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"In 2291, in an attempt to control violence among deep-space miners, the New Earth Government legalized no-holds-barred fighting. Liandri Mining Corporation, working with the NEG, established a series of leagues and bloody public exhibitions. The fight's popularity grew with their brutality. Soon, Liandri discovered that the public matches were their most profitable enterprise. The professional league was formed: a cabal of the most violent and skilled warriors in known space, selected to fight in a Grand Tournament. Now it is 2341. Fifty years have passed since the founding of Deathmatch. Profits from the tournament number in the hundreds of billions. You have been selected to fight in the professional league by the Liandri Mining corp. Your strength and brutality are legendary. The time has come to prove that you are the best. To crush your enemies. To win the Tournament."

Unreal Tournament is a multiplayer-oriented First-Person Shooter developed by Epic Games and Digital Extremes and published by GT Interactive set in the Unreal universe and released for PC in 1999, and for PlayStation 2 and Sega Dreamcast in 2001. It is considered a spinoff of Unreal I, beginning development as an Expansion Pack before the plethora of changes made to the game's code forcing the development team to go the standalone route.

The game focuses on a tournament (involving both humans and aliens) which started as a way to occupy deep-space miners and eventually grew to become a massive sport event watched by countless spectators. The single-player story was, at best, glorified bot matches to prepare the player for the multiplayer mode, and featured the player choosing a team, a face and a name, and fighting in different arenas with different weapons, different rivals, and in some of these matches with the team he/she has chosen, until he/she reaches the Tournament finals and fights against Xan Kriegor, the Tournament's first and still-current champion.


As for the gameplay-side of things, the game evolves upon the multiplayer model set by Unreal by mostly polishing it. Players fight in enclosed arenas for supremacy with two starting weapons and a plethora of more powerful weapons scattered across the fighting area. The weapon roster was reorganized and polished accordingly, with annoying features of some weaponsnote  being gone while also introducing more interesting modes for existing weaponsnote  and more punch-packing effects for the weapons making them feel more powerful than their counterparts. In addition, some new weapons were added to the player's arsenal: the Impact Hammernote , the Chainsawnote , the Translocatornote , the Pulse Gunnote  and the Redeemernote . On the movement side of things, dodging was polished and the reworked physics allow certain tricks in maps that weren't exploited back in Unreal. The GUI eschewed the console-like interface which Unreal had on release and adopted a Windows-like scheme with menus and dialogues which was so well received, it got ported back to Unreal for both Return to Na Pali and its Gold re-release.


The game features six playable modes, four of which can be found in the aforementioned Single Player mode:

  • Deathmatch is the classic free-for-all mode where players are pit against each other and the one with the highest amount of frags wins.
  • Team Deathmatch is the team-based version of Deathmatch, and up to four teams battle in order to rack the highest amount of frags. This mode doesn't appear in the SP ladder.
  • Domination is a team game where up to four teams (two in the SP) battle in order to take control of several areas of a map; teams gain one point every five seconds for the number of control points under their control.
  • Capture the Flag pits two teams in a map where the objective is to steal and capture the enemy flag while preventing the own flag to be taken and captured.
  • Assault is a two-round-based gametype which involves two teams, Attack and Defense. The Attacking team (Red) must complete all of the objectives within a set time limit while the defending team (Blue) must prevent this. After the round ends, the teams are switched, and Blue must now attempt to complete the objectives faster than Red did (if Red won their attacking round) or simply complete more than Red did (if Red lost).
  • Last Man Standing is a free-for-all gametype where each player has a set amount of lives and must take the lives of their opponents until one remains alive. This mode doesn't appear in the SP ladder.

The game gained lots of critical acclaim, and was considered by many reviewers as a superior game to its most direct rival, Quake III: Arena (although Quake III lasted far longer in the competitive scene). Its success was such that Epic Games decided to entirely focus on the MP side of the franchise for the future.

There are also four official releases as small and free Expansion Packs, called "Bonus Packs". These were done respectively by Epic Games, Digital Extremes, Cedric "Inoxx" Fiorentino (the creator of the map CTF-Face, a.k.a. "Facing Worlds") and by the three of them for Christmas 2000.note 

Near the end of 2019, Epic Games granted an NDA to the folks at OldUnreal (the same people behind the community patches for the original Unreal) and the permission to develop community patches for the game. The first community patch, for version 469a, was released on September 22, 2020, for Windows, Linux and Mac OS.

Some characters from this game went big for the remainder of the franchise, as the character sheet shows.

Followed by Unreal Tournament 2003 and Unreal Championship.

Game mods with their own pages

Recurring tropes from the series include:

  • Abnormal Ammo:
    • The GES BioRifle uses tarydium waste.
    • The Ripper uses bladed discs.
  • Arbitrary Minimum Range: Averted with the Redeemer in the games, which is a mini nuke, but it can blow up in your face given the right circumstances.
  • Armor Meter: Depending on version:
    • The PC version has, in the top-right corner of the HUD, a human-shaped figure showing which kinds of armor you're holding. (And if you're using jump boots, it also displays it).
    • The console versions represent armor with a meter.
  • Armor Points: The PC version shows, in the top-right corner of the HUD, an icon and number representing armor.
  • Artificial Brilliance: Bots generally have a sense when a Damage Amplifier or other good powerup is available, can call movers and platforms at will (something the player can't), and allied bot ordered to assist you can always track you down to pinpoint accuracy.
    • The exact capabilities per difficulty levels are listed here. While low-level bots are heavily handicapped, high-level bots are literally playing with a wallhack, have lightning-fast reflexes and accuracy and are Crosshair Aware.
    • In 0 player mode (all bots), players and mapmakers could watch how the bots acted on the pathnodes. When a bot approaches a blind corner or intersection, it'll hunch over suspiciously and walk slowly, with more defensive awareness.
  • Artificial Stupidity: In spite of their brilliance, sometimes they don't have such good behaviour. Some examples:
    • Bots can't guide the Redeemer missile on the off chance they even locate the launcher in the first place.
    • In the map DOM-Osiris, from the console versions, the bots won't ever reach the Bridge point. So it becomes easy to win a match against them by taking this point and focusing on fighting for the others as well.
    • Despite how well they seemingly navigate maps, bots are actually blind to anything except enemies and only find their way around the map with a pre-placed pathnode network. If a pickup item is not connected to the network, bots won't even try picking it up even if it's lying on the floor in plain sight. Bots also cannot use jump boots, translocators or even elevators to navigate elevations without the mapper explicitly placing the proper entry/exit nodes.
  • Artificial Limbs: Nikolai and Gorn from the Dark Phalanx team.
  • Awesome, but Impractical:
    • The Ripper, continuing the trend from Unreal's Razorjack - easily dodged and with pitiful damage on non-headshot hits, despite being a buzzsaw launcher. In spite of its upgraded Secondary Fire, it keeps the same problems.
    • The Redeemer. As the Superweapon of the game, it can rack a lot of kills if fired in the right place. More often than not, however, the player might end up in the explosion radius and kill himself, if the opponents don't just dodge out of the way... or shoot the rocket down. It's blast radius is so massive, however, that one strategy was on some maps to have it come from below and blast the floor, killing everyone above.
  • Blatant Item Placement: Ammo near weapons. Weapons in unlikely places. Powerful weapons, typically rocket launchers, in pretty much unrisky zones. You are, of course, fighting in an arena.
  • Bowdlerize: The PS2 port changes "Die, bitch!" to merely, "Die!". You also have the option to disable the mature taunts in the PC version.
  • Convection Schmonvection: Many maps such as DM-Codex, CTF-Gauntlet, DM-Mojo][, DOM-Cinder and DOM-Leadworks feature lava areas which are easily escapable. You won't suffer any damage from standing near to it, but as soon as you so much as dip your toe into it you get violently gibbed.
  • Death Is Cheap: In-universe, molecular regeneration explains respawning, even from being gibbed.
  • Gangsta Style: The Enforcer's alternative fire, much like the preceeding Automag. For double coolness points, this game lets you do it with two Enforcers at once.
  • I Shall Taunt You: The first major game to have bots actively troll and mock players after scoring a frag. The player could counter this by activating 'Auto Taunt' option, which would allow their character to also mock the bots (and human players) after scoring a frag.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills: On higher difficulties this is an Enforced Trope, as bots increase their accuracy to 100% or near, depending on their individual settings.
  • Large Ham Announcer: Your gaming experience isn't complete without a booming voice yelling "M-M-M-M-MONSTER KILL!".
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: Your player character is somewhat generic (no personality - there's not much of a storyline, duh) and is just fighting in the tournaments to usurp the current champion.
  • More Dakka: The minigun.
  • No OSHA Compliance: Lampshaded in many of the stages: it's stated Liandri confiscated the factories involved due to unsafe working conditions, and then turned the facilities into arenas. It's noted in the description for DM-Fractal that "real life" venues of this nature tend to be more popular with spectators than purpose-built arenas.
  • Quad Damage: The Damage Amplifier.
  • Updated Re-release:
    • Game of the Year Edition: This included three bonus packs, the S3 Compressed Textures, and the mods ChaosUT and Rocket Arena.
    • The PS2/DC editions included most of the Bonus Packs' stuff, plus original content.
    • It should be noted that all of the upgrades and features available in the updated releases (sans for some of the exclusive maps of the console versions) are also available as free downloads to the owners of the original game.

Tropes exclusive to this installment includes:

    open/close all folders 

    Map related tropes 
  • Acid Pool: Some levels have the proper acid, while others have acid in all but name:
    • Proper acid: CTF-Command, DM-Deck16][, DOM-Gearbolt.
    • Pseudo-acid: In AS-Mazon the crystal chamber's water is electrified; CTF-Dreary and Bonus Pack 1's CTF-Hydro16 have virus-infected water; Inoxx Pack's CTF-Kosov, DM-KGalleon, Bonus Pack 4's DOM-Bullet, DOM-MetalDream and Bonus Pack 4's DOM-WolfsBay have water areas (or take place in a prop surrounded with water) which aren't suited for swimming.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space: Several of the maps take place in outer space. The maps are all low-grav, but missteps are usually punished with death:
    • CTF-Face and its derivatives (Inoxx Pack's CTF-Face][ and Bonus Pack 4's CTF-Face-SE) take place in an asteroid with two towers.
    • DM-Barricade takes place in an asteroid with a castle embedded on it. The castle has several "dead ends" where the usual final wall is just an exit to outer space.
    • DM-Hyperblast lets you go outside of the ship during its transit. The map's description describes this as a result of "magnetic anti-vacuum resonance" technology allowing for extended stays outside a ship.
    • DM-Morpheus takes place atop three very high skyscrapers which reach all the way to outer space.
    • DM-Phobos takes place in a satellite surrounding the planet Mars.
    • DM-Pyramid takes place on a floating three-tiered, well, pyramid.
    • DM-SpaceNoxx from the Inoxx Pack takes place in a floating platform.
  • Book-Ends: DM-Oblivion and DM-Hyperblast, the first and last maps in the Tournament, are both spaceships flying through hyperspace - the first taking you to the Tournament proper, the last pitting you against the Champion.
  • Conveyor Belt o' Doom: The aptly named DM-Conveyor.
  • Cool Boat:
    • DM-KGalleon, with the K standing for "Koos". An older galleon complete with a captain chamber and lower decks, where it's also possible to reach the crow's nest for a powerful goodie.
    • You must take control of one in AS-Frigate.
    • DOM-WolfsBay is a cool hoverboat.
  • Cool Starship: DM-Oblivion, DM-HyperBlast.
  • Cool Train: AS-HiSpeed has the attacking team fighting for the control of one.
  • Crate Expectations: You can find some goodies by getting near some crates in DM-Stalwart.
  • Developers' Foresight:
    • Maps with flaming torches will cause damage if any player stand on top of them.
    • Found a quicker way to enter the ship in AS-Frigate by using an impact jump in a certain area to reach the ship's dock and going all the way back? Well, there's another minigun cannon waiting for you.
    • Trying to teleport out of the map in DOM-Olden? You'll get teleported back to that specific area.
  • Elaborate Underground Base:
    • The Assault map AS-OceanFloor is an underwater base.
    • AS-Overlord has a base built into a mountain.
  • Explosive Decompression: DM-Pressure features a pressure chamber with a rocket launcher and ammo for it inside. If anyone going for it isn't observant or fast enough, someone else can activate it from outside to lock them in and watch them explode through a window.
  • Floating Continent: Multiple floating islands and asteroids which you actually get to fight on, such as DM-Barricade and the various versions of CTF-Face.
  • Gateless Ghetto: The intro sequence features one. There's also the maps DOM-Condemned and DOM-CiDom which take place in abandoned areas as well.
  • Grimy Water: Several stages have pools with different water colors, often not good for your health.
  • Hazardous Water: Featured with at least an attempt at an explanation in CTF-Hydro16 (its description states that a virus plagued the installation and killed everyone there, possibly also contaminating the water) and DOM-MetalDream ("located near strange meteorological phenomenon", and the water looks similar to that of Hydro16), and without any explanation in CTF-Kosov, DM-KGalleon, and DOM-WolfsBay (solely for gameplay purposes, since both take place on ships where there's no way to get back onto them if you fall off).
  • High-Altitude Battle:
    • CTF-High, DM-Crane and DM-Morpheus take place atop of high city buildings.
    • DM-Peak takes place in a temple atop of a high mountain.
    • DM-Barricade, DM-Phobos, DM-Pyramid and DM-SpaceNoxx take place on orbiting structures.
    • DM-HyperBlast takes place in a travelling ship.
  • Hold the Line: The Assault gametype consists on a pair of rounds where the teams take the roles of assault and defense. The first round starts with the Red team attacking and the Blue team defending, while the second round invert the roles. Should the Red team succeed in attacking, the Blue team has to succeed in a shorter amount of time to win. Should the Blue team succeed in defending, they must accomplish more objectives than their Red foes did in the first round in order to win.
  • Invisible Wall: You'll find these pretty much in any open level in any of the games, if it doesn't kill you.
  • Lava Pit: Some of the levels.
  • Lethal Lava Land: CTF-LavaGiant.
    "This volatile world has an extremely low orbit around a superdense gas giant. The resulting gravitational forces have caused the planetary mantle to collapse. Combatants are issued special gravbelts for each match."
  • Mineral MacGuffin: The map AS-Mazon, where the objective of the attacking team is to destroy a big crystal which empowers the defenders' defenses.
  • Obvious Beta:
    • The map AS-Rook has a glitching wall (in an area which couldn't be reached, anyway).
    • There's an invisible collision box in DM-Pyramid which wasn't fixed.
  • Refuge in Audacity: The overall shape of CTF-Command resembles a dick.
  • Storming the Castle: The Assault levels require you to do this, due to the nature of the game. Inverted in one of the maps (AS-Rook) which takes place in a castle, and where the objective is to escape.
    • Done literally in AS-Mazon, where the objective is to infiltrate a castle in order to blow up a crystal.
  • Train Job: AS-HiSpeed is about taking control of a moving train.

    Character related tropes 
Tropes related with Malcolm, Brock, Lauren and Xan can be found at the UT Character sheet. This section is for those who didn't appeared in any other game.

  • Action Girl: Every female.
  • Adaptational Badass: The Nali were non action guys in Unreal, pretty vulnerable and whose main utility was to guide the player to secret areas. Then, the first Bonus Pack was released, and transformed them into playable characters, suddenly turning their badassness up.
  • Amazon Brigade: The Venom team.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes:
    • Finishing the single player ladder, you unlock Xan, the final boss.
    • From OldUnreal's v469 onwards, you also unlock the Skaarj Hybrids as a selectable team.
  • Ax-Crazy: Several of the AI players in the campaign are stated to be this.
  • Badass Crew: You must choose one of them in the campaign. Two (the all-male Raw Steel and the all-female Venom) are gender-dependent, and three (Iron Skull and Red Claw, obtained in the GOTY edition, and the console-exclusive The Corrupt) aren't playable at all.
  • Back from the Dead/Was Once a Man: Every Necris, especially the Black Legion team, though there's really no mention as such in this game.
  • Bare Your Midriff: The Commando (Dark Phalanx) and Mercenary (Blood Reavers) gals.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: The female part of the Iron Guard team: Sara, Shyann and Lauren/Rylisa.
  • Breakout Character: The customizable practice-session bot Loque is somewhat famous among fans for having his Accuracy set as high as possible by defaultnote . First he was given his own match in the ladder of the Game of the Year Edition (he shared a match with other 5 fighters in the retail version). Then, when Unreal Tournament III featured the Necris as the primary bad guys, he returned as one of the toughest opponents in the campaign and the first Necris you fight against, if you follow the right path.
  • Character Customization: Divided into models (the overall shape of your character, divided by default into two variations for male and female humans plus others like Xan and the Skaarj hybrids), skins (the actual appearance, depending on the model), individual faces for each skin, and voices (which are only limited based on gender).
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Several characters were only mentioned in this game, the most notorious ones are Jerl Liandri (billionaire creator of the Tournament and owner of Liandri Mining Corp.) and Jihan Nyhn (weapons smuggler who owned the Iron Guard team before his assassination). Others such as Tournament Master Kilbragh (owner of the Cryptic domination arena) and Flabeline Xion (an artist who was murdered by Fuego, her then-bodyguard) are mentioned only in this game as well.
  • Cleavage Window: The Iron Guard females.
  • Condemned Contestant: So many...
  • Cool Mask: Iyrash and the Metal Guards.
  • Cyborg: Gorn.
  • Death Seeker: Luthienne, from the campaign, is stated to be this after the loss of her crewmates in the destruction of the ISV-Kran.
  • Faceless Goons: The Metal Guards.
  • Fiery Redhead: Anna and Ivana (Dark Phalanx), and Sara (Iron Guard).
  • Fighting Clown: The Nali Warcow.
  • Gas Mask Mooks: Portia (Aphex) and Iyrash (Dark Phalanx). Also Vanessa from the Deathmatch ladder.
  • Goggles Do Nothing: Idina (Aphex), Ryanna (Thunder Crash), Ramirez (Iron Guard), and Arkon (Raw Steel).
  • Half-Human Hybrids: Skaarj Hybrids.
  • Kick the Dog: One of your opponents is a slave who managed to escape her slavers and made her way to NEG space. NEG picked her up and rewarded her by shoving her in an arena.
  • Killer Robot: The War Machines. Some of them are Xan's personal bodyguards. Also Xan himself, if you go with the canon "Xan is robot" way of thinking.
  • Mecha-Mooks: Xan Kriegor and his teammates.
  • Proud Warrior Race Guy: The Skaarj. One of them (Dominator) is even one of the bosses of the console versions of the game.
  • Spear Counterpart:
    • The all-male Raw Steel team is this to the all-female Venom team.
    • Some of the default customizable bots are males sharing names with canon females (Athena, Cilia, Sarena) or viceversa (Kragoth).
    • In the Dreamcast version, because of the lack of female characters, this is true for Visso and Doviensk, the stand-ins for the females Visse and Dovienya.
  • Spikes of Villainy: Damien (one of the PS2 characters) and the PS2 male Necris.
  • Stripperiffic: The Aphex babes, the female Commandos (Dark Phalanx), and the female Necris (Black Legion). In the other side of the spectrum, the Nali and Skaarj Hybrids (only the Arena Warrior and Cyborg Trooper classes).
  • Tomboyish Ponytail: The Female Soldiers (Thunder Crash, Iron Guard, Venom, Metal Guards and War Machines)
  • Took a Level in Badass: Both a Nali and a Nali Priest can be chosen after the installation of the first official Bonus Pack and in the GOTY edition.
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: The Raw Steel warriors.

    Gameplay tropes 
  • Arrow Cam:
    • The Redeemer's secondary fire allows you to take control of the missile, and guide it around until it explodes. You are left vulnerable, since you can't see what's happening around you in this mode, though.
    • Being gibbed at any point leads the player to a "head bouncing around-cam" shot.
  • Artificial Gill: The SCUBA Gear from Unreal reappears in the map AS-OceanFloor.
  • A-Team Firing: Low-level bots behave like this. Don't try it yourself, or you'll get murdered.
  • Beam Spam: Any Instagib match with many players.
  • BFG: The Redeemer.
  • Book-Ends: Your character fights 1on1 battles at the beginning (DM-Oblivion) and the end (DM-HyperBlast) in Cool Starships. The first fight is aboard a ship transporting newcomers, the second is the Final Boss's own ship.
  • Boss Rush: The console version's Challenge ladder pits you against four bosses in four different matches in consecutive order.
  • Capture the Flag: The other Trope Codifier.
  • Chainsaw Good: With a Shout-Out to Doom.
    • Same goes for the Ripper in the same game. The secondary fire launched an explosive saw disc. Insta-kill for both modes if you aimed for the neck.
  • Competitive Multiplayer: It even has everything for all the flavors, some depending of the game.
  • Death Is Not Permanent: It's a (simulated) deathmatch tournament after all.
  • Dynamic Difficulty: There's an option to make the AI dynamically change its set difficulty, depending on how well the player is playing.
  • Early Game Hell:
    • Due to the Deathmatch ladder disabling the "Weapons Stay" option, DM-Stalwart falls into this. You're faced with two enemies who will control the items on the level and force you to be quick.
    • The first rungs of the Capture the Flag ladder puts you in a single-way map, a very open map with snipers being a constant danger, and an asymmetrical map where your team gets every disadvantage while the enemy team gets it easy.
  • Easy-Mode Mockery:
    • The PC version has mocking messages for the easiest difficulty setting in the Practice Session menu.
    "They won't hurt you... much."
    • In the console versions, a crying child's face represents the easiest difficulty.
  • Gaiden Game: Towards Unreal I. The closest thing to a single-player campaign is the Ladder.
  • Game Mod: Several, the most famous of which is Oldskool, which lets you play the first Unreal in single-player, with a better and more customizable graphical engine and a few small touch-ups to gameplay such as giving the Automag a separate reload function. Loads of custom campaigns and maps were made for this one.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation:
    • The Redeemer's description claims that it's exhausted after just one shot, but if you're patient and/or lucky, you can grab a second missile for it without having to launch the first one beforehand.
    • The manual claims the Pulse Gun's magazine only holds 50 rounds at a time and has to be replaced, but in-game you can just fire away as long as you have ammo.
  • Gatling Good: The minigun and pulse gun.
  • Improvised Weapon: The Impact Hammer and Pulse Gun are mining tools (pneumatic drill and cutting torch respectively), while the Bio-Rifle uses waste material produced from Tarydium crystals.
  • Instant-Win Condition: The Assault gamemode consists of two phases: in the first round, the Red team assumes the attacking role, and the Blue team the defending role. After the first phase ends (either by objective completion or time running out), both teams switch roles, with the Blue team attacking and the Red team defending. In this round, the Blue team wins if they complete more objectives than the Red team did in the first phase, in case the first phase ended with the Red team not managing to complete every objective, regardless of time left for the objectives to be completed.
  • Lightning Gun: The Pulse Gun.
  • Mêlée à Trois: The gametypes Domination and Team Deathmatch allowed battles of 3 and 4 teams.
  • No Campaign for the Wicked:
    • Official characters not belonging to the Male/Female Soldier or Male/Female Commando classes cannot be selected in the Ladder.
    • Inside of the accepted models, only the skins belonging to certain teams can be chosen, meaning players can't play as Metal Guards nor War Machines for the Male/Female Soldier Class and no Aphex for the Female Commando class.
  • No One Could Survive That!: The 'feign death' function can at times be incredibly useful if used correctly.
  • One-Hit Kill:
  • Playing Possum: The game allows the player to feign death.
  • Playing Tennis with the Boss: The Impact Hammer can reflect rockets.
  • Set Swords to "Stun": An automag bullet in the brain? No problem, it hurts a bit, but it only takes away 25 HP. Shock Rifle blast to the face? More dangerous, you lose 50 HP. There are however weapons that can insta-kill in certain circumstances, such as the Flak Cannon from close range, a direct hit from the Rocket Launcher, or a head/neckshot with the Sniper Rifle/Ripper.
  • Shoot the Bullet: Redeemer missiles can be shot down.
  • Sighted Guns Are Low-Tech: Only two guns have visible iron sights, the Enforcer and the Sniper Rifle.
  • Standard FPS Guns: Averted. Most of the weaponry has a different feel to it, and one of the main selling points is that its weapons invariably have a Secondary Fire.
    • The Impact Hammer is the melee weapon, in the form of a pneumatic piston. The primary fire charges the piston. The alternative fire is an Attack Reflector.
    • The Chainsaw replaces the Impact Hammer in the Chainsaw Melee mutator. The alternate fire decapitates opponents.
    • The Translocator, available in non-Deathmatch modes like Domination and Assault. Not really a weapon (barring the ability to Tele-Frag) but quite useful. The primary fire shoots a beacon, and from there primary fire retrieves it and alternate fire teleports you to it. Opponents can shoot the beacon and make it malfunction – you can't retrieve it with primary fire and will Tele-Frag yourself if you try to teleport with it. The only way to fix it is to walk over the beacon to pick it up.
    • The Enforcer is a hitscan automatic pistol. Players start with only one, but they can dual-wield them if they claim one from a foe's corpse. The alternative fire is a Gangsta Style fire, raising fire rate at the cost of accuracy. Shares ammo with the Minigun.
    • The GES Bio Rifle shoots radioactive green glop in a parabolic arc. Primary fire flings a single ball; secondary fire charges up to eight balls together into a giant cluster mine. The glop hangs around for a bit on whatever surface it hits, doing damage to whatever touches it, and then explodes, doing damage to anything near it.
    • The ASMD Shock Rifle's primary fire produces a moderately powerful hitscan laser beam with a lot of knockback, with secondary fire sending off a fairly weak and painfully slow Energy Ball. The weapon's true power lies in the fact the energy ball explodes if shot with the primary fire beam, doing massive damage at the cost of extra ammo.
    • The Pulse Gun is the assault rifle analogue, shooting fast-moving (but not hitscan) energy balls. The alternate mode is a short-range Lightning Gun.
    • The Ripper shoots sawblades which can ricochet off walls and around corners. The alternative fire shoots exploding, though non-ricocheting, sawblades. Headshots (or hits to the neck area) deal extra damage and decapitate on kill.
    • The Minigun is a typical machine gun. Altfire makes it go twice as fast, but at the cost of accuracy. Shares ammo pool with the Enforcer(s).
    • The Flak Cannon is a shotgun on steroids: primary fire shoots a load of shrapnel that bounces off solid surfaces. The alternative fire lobs the shell instead of firing it; the shell explodes upon impact with an object or surface, showering anything nearby with shrapnel.
    • The Rocket Launcher can shoot between one and six rockets at a time, in either a horizontal pattern or a tight cluster if you hold altfire while charging it up. The alternative fire lobs them as bouncy grenades instead.
    • The Sniper Rifle is Exactly What It Says on the Tin. The alternative fire toggles in and out of using the scope. Headshots are instant kills for unarmored enemies, and the helmet pickup specifically renders you immune to one headshot.
    • And finally, the Redeemer is the tactical mini-nuke. Primary fire launches it as a straight-flying rocket; alternative fire is a Player-Guided Missile, where you can hit primary fire to detonate it without having to hit a surface or player.
  • Swiss Army Weapon: With their alternate firing modes, almost every weapon is one of these. Special mention goes to the Shock Rifle and the Rocket Launcher, each of which has more than two ways of killing opponents.
  • Teleportation: Achieved by way of plasma teleporters scattered through the maps[[note]]Notable examples include the Assault maps Overlord (for the defenders) and Rook (two plasma portals for the attackers); the Capture the Flag maps Face and its variants (all for defense to the Redeemer and Sniper nests), High (both inside of the tower and to access the top road between bases) and Kosov (for the sniper towers); the Deathmatch maps Arcane Temple (water to top of the mountain), Deck 16 (to Redeemer), Koos Galleon and Liandri; and the Domination maps Bullet, Cryptic (from Daemon's head to the Iron Star) and Metal Dream (to the top of the Redeemer tower), and the Translocator item in games where it's enabled. In both cases, opponents standing in range of the teleportation exit become giblets.
  • Teleporter Accident: In addition to Tele Frags, if you damage someone's Translocator beacon, they'll die instantly if they try to teleport to it.
  • There Can Be Only One: Last Man Standing.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: The Redeemer being a personal, portable, potentially remote-guided tactical nuclear missile. In addition, it has a very large area effect.
  • Universal Ammunition: The Enforcer and Minigun share ammo.
  • Unlockable Content:
    • In the PC version, Xan.
    • In the PS2 version, the ladder maps and nine characters.
    • In the DC version, the ladder maps.

    Misc tropes 
  • After the End: The game takes place after the Human-Skaarj wars, initiated with Prisoner 849's actions in the first game and its Expansion Pack, which left a devastated Earth, with many rebellions between groups of Earth's survivors. In fact, many of these rebellions led to the creation of the Tournaments. Many of these events are also referenced in the backstories of both maps and AI characters.
  • Announcer Chatter: Iconic enough to have carried over to other games such as League of Legends and server-side Counter-Strike mods.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: The OldUnreal patch introduced some needed Quality-of-Life features and options such as raw mouse input (and a DirectInput option which uses DI8 instead of UT's old DI3), automatic scaling for crosshair and fonts, new renderers, and widescreen support.
  • Attract Mode: In the console versions, though you see the action from a camera, and not from someone's POV.
  • Blood Sport
  • Bond One-Liner: Taunts... for the most part.
  • Boom, Headshot!: Despite that the first Unreal game already allowed the player to nail headshots with the Rifle, this is the game which introduced the Headshot announcement. This later carried on to many games.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • The team logos are references to Unreal. The blue team one is the Vortex Rikers logo, a lightning bolt with three bars, the green team one (also the model for the Damage Amplifier) is the Skaarj Razik, and the yellow team one is the Mercenaries logo.
    • The levels DM-Deck16][, DM-Curse][, DM-Morbias][, DM-HealPod][, DM-Mojo][, DM-Cybrosis][ and DM-Shrapnel][ were taken (and modified) from Unreal and it's Fusion Mappack.
    • The description for Luthienne, one of the Ladder's bots, has a reference to the ISV-Kran from Unreal:
    "Having survived the Wreck of the ISV-Kran, Luthienne was forced to watch all her friends and crewmates die at the hands of the Skaarj until she and 3 others were rescued two years later. Irreparably scarred by her experience, she has entered the Tournament to confront her inner demons and ultimately to silence them through her own death."
  • Creator Cameo:
    • The map DM-Codex has a secret room with a photo of the level designer behind it.
    • The map CTF-Orbital has, in the ceilings of both flag bases, the Digital Extremes logo.
  • Combos: Double Kill. Multi Kill! ULTRA KILL!! '''M-M-M-M-M-MONSTER KILL!!!'
  • Dummied Out: Since this game has all of Unreal's original assets (sans maps and music), this was to be expected. With the right cheat codes it's possible to use elements of the original game such as the Acoustic Dampener (a silencer) and the Nali Seeds/Healing Fruits. Of course, since this game is a highly moddable game, many user-made maps feature these "hidden" items. A few mutators even add Unreal's monsters into the levels for additional fun.
    • There're also some mutators which were unfinished, such as Minigun Arena and Impact Arena, as well as a gametype (Tournament Darkmatch) which doesn't have any associated maps.
  • Easter Eggs:
    • There's a small room in DM-Codex, opened by hitting a wall-lamp, which shows a picture of its creator, Cliff "CliffyB" Bleszinski.
    • Firing a Redeemer missile or a Flak shell with the playersonly cheat allows you to see both a message and a face, respectively, drawn on them.
    • The maps DM-Mojo][ and DM-Shrapnel][ have the UT logo hidden in some parts.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: The smiley-face on the front of the Flak Cannon's projectile. The "playersonly" Time Stands Still cheat code is the easiest way to see it.
  • Fun with Acronyms:
    • Many meanings were suggested for ASMD, such as "Atomic Shock Matter Disruptor". Word of God eventually confirmed that it simply stood for "And Suck My Dick".
    • Similarly, the GES in the Bio Rifle name stands for "Green Exploding Shit".
  • The Government: The New Earth Government.
  • Game-Breaking Bug:
    • Due to the way the Unreal Engine 1 works, input lag in modern PCs due to the game not being able to properly handle multi core CPUs practically renders the game unplayable, unless a custom driver is installed. Some custom renderers such as Chris Dohnal's OpenGL driver alleviate this issue by introducing measures such as a framerate limiter.
    • The official map CTF-EpicBoy is known to cause crashes with certain renderers due to having two internal files called "Screenshot", which is a Logic Bomb for the engine.
    • Due to widescreen not being a thing at its time, weapon display could end up occupying most of the screen, in some cases covering even the HUD, with the worst offender being the Redeemer, which occupies almost the entirety of it.
  • Green Rocks: Blue glowing crystals (tarydium) that pretty much everyone uses as a power source. Similar to Real Life nuclear power, in that it produces dangerous waste material when used for such a purpose. Unlike nuclear power, said waste is then used as ammo for the Bio Rifle.
  • "Have a Nice Day" Smile: As a consolation for unfortunate recipients of live flak cannon grenade rounds, the front end of each grenade is adorned with one of these.
  • Have a Nice Death: "W was X'd by Y's Z."note  There are also unique messages for deaths from things like falling too far, falling into lava or deep space, drowning, trying to rocket/hammer jump with too few hit points, and so on.
  • Level Editor: The retail game came with the same one as Unreal, UnrealEd 1.0. Patches from 425 onwards, and the GOTY edition, comes with UnrealEd 2.0. The OldUnreal patch v469a upgraded it to their improved version of Unreal's 2.2.
  • Marked Bullet:
    • Flak shells have a smile face painted on the front, but require a high texture resolution to see.
    • The Redeemer has Adios! written on the side.
  • Mega-Corp: Liandri and Phayder.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: The Liandri Mining Corporation. Just look at any description on any game starting with this one which mentions them. Hell, they even were one of the main forces behind the Tournament itself!
  • Small Role, Big Impact: FenTech Incorporated. Their small role? They were only mentioned in this game, and in only two separate bios from two players from separate teams who were created by them. Their big impact? One of said players is Malcolm, a chemical killer who went on to lead Thunder Crash, dethrone corrupt champion Xan Kriegor and dominate the Liandri Grand Tournament for almost a decade. And that's just In-Universe, as Malcolm also became the Series Mascot.
  • Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Perhaps done intentionally, but the award goes to Thunder Crash. (A.K.A. "Thunder Cash") They are the first squad you're shown while starting a new ladder, if you select another team, they take their place in the ladder, they are the only full team to return intact in Unreal Tournament 2004, (Iron Guard and Iron Skull came reformed, as well as the Guards and the Necris Black Legion in UT3) and, well... we all know what happened to their leader, Malcolm.
  • Ur-Example: Of the announcer announcing HEADSHOTS! and the Instagib mode, among other things.

"Congratulations, you're the winner!"


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