Unreal Championship
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6  |  Unreal Championship for the XBox - review
larsoncc , 12/6/2002 4:41:38 AM

I'm not doing enough damage with this gunShould you buy Unreal Championship? NO. Well, probably not, depending on your PC situation. That's right, I mentioned PC in a XBox review. I think it's a fairly safe bet to say that everyone's got limited resources, and that you're looking for the best bang for your buck. So, here's my take on the situation.

Unreal Championship is the baby brother of it's PC counterpart, Unreal Tournament 2003. UC runs slower, is more difficult to control, has less of a chance of being expanded, and has fewer setup options (connectivity, graphics, etc). There also is not a "lifespan" issue with the PC version - people stick with computer games for years longer than with console games. For those of you with a decent computer that can handle Unreal Tournament 2003 (1 Ghz, a 3D accelerator, Linux or Windows, and not crash prone), I would recommend UT2003 over UC any day.

get some!On the other hand, Unreal Championship does have some advantages. When you instinctively yell "Oooohhh, that's gotta hurt!" or "Come here, you little @$@$@%!", others can hear you, and respond. That's nifty. The game is also portable. You can take your XBox live account with you on a memory card, you can take your saved games on that same memory card, and you can bring along the DVD. Sharing with friends is a very compelling reason to get this game. The two player split-screen mode is most fun when not played on-line (see below), but it's still quite good, and two player mode is something that the PC game lacks entirely. It also must be said that if your PC is something that you only use for work, or if you simply can't convince anyone to allow you to install the game (if you're a kid, for instance) - you're better off getting the XBox version. In fact, in these instances, I highly RECOMMEND the XBox version.

ow - ow - ow!My first experience with Unreal Championship was with a friend, in two player split-screen mode, on-line. In my eyes, there were so many deficiencies with this mode, I felt I had to say something, right afterwards. To recap, here are my problems with the two player on-line mode of this game:

  1. The person that you're shooting at is not labeled.
  2. When you kill someone, it doesn't tell you so.
  3. It's difficult to see details in split screen mode.
  4. It's (obviously) more "laggy", because your poor XBox has to send twice as much info - this leads to dropped connections, your shots not showing up on screen, people jumping around, and more.
  5. The graphics look "washed out" - I don't think this was my TV, really - I play other games, and UC in different mores, and everything seems to be fine.

you're a goner, antmannThat said, the single player on-line mode and the single-player mode are both very good. They are exactly what I'd expect from a console FPS, and since this is the only TRULY on-line FPS for XBox (right now), the game earns a few points of redemption. The graphics are fantastic, all the labels are there as you'd expect, the game play is varied. It's a good game. No, I take that back - until they get Halo2 out, it's THE game for XBox Live.

But still, it's not good enough. When computers are almost as cheap as consoles, they play the same games (sometimes for less money), and they offer more opportunity, well... You get the picture.

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