The build up to Unreal Tournament 3, which was previously known as Unreal Tournament 2007, has been a long, twisted story. Shown for the first time at E3 (Electronic Entertainment Expo) in May of 2004, Unreal Engine 3, which is the gaming engine that powers UT3, was far and away the most impressive graphical display anyone had seen in real time rendering. The game engine was designed for DirectX 9 GPUs specifically and adds support for HDR and per-pixel lighting, dynamic shadowing and even AGEIA PhysX technology.
With such a lengthy time to market, it should come as no surprise that UT3 may not be as jaw-droppingly impressive graphical as we predicted when we saw the tech demos in 2004 and 2005. Based mainly on DX9, the engine has been updated somewhat to include DX10 in SOME areas, but those are still unknown to us as the demo that is set to be released this week is only using DX9 code paths. The fact that the game was originally known as Unreal Tournament 2007, but then renamed to UT3 (signifying the Engine version), is another indicator that perhaps Epic had planned on getting it all wrapped well before this November. After all, do you want a game called "2007" just a month before the year 2008?