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Monday, March 18, 2002

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Name Change for UT 2 & Possibly Unreal 2
6:00 AM | Eddie Park | Comment on this story

A recent article posted by GameSpot reported name changes for Epic Games' upcoming titles Unreal 2 and Unreal Tournament 2. The reported name changes, which are Unreal Episode II and Unreal Tournament 2003, respectively, sparked a flurry of responses from fans of the series, most of them negative.

In response to concerns over the names voiced at the Infogrames forums, Tim Sweeny of Epic posted a clarification:

The Gamespot announcement was a mix of actual news and speculation (this wasn't Gamespot's fault; we seem to have some bugs in our PR pipeline.)

The name "Unreal Episode 2" is just something that we, Legend, Epic, Infogrames, have been discussing internally. We haven't come to a decision and are still split on it; some of the guys love it and some of the guys hate it. What does everyone here think?

The motivating factor for a name change would be to reduce the confusion we've created by having several Unreal games in development.

For now, though, the name is still "Unreal 2."

The new name for "Unreal Tournament 2003" is official. But the idea of to releasing a new one every year is just another concept we've been debating internally. If that were seriously considered, we would have to avoid splitting the community every year.

Sweeny also volunteers information regarding UT's continued backwards compatibility with existing servers:
The next-generation Unreal engine's network code and file formats are stable enough that we could potentially ship UT(year x) and include the maps from UT(year x-1) and maintain backwards compatibility with existing servers. This obviously couldn't go on forever, but could assure a lifetime similar to UT. Remember, in over 2 years of UT, we only broke network compatibility once.
Those interested in looking over the whole story should check out both the GameSpot article and Sweeny's forum response at the Infogrames web site.

GameSpot: Unreal changes
Epic Games
Unreal Tournament
Infogrames Forums: Unreal2 Name change?

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Archives  News  Name Change for UT 2 & Possibly Unreal 2