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.
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.
Anyway, ongoing Unreal Tournament releases aren't an actual plan, just an idea we've been tossing around.
Here follows an earlier posting:
On Monday, Infogrames will announce that it will be changing the name of Epic Games' and Legend Entertainment's forthcoming first-person shooter from Unreal II to Unreal Episode II. Likewise, Unreal Tournament 2 from Epic Games and Digital Extremes will carry the new Unreal Tournament 2003 moniker.