Unreal Mission Pack 1: Return to Na Pali
Description official description
Prisoner 849 has escaped from the planet Na Pali (as chronicled in Unreal), but his or her troubles are not over. Picked up by the warship UMS Bodega Bay, the military force the convict to go back to the planet once again, with the mission to recover the data cores of another crashed ship, the Prometheus.
The Return to Na Pali add-on to Unreal features seventeen new single-player missions. Three new weapons are included: the combat assault rifle (a powerful machine gun), as well as dedicated rocket and grenade launchers. The enemies from the original game return, and are supported by a few new ones: Pack Hunters are small dinosaur-like creatures that usually attack in groups. Spinners are small spider-like creatures that spit acid. Finally, there are the UMS Space Marines, who will use some of the same weapons as the player.
As in the original game, the storyline is mostly told through text logs, but in addition, the prisoner records an audio log entry after every mission.
The game comes with six new multiplayer maps and several new game types: Marine Match is a deathmatch against a team of Marines. Gravity Match is standard deathmatch, but with reduced gravity. Terran Weapon Match uses only the add-on's new weapons. Finally, Cloak Match is like a game of Tag, where the player who is "it" is cloaked and has better jump abilities.
Credits (Windows version)
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|Additional Level Designers|
|Associate Producer and Tester|
|Candy and Paychecks|
|Localization Co-ordinator Europe|
|[ full credits ]|
Average score: 73% (based on 22 ratings)
Average score: 3.9 out of 5 (based on 27 ratings with 1 reviews)
Interesting new enemies
The Bottom Line
Add-ons tend to be a mixed bag. Often, they are little more than rushed attempts to milk more money out of the fans. Return to Na Pali, unfortunately, doesn't stray much from this description.
In the first game, the developers focused more on the gorgeous environments and relegated the story (what little there was) to occasional unobtrusive text messages. Return to Na Pali takes a different direction. Apart from the fully voiced intro and outro, we are treated to the protagonist's voiceover comments after some of the levels, as well as one non-interactive cutscene where you have to stand still and listen to dialog. Frankly, however, they shouldn't have bothered. The writing comes across as corny and incredibly cliche, and is more annoying than anything. Please, just let us travel across Na Pali in sweet silence, instead of having to listen to our 'tough girl' hero's lame justifications as to why the levels are stitched together in this particular order.
The levels, in general, do not approach the quality of the original game's environments. Most of the maps feel like a bunch of rooms and corridors hastily cobbled together, a far cry from Unreal's complex castles and factories. Some maps are shockingly short and can be finished within minutes. The rush-job is also evident in bugs: sometimes, you'll run into invisible, solid obstacles just standing there in the open.
One good thing about the expansion pack is that it adds new, interesting enemies. The Pack Hunters are tiny reptiles which look underwhelming, but are surprisingly strong and durable, as well as frighteningly fast. Trying to take down an entire gang of them closing in is a tense experience. There are also Marines, who are no-nonsense killing professionals: unless you're ready to take on them with all you've got, they'll make mincemeat out of you. They can be satisfying to fight once you get in the groove, but unfortunately they only appear once in the game. Also worth noting are the giant spiders. They're as generic an enemy as you'd expect a video game spider to be, but they still deserve accolade for being easier to hit than the infuriating tiny green bugs from the original Unreal (sadly, these damn buggers reappear in the expansion pack as well).
You're given three new weapons as well. The Combat Assault Rifle is essentially the Minigun, except without the eternal ammo shortage. Unlike the original Unreal's weak weapons, which make nearly every single fight into a drag, the CAR finally allows you to take down those pesky Skaarj at a reasonable speed. The two other weapons, the Grenade Launcher and the Rocket Launcher, feel redundant, given that there's already the Eightball Launcher.
In summary, while the new enemies are interesting to fight, that's about the only good thing I can say about this expansion pack. It feels like a pale shadow of the original game's greatness, and it's painfully obvious that it was cobbled together hastily.
Windows · by Havoc Crow (formerly JudgeDeadd) (28423) · 2019
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- MobyGames ID: 3452
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Contributors to this Entry
Game added by Riley Beckham.
Additional contributors: oct.
Game added March 27th, 2001. Last modified March 18th, 2023.