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ModSquad NewsPoster
6th Oct 2003, 10:17 PM
[ Transcript of review for Systemic UT2003 v1.1.1 (http://modsquad.beyondunreal.com/review.php?id=176) | Posted by Vlosk on 2003-10-06 | Score: 8.7 ]
Systemic UT2003 v1.1.1

This mod is a delightful little surprise, and though only in the early stages of development, is worth the download. The premise of the mod is to add rather large, slow, and powerful mechs to the basic UT gameplay; these mechs being transformed players who access a relic like object, spawned by a mutator. This mod is compatible with all gametypes, has bot support (though not 100%) and apparently has decent network support as well.

There are only two mechs for version 111, a rocket mech and a minigun mech. Both essentially get the weapon of their namesake, though practically with unlimited ammo and akimbo guns. The minigun version does have a nifty system with cooling though, and the rocket mech gets the option to disable / enable rocket lock-ons (instead of the loaded up standard altfire). Not overly inspiring, but not half bad either. The akimbo weapons in third person are a nice touch, and the fact that everything seems to work and play decently well is another sign of true craftsmanship. All I could ask for in terms of mech-weapons is a little variation and creativity; perhaps a link mech that has a couple takes on the linkgun – plasma weapon, or rockets that behave not unlike those inUnreal2 instead of just the static straight-line – boom. Don’t get me wrong, this was rather fun, but the basic weapons just felt a little stale. (grouped weapons would be nice as well; 3 different forms of rocket for the rocket mech, etc).

One thing that impressed me was the polish. This is important for all games, mods and mutators… and unfortunately overlooked more often than not. Systemic does not state that this is a beta, does not ask the public to forgive and forget bugs and issues. Instead, the product is clean, stable, and has a lot of features, if only in the way of 2 completed mechs. (Which is acceptable for a first release). Such polish includes a rather nifty radar, the ability to disable / enable the radar and a myriad of other mutator level options. The player is also changed while playing as a mech, with a robot voice and rather large size (Eye height adjusted to suite… and nice, heavy footsteps too, and the ability to crush those poor bots underfoot!) The visuals are clean, they work, and though a more extreme HUD modification would be appreciated, the current scan-line does a lot to settle the player into ‘large mech of doom mode’. The pickup model itself is good, and the effect when becoming a mech works. Little details like the freeze of player control while ejecting, and becoming a mech in the first place, also help.

The only bug I found with this mod was with the bot-support. Though I am impressed that bots are capable of becoming mechs, and playing as mechs, more often then not they’d stop firing and simply stand there. I could go up and shoot them, only to have the poor bot charge for a second or two and then resume standing idly. The bots did indeed fight a few times, most especially as the rocket mech, but too often did they simply freeze in place. Not sure why this happens, and its not the worst bot issue I have seen, but fixing it would be a nice touch.

All in all, this little gem earns an 8.7 out of 10. There is a lot of potential here, and to see it realized would be a great thing for the UT community. All I can really think to say per way of suggestion is more variation and uniqueness to the weapons and mechs; perhaps some smaller and faster, maybe a giant, and the like. The bot code isn’t too much of an issue, and hopefully it will be wrapped up and packaged with the same quality that defines the rest of this production.

Well done.