The game is still garbage. Epic was starting to go downhill LONG ago, but it wasn't so bad yet. I still think UT2K4 could've been more, but it was a great game still and UE2 was great in lots of ways.
Personally though, I think UE3 is used like complete garbage in most games, including any of Epic's games (go figure). Only a few games make use of it in a way that actually feels like an improvement from older engine.
The game itself is nothing. It removes stuff, never added anything I cared about. There was so much more they could've done, and they did nothing at all. And nevermind vehicles. Thats what started ruining Unreal.
This game deserves its population, plain and simple.
Its early crappy release state killed it, simple as that. If it were how it is now, I see no reason why this wouldn't still be one of the most played games to this date. Great, in-depth FPS as it is now (something I can't say for 2k4, or any FPS's outside of the Battlefield series)... but its impossible to realize it with its one half full server of constantly rotating new players that (understandably) give up on it immediately. -shrug-
It's too bad, since content isn't all that hard to make for it. Map making is pretty simple, gametypes are probably a lot more complex, but at the same time, there's an almost finished assault mod that just needs a new dev team... --- 2% of GameFAQs users have this in their signature. If you're one of the 98% that doesn't, copy and paste this into your signature.