Over at BU, there was a post regarding the announcement of an expansion for UT3.
I was just curious what the community would like to see from this so called "major" expansion to UT3.
I for one would like a fully supported and complete expansion for PC. I would like a PC version easily discerning from console versions.
This includes, but is not limited to, a UI that is befitting to PCs. The interface should be fully customizable without being too cumbersome and simple without being too limited. Also, I think the UI should ditch the "console" (PS3 / Xbox360) look and feel. The UI should back to to a windows-like interface with input boxes, check boxes and drop down menus... etc.
I think UT3 should include some form of enhanced netcode, similar to that released in versions of UTCOMP for ut2004, but refined and more accurate. For a game that makes its mark as a fast paced deathmatch genre, there shouldn't be ping issues to deny players that well placed shock combo, or that flick headshot. UT3 should reclaim its lost title and offer an online that feels refined not only gameplay-wise, but connection wise. This is from my experience on PC. I don't know how good the PS3 or Xbox360 online is.
I think what turned most people off about UT3 is its bulky feel. I'm referring to movement, dodging, jumping and map design. UT3 feels more crampt than UT99. The aiming feels less responsive than UT2004, but slightly better than UT99. We all remember UT2003. It was an unrefined, fast paced PC incarnation of Unreal Championship. Epic sought to fix 2k3 by working on movement, dodging, air control, and map design. The result was UT2004. I expect the UT3 Expansion should turn out similarly. I expect the stray hairs in UT3 will be plucked and it will get a makeover.
By the time UT3 Expansion is released, people should have fast enough computers to run it at a framerate of 45fps and above. I think UT3 Exp should work on optimization. Huge levels bring my system to its knees and I have a midrange system with a bahemoth videocard. This has everything to do with polygon count and special effects. Epic needs to churn out a game that offers the best of both worlds without being too noticeable. Crysis Warhead has an example of a game that has been optimized to play on lower end pcs. Epic should take note.
I hope UT3 Expansion is supported. One reason why I quit on UT3 was because patches were delayed and too few. There are still issues that plague UT3. Holes in levels that allow you to escape. The dreadful issue that causes progress and settings to be deleted or not saved upon exiting UT3. Having the My Documents folder set to the drive letter and not a folder within, thus resulting in no save data. These are all things to scream lack of polish and completeness. A true oversight on Epic's behalf. The PC version of UT3 Expansion should be well supported, with patches released on a timely fashion.
Most of all, Epic should listen to its community and design the game for the communities best interests. UT99 has deeprooted itself as a game for the community. The reason I say this is because when a game is designed for the gamers, the gamers design for the game. UT99 and UT2004 have tons of mods, mutators, skins, custom levels and custom content. UT3 is limping by comparison. Simply put, there is no community for UT3. It's a collection of only the most devoted players and the least devoted. Epic designed a game with the business first and the gamers second. UT3 Expansion should be the result of community feedback.
As much as it pains me to make a reference to Quake 3 / Id, they are getting it right. Quake Live is the ultimate community / gamer's game. Quake Live has the potential to last a very long time and grow to enormous popularity... and it's all paid for by in game advertising. Who knows what else they've got up their sleeves. Id doesn't want to make another mistake like Quake 4. Don't get me wrong, Quake 4 was fun.. but most agree it wasn't hardcore like Quake 3 Arena. They are building a game, offered to the gamers for free... based on a long beta period. Remember the beta period of UT3? I sure don't. Why call the UT3 Demo "Beta" if Epic had no intentions of benefiting from the beta?
I hope UT3 Expansion is released during a private beta period to collect community feedback and suggestions. I hope this beta period lasts at least 6 months and I hope Epic is willing to get their game right. As a business, Epic should agree that you're trying to sell your product... and if it has no selling value, then it has no value at all.
These are just my thoughts. I want to hear what you guys think about them and I want to hear any of your thoughts. Maybe if this thread gets enough attention, Epic will take notice.
P.S. UT3 Expansion should be about uniting the communities. With each new game Epic releases, the community is divided thinner. UT3 was designed for console, nobody is disputing that, but that doesn't have to be Epic's Achillies Heel. Epic should look at this new direction as an opportunity. Epic has stated that there isn't much desire for cross platform gaming. This was said during a time when Unreal was still very much exclusive to PC. Now that console is the final verdict, it's clear that the most popular game has the biggest community. I could be wrong, but isn't the Xbox 360 version of UT3 limited to 360 gamers? I say, merge the communities. Forget about the possible pitfalls and complications of cross-platform gaming and embrace it as an opportunity to bring enjoyment to any of all the platforms. Why risk killing a platform due to a lack of community when you can eliminate that factor altogether.