Here it is, one of the more anticipated games of the year and most notably one of the most talked about games on the internet and in message boards all over, UFC has arrived. From the word go, UFC Undisputed packs a punch, no pun intended.
From the first fight to the top of your career you will see just how great the graphics are through out the entire game. The presentation here is second to none in terms of graphics, it has graphics that are on par with EA’s Fight Night, but there is still room for improvement.
I have noticed it both online and in local play that while the graphics are great, the Hit Detection is just not as good. What that means is when you hit someone, you hit them with your punch or kick but when those attacks miss why am i knocked out? Thats where hit detection comes in, when the contact is not made your still knocked down or out. When that is fixed everything graphics wise is all set for me. This is a common issue in most games, Hit or Collision Detection issues.
Most notable, Resident Evi has these issues a lot. You will see enemy body parts come through walls or doors as well as your own body can go through these objects. Its not bad graphics its just that someone did not follow through completely with there programming check. Even in RE5 it still happens and since these games are in HD, it makes it worse. Even games like Gears Of War, Halo, Metal Gear Solid, and Super Smash Bros. have these issues. Its not just something that is limited to Debut games for a new franchise, major titles have these issues as well. It may be something other reviewers look away from, but to me if these consoles are “Next Gen” then these issues need to be resolved.
Outside of the No-Contact Knock Outs, the amazing detail in UFC is astounding. When this game was being developed, the team actually knew the sport. Its not a game that was thrown together simply because we have the license, it was a game well thought out and developed.
While For Dreamcast, Lets try and forget this one: http://i44.tinypic.com/dn0ill.jpg
From the past games, as i mentioned in the impressions article, this game plays like an actual MMA and not a Mortal Kombat fighter. HUGE improvements were made, and actual engine was created and boom, we have a game here.
Another out of the box observation that can be very quickly made is the amount of fighters available to you at start up. This is an insanely deep roster, 80 fighters are available as well as the option to create your own fighter as well. You develop your fighter by deciding your weight, height, fighting styles, and skills. Once thats completed, its off to the octagon to do battle with some of he UFC’s best fighters. You can continue to work your fighter through the ranks of the UFC in hopes of making it to the UFC Hall Of Fame, which is a feat for anyone who just watches MMA. This opens up a lot of door ways for players and fans alike since you can take your created fighter online to fight with other created fighters or against live players using established fighters.
This works out well in a game like this more then a boxing game since a boxing game has way more attributes that can be tweaked and improved to favor the created fighter which poses a problem for an established fighter. While it is the same situation here, the UFC game has not as many attributes as a boxing game does that are as customizable, you can sill have an advantage over established fighters. While its worth noting, you can mix and match up your fighters online and locally in multiplayer and its an option that can be set to a personal preference before the fights begin. Also, now that we have a well knock developer making this game, outside of the graphics, roster and customization; there is a great presentation to be had in this game.
Will You Tap Out? http://i39.tinypic.com/2mw6t8w.jpg
Someone Needs A Cut Man: http://i41.tinypic.com/2eda74i.jpg
The octagons have amazing detail, you can see every drop of sweat, blood, and every single advertisement is in plain view. Nothing like having an energy drink advertisement being shoved down your throat while your having a Tannen Knuckle Sandwich being served to you for causing $300 bucks damage to his car. When the blood hits the canvas, you can see it all over and you can also see it trail as you move your fighter around the ring. While this happens in boxing, MMA is more of a top down or a from the side camera angle style fighter as opposed to a face to face camera for a sport like boxing. The pre fight “Tale Of The Tape” is awesome as well the fighter introductions.
[adinserter block=”1″]There are no walk to the ring as in THQ’s WWE games, but what you do get is Bruce Buffer doing all the announcements and all the hype and build up that creates is simply amazing. You can get this sense of “something is getting ready to go down” during the entire opening. Sadly though, these introductions can go on for a bit too long, you can skip them no problem. But when it comes to online, you cant skip it unless it is set to off by the host of the session or by you if you are hosting. You can skip them in the single player very easily, but with the online, if there is some lag, it will make the presentation even longer which is ridiculous. A simple pressing of the start button should have been the default here.
I won’t take away from the quality of the presentations with this problem since there amazingly done and well produced but it does get annoying after seeing it over and over. Also, i can do without the Ring Girls, thats useless to me. You already have a game that has great graphics all over and not just in one area of the characters body, don’t ruin it with cheesy none sense like that. That’s what wrecked the Need For Speed games, the need to constantly pour all your efforts into the realism of the female characters to cover up the weak areas of a game.
Great Facial Animations: http://i40.tinypic.com/21jy42o.jpg
This Missed Shot Could Knock You Out: http://i43.tinypic.com/nvqhqf.jpg
The commentary is something of a bother as well. While Joe Rogan and Mike Goldberg do lend there voices and likeness to the game, past that its nothing special at all. The voice over work is good and the emotion is there, however, the game just has a commentary set in tracks more then in real time. Madden had this issue which had it fixed over the years, even though there are still some issues to be had with that. But Madden is the standard in commentary, not because its Madden and Michaels, but because it makes a video game of football feel, sound, and look real.
UFC has a good selections of recordings but that is all they are, the pop in and out when certain actions occur, but all the while when nothing is going on, there is either silence or some attempted conversation going on that does not translate well into the fight. A good example of this is when these conversations are going on and a big punch or kick is landed, you can clearly tell there impact move track quickly plays when the actions occurs and that there conversation does not build up into the contact, the dialogue is well written but poorly put together. Its annoying to hear at times and when there is lag online, its very behind.
I like both Rogan and Goldberg and i know that THQ will work with them to get a more accurate feel for the next game, its just right now the voice over work is very poor. Its the only problem i consider MAJOR with the presentation. The others are minor things that are bothersome but not as severe as the audio track.
The rest of the audio is excellent. The music selection is good as well, as soon as i turn the game on i hear Click, Click, BOOM! thats a great way to get anyone who just got this game ready to go. All the music in the game fits well into the game and you can also use your own music since thats a feature worked into the Xbox 360. The music is unedited to a degree, i mean they know there will be kids playing this game so not all you hear is unedited. The sounds of the contact of the kicks and punches being made are clear and loud which is perfect since the game itself is very loud. Being a high impact sport it fits very well into the entire theme of the game. Great graphics and audio complete the package.
The detail put into the facial animations is amazing as well. When your hit, you can see the fighter squint and wince in pain and the more body work you do, the more gasps of air can be heard as well. Its a very well done aspect of this game and its something not too many games can pull of correctly. You can feel your fighter getting weaker and you can feel the suffering going on, its just a shame that your fighter continues to fight at full strength even though there being destroyed during the fight. There is some minor changes to the way your fighter controls and there speed and power decrease slightly but not enough in comparison to the punishment your are either giving or enduring.
And speaking of enduring, you can clearly see the open cuts, bruising, and swelling that is occurring on your fighters body. This is a great feature since it shows there are areas softer and more prone to pain that you can work. The blood and sweat in this game is simply stunning, it actually looks like your fighter is bleeding and sweating. The animations once again are huge here and come to a head here. There is no slow down in the frame rate which keeps the game moving smoothly.
The online play from all i have played so far of it online is very slow, i mean slow. There are huge delays in the connection rates online when you either host or search for a game. And there are instances where there are no search results found. Also in terms of the multiplayer, there are NO open weight class fighting. This sucks since you cant make your own UFC dream match come true. As Eric said to me in an email, it would be nice to see Anderson Silva Vs GSP or Liddell Vs Lesnar. That would be a huge addition to this already robust MMA game, opening up the weight classes would generate interest online and could very well lead to actual fights in a real UFC Ring.
Another issue i have is that while there is already a HUGE roster of fighters, there is no legends division roster of sorts in the game. While this has not been ruled out since there is an option for downloadable content. But no Randy Couture? Perhaps this is because he is a consultant for the upcoming EA Mixed Martial Arts project? Who really knows about this one.
Also, while this game is a true MMA at its core, the controls are good for the sport, but bad for the gamer. There is a MAJOR learning curve in the controls so if your not open to learning them or reading the manual or using the practice mode, this game may not be for you. In the end, what you are getting here is the complete package, a true MMA game in every sense of the word. While there are some rookie mistakes made here, its a good game but does have lots of room for improvement. UFC Undisputed 2009 is now available for both the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 for an MSRP of $59.99. Rated T For Teen.
-Fantastic Graphics & Detail
-Great Sound Effects
-Amazing Realistic Character Models
-HUGE Roster Of Fighters Right Out Of The Box
-Fighter Creator Increases The Roster
-Great Tutorial Mode
-Feels Just Like An Mixed Martial Arts Match
-Controls Have A Steep Learning Curve
-Commentary Is Horrible
-Online Play Is Very Slow And Buggy (At The Time Of This Writing)
-No Open Weight Classes
-No Established Fighters Can Compete In Career Mode
-Hit & Collision Detection Issues Are Rampant
-No Legendary UFC Roster (At The Time Of This Writing)
-Can’t Have George McFly Vs. Biff Tannen Fight In The Octagon
UFC Undisputed 2009 Rating – 3 Stars Out Of 5
To purchase UFC Undisputed 2009 for the Playstation 3 , click here .
To purchase UFC Undisputed 2009 for the Xbox 360, click here .
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