I shouldn't be reviewing this game. I find the violence in mixed martial arts repulsive. But then again, this is just a video game. And surely the violence cannot compare to the ridiculously violent things I've done in other video games. I sunk a chainsaw into the midriff of a zombie the other day and tore it in two. So maybe I just might like UFC.
Considering I know nothing about MMA, a tutorial before I fight is appreciated.
Unfortunately, there seem to be a thousand different moves and by the time I get into the game I've forgotten everything except punching and kicking. I soon find that button mashing is an awfully inadequate tactic.
I spend half of my first fight with my opponent on top of me in what the commentators call "side control". I don't appear able to get myself some of this side control, or the equally intriguing sounding "ground and pound". I don't recall either being in the tutorial.
Then the guy elbows me in the head and I get knocked out.
Surely you can't elbow a guy in the head? If he can do that, why can't I bite or eye-gouge? Despite appearing to be mindless violence, there are apparently rules in UFC.
Armed with what I learned in my first fight (nothing), I challenge my nemesis (some Swedish guy) to a rematch.
The second fight starts much the same as the first. I punch and kick the guy for a wee bit, but before long he tackles me and gets me in a cuddle on the mat (more ground and pound?).
But then I cut him in the face (did I manage to sneak a knife into the octagon?). And he starts bleeding on the mat. "Get in," I scream. But somehow the Swedish chap gets up. Not so fast, I say and kick him in the head. He is dazed and so I go in with a really strong punch. And I knock him out! Victory!
It's amazing when you knock them out - but it is a challenge getting there. Executing moves is ridiculously complex. All the buttons are required and you'll need to push most of them at once to do anything beyond punches and kicks. You're going to want to revisit the tutorial or take on challenges to hone your skills before heading back in to the octagon.
The fighting moves are fluid and natural, but while the fighters are impressively life-like in their movements, their faces are life-less, with these dead, zombie eyes.
There are loads of fighters, including Samoan New Zealander Mark Hunt, and you can even unlock martial arts legend Bruce Lee. And unlike a lot of games, you can play as female fighters. So it does have gender equality going for it - cool.
If you like watching two people bash the crap out of each other in real life, you will like EA Sports UFC.
If MMA is not your thing, this game is not for you. Unless you somehow manage to knock someone out, in which case you will probably love it.
Xbox One, PS4