Hype for EA Sports UFC is at an all-time high with a vibe that this could be the best UFC game on consoles so far and now we’ve got a demo to get a taste of what’s to come.It’s always quite tough to make a judgement on the snippet of a game, with only a solitary fight to partake in there’s not much to go on. However this does give us a glimpse of what to expect from the feel of the fight, something they’ve made a focal point for this next-gen of fighting experience. So after a quick tutorial you get thrust into a match-up between Jon “Bones” Jones and Alexander “The Mauler” Gustafsson.
The fighters, the arena and Bruce Buffer all look the part and create an authentic atmosphere for the bout, but outside of the cut scenes it lacks a little crispness, which I hope to see sharpened up come the full game. Having learnt all the button combinations I was ready to pound my opponent; I was swinging left hooks, back kicks and even went for the odd takedown.
Stamina prevents the affair from being a button mashing frenzy and the HUD makes you aware of potential weak points from sustained damage. Marks will appear on the fighters too which is rather handy to spot where your hits have been landing.
Did I “FEEL THE FIGHT” though? No.
There seems to be a real issue within the collision mechanics, I’m swinging a foot to plant on his face and although the character reacts like he’s been hit a little the contact seems minimal and nowhere nears a brutal as it should be. That goes for all the shots I piled into “The Mauler” and it was almost like a stunt fight from the movies but with really bad acting.
That aside I appreciate a more technical submission system where you need to be alert and react quickly to the opponents escape attempts. Basically they have four directions to press where they need to hold one long enough to escape but if I match their direction then the submission stays intact whilst another direction is chosen. As the escapee you can keep changing your mind to keep the aggressor on their toes, it should simple enough for anyone to pick up and have a chance of escaping even if I haven’t explained it very well.
Although I have no problems with the punches and kicks being multiple buttons, it does bother me how the often confusing ground transitions have remained from other MMA/UFC games, just with a few less transitions. Defending on the ground is much simpler though as long as you keep an eye on the body movements.
Having been excited for the EA Sports UFC release on June 17th or 20th, depending where in the world you are, I’m a little underwhelmed after this. That doesn’t mean it won’t still be great though, as we’ve seen before a demo can be improved on. All EA need to ensure they do is sharpen up the visuals and improve on the collisions, and then it might feel more realistic being inside the Octagon.