So, does UFC Undisputed Fight Nation survive the Octagon? Find out after the break.
After choosing from one of several ridiculous nicknames like Pseudonym, Big Papi and The Saint, you'll be guided to the Training Screen by Dana White, president of the UFC. This is where you will train moves to use in fights much like Jobs in Mafia Wars. However, these directly effect your performance in fights. Training, of course, consumes Energy that refills over time or can be refilled using paid currency, or UFC Points (sound familiar?). There are four types of moves: Strike, Submission, Transition and Buff. These moves can be mastered for increased effect and extra bonuses like more damage or Stamina recovery. Not to mention that training contributes to your experience gain too.
But so do fights, the core of UFC. Go in untrained, and the game's randomly chosen opponents-which happen to be real players--will mop the floor with you. Enter the Octagon prepared and you might have a chance. While you are fighting real players, it all happens asynchronously. Much similar to how you wouldn't know if a player iced you in Mafia Wars until your next log-in, you would not be aware of being KO'ed by an opponent until doing the same in UFC. And while the preparation for fights and the camp distinctions are certainly unique, the excitement stops there.
Fights are turn-based events in which each player is given five moves per round, which are chosen at random from a deck of move cards. The cards will fling themselves toward the opponents deck in a flourish of red and white depending on whether the attack landed. This automated process goes on until either a player is knocked out or players run out of Stamina. Each move drawn consumes a certain amount of the stat and when it's all gone, players get "gassed," meaning they're all out of oomph for attacks. From here, the player with the most health wins. In fact, this whole process can be skipped just to see the results immediately. It's as if THQ knew that players would get bored to tears of it.
UFC for Facebook gives players purpose to otherwise mundane tasks like training and interesting decisions to make like fighting camps and which moves to improve first. However, the fight portion of the game, like so many sports or action-based social games, fails to come off as even close as exciting to the source material. Even being able to choose which moves to employ during fights would have been enough for an engaging, skill-driven fight system. But what we get is a Facebook game backed by an enormous brand that, sadly, isn't terribly different than the rest.
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