original Unreal released nearly two years back goes down in
history next to the likes of 'Prey' by 3Drealms as being one
of the longest games in development, ever! It makes Daikatana
looks like a summer holiday and SimCity 3000 like a Thanksgiving
weekend. The first time my eyes came into contact with the mighty
project was at the 1995'E3 technology demo of Unreal (yes really),
by that time the very technology we see now was easily noticeable
but still leaning more to Quake1 styles.
itself had then been in development since 1994 and was touted
as being a 1996 release. 1996 came and went, and so did 1997
and just as we got into 1998 something amazing happened, it
got released. Bugged to the hilt and with only Software and
3Dfx support it needed plenty of work. These days the engine
is stable and looks good on just about all cards and best of
all the technology is still in-date because it was released
early (laughter is heard).
Unreal lacked one element that even the various mod authors
couldn't do (partly due to the sickening amount of bugs stopping
them no doubt), that of quality multiplayer gaming. At around
the same time Quake3Arena was announced the Epic team behind
the original Unreal made a startling announcement. They intended
to go head to head with ID with their concept of a multiplayer
only game that used bots to appease the single player fans.
Originally due for release months before Q3A it missed its dates
and now goes head to head with the consumer nightmare of Q3A.