UFC Undisputed 2010 Review for PS3

On: PS3Xbox 360PSP
UFC Undisputed 2010 screenshot
UFC Undisputed 2010 screenshot

Perhaps it's just me being disorganised, but I found the constant time management to be a major drag. Your wait between matches is divided up into weeks, and you're only ever able to do one thing per week (why can't your fighter multi-task? I don't know, but I'm guessing brain damage is the answer). As in real life, there never seems to be enough time to do everything, and I found it very hard to keep my stats in line. Strength, speed and cardio sessions are resolved "off-screen", but with sparring you get a choice: either let the AI do it, resulting in a purposefully low-set budget of skill points to spend, or try for a decent amount by taking control for yourself. Player-controlled sparring bouts are essentially mini-fights, only for not as long. And without the excitement.

There's actually another activity that requires your time and input: the only way to learn decent special moves is to visit a special Fighter Camp, where you enter into sparring sessions that require you to perform specific moves or combos. As with last year, there's a slight problem here, as the AI will sometimes decide to be quite unhelpful. You might need to pull a certain number of submissions, for example, but your dim-witted buddy keeps grabbing you in a clinch. You flail away, the clock ticks out, and suddenly you've wasted one of your precious weeks.

I'll stop there, because this review is starting to sound rather negative. The truth is that I didn't get on with career mode at all, and that's a shame. If you're patient and really fancy the idea of a very long-winded road to fame, you'll probably enjoy it; personally, I thought there was way too much that got in the way of the fighting – you know, the actual fun bit.

Luckily, Yuke's and THQ have been very generous in their supply of other game modes. The Ultimate Fights mode returns, allowing you to play through some classic UFC match-ups, and this time there are goals to complete that ultimately help you to unlock stuff for Create-A-Fighter mode. There's also a Tournament Mode, and an Event Mode that lets you build your own pay-per-view cash-sapper, replete with all the flashy trimmings you get on the official TV coverage.

It's most telling, however, that the game is still at its most enjoyable when you're simply smacking seven bells out of a friend. Undisputed really comes alive when you're playing with another human, particularly one who's sitting right next to you. The best matches are slippery, unpredictable affairs, where you almost manage to pound your chum into submission, only to have him escape at the last minute. It also helps that the action itself is extremely good-looking: UFC 2009 turned a few heads, but this follow-up manages to look vastly more natural and realistic. Given that it's essentially the same setting, albeit with an expanded roster, that's really quite impressive. Once again, the violence is extremely well-rendered, and there's no doubt that Undisputed's beatings are among the most visceral in modern gaming.

It is also, naturally, the most authentic depiction of Mixed Martial Arts on today's gaming market. EA's MMA title will be surfacing later in the year, but no matter what that game achieves, it'll lack the sheer star quality of Undisputed. Yuke's has once again done a grand job with the UFC license, and existing fans of the sport (and the first game) will find plenty to love here. If you're a curious newcomer there's still every reason to give this a shot – just don't expect to learn everything overnight.

A quick note about multiplayer. Frustratingly, our efforts to access the Undisputed servers prior to review proved fruitless. There are new mechanics in place to prevent the cheating that hindered UFC 2009 Undisputed's multiplayer – particularly the "quitters" who abandoned matches prior to an online defeat – but at the time of writing, we've not been able to test out the new netcode.

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Wido's Avatar

Wido

Nice review Neon. Never did get round to get UFC 2009. I hear that UFC 2010 Career is taking the Fight Night Round 4 route. To be kept in shape, you got to work out and etc. I really enjoyed the demo and I will be picking this up. 3 games I want. This, Blur and Prince Of Persia. Though I don't think I will be purchasing any new games till I get RDR to 100% and at least finish my first playthrough on ME1.
Posted 17:54 on 25 May 2010
Roland_D11's Avatar

Roland_D11@ mydeaddog

Thanks, that sounds promising. I can live with some load times, but the save messages last year forced me to put the game down. I think I will rent this before I buy it.
Posted 12:49 on 25 May 2010
mydeaddog's Avatar

mydeaddog

@Roland

They've condensed the saves, as in you no longer get those irritating messages where it seemed to save several things in a row. In general, the load times are still a bit annoying though. Once you actually get into a fight it's all cream, but the flip-side is that you still get fairly lengthy waits between activities, screens etc.

To give the developers credit, at the start of a match some of the loading is masked with announcer stuff.
Posted 12:40 on 25 May 2010
dudester's Avatar

dudester

I hated all the training from the 1st tho Neon so seems like I wouldn't enjoy too much in this one.
Posted 12:32 on 25 May 2010
Roland_D11's Avatar

Roland_D11

Neon, how is the autosaving in the career mode? I found that extremely annoying in the last UFC game. After every training etc. the game showed several 'Saving xx'-screens. Is that better in 2010?
Posted 12:32 on 25 May 2010
mydeaddog's Avatar

mydeaddog

It's not too bad... you still get cred from each fight you take part in, and there's a bonus from wearing sponsored clothes etc. I ended up sacking them off a lot in the early part of my career.
Posted 12:10 on 25 May 2010
El-Dev's Avatar

El-Dev@ mydeaddog

I'm pretty sure your stats degraded in Fight Night as well though so that wouldn't annoy me. I don't mind the training, but having to build up cred sounds like it would annoy me quite a bit. Is it detrimental not attending events?
Posted 11:30 on 25 May 2010
mydeaddog's Avatar

mydeaddog

It's been a while since I played Fight Night, to be honest. There's a lot training. The thing is, it wouldn't be so annoying if it weren't for the fact that you stats degrade if you don't maintain them - and there are 16 skills plus your three attributes to look after. It feels a bit like a plate-spinning contest, only each spin requires a separate trip to the gym.
Posted 11:18 on 25 May 2010
El-Dev's Avatar

El-Dev@ mydeaddog

Would it be beyond the level of training in the last Fight Night game?
Posted 10:49 on 25 May 2010
mydeaddog's Avatar

mydeaddog

Listen, some of you may really like the career mode. It's much more in-depth than last year, and if you've got the patience for it (which, let's face it, is something this game requires) you may well have a blast with it. Personally, I just got fed up with all the training / stat maintenance.

It's still a good game, it just requires you to put a lot in.
Posted 10:47 on 25 May 2010
dudester's Avatar

dudester

Bad times was really hoping they fixed the career mode :(
Posted 10:43 on 25 May 2010
Karlius's Avatar

Karlius@ SexyJams

Shame I was hoping Career mode would go down the Ultimate Fighter route.
Posted 09:53 on 25 May 2010
SexyJams's Avatar

SexyJams

My mate loved UFC Undisputed,
I'll have no problem recommending this to him after everything you've said about it :D
Posted 09:49 on 25 May 2010
South_East_Jedi's Avatar

South_East_Jedi

I hate this game, not because i think it's a bad game, it's just because i cannot f**king get used to the super complicated control system and the fact that whenever i play it, i get far too stressed out and angry
Posted 09:31 on 25 May 2010
El-Dev's Avatar

El-Dev

Sounds like a decent improvement on last year, but career mode still sounds sh*t. It was the biggest disappointment in the last game.
Posted 09:10 on 25 May 2010

Game Stats

UFC Undisputed 2010
8
Out of 10
UFC Undisputed 2010
  • Brutal yet beautiful
  • Very authentic
  • Some smart additions to last year's game
  • Career mode is a drag
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 28/05/2010
Platforms: PS3 , Xbox 360 , PSP
Publisher: THQ
Genre: Sports
No. Players: 1-2
Rating: BBFC 15
Site Rank: 2,304 3
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