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Video Game / Unreal Tournament III

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"In 2291, in an attempt to control violence among deep space miners, the Liandri Mining Corporation established a series of leagues and bloody public exhibitions. For fifty years the fights' popularity grew with their brutality. Then... the war came."
Trailer of the game

Unreal Tournament III is the latest installment in the Unreal series. It was made by Epic Games, and was released for PC and PlayStation 3 in 2007, followed by the Xbox 360 in 2008.

The game was an attempt to introduce some serious changes and additions to the gameplay, trying to reunite the already Broken Base of both Unreal Tournament and Unreal Tournament 2004, another major graphics update, and new maps. The amount of gametypes was also trimmed, with only six gametypes available on launch (Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, Vehicle CTF, Warfarenote  and Duel). The Black Edition added two more gametypes to the mix: Betrayal and Greed.

The single-player campaign has an actual plot! It's also the first Unreal Tournament game where you don't actually compete in the Tournament. Instead, you play as Reaper, the leader of the Ronin team, who were rescued and hired by the Izanagi corporation after the Krall invasion of the Twin Souls colony, while the three corporations face against each other for controlling different worlds, and at the same time fight against the Necris race, who wants to infest and assimilate all the worlds they can. The team was put under the command of Malcolm, a former Tournament champion and the series' face.

Its real lastability lies in the almost limitless potential for modding, though, but the single-player campaign is a fun ride in itself, and multiplayer... oh boy, the multiplayer.

It should also be noted that, like previous installments of the UT franchise, this one's Game Engine has been very popular amongst developers and their games, being by far the most popular of the series so far - as of 2020, over four hundred games have been built with Unreal Engine 3, compared to about 20 for the original engine and 60 for UE2. Batman: Arkham Asylum, the Mass Effect franchise, Mirror's Edge, sibling Epic franchise Gears of War, Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe, the Medal of Honor franchise, Rainbow Six: Vegas, the 2009 Star Trek preboot's tie-in ("Star Trek DAC"), and even Infinity Blade for iOS are just a few of the titles which utilize this game's underpinnings.

On December 14th, Epic Games pulled off from both Steam and the digital distribution of the Black Edition, which contained the base game and its Titan Pack DLC, thus the game, outside of auction sites, can't be bought legally any longer. In its place, a Free-to-Play version of the game called Unreal Tournament 3 X was spotted on Steam and GOG, with the promise of crossplay between the Steam, GOG and Epic Games Store's versions of the game.

Check the game's character sheet for character specific tropes.

Followed by Unreal Tournament 4.

3... 2... 1... Play!

Bear in mind that tropes which also apply to past games may apply here as well.
  • Abandoned Area: DM-Arsenal:
    "The Arsenal is a former Liandri munitions plant whose remote location was intended to reduce collateral damage in case of an accident. As Hyperion expanded and modern plants came into operation, the Arsenal fell on hard times. All human colonists were pulled from the plant over a decade ago, and all robotics about a year later."
  • Action Girl: All the females.
  • Advertising by Association: One of the later pre-release trailers outright tells the viewers that the game came "from the creators of Gears of War".
  • Alien Blood: The Necris have nanoblood, which is black.
  • And the Adventure Continues: Provided Reaper survives the Bolivian Army Ending.
    "Only one person knew about our plans. That makes you next, Malcolm."
  • Applied Phlebotinum: Nanoblack - from what we see, it raises the dead, powers vehicles in unknown ways, and can shield people from all harm.
  • Armor Meter: Displayed at the bottom-left corner, the meter only appears if the user is wearing any piece of armor and/or the Jump Boots. It's displayed as a mix of icon and number.
  • Armor Points: Displayed at the bottom-left corner, armor displayed as a mix of icon and number and a human-shaped figure.
  • Arrow Cam:
    • As always, 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.
    • There's also the SPMA, short for Self Propelled Mobile Artillery. The second fire of the main seat lets you take control of a small missile which acts as both a satellite-like cam (where you choose where to shoot your next swarm of missiles) and a projectile. While it's shooting, you can follow said projectile's trajectory. It has the same drawback as the Redeemer, though.
  • Artifact Title: Unreal Tournament 3's story does not follow the Liandri Grand Tournament.
  • Artificial Stupidity: The campaign AI for your teammates is infamously terrible. Expect to see them charge enemy bases one at a time to no success, walk around in circles carrying the flag/orb not sure where to go, and if set to defend an objective they'll be overwhelmed even if they outnumber the attackers 2:1.
  • Ascended Extra: The Krall were just Slave Mooks in the original Unreal. In UT3, they're a playable race.
    • Loque was just one of the default customized bots (and one of the Deathmatch ladder's warriors) in Unreal Tournament. Here, he's almost a boss, (seemingly, next to Akasha) and was Promoted to Playable. The reason? He was the hardest customizable bot in the original UT.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Whenever you play with the official Titan mutator and become a Behemoth. It lasts 30 seconds, though.
  • Auto-Pilot Tutorial: For the Capture the Flag (CTF-Reflection), Vehicle CTF (VCTF-Kargo) and Warfare (two tutorials) modes, placed at the first rungs of the Campaign. Warfare even gets two tutorials: one (WAR-Sinkhole) about the core Onslaught mechanics, and another (WAR-MarketDistrict) for the new introductions such as the Orb and the Support Nodes. The only thing the CTF tutorial requires you to do before joining the battle is to use the Translocator to enter into the arena (compare with the Deathmatch tutorial guiding you through the game's movements and the series' Alternate Fire system).
  • Back from the Dead / Was Once a Man: The Necris race.
  • Badass Crew: Take your pick.
  • Beam Spam: The Link Gun. Also, an Instagib match with many players, or, for that matter, just about any high-level play. Shock Rifle beams everywhere!
  • BFG: The Redeemer, natch.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Big Bad is killed and the Necris invasion of Taryd was stopped, but all of Ronin except Reaper are dead, Reaper himself faces a Bolivian Army Ending, and even if he survives he has no way back to friendly territories, and even if he did he's a wanted man for defying orders to pursue Akasha as he did, and it's unlikely any of the corporations will want to help him out. And if that isn't enough, Malcolm is revealed as a Treacherous Advisor to the team, so he's next on Reaper's kill-on-sight list.
  • Bolivian Army Ending: The game ends as Reaper, the only survivor, charges against the remaining Necris forces closing on him.
  • Book Ends:
    • The Single Player campaign starts and ends with an invasion: the Krall/Necris invasion of Twin Souls and the Ronin invasion on Omicron 6.
    • Likewise, the campaign proper starts and ends with a 1-on-1 fight against a woman. The Act 1: Ronin training match Rising Sun against Jester and the Act 5: Disposable Assets mission Sentinel against Akasha.
    • Boss Tease: Akasha is found at the opening cutscene and at the cutscene preceeding Act III: The Liandri Conflict, before finally appearing as an opponent (first as part of the Black Legion team, then as a solo opponent) in several missions of Act V: Disposable Assets.
  • Bowdlerization: Shortly after the retail release, (a full week before the official shipping in USA/rest of Europe) a special version was made for Germany, which didn't have blood. However, the blood was later restored as of the first patch, which was out about a month after launch and several workarounds.
  • Capture the Flag: Once again comes in both regular and Vehicle varieties - and this time, there are actual, official VCTF maps.
  • Car Fu: Quite frequent with vehicles in the Warfare and Vehicle CTF modes. Vehicles kill dismounted enemies, regardless of how much health they have. Upon collision, vehicles damage players based on the momentum of the vehicle. However, due to the fact that most vehicle use is usually at the maximum possible speed (actually controlling the speed of the vehicle is a non-trivial task), this generally results in vehicle OHKOs.
  • Character Customization: Aside from being able to do this via modding, the game allows you to choose several stuff for your character such as chests, goggles, helmets, etc.
  • Charged Attack: All of them of the Hold variety:
    • Among the weapons, the Impact Hammer's both fires, the Biorifle's secondary fire, and the Rocket Launcher's secondary fire.
    • Among the vehicles, the Hellbender's second seat's primary fire, and the Cicada's first seat's primary fire.
    • Subverted with the deployed Leviathan's first seat's primary fire. It only requires a single click, though it has a significant delay between the press action and the fire action, which could have been used as a Charge Attack.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: The Betrayal gamemode from the Titan Pack is basically CBD: The Game. It's an Instagib-based gametype where your only weapon is a Shock Rifle whose two modes kill enemies and teammates respectively. Since the fraglimits tend to be high and the two most effective methods of garnering points is through backstabbing your teammates and gunning down said backstabbers repeatedly, playing Betrayal is looking over your shoulder for teammates as well as enemies. Successful betrayals are also tallied up against your name on the scoreboard, and next to your name on the team roster, so everyone can see how much of a bastard you've been.
    "Kill enemies to fill the pot for your team. Kill your teammates to get the pot for yourself."
  • Cleavage Window: The Iron Guard females.
  • Combos:
    Double Kill.
    Multi Kill!
    HOLY SHIT!!!!
  • Comeback Mechanic:
    • The Orb in Warfare mode allows instant node conquering and node shielding if the node is already taken.
    • Some of the Support nodes in the (official) Warfare maps have a gimmick which allows the losing team to either recover territory or turn the tide of the war. There are also barricades which can be destroyed with either the Redeemer or the Shaped Charge.
    • The Betrayal game mode awards you more points if you kill someone who has more points than you. The game even show you above their head how many points killing them is worth.
  • Competitive Multiplayer: It even has everything for all the flavours.
  • Composite Character: A few weapon examples.
    • The Stinger Minigun, as its name suggests, is a combination of the Minigun (multi-barreled machine gun to hose down enemies) and the old Stinger (Secondary Fire launches larger but slower shards of unprocessed tarydium).
    • The Sniper Rifle obviously borrows from its predecessor in looks as a bullet-firing rifle with a scope, but mechanically works more like the Lightning Gun introduced to replace it in Unreal Tournament 2003, in that it has a charge time between shots (this time due to being a bolt-action weapon) and its shots leave easily-noticeable trails to point back towards the shooter (thanks to bright red tracers in this case).
  • Condemned Contestant: Still around, though this time none of them are mentioned, partly because the game doesn't actually focus on a Tournament.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • The maps DM-DarkMatch and CTF-SearchLight reference two concepts from the first Unreal: the Darkmatch gametype, and the Searchlight item. The Titans and Behemoths also take their names from the Titan and Behemoth enemy classes from the first Unreal game.
      • The map WAR-Hostile takes place on Na Pali, to the point of even having several of that game's sounds.
    • At the beginning of the campaign, there's a kid who finds a medallion with the first UT's logo.
    • The name of Act III is "The Liandri Conflict", which is also the subtitle of Unreal Championship 2.
      • Akasha's first speech in the final match refers one of Raiden's taunts in the same game:
    "My patience for games has worn thin."
  • Conveyor Belt o' Doom: The maps DM-CarbonFire and DM-Shaft, the latter from the Titan Pack.
  • Cool Boat: DM-KBarge, from the Titan Pack.
  • Cool Mask: Some of the default player customization packs which came with the game allows the use of such masks.
  • Coup de GrĂ¢ce Cutscene: The final match ends with Reaper smashing Akasha's head with his Rocket Launcher.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max: Some weapons and vehicles have functions in cutscenes that they lack in-game.
  • Darker and Edgier: It's an actual war instead of tournaments, although the tournament's technology, such as the respawner, is used.
  • Deadly Upgrade: By using the Titan mutator, you can become a Titan, a big hulking bud who has just two (very deadly) weapons and can't complete objectives such as capturing flags and taking nodes, skulls, and orbs. Later, while in Titan mode, the user also can become a Behemoth, which has the same weapons with more damage, its bigger than everything... but has 30 seconds of duration. When time runs over, the player will explode in the same manner as the Redeemer's missile.
  • Death from Above:
    • The Cicada and the Raptor in Axon's side; and the Fury in the Necris side.
    • There's also the chance of pancaking an unlucky opponent with a tank, regardless of how long it took you to drive it up the cliff and how likely it is to fail.
  • Death Is Not Permanent: Justified in-universe. It's explained several times in the campaign that the Respawner technology that is used in tournaments has its limits, and, in order to make the Ronin' enemies retreat, they must wear out their respawner charges, from killing many of the opponent's team (Deathmatch) to sabotaging the respawner technology (Capture the Flag and Onslaught).
  • Defeat Means Playable: The Necris and the team leaders.
  • Difficult, but Awesome: Dual-wielding Enforcers. The reason it's difficult is that bots only drop the gun they're currently using, and they're programmed to switch away from starting weapons the instant they have something better. The reason it's awesome is that dual Enforcers are one of the best weapons in the game, combining hitscan accuracy with high rate of damage.
  • Doomed Hometown: Twin Souls colony, which leads Reaper into a big Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
  • Double Jump: Partially toned down for this game, compared to UT200X; particularly, you're unable to double-jump from a dodge.
  • Downer Beginning: The intro of the Campaign shows the Krall invasion of the Twin Souls colony. It's implied that, after Reaper was rescued by Jester and Othello and brought to the Izanagi medical center, the entirety of the colony was overran, thus kickstarting the plot and Reaper's Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
  • Downloadable Content: The PS3 version had, aside of user-created content for the console, two official Bonus Packs, but again, all the content from the first Bonus Pack and the Xbox 360 exclusive maps were included in the second pack, the "Titan Pack", which is also the biggest pack to the date. Needless to say, this pack is also available for the PC version.
  • Dual Mode Unit: The Leviathan has a stationary mode where its main weapon is unleashed, and a mobile mode whose primary fire shoots heat-seeking missiles.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Of sorts. When opening the Level Editor, its splash image was a screenshot of WAR-ColdHarbor two years before it appeared as a playable map on the Xbox 360 version of the game, and three before it appeared as part of the Titan Pack on the PS3 and PC versions.
  • Emergency Weapon: The Impact Hammer is the last-resort weapon when every other weapon in the game has no ammo. It also has the ability to hijack vehicles and steal enemies' Power Ups.
  • The Empire: The Necris.
  • Faceless Goons: The Izanagi troopers who aren't Ronin, though they're the "good" guys.
  • Fragile Speedster: The Raptor is incredibly fast, can kill enemies on foot in a matter of seconds, and can deal incredible damage to most vehicles with its missiles. It's also only durable enough to survive maybe two AVRiL rockets, and getting hit with most other weapons sends it spinning out of control. Same with the Manta and the Viper, which are just as fast and is almost tailored specifically towards crushing anyone who isn't in a vehicle, but has even less armor than the Raptor.
  • Fun with Acronyms: The FLaG Generators, for Capture the Flag matches, stands for "Field Lattice Generator". Lampshaded in CTF-Reflection, in Act II:
    Othello: We have the flag, let's bring it home.
    Jester: You mean "Field Lattice Generator", right?
    Reaper: It looks like a flag, waves like a flag - it's a flag.
  • Gaiden Game: The Unreal Development Kit contains a game based on Unreal Engine 3, with weapons, vehicles, maps and gameplay similar to Unreal Tournament 3, and features the Matrix character model with the other bots being based on this character model. Bots are divided into red and blue teams while in Team Deathmatch and Vehicle Capture the Flag. The maps Deck and Sanctuary are available in Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch, the maps Necropolis and Sandstorm are available in Vehicle Capture the Flag, and a GDC Demo map shows off some of the game engine's visual effects. The game is compatible with Steam, but is no longer supported by Epic Games.
  • Game-Breaking Bug: For a long time the server configuration files had the "maps" DM-Hardcore and DM-Revenant as votable maps. Picking these "maps" was a sure way to crash the server.
  • Game Mod: The series it's known for this, but in this installment you can even do your own stuff for the PS3 version of the game, as long as you don't use materials which don't come with the game. There's even a site dedicated to collect PS3 mods.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: Respawning is accomplished with advanced alien technology. It wears out after a certain number of respawns, though, so the deathmatch system, where you have to kill a certain number of enemies in order to break their system, was created. And these are the basic models for Deathmatch: in CTF/VCTF, respawners are fueled by the FLaG devices, and in Warfare, your Power Core provides the energy needed to keep your respawners rolling. All that's left is to explain what's the source on Betrayal and Greed.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: You can still use the Iron Guard and Liandri Reinforcements cards after you left Taryd space and entered into Omicron 6. For the record, these two cards give you two Iron Guard or Liandri allies for your next mission.
  • Gangsta Style: The Enforcer's alternative fire replaces this with burst-fire, though keeping the crosshair on an opponent for about two seconds causes you to fire this way.
  • Gateless Ghetto: WAR-Downtown.. The map description and it's placement in the campaign mentions that the area had to be enclosed and the Iron Guard declared martial law.
  • Gatling Good: The Stinger Minigun.
  • Glitch Entity: The Demoguy. May cross with Urban Legend of Zelda.
  • Gotta Catch 'Em All: The basic premise of Greed is that both teams spawn with a skull receptacle on their bases and must collect enemy skulls by fragging enemies. The more skulls they collect, the better bonuses they get (such as powerups) and the more skulls they deliver, the higher the score for their team.
  • Grimy Water: Several stages have pools with different water colors.
  • Ground Pound: Doable with both Titans and Behemoths when playing with the Titan mutator.
  • Have a Nice Death:
    "X was X'd by X."
    "X cratered"
  • High-Altitude Battle: CTF-FacingWorlds, as always.
  • Hold the Line: With the lack of an Assault gametype, many Warfare maps of the Attack-versus-defense variety end up being this, such as WAR-Islander, where a team starts with vehicles and the other team has turrets, (with WAR-Islander_Necris inverting the teams) and WAR-Hostile, where the Red team has access to a countdown node which can destroy the Blue core in a single hit.
  • Home Stage: The game has a particular approach to their levels: each of them takes place in a particular area and belong to a particular faction which the player gets to fight (either against or as) in the Campaign:
    • Levels set on Tokaidonote  belong to the Izanagi Corporation, which backs the Ronin team, the leader of which is The Protagonist (and hence the Player Character, though the other three members can be played in Cooperative mode).
    • Levels set on Oxida Novanote  belong to the Axon Research Corporation, which backs the Iron Guard team.
    • Levels set on Hyperionnote  belong to the Liandri Corporation, which backs the game's version of The Corrupt, simply named "Liandri".
    • Levels set in the planet Omicron-6note  belong to the Phayder Corporation, which backs the Necris Black Legion team and, by extension, the Krall team.
  • Hoverboard: With a built in Tractor Beam allowing you to be towed by friendly vehicles, including the flying ones.
  • Improvised Weapon: The Impact Hammer and the Stinger Minigun are both stated to be former mining tools.
  • In-Vehicle Invulnerability: With the exceptions of the Manta, Viper, and Leviathan turrets.
  • Invincibility Power-Up: The Invulnerability item, found in DM-Fearless.
  • It's Raining Krall!: The intro sequence to the campaign.
  • Invisible Wall: You'll find these pretty much in any open level.
  • Ironic Echo: In the Act II intro, almost at the beginning of the game, Reaper meets Malcolm. He says that the Ronin team is a valuable asset, something which Reaper replies with "A real disposable asset". It's subverted at first, in the beginning of the final chapter, when he praises the Ronin team, and they decide to continue their hunting of Akasha. And before the final fight against Akasha, Malcolm, after talking of business with a Phayder executive, switches screen to heck the team and says "A real disposable asset. Tough break, kid". Cue Reaper's teammates being killed while Reaper fights against Akasha. "A real disposable asset", indeed.
  • Justified Tutorial: After being mortally wounded during the siege of Twin Souls, Reaper is rescued, (mostly) fully healed... And her sister Jester wants to fight her 1-on-1, guiding him through a movement and shooting tutorials. Later tutorials have them going through the basics of the Capture the Flag, Vehicle CTF and Warfare modes, as well as the introduction of the Translocator, vehicles, the Hoverboard, and the new features that Warfare introduced in relationship with Onslaught from 2004.
  • Level-Map Display: The game incorporates it for the Warfare and Vehicle Capture the Flag modes. In Warfare, like in Onslaught, it displays the Cores and Nodes, but it also displays the team's own orb, if it's in play, and the enemy team's orb, if it's near an item; while in VCTF it displays the status of the flags and where the team's own flag carrier is. The map itself is displayed in full in the in-game options menu as well.
  • Limit Break: When playing with the Titan mutator, an additional meter appears in the GUI, which is filled by fragging people or completing objectives. Filling it and then pressing the designated key allows the player to become a Titan. Titans are powerful warriors with 40 times the regular health and only two weapons: a homing rocket launcher and a rapid-fire shock rifle. This mode lasts until the player is fragged or the meter is filled again, and the player further becomes a Behemoth, who is even more powerful but has a 30-second limit after which they explode like a Redeemer blast, turning back into a normal player. It's worth noting that Titans and Behemoths cannot carry flags, orbs or enter into vehicles.
  • Loading Screen: The game offer useful in-game tips while loading matches. One of these, however, is about online chivalry:
    "Practice good sportsmanship. You were a n00b once, too."
  • Made of Iron: The Leviathan.
  • Meaningful Name: A lot of thought was put into the map names:
    • CTF-Vertebrae is a vertical Capture the Flag map.
    • In DM-BioHazard, the Bio Rifle is a common weapon. Also scoring 15 kills with it nets a player the "Biohazard" award.
    • DM-DarkMatch is a match in a factory where the energy system is malfunctioning, aside of being a long Continuity Nod towards Unreal, which featured a map in this mode.
    • DM-Deimos is named after one of Mars' natural satellites and is the map which continues the Phobos series' of maps from past Tournament games.
    • DM-Gateway features four different arenas connected with teleporters.
    • DM-HeatRay features the Darkwalker. Put the Darkwalker out of that map, and the name loses its meaning.
    • VCTF-SandStorm is a map set in a desert which features a sandstorm limiting the view of every player for half a minute passing every two minutes.
    • VCTF-Stranded is set on the borders of an archipelago. The Blue team takes place of a navigating team whose cargo ended up in the Red team's territory.
    • WAR-Avalanche features a pair of single-triggering avalanches, one per team, which can be triggered in order to recover terrain.
    • WAR-FloodGate has a special countdown node which, when reaching 0, sunk the affected core and damaged it with water.
  • Mighty Glacier: The Darkwalker and the Leviathan. The latter has a nasty laser weapon with a decent rate of fire. The former has four turrets, each with a different weapon, in addition to the main gun used by driver. It can also anchor itself and fire a Wave-Motion Gun that destroys everything in one hit except cores and other Leviathans. They're both very, very slow compared to other vehicles, the Leviathan more so than the Darkwalker.
  • Mordor: Omicron 6.
  • More Dakka: The Stinger Minigun.
  • Nano Machines: The nanoblack used to create Necris.
  • Newbie Immunity: The first chapter has you fighting a 1-on-1 match against your sister. Regardless of the result, you instantly start Chapter 2 after finishing that match.
  • Nitro Boost: The Scorpion and the Viper have a speed boosting feature which overlaps with Self-Destruct Mechanism.
    • There are also speed boost pads on some levels.
  • No Fair Cheating: Cheat codes in the campaign prevent you from getting cards and achievements, and unlocking characters.
  • No OSHA Compliance: Some fights take place in abandoned munitions factories which were closed some time before the battles themselves. There's also a robot-building conveyor level, and, of course, the game's remake of Deck takes place in a factory with loads of slime.
  • Nostalgia Level: CTF-Hydrosis is CTF-Hydro16 from UT's Epic Bonus Pack, retaining theme and placement, with some small changes introduced in order to adapt the map to the UT3 style.
  • Playing Possum: The game allows the player to feign death. It can be incredibly useful if used correctly, and it's more believable, thanks to Ragdoll Physics.
  • Playing Tennis with the Boss: The Impact Hammer can reflect rockets.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: Delivered by Reaper in the fifth act intro, right in the greedy eyes of Malcolm.
    Reaper: You're not listening. THAT. IS. IT. We are leaving, right now, to do what we should have done from the start.
  • Real Is Brown: Though not to the extent of most other modern games, and the result is actually quite stylistic and... unreal. The other games in the series are otherwise very colorful. Maybe it has something to do with that other main franchise from Epic.
  • Reclaimed by Nature: The basis of the Titan Pack map DM-EdenInc. Once the funds for the research facility were over, the specimens under study grew up and overtook most of the building:
    "This industrial complex was once a hydroponic research facility focused on saving rare and endangered species. When their grant ran out, funds dried up and all work was suspended. Months later, demo crews moved in to pave the path for a new highway and found that many of the research seedlings had taken root and continued to grow."
  • Redshirt Army: The Izanagi soldiers suffer from this in cutscenes, where they are shown being easily slaughtered by the bad guys. This is apparent in the Act IV intro where, for some reason, all of them are unarmed and defenseless against the invading Necris. If that wasn't enough, they wear literal red suits.
  • Remixed Level:
    • CTF-Coret didn't feature many layout changes from UT, aside of the theme changing from a moon base to a futuristic city.
    • There are necrified versions of the maps WAR-Islander (in addition to the Necris vehicles replacing the Axon ones, the sides are also switched), WAR-Serenity and WAR-Torlan. The Xbox 360 version also introduced necrified versions of VCTF-Suspense and WAR-Downtown. These necrified versions replace the Axon vehicles with Necris ones in either both sides or the Blue team side.
    • Both WAR-Torlan and VCTF-Containment have single-player only versions called WAR-Torlan_Leviathan (features the Leviathan in one side, and two Darkwalkers on the other) and VCTF-Containment_SP (the Darkwalker is released).
    • DM-Deck is the game's take on recurring map Deck16 featuring the slime facility of the classic versions with the extended layout of 2004's DM-Deck17.
    • DM-Deimos, combines aspects of the recurrent maps HyperBlast (mostly the U-shaped corridor) and Phobos (being a map set in a satellite orbiting above Taryd).
    • WAR-Torlan is the game's take and expansion of 2004 map ONS-Torlan, with two new nodes, redesigned bases and more vehicles. It also has two extra versions: the single-player exclusive WAR-Torlan_Leviathan and the aforementioned necrified version WAR-Torlan_Necris.
    • CTF-Facing Worlds, from the Bonus Pack 1, is the game's take on recurring map Face, as a Humans vs. Necris map instead of being set in an asteroid in the middle of the space.
    • DM-Morbias, also from the Bonus Pack 1, is the game's take on the UT version of the recurrent map Morbias, with only a theme change and the addition of the Jump Boots. In addition, the Titan Pack came with a version only playable with the Titan mutator called CTF-Morbid.
    • The Xbox 360 map DM-KBarge is the game's take on UT map DM-KGalleon, with the theme changed from an ancient galley to a transport ship.
    • The Titan Pack came with a remix of UT map DM-Turbine.
  • Respawn Point: Though previous games in the series gave hints about them, this trope is invoked by the so-called "respawners": they're portable units that allow dead soldiers to come back to life and take many forms ("Field Lattice Generators" in (Vehicle) Capture the Flag and the Power Core in Warfare, for example), so in order to win a battle, one faction must deplete the other faction's respawner units.
  • Retcon:
    • In UT, the Necris are explicitly described as aliens who have "declared a kind of guerilla war against Earth". In this game, they are humans resurrected using nanoblack, something already known from UC2.
    • The Phayder corporation isn't fully explained in the first UT, but appears to be some sort of military unit or assassin's guild. In this game, Phayder is the corporation that creates and raises the Necris.
  • Satchel Charge: The Shaped Charge, a plastic explosive modelled after a Satchel Charge which acts as a much safer alternative to the Redeemer and the Leviathan's stationary mode Ion Cannon when it comes to obstaclenote  and objectivenote  destruction. Once picked up, a player isn't allowed to fire any weapon until they drop it, which is when it's activated.
  • Scenery Porn: Courtesy of the Unreal Engine 3. Hell, opening any map in the editor will reveal that the playable area, even on larger maps, is very short compared to the rest of the level. There was a lot of detail put in the maps this time.
  • Secret Character:
    • Beating the Diesel mission in Act II: With Caesar's Coin grants you Lauren.
    • Beating the Gateway mission in Act III: The Liandri Conflict grants you Matrix.
    • Beating the Islander_Necris mission in Act IV: Calculated Losses grants you Kragoth, Damian and Malakai.
    • Beating the Omicron Dawn mission in Chapter V: Disposable Assets grants you Loque.
    • Two characters can be unlocked in the Character Selection screen with special codes: "jihan" grants you Ariel from the Iron Guard faction, and "phayder" grants you Alanna from the Black Legion faction.
  • Shows Damage: Applicable to the vehicles. The Link Gun tries to repair this as well.
  • Sixth Ranger: Two unlockable cards from Act II: With Caesar's Coin and Act III: The Liandri Conflict called "Iron Guard Reinforcements" and "Liandri Reinforcements" grants you two Iron Guard or Liandri members for the next mission.
  • Spider Tank: The Scavenger. Also counts as Sphere Factor and Spin Attack.
  • Stance System:
    • Of sorts with the Necris Nemesis. It has three modes which affect its turret and maneuverability: the first raises the turret and increases the rate of fire at the cost of slower mobility; the second is the regular one, and the third locks the turret to point only in the direction the player is facing but comes with an increase in speed and mobility.
    • The Leviathan also keeps its two modes from 2004: the mobile one with the homing missiles, and the stationary one with the big Wave-Motion Gun.
  • Standard FPS Guns: Largely averted. Most of the weaponry has a different feel to it, and one of UT's selling points is that its weapons invariably have some function attached to the alt-fire button. How weapons differ:
    • The Impact Hammer returns from UT, replacing the Shield Gun. Unlike other FPS where melee usually consists of a punching or stabbing motion, this item you charge up and run into people with; it can also be used to Rocket Jump. Alt-Fire will release an EMP burst that does significant damage to vehicles and will knock Power Ups out of on-foot enemies.
    • The Enforcer returns from UT, replacing the Assault Rifle. The alt-fire gives you a three-round burst instead of Gangsta Style; instead, your player will automatically tilt the gun sideways if you keep your crosshairs on a target for long enough. Can be dual-wielded.
    • The Bio-Rifle remains unchanged.
    • The Shock Rifle remains unchanged.
    • The Link Gun remains unchanged.
    • The Stinger Minigun replaces the standard gatling seen in the first two games. Instead of bullets, it fires shards of the local Phlebotinum; the longer you hold down the trigger, the higher the rate of fire. Alt-fire reduces your output but gives you semi-homing shots that impart physical momentum and push the victim around.
    • The Flak Cannon remains unchanged.
    • The Rocket Launcher remains unchanged.
    • The Sniper Rifle returns from UT, replacing the Lightning Gun.
    • The Redeemer remains unchanged.
    • The AVRiL remains unchanged.
  • Stat Overflow:
    • The game features a rare, usually well-hidden item which gives the player 100 hitpoints called Big Keg O'Health that surpasses the standard cap of 100. The player, however, won't be able to pick up other healing items until their life meter drops below 100.
    • Health Vials can overheal at a rate of 5HP.
  • Storming the Castle: The last act invokes this with the Ronin team going on to Omicron-6 (the Necris' planet) in order to finish Akasha.
  • Story Branch Favoritism: Played straight in Act II: With Caesar's Coin. You're given two major objectives in the chapter: reinforce Tokaido and make an alliance with the Iron Guard (and, by proxy, Axon). The game expects you to follow that path to the letter. Not doing so (either forsaking the reinforcement or accepting the truce from Axon/Iron Guard, or both) ends up with your team fighting a 4-on-7 "Invasion Style" match in Torlan_Leviathan at the end of the Chapter, which, considering how awful the AI on said map is, becomes quite a chore, whereas the intended path has a much easier end map.
  • Strategic Asset Capture Mechanic: The Warfare mode is more or less Unreal Tournament 2004's Onslaught mode with some new additions. Both teams battle to control Power Nodes in order to create a link between both bases and destroy the enemy team's Power Core. The new additions to the mode are the Support Nodes, disconnected from the Power Node Network, that can be owned by any team at any time, but grant key advantages such as more powerful vehicles or granted damage to the Enemy Core without the need to link to it. In addition, teleportation between owned areas is now done via dedicated teleporters rather than the nodes themselves. Finally, there's also the Orb, of which each team has one that spawns in the closest Orb Spawner to the enemy base, which allows the proprietary team to instantly take out any enemy node (whether it's a regular Power Node or a Support Node) and claim it for their team, as well as shielding an already owned Power Node from damage.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Just one example of many: when playing Warfare, the computer's team gets two orbs. If you are very (un)lucky, you might even see both of them.
  • The Shangri-La: The Tokaido-based maps such as DM-RisingSun, DM-ShangriLa and CTF-Reflection are all designed after a popular interpretation of Shambhala.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill:
    • The Redeemer, being a personal, portable, potentially remote-guided tactical nuclear missile.
    • The Leviathan, a crawling death machine.
    • Tripod Terror: The Necris Darkwalker, a The War of the Worlds based tripod colossus which delivers a hugely destructive laser.
  • Took a Level in Badass: The Krall in this installment look and act a lot more vicious than before. They're just as deadly as their former slave owners, the Skaarj.
  • Too Awesome to Use: The Instagib card in the campaign. You'll obtain it after completing the "Necropolis" mission, and it gives you the eponymous superpowered, one-hit-kill rifle. The catch? You're three missions away from the end, and one of them ("Floodgate") is a Warfare match (where you can't use Instagib) and the other is the Boss Battle... where you can't use that card because the game doesn't give you the chance to use it. That leaves the other mission, "Vertebrae", as the only mission where you can use that card.
  • Too Injured to Save: While the rest of the Ronin team manages to get out alive of the Twin Souls massacre, Reaper ended up being mortally wounded. Jester and Othello managed to rush him onto an Izanagi Corporation medical facility, and the doctor outright told Izanagi captain Malcolm "Don't even bother with this one. No way he fights again", to which Malcolm replies "Just do it". Subverted when Reaper manages to survive dying.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: A very unfortunate variation of this trope occurs in the game's setup program (assuming you didn't buy over Steam) - if you watch the files being installed, you will notice that one of the video files is suspiciously named "malcolmbetrayal".
  • Travel to Projectile: The Translocator launches a beacon (with primary fire) that teleports the player on command (with alternate fire), but it may also be damaged by the enemy. Said module can be retrieved too, by using the primary fire after launching it. This game extended the charge count to 7 and made charging it faster.
  • Updated Re-release: Unreal Tournament III: Black Edition => UT3 + Titan Pack. It's only sold on Steam, and had many Free Weekends, where the people could download the entire game for free on a determined weekend and try it.
  • Variable Mix: Some maps (such as Rising Sun) switch between a peaceful and combat music. If you're by yourself, you can force the combat music by attacking yourself and sustain it by firing your weapon.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Par for the course, but this time you have several extra tools to accomplish more creative and sadistic killing.
  • War Is Hell:
    Bishop: We face horror and death wrought by man, and call it war.
  • Wave-Motion Gun: The Leviathan's Ion Cannon. Compared to the previous game, it has a smaller blast radius, but a higher rate of fire.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness:
    • Malcolm sells out the Ronin team in the final chapter of the campaign.
    • The Betrayal gametype, from the Titan Pack, incorporates this as a gametype mechanic. Once the player's temporary team has earned enough score, he can choose to betray them and take the pot.
  • Zerg Rush: An integral part of the "Invasion style" Ronin vs. Krall match in the campaign's Act II.

Alternative Title(s): Unreal Tournament 3