness or lack there of. When put together it makes for a really engrossing experience and something which everybody except the neighbours will appreciate.
When you get down to the nitty gritty, this is unreal tournament, and is another version in a long line of games that never fail to disappoint. The first real fast paced action shooter to hit the consoles and leave such a high benchmark. The positive fair outweighs the negative. This could be following in line of gears of war as a game that will be played for years to come or at least until the next UT is released. If you’re a fan of the series you won’t be disappointed and if you have never played a UT game before this is a great game to start on
Gameplay: 9/10 (Only as UT can do)
Presentation: 9/10 (Smooth and beautiful)
Sound: 7/10 (As good as it can be, nothing ground breaking)
Value: 9/10 (the fun never ends)
Overall: 8.5/10 (nothing new but still great)
Better Than: Halo 3
Worse Than: Being as big as the Marcus Fenix look-a-like
Last Updated: July 10, 2008