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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) The singleplayer was not that bad (Read 8090 times)
m4pwner
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The singleplayer was not that bad
Aug 18th, 2014 at 7:11pm
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I played Unreal 2 on Steam about a year ago now, and despite all the criticisms I see thrown at this game, I would say the singleplayer campaign for it was reasonably good. Who here agrees, or disagrees? Unreal 2 deviated greatly from the core Unreal spirit that existed at the time, but I would say as a game, Unreal 2 is a reasonably good game in it's own right. I think the problem is comparing it to other game titles, which people tend to do quite a bit.



  
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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #1 - Aug 18th, 2014 at 7:48pm
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Unreal 2 is completely subpar on every level except for its visual. Everything else is terrible. It seems deceivably good because there is not a single completely broken thing, but it's an ensemble cast of failures.

- The huge campaing which was promised and which would have been a good follow-up to the long and fascinating adventure of Unreal is extremely short and can be finished in less than an afternoon. It could be even shorter if not for...

- The inability for the player to move at any decent speed. You run at the speed other games walk and you walk at the speed other games crawl. Jumps are slow and heavy, you feel like you are piloting a mecha. Contrast it with Unreal's fats and dynamic movements. Also noteworthy, the ability to jump and cling to the edge of a platform exists in the game and is used exactly once, when it is explained in the tutorial. Completely 100% never used anywhere else.

- The visuals are pretty. But the art design is the blandest ever commited to a renderer. You are walking in the middle of the best-rendered banality of its time. Contrast with Na Pali.

- Enemies are both dumb and slow. Slow is needed because the player is basically a huge concrete slab slowly rolling down the road of the campaign, but dumb is really dumb. Contrast with Unreal's Skaarj which were both fast and furious well-known for dodging shots efficiently. Even the Mercenaries and their cunning ability to shield themselves 0.1s before a rocket hit them.

- The story is worthless. Nothing of value. Ancient artifacts must be gathered to save the galaxy. I invented better stories playing with legos before I could even walk. Compare to Unreal who had the decency to have almost no story instead of a retarded one.

- Weapons are generic and uninteresting. Exactly 0 of them are better than those in Unreal. The Dispersion pistol (which is worth) is also never used because you always start a mission loaded with better things. The ASMD lance (or whatever it's called) is a shock rifle but slow, weak, no combo, no knocback. The Flak is now a bland shotgun which will feel even blander when it's the only weapon you use (because it's the only one worth its salt), the main weapon is a machine-gun with an added bonus, you have seen it a million times in just about every game ever. The pistol is a pistol. The Grenade launcher is a cool idea crippled by the fact that smoke grenades etc. are useless against the AI, I could go on for every weapon in the game. Compare that to Unreal/UT's weapons which they haven't even changed since Unreal, 16 years ago.

- The mission structure sucks. Plain and simple.

- The characters are as bland, cliché and useless as the story they serve.

- The big reveal and emotional tear-jerker falls flat because of the character and story problems described above.

- The game and the editor are the least stable Unreal release ever.

- It has no multiplayer, and as a consequence...

- It has no players.

So if I want to play a mediocre, bland, solo game which lasts 5 hours and which I feel I have played a thousant times and which ruins the legacy of a good game, then yes, I might play Unreal 2. Or not, I'd play Deus Ex 2 which does all that except it has a semblance of atmosphere.

It's not a question of deviating greatly from Unreal. A game can be a good game while deviating from its predecessors. It's just that even on its own, Unreal 2 is a game which is not BAD, but which is even worst: it's boring. It's a functionnal game which presents nothing interesting except the fact that it works.

EDIT: Wew, wall of text, I didn't even realize I was ranting this bad. Have fun Cheesy
  

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m4pwner
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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #2 - Aug 18th, 2014 at 8:21pm
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Opinions are awesome.

Like I said, I personally think the singleplayer is good in it's own right. Compare the game to other games, and you start to see how bad it is in comparison.

Your criticism has some valid points, although it does seem a tad emotional in nature.
  
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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #3 - Aug 18th, 2014 at 10:56pm
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I actually enjoyed the game, it was the incessant load times that turned me off from a replay.
  

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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #4 - Aug 19th, 2014 at 2:03am
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What I like in this game it is have nice design of some environments\worlds. Weapons are poor as Hellkeeper wrote, but I do not agree about characters playing main roles, they have nice created personality which reveals more and more between missions. Scenario? Nothing memorable, lack of U1 elements is a big no no for me too, some Skaarj elements only- too little for me. Good thing is that we have some sequels to U1 made by users. And another ones are in developing state. ^.^
  
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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #5 - Aug 19th, 2014 at 10:12am
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m4pwner wrote on Aug 18th, 2014 at 8:21pm:
Your criticism has some valid points, although it does seem a tad emotional in nature.


That's because I use fluffy language. I do believe ths singleplayer does not stand on its own based on objective criteria: it is short, it lack novelty, the weapons, their feeling, the enemies and their AI, are bad, the player's character and the map design are extremely restrictive compared to non-pseudo-realistic shooters (and Unreal never aimed at realism), and the mission structure is really breaking any semblance of flow.
  

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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #6 - Aug 19th, 2014 at 6:15pm
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Hellkeeper wrote on Aug 19th, 2014 at 10:12am:
m4pwner wrote on Aug 18th, 2014 at 8:21pm:
Your criticism has some valid points, although it does seem a tad emotional in nature.


That's because I use fluffy language. I do believe ths singleplayer does not stand on its own based on objective criteria: it is short, it lack novelty, the weapons, their feeling, the enemies and their AI, are bad, the player's character and the map design are extremely restrictive compared to non-pseudo-realistic shooters (and Unreal never aimed at realism), and the mission structure is really breaking any semblance of flow.


At this point, not much else can be said on my part.  You believe on a personal basis, and even through objective criteria, that this game sucks. I think this game in it's own right is OK with itself, but outside of that description it's not a good game. Humans tend to try to seek validation of their claims through objectivity, and I'm sure that's what almost every Internet argument is based around.

You admitted the visuals were pretty, though. How is the AI that bad? They get stuck sometimes, but I found them to be a challenge and somewhat interactive with the environment (although absolutely not on the same level as the first Unreal).
  
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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #7 - Aug 19th, 2014 at 7:38pm
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The game is pretty, yes. This is something which has to be said, but I believe it's the only good thing.

The AI is bad because it tends to get stuck. I had some occasions where monsters simply did not react when I shot them or didn't see me when I was not under cover. Interactivity is zero. They do not react to the environment. Some of them try to take cover, which is the only good thing I can say about it, but which is nothing new. Enemies in Half-Life years before did that. Other than that, their only tactic is to advance towards you, shooting. It is especially painful to see when the heavy skaarj do it, as there speed is miserable. The mission where you have to snipe skaarj warriors attacking a mechanic is a glaring example: they run and do not try to escape your sight even when they know you are here. Even when they reach the guy, their combat tactics are so inneficient that watching the fight is interesting because of how long it takes and how bad they fight.

Contrast all this with Halo's AI which is vastly more efficient, forms group tactics, takes cover when wounded, etc.
  

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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #8 - Aug 24th, 2014 at 8:44pm
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I'll be the first one to defend Unreal II. I recently went over the dialogue in the game (as part of my quest to look through all canon in the series), and I find it pretty nice. I even had a few fridge logic cases where things I never thought about before snapped into place. For instance, Dalton chastises the Marines in Swamp, which sounds backwards at first (Dalton wants to get into the Marines himself, so it would seem like he wouldn't have the authority to tell the Marines anything), but then when you realise that the TCA is actually Military Police (in SPACE!), it makes perfect sense. The TCA does have the authority over the Marines when it comes to the behaviour of Marines themselves. Also quite ironic: Dalton must have been thrown out of the Marines by the TCA, because throwing people out of the Marines must be TCA jurisdiction.

Of course, the game does have its problems. Logic included. There's no way a four-man team could have maintained a corvette. In the real navy corvettes are manned by around 40 people each (although admittedly fewer people go to space than into ships, so things are a bit more roboticised there; still would require at least 10 people to run the ship for the missions Atlantis takes on).

Oh, and ignore Hellkeeper over there, he's a vehement hater of anything related to Unreal II (except the engine), because he thinks every SP game should stand against Deus Ex standards Wink
  
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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #9 - Aug 24th, 2014 at 9:38pm
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You cannot say that, I do not hold all single player games to a single standard, but even compared to other short corridor-singleplayer campaigns from other games, Unreal 2 is lackluster in terms of speed, feeling, plot and general level design. I have also spent more than my share of time defending U2 against those who say there's precisely nothing good in it. Let's just recognize that despite the rose-tinted glasses, nostalgia and the big Unreal title slapped on the cover, it is different from all Unreal games in pretty much every way and does not bring anything remarkable to the table. Everything in this game was already old when it came out, it did not bring anything new and it did nothing especially spectacular to compensate.

Regarding your fluff part, I'm fairly sure you are wrong. The TCA, the Terran Colonial Authority, is an outright transposition of US marshals IN SPAAAAAAACE, and I see no reason (or even evidence) that they have any authority over the regular army, and especially the marines which (if we go by the same "America in space" standard) are an elite corps. TCA must have jurisdiction over peasants in unorganized space just like the US marshalls had over their local cow-boys, while they would just shut up and say yes once the regular army arrives.

Dalton chastising marines would be because he's a former marine and thus used to be colloquial with guys in the army. It would also be stupid to have Dalton "downgraded" to a higher level. You don't punish someone by promoting him. My opinion is that he was downgraded because he is black and has racist superiors who prefer transparent aliens.

As for how many people are needed to man a ship, I'm pretty sure we can't extrapolate how many humans and alien with possible robotic and AI help are needed to man a functionnal inter-stellar spaceship from the number of people needed to man an ocean-going vessel. Tongue
  

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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #10 - Aug 25th, 2014 at 6:51am
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Hellkeeper wrote on Aug 24th, 2014 at 9:38pm:
You cannot say that, I do not hold all single player games to a single standard, but even compared to other short corridor-singleplayer campaigns from other games, Unreal 2 is lackluster in terms of speed, feeling, plot and general level design. I have also spent more than my share of time defending U2 against those who say there's precisely nothing good in it. Let's just recognize that despite the rose-tinted glasses, nostalgia and the big Unreal title slapped on the cover, it is different from all Unreal games in pretty much every way and does not bring anything remarkable to the table. Everything in this game was already old when it came out, it did not bring anything new and it did nothing especially spectacular to compensate.


We've been over this many times already Tongue There are quite a few remarkable things about Unreal II, such as the Drakk. Its storyline is also solely responsible for introducing the great corporations, Axon and Izanagi.

Oh, and you seem to enjoy picking holes in anything you come across Wink

Hellkeeper wrote on Aug 24th, 2014 at 9:38pm:
Regarding your fluff part, I'm fairly sure you are wrong. The TCA, the Terran Colonial Authority, is an outright transposition of US marshals IN SPAAAAAAACE, and I see no reason (or even evidence) that they have any authority over the regular army, and especially the marines which (if we go by the same "America in space" standard) are an elite corps. TCA must have jurisdiction over peasants in unorganized space just like the US marshalls had over their local cow-boys, while they would just shut up and say yes once the regular army arrives.


The problem is that the US marshals you're referring to... do not exist. Oh, some states call court bailiffs that, others call the leads of their military parades that. Either way, nothing even remotely similar to what Dalton and friends were doing. And it's not a rank at all.

Dalton isn't a regular Marshal. He's a Provost Marshal, which is an actual rank meaning an officer of the US Military Police Corps. What do the US Military Police officers do? They mostly patrol. Mounted, unmounted, static patrol. They also do recon, raids, escort missions, disaster relief and manoeuvre support for the US army and the Marines. They don't go to the front lines like the army or the Marines, but rather maintain security of the area claimed by them. And they work closely together, when one can't handle the situation alone, they call in the other. Sound familiar? Wink

Hellkeeper wrote on Aug 24th, 2014 at 9:38pm:
Dalton chastising marines would be because he's a former marine and thus used to be colloquial with guys in the army. It would also be stupid to have Dalton "downgraded" to a higher level. You don't punish someone by promoting him. My opinion is that he was downgraded because he is black and has racist superiors who prefer transparent aliens.


It would be stupid... if Dalton had actually committed a crime. He didn't, and everyone knows that, but since the rules call for obeying direct orders, they had to make an example of him. It's mostly Dalton that feels demoted because of his personality. Which, after reading all the dialogue, I finally understood quite well: he's a chaotic good, a Leeroy Jenkins, jumping right into the middle of anything with no regards to rules or safety precautions, doing what (he thinks is) right. So of course he wants to be on the front lines with the Marines, not, as he said himself, "patrolling the ass end of nowhere" with the TCA.

And his rank is certainly not higher than what he was in the Marines (which is most likely Lieutenant Colonel, because Hawkins offered him a promotion to Colonel and he was taking direct orders from a Colonel before). But the Military Police and the Marines are two different branches of the military, they can't be directly compared. They have different duties and purposes. The Military Police deals with insubordination within the military itself, but that doesn't make the MP officers higher rank then anyone in the military. Quite the opposite; it's just their job. And nobody would send MP officers to the front lines, because that's not their job.

That said, another interesting tidbit is that Hawkins was described as a Sector Commander. It could be a futuristic title, "sector" being a sector of space. Or it could not be. A Sector Commander is a decorated officer of the US Coast Guard, the rank being Captain (equal to Colonel in the army and the Marines). Granted, the Coast Guard is a different branch of the military as well, so it's a bit inconsistent.

Hellkeeper wrote on Aug 24th, 2014 at 9:38pm:
As for how many people are needed to man a ship, I'm pretty sure we can't extrapolate how many humans and alien with possible robotic and AI help are needed to man a functionnal inter-stellar spaceship from the number of people needed to man an ocean-going vessel. Tongue


Sure you can. All those people in ships aren't there for show. In a warship, space or otherwise, you absolutely need an officer (usually several) constantly monitoring the radar information, a comms officer keeping a channel with the base open and relaying orders, a group of officers responsible for each weapon the ship had, a helmsman that pilots the ship, a navigator that finds the best routes to take, a security division that would react to any attempts to board the ship or deal with any shipmen deciding to go rogue, an engineering division that would do maintenance and constant monitoring on the ship engines and other parts of the ship and very rapidly react to any emergencies, a captain that decides the orders and an executive officer that relays orders, acts as a second in command and makes sure everyone falls in line. And then you also need people to do the routine stuff like scrubbing floors and making food.

On the Atlantis it's like each person is a division on their own. Issak is the engineering division, Ne'Ban is the operations division, Aida is the science division and Dalton is the command division. It's crazy. No way that would ever work, that's way too much work for each person.
  
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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #11 - Aug 25th, 2014 at 8:25am
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GreatEmerald wrote on Aug 25th, 2014 at 6:51am:
The problem is that the US marshals you're referring to... do not exist.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Marshals_Service#Enforcement_roles.2...

Quote:
During the settlement of the American West, marshals often served as the main source of day-to-day law enforcement in various parts of the west that had no local government of their own


GreatEmerald wrote on Aug 25th, 2014 at 6:51am:
There are quite a few remarkable things about Unreal II, such as the Drakk. Its storyline is also solely responsible for introducing the great corporations, Axon and Izanagi.

Corporations are a standard of science fiction since at least the 80s. You can credit them with giving names, it's fine. They could as well be called "blue team", "red team" and "naked chicks team" for that matter.
Drakks are robots with their design ripped from Alien. Incredible.
  

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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #12 - Aug 25th, 2014 at 8:49am
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Hellkeeper wrote on Aug 25th, 2014 at 8:25am:
During the settlement of the American West, marshals often served as the main source of day-to-day law enforcement in various parts of the west that had no local government of their own


During the settlement, which was a long, long time ago. And again, nothing those guys do are related to what the Atlantis was sent to do, unlike the Military Police.

GreatEmerald wrote on Aug 25th, 2014 at 6:51am:
Corporations are a standard of science fiction since at least the 80s. You can credit them with giving names, it's fine. They could as well be called "blue team", "red team" and "naked chicks team" for that matter.
Drakks are robots with their design ripped from Alien. Incredible.


I'm not claiming these things are super original, but credit where credit is due. Names, descriptions, logos, all from Unreal II. And the Drakk are still more original than anything we've seen since UT1.
  
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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #13 - Aug 25th, 2014 at 9:34am
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GreatEmerald wrote on Aug 25th, 2014 at 8:49am:
Hellkeeper wrote on Aug 25th, 2014 at 8:25am:
During the settlement of the American West, marshals often served as the main source of day-to-day law enforcement in various parts of the west that had no local government of their own


During the settlement, which was a long, long time ago. And again, nothing those guys do are related to what the Atlantis was sent to do, unlike the Military Police.


The settlement of the old west, now replaced by the settlement of outer space.

The Military Police is a police for the military. I'm not seing Dalton doing much investigation and policing the soldiers but I'm seeing him patrolling and assisting remote colonies and facilities with his old derelict ship.
  

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Re: The singleplayer was not that bad
Reply #14 - Aug 25th, 2014 at 11:49am
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Hellkeeper wrote on Aug 25th, 2014 at 9:34am:
The Military Police is a police for the military. I'm not seing Dalton doing much investigation and policing the soldiers but I'm seeing him patrolling and assisting remote colonies and facilities with his old derelict ship.


You'd think that, but the US Military Police actually isn't just that, they're also support troops for the army.
  
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