Saying farewell to Unreal games! :(

Sarafan

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Jan 14, 2020
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Looks like Epic wants to angry a lot of players. It was announced that they're shutting down online services for all Unreal games (this includes Unreal Tournament, Unreal Tournament 2003 and 2004, Unreal 1 and 2): https://www.pcgamer.com/epic-is-delisting-almost-every-unreal-game-but-making-unreal-tournament-3-free/. This announcement is followed by complete removal of the mentioned games from digital stores.

What intrigues me is that almost no one is playing these games on official servers. Are they planning to block server search engines or block somehow access to private servers through some update? If so, I'm making a backup of offline installers from GOG. What's even stranger, these games are perfectly playable offline. UT and UT2004 have great bots which don't differ greatly from humans. Unreal 1 and Unreal 2 are both mainly single player games, so who knows why Epic is taking them out of sale.

GOG is the only digital platform where the games are still available until 23rd December. You even get a 40% discount if you buy more than one game from the series. If someone is interested in keeping these games this might be your last chance, because I doubt they'll return to sale one day. Epic probably wants to push his new version of Unreal Tournament 3 which is based on Epic Online Services. I didn't think for long and decided to buy the missing games. There were better price offers, but it's probably last chance.

 
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Wow, that's nuts. I think I got the first Unreal for free on GOG, or something, a couple of years ago. When it was a new game, I was a huge fan. It was really a technical pioneer in a lot of ways. It was an awesome game for its time. It was one of the first games where the beauty of the world blew me away. You start off on the ship, and then when you come out and see that waterfall, it was just awesome.
 
Jun 22, 2021
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One of the best online multiplayer game series. I loved and hated 3. Removing assault mode was a sin. UT 2k4 was a clutch game. The custom servers were fun as hell. I use to play nothing but race assault maps. OMNI servers were amazing. Mr. Soi was my name and if you heard it in text to voice you'd know why I used that name. As soon as someone said it Soi would get spammed cause that word would mess up the voice and make it come out as a weird sound. It was hilarious.
 
Dec 23, 2022
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trimming the fat probably. third party server space cost money. many older games are EOL mainly because the subscription based business model for online games is done.

A more recent business model that is on the decline is downloadable content. which is, if im not mistaken, being phased out. Though things like digital goods, and microtransactions will be around I imagine. Much of the new business models revolve around advertising, product placement, and data collection.

Its no wonder they want to clear this server space. Fools are actually paying millions for 'virtual real estate' (insert gurgling sound of toilet flushing) I think I have some 'virtual' ocean front property in Nebraska. Only 800k an acre....

You could have gotten a free drink out of me, if you had asked I would have told you no official public servers existed for those games, and lost the bet...
 
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Zloth

Community Contributor
There's no server space for the first (or second?) Unreal game. I doubt there's any licensing, either. My only guess is that somebody in the marketing department decided that they might lose one or two Unreal Engine sales because the prospective buyer searched on Unreal, saw screenshots from the original game, and ran off.

The Last Remnant is another mysteriously absent game. It was originally for XBox but barely fit on the console. Then Square/Enix updated it a little, folded all the DLC for the game into the game itself, and sold it on PC for years. Then, they decided to make an HD version for PlayStation. When they released the HD version, they shut off sales of the PC version! That was several years ago now, and it's still only possible to get the PC version directly from Square/Enix and only in certain countries. I don't think anyone ever figured out why.
 

Sarafan

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trimming the fat probably. third party server space cost money. many older games are EOL mainly because the subscription based business model for online games is done.
The thing is that Unreal games don't have official servers anymore IIRC. The only thing that Epic provides is the updated server list for UT2004. If I'm right the server list for UT1 is provided by fans. Same when it comes to multiplayer modes in Unreal 1 and 2. There's no sensible reason in pulling these games out of sale. The single player modes don't require online connection and all of these games are playable in offline mode. Besides there's a bunch of private servers for the games, as well as LAN mode. The only reason I can think of (apart from the one provided by Zloth) is that Epic wants to move the player base to the new version of UT3, but I doubt that veterans will drop the previous Unreal games.
 
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The thing is that Unreal games don't have official servers anymore IIRC. The only thing that Epic provides is the updated server list for UT2004. If I'm right the server list for UT1 is provided by fans. Same when it comes to multiplayer modes in Unreal 1 and 2. There's no sensible reason in pulling these games out of sale. The single player modes don't require online connection and all of these games are playable in offline mode. Besides there's a bunch of private servers for the games, as well as LAN mode. The only reason I can think of (apart from the one provided by Zloth) is that Epic wants to move the player base to the new version of UT3, but I doubt that veterans will drop the previous Unreal games.
The single player is all I ever cared about. So does this officially make Unreal abandonware?
 
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Sarafan

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The single player is all I ever cared about. So does this officially make Unreal abandonware?
Officially not, but if you ask me whether it's justified to download these games for free in this situation, I'd say yes. They completely went out of sale and aren't available in digital nor physical stores. It's still not 100% legal, but I think that in cases such as this one the rules of common sense should be applied.
 

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