Review by CLURPY
UFC 2010. while good, feels a shade rushed in a few areas
THQ released UFC 2009 last year and absolutely wowed us with a game, that while flawed, was a great MMA base and a game that with a little bit of tweaking could be made into a perfect MMA game. One year to the day later and while somethings have been tweaked other flaws have come up and while they are minor flaws in some cases it can be utterly frustrating and can turn you off the game.
This is where the game is hurt the most. The stand up is amazing and in my opinion the animation looks great and has been improved from the 2009 version, however, the ground game feels like a complete mess. In 2009 the fighter on the bottom was at a disadvantage but had a few tricks to be able to get out of bad positions or even turn the tide and get into a good ground position by reversaling the top fighter. While this mechanic still remains in place what is a bit of a gamebreaker in terms of gameplay is that in 2009 if you had a BJJ based fighter you could rubberguard and then reversal them so you could be on top and they on the bottom, you also had many other options for getting out from under a fighter. This seems to be missing in 2010 and as said before I feel a bit of a gamebreaker is the fact that it completely feels like they have given TOO much power to the fighter on top. Remember in 2009 how annoying it would be to fight someone (typically online) and all they would do is take you down then sit there blocking EVERY attempt you had trying to get out of a bad spot? Well thanks to THQ the whole ground game feels broken in that its far too easy to block everything from the top position and next to impossible to do anything on the bottom. I can understand they don't want to over power the fighter on the bottom I think its highly ridiculous when Dan Hardy who is not known for any sort of takedown offense, let alone ground game, is able to hold GSP on the bottom EVERY time theres an attempt to get out from underneath him. The fact that online now has become a battle for the first takedown and spam block transitions it really makes playing online rather arduous and not worth the time and effort.
Graphics: 9 / 10
I really felt they upgraded the graphics in this game and while some fighters are completely ripped from 2009 (Forrest Griffin, Wanderlei Silva to name a few). I didn't mind this one bit as I felt that some characters were spot on and honestly for a yearly title I can understand the reasoning for not re-scanning them in just to have the exact or similar character model come up anyway. The fact that they went in and have upgraded all the models (yeah remember how Thiago Alves looked in 2009? well he looks 100x better here) really shows that they took the necessary time to upgrade the graphics where they were needed. I still think the cutting & bruising looks a little cookie cutter in that all cuts under the eye looks the same on each figther and I've yet to see cuts happen in strange locations (ie side of the head, the forehead etc) it always seems to happen just above the eye, below, bridge of the nose etc, I hope for the next one they can really up the ante and give us more realistic cuts. Also on that note I feel the doctor stoppages look absolutely silly in this game because the amount of blood. All the fights that get stopped happen to have a real ugly cut followed by a rather large amount of blood spilling out of it, in this game some tiny scratch can get the fight stopped if you dirty box a little bit on the cut.
Extras: 9 / 10
There are tons of things to do in this game, aside from the robust career mode, you have tournament mode, title mode, title defense mode and in annoying fashion the Ultimate Fights returns. I mention annoying because unlike the last game you have goals you have achieve in order to unlock the movie. While in theory its cool that they give you more little goodies to do in those fights its annoying when some of them feel so silly in that the slightest thing prevents you from unlocking the fight clips. For instance some of them require that you don't throw kicks or prevent from getting taken down, which can be awfully frustrating when you have to KO someone by the end of the first round. It may seem like I am complaining here, however, my point is some of the fighters that go for take downs almost never go for them in their career yet they almost always go for them in this game and when you get 2 of 3 items complete and then the computer goes for the takedown and you can't block it? you've wasted your time and have to restart all over again. Its a process that becomes a bit tedious after awhile.
Online mode is really buggy as of now and honestly I don't find it that fun as I find its just like 2009 with a bunch of people plugging on the ground getting lame TKOs.
The career mode gets a lot of heat due to being repetitive & a bit menu heavy, but there is lots to like in it too. I personally really like the idea that you can get your creation to learn a variety of moves from all the different camps so you can have a completely unique CAF to your tastes. The main downside is that during career once you win the title it is a matter of fighting the same few guys all the time, a quick remedy in my opinion would be to have some randomly generated guys that would once in awhile fight for the title to add a different dimension to it. Career is also 12years instead of 7 and has stat decay which lots of people complain about but in many ways it makes sense - what fighter still has perfect skills from their early to mid 20s to their 40s?
Overall UFC 2010 is a really fun game, especially with some friends over just messing around in tourney mode or title defense mode. Some flaws are really annoying and do detract from some of the fun elements but not enough so that you can't go back to the game.
Rating: 4.0 - Great
Product Release: UFC Undisputed 2010 (US, 05/25/10)
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