Unreal Tournament 3 Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | PC
Unreal Tournament 3 box art
System: X360, PS3, PC Review Rating Legend
Dev: Epic 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Midway 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: July 7, 2008 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-2 (16 Online) 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Mature 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Pace of play in UT3 is off the charts. This is both a plus and a minus for the title. For starters, it does produce a frantic euphoria among combatants that definitely keeps you on the edge of your seat. Stringing three or four kills together definitely feels good, and the onscreen notification system that lets everyone know who's boss is very rewarding. However, accumulating frags tends to be more a question of twitch reflexes rather than skill. That's probably why many guns have an explosion or ricochet effect to help compensate for the uncanny speed (I've never seen anyone run that fast while going backward).

Unreal Tournament 3 screenshot

Moreover, though level design, on the whole, is very compelling, the lack of cover never allows players to stop running. Subsequently, frontlines and bottlenecks never really form except occasionally in the Warfare game mode. Finally, there's no consequence for dying. Sure, it will hurt your team's chances in Deathmatch, but players aren't publicly humiliated for their careless play and re-spawning antics. That's because only frags (kills) are tracked, not the amount of times the N00b died before they got their four measly kills.

Fortunately, the game is blessed by some amazing graphics. As one would expect, the creators of Unreal Engine 3 know how to use their tool. With the amount of action onscreen, it's amazing there isn't any shuddering, and the maps and environments are frequently breathtaking. The sounds are also quite representative of the varied guns and high speed action, but the voice over work is utterly forgettable. Thankfully, the controls are about as good as they can be for a console FPS. My only complaint would be that once mounted in vehicles, it becomes very clunky indeed. In fact, I always let fellow team members deal with the frustration.

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Unreal Tournament 3 is a solid first-person shooter marked by exceptionally smooth multiplayer support. Plus, the community of players that gamers who purchase the game will be joining is outstanding. If you're looking for a simple title to get your blood pumping, then UT3 may be just what the doctor ordered. However, players looking for greater complexity and realism must look elsewhere.

By Jonathan Marx
CCC Editor / News Director

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
4.8
Graphics
Absolutely outstanding! With the amount of action onscreen, it's amazing there isn't any shuddering, and the maps and environments are frequently breathtaking.
4.2
Control
On foot, the game controls really well. However, once mounted in vehicles, it becomes very clunky.
3.5
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The sound effects are quite representative of the guns and action, but the voice over work is utterly forgettable.
3.7
Play Value
The low level of difficulty, poor single-player experience, and gimmicky, futuristic arsenal make the game shallow. Nevertheless, the vibrant community and diverse online modes make it quite enjoyable overall.
3.9
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Unparalleled graphical and physical realism from the award-winning Unreal Engine 3 technology delivers the most compelling first-person shooter experience to date...online and offline!
  • Vast arsenal of weapons: Unreal Tournament has always been known for brutal weaponry, and now the arsenal is even bigger and badder. Detonate your opponent from a distance with the ever popular Shock rifle or blast away at close range with the Flak Cannon. Over two dozen weapons and vehicles have been upgraded and enhanced for maximum killing potential.
  • New single-player campaign: This is Unreal Tournament like you've never seen it before! The Necris invasion has begun, and your clan was one of the first to be slaughtered. Head to the front lines and join this Epic battle to defend humanity while taking your revenge.
  • New and favorite characters: Fight side-by-side or compete against new and returning characters from the Unreal universe, including two Xbox 360 exclusive characters, all with enhanced abilities, extremely detailed designs, and distinct personalities.
  • Enhanced popular game types, including: Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag and all new Warfare mode and More.
  • Online innovations: Unreal Tournament 3 brings back all the award-winning online features of previous Unreal Tournament games, plus seamless loading on servers, improved matchmaking, and co-operative campaign play online.
  • Additional, exciting content: Players can not only get their frag on with five new Xbox 360 exclusive maps, but Unreal Tournament 3 for Xbox 360 also includes all previously released downloadable content.
  • All-new split screen capability: For the first time ever, the Unreal experience can be played using the Xbox 360 exclusive split screen feature.
  • Screen Resolution: Up to 1080p (Full HDTV, Widescreen).


  • Screenshots / Images
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