Unreal II: The Awakening

aka: Unreal 2
Windows Specs [ all ]

Description official descriptions

Some years after the Strider Wars, humanity has resumed its expansion into space. On the rough frontier, it falls to the Terran Colonial Authority to maintain peace and order among the outlying colonies and outposts. TCA Marshal John Dalton and the crew of his ship, the Atlantis, patrol this dangerous sector of space when several distress calls lead to the discovery of alien artifacts with unique properties. Soon, the hunt for these artifacts is on between several alien factions as well as human corporations and their mercenary forces, with the TCA and their allies caught in the middle.

The first-person shooter Unreal II, while a sequel to Unreal, has no direct connection to the first game except being set in the same universe (with the Skaarj from Unreal and the Liandri Corporation from Unreal Tournament being major enemy factions). The player controls John Dalton through a dozen missions, taking place in such locations as the dense jungle of a tropical planet, a research facility on a frozen moon, the insides of a planet-sized living organism, the home world of an insectoid machine civilization, as well as a huge starship.

The weapon arsenal consists of more than a dozen guns. Standard types include pistols, an assault rifle, shotgun, and sniper rifle. Some heavier ones are a flame thrower, as well as rocket and grenade launchers, with the grenade launcher being able to use six different ammunition types, including fragmentation, EMP and smoke grenades. Available in later missions are weapons adapted from alien technologies. These include various energy guns, a biological weapon that creates living spiders that attack enemies, and an autonomous floating orb that either seeks out and attacks enemies or circles around the player in point defense. As in other Unreal titles, each weapon has two different firing modes.

Missions are usually of the run-and-gun type, but there are exceptions. Several levels include defense assignments where either a position must be held for a certain time or a character be kept alive. These levels usually include additional tools such as energy barriers and automated turrets that can be placed by the player in any location. Sometimes, AI-controlled characters will be there to help out the player as well. In that case they can be given orders on which sector to defend or patrol, for example.

The story of the game is told through a variety of means: besides in-engine cutscenes, there is a lot of radio chatter during a mission; in fact, it's not unusual for mission objectives to completely change due to story developments. Between missions, Dalton can wander freely about the Atlantis and chat with his crew, going into their personal backstories as well as more details about the main plot.


  • 虚幻II:觉醒 - Simplified Chinese spelling

Groups +




See any errors or missing info for this game?

You can submit a correction, contribute trivia, add to a game group, add a related site or alternate title.

Credits (Windows version)

227 People (207 developers, 20 thanks) · View all



Average score: 79% (based on 43 ratings)


Average score: 3.3 out of 5 (based on 106 ratings with 12 reviews)

A review, one year after the hype.

The Good
No doubt, Unreal 2 is a cinematic experience then standard 08/15 game, this includes a:

1.) Breathtaking Scenery with beautiful textures and models. 2.) Very suitable music and soundeffects. 3.) Interesting characters, with an amazing voiceacting and witty dialogues (english version). 4.) Great variety of weapons. 5.) For non FPS-Freaks (like me) it has a moderate difficult which makes it less frustrating and more fun to play.

The Bad
It has it flaws, no doubt, I seen follows:

Major weaknesses:

1.) I think for FPS-Freaks this is way to easy, and when there is no challenge, there is bore. 2.) Mainstory is really thin, but even then they managed to put some cliches into it.

Minor weaknesses:

1.) Moving around in the spaceship was pretty useless, in that case cutscenes would have been more than sufficient. 2.) I would like to choose for myself which weapons I take to a mission. 3.) Took sometimes ages to load. 4.) It was short, but on the other hand not too short for me.

The Bottom Line
Unreal 2 is a very eyecandy Singleplayer FPS, for everyone who likes SF and a little action. For me, who usually plays RGP, Strategy or Adventures it was a neat alternation. For its cheap price today its no loss except you are a hardcore FPS Player, then be aware for an easy and short trip.

Footnote: I was surprised to see C64 Graphic Legend Hugh "Last Ninja" Riley worked on that title. Most of artist/musicians/coder of that time are gone or do something completely different the industry.

Windows · by Der.Archivar (544) · 2004

Eye Candy (Gameplay Sold Separately)

The Good
Sure, looks count. When a game is as pretty as Unreal II, you forgive it a lot. I plodded on to the end merely to see one more beautiful alien planet. Occasionally, this visual splendor almost becomes compelling. When a planet infested by a huge spongy organism erupts in angry green spouts of acid, it's a money-shot moment, even if the effects are all decorative and irrelevant to gameplay. I also liked - gasp! - the story. If you persevere until the end, you're in for a satisfying conclusion. Rarely do game narratives rise above the level of idiocy; this one, after plenty of dross, finally does. Nice voice acting, too.

The Bad
Everything else is terrible.

Let's start with player movement. There are two speeds: creeping and crawling. Seriously cramping the range of available tactics, this hobbled mobility reduces fighting to a series of repetitive pot-shots. Mind, enemies aren't slow. Only you are.

Although level design is pretty, it's also painfully linear. The highly-skilled designers have created the illusion of broad, expansive landscapes. But it's all superficial, as they've squandered the graphics engine's power by making you stick to a narrow path no more divergent than, say, the one in ten-year old Quake. Frustratingly, you even come across features in the landscape that you can climb or jump in some areas, but not in others.

Enemy AI? Forget it. Enemy character design? Pfffft. The tiresome Skaarj are back doing their goofy somersaults, joined by (shock!) spiders, (amazing!) weird aliens, and (omigod!) humans in armor. This colorless, uninspired work is instantly forgettable. You never feel menaced - annoyed, maybe. Partly that's also the fault of the designers having no sense of rhythm, drama, or pacing; long stretches of the game are inexplicably unpopulated. And when they do bump into something successful - for instance, using friendly AI soldiers to protect you - they quickly drop the idea. You can lead a game designer to green alien acid pools, apparently, but you can't make him drink.

While I appreciated the finale, the story is filled with cliches borrowed from more successful games and movies. Expect no originality. Five minutes into the game you're given to understand that celebrated female military heroes in the future will dress like Hooters chicks, and it's mostly downhill (or downbra, you might say) from there.

The Bottom Line
With the commercial and critical failure of Unreal II, this great-looking game can be picked up for a song (I paid $10). Though highly polished, it's about as dull as it is beautiful. This is corporate design in all its safe, cliched, derivative, formulaic glory, with a heavy dosage of hack work substituting for creativity: step right up and be relieved of your imagination.

Windows · by Richard Cramden (6) · 2003

What a BORE !

The Good
The graphics are nice.

The Bad
The gameplay is BORING. The actors are BORING. The music and sound are BORING.

The Bottom Line
Well, well, this is the successor to a game that wanted to revolutionize the genre from within and partially succeeded. The hype was high on this one, and it got pretty good ratings, but is it really a good game? Depends on what kind of gamer You are. The casual gamer will like the easy gameplay, linear level design and not-so-deep immersion. The games player will like the graphics and soon turn to something else. The hardcore gamer will probably turn to something else 6 hours later after he played through U2 once.

U2 is very light, it features some great graphics and environments, and it also offers a plot. That's all I can say neutrally.

The plot is boring, the characters are so superficial that the helpless try of giving them depth through conversation is in vain. The hero is quite strange, and hard to identify with. The story is very linear and the enemies You encounter a pretty faceless. The infamous Skarrj appear only rarely, the boss enemies are mostly huge, and the weapons are pretty unimaginative.

Conclusion: nice to see, but it has no identity.

Windows · by Emmanuel Henne (23) · 2003

[ View all 12 player reviews ]


German version

In the German version, all blood and gore effects were removed. Also some corpses in the levels were replaced or removed. The later released Special Edition is not affected.

John Dalton

The main character's last name, Dalton, was based on Scott Dalton, one of Unreal II's game designers. The developers tried to avoid the name collision for a while, but in the end "Dalton" just seemed to work best for the game and was used in the final product.


A patch to this game adds multiplayer, vehicles and new weapons. It is called Expanded Multiplayer or Unreal II XMP.


  • Coincidence...or not? The player you control in the game, sometimes appreviated as "U2," is named John Dalton. In the late 80's, the Irish rock group U2 would sometimes dress up as a country western band and open for their own shows. The name of the group?: The Dalton Brothers.
  • An NPC in the tutorial area muses about getting himself two flags and conducting a some kind of tournament. An obvious reference to the Unreal Tournament series of games.


The Seagoat, the alien, bunny-like pet that shows up on the player's ship during mid-game, was created very early on in development and originally thought to be a huge, bovine creature that could inhabit one of the alien worlds in the game. During development, the name "Seagoat" started to stick for the creature, and it was greatly reduced in size and given the role of cute, slightly weird pet.

Voice acting

Even though all other voices for the game were performed by professional actors, Ne'Ban, the ship's alien pilot, is voiced by one of the developers (Grant Roberts).


  • GameStar (Germany)
    • Issue 04/2009 - One of the "10 Most Terrible Sequels" ( It is a good game in its own right but forgettable and far from being as groundbreaking as Unreal. The technical potential goes to waste because the player mostly walks through illogical and linear levels instead of being outdoors.)
  • PC Powerplay (Germany)
    • Issue 03/2005 - #6 Biggest Disappointment

Information also contributed by Matthias Worch, St. Martyne and STU2

Related Games

Released 1998 on Windows, 1999 on Macintosh
Unreal Championship
Released 2002 on Xbox
Alwa's Awakening
Released 2017 on Linux, Windows, 2022 on NES...
Unreal: Anthology
Released 2006 on Windows
Unreal Tournament
Released 2014 on Macintosh, Windows
Valhalla: Awakening of Valkyrie
Released 2022 on Windows
Unreal Tournament 2004
Released 2004 on Linux, Windows, Macintosh
Unreal Deal Pack
Released 2008 on Windows
Unreal Tournament III
Released 2007 on Windows, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360

Related Sites +

Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 8377


Are you familiar with this game? Help document and preserve this entry in video game history!

Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Riley Beckham.

Xbox added by Kartanym.

Additional contributors: KSlayer, Unicorn Lynx, Rebelteen, Sciere, Patrick Bregger.

Game added February 9th, 2003. Last modified September 25th, 2023.