Review by Lucifer777

"Unreal Tournament III has brought good ol' fashioned fun back to the console FPS world."

Unreal Tournament has been known for a while to many PC gamers as a great series of first person shooters. Not too long ago, they were also released on the XBOX Unreal Championship 1 and Unreal Championship 2: The Liandri Conflict. Now, the makers of the Unreal series have bestowed unto us a great new game, on a console no less! Read on to witness a first person shooter at it's finest.

Gameplay: If you've never played an Unreal Tournament, you're in for a treat. With a wide selection of weapons, characters, maps, game types, and vehicles, it can easily help you kill time on a long boring day or if you're chilling with friends, online or off. There's just so much to do in the different game modes, and with the addition of awesome vehicles, and weapons, there's just so much variation that it would be difficult to get bored of it, unless you're not a fan of this kind of game.

The game modes consist of your standard Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, Vehicle Capture the Flag, and a new game called Warfare, where you capture various points of interest on the map to reveal or damage your enemies power core, while defending your own. Certain points (nodes as they are known in-game) will give you benefits like vehicles and such to use, if you can maintain control of them, that is. There's also a 1 on 1 duel mode, but I haven't experienced it enough to give an accurate opinion on it.

Another important thing that they have brought to the table: bots! That's right, if you're without friends for some reason, or can't get online, then you can mix it up with a team of bots. No more lonely nights playing the same campaign over and over because you don't have online access. Other first person shooter game creators should pull over and take notes from this game on this. At times during the single player campaign your allied bots can act a bit weird, for instance trying to drive a vehicle only to get it stuck on a tree, and then abandon it. Or, what's worse, not defending that flag when you really need them to!

As far as controls go they're pretty nicely mapped out, although if you don't like a particular button's function, you have the ability to change it. Don't like the push-to-talk button that's causing you to stop running to chat? Simply map it to a shoulder button to allow you to talk while you frag. Weapons hard to access? Then change it! It's all up to you, even down to how sensitive the controller allows you to turn and look around.

Story: As far as the story goes, you've got the single player campaign which tells a pretty decent story as far as FPS games go, but it could've used say... An ending? I won't list details about it and end up spoiling it for you, but the ending just left you hanging, possibly to set up another Unreal Tournament game in the future, but I never have been a fan of cliff-hanger endings. Also, a little more background on the lead characters would have been nice as well.

Graphics/Sound: I was skeptical when I rented this game because of the amazing graphics on the PC version, but my skepticism was put away when I sat down to play this. In true XBOX 360 fashion, the stunning visuals will blow you away. From the character models to the terrain, it looks nice. The enviroments can sometimes seem a bit bland, but on certain stages it's simply beautiful to look at. The sound is pretty darn good too, although at times hearing the same taunts over and over or the computer announcer constantly incorrectly telling you where to go can be a bit annoying.

Play Time/Replayability: All in all it took me two days of off and on playing to finish the single player campaign. It may vary from person to person, but for me it moved along at a nice pace. The single player campaign had it's moments where I wanted to toss the controller down in frustration, but it easily made up for that with good times a-plenty. Add in the Instant Action mode, modifiers, online access, and many more options, and you've got yourself a replayable gold mine.

Final Recommendation: I have to say I greatly enjoyed this game, and I intend on purchasing it when I get the chance. The fact that I already own it on PC doesn't sway me from it too much, because the new additions (characters, maps, and split screen) are well worth another purchase. If you've got the spare cash lying around, go get this game! I think you'll be very pleased with this one, for many years to come.

Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 07/14/08

Game Release: Unreal Tournament III (US, 07/07/08)

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