UFC 2009 Undisputed

Key events

EA Sports MMA 2 sunk by Strikeforce sale?

UFC owner snaps up rival league.

The future of EA Sport's fledgling MMA franchise looks bleak after the UFC brand snapped up rival operator Strikeforce, upon which the publisher's 2010 brawler was based.

THQ may scrap annual UFC policy

After disappointing sales of 2010 game.

THQ may axe its policy of releasing a UFC game every year after the last game in the mixed martial arts simulation series sold fewer copies than expected.

THQ pins money-hopes on WWE

Reports thin sales for thin quarter.

THQ has posted depleted sales for the quarter ending 30th September, but has reassured investors with promises of imminent money-winners - particularly WWE SmackDown vs Raw - in the future.

Xbox 360 vs. PS3 Face-Off: Round 21

Xbox 360 vs. PS3 Face-Off: Round 21

Wolf, BF1943, Virtua Tennis, Juarez, GI Joe, Fight Night, UFC, Overlord II.

The cross-platform console games having been gradually piling up over the summer, and it's about time the decks were cleared to best ready ourselves for the upcoming Q4 gaming tsunami. On this particular occasion, eight recent titles are put to the test, including our very first multi-format PSN/XBLA face-off.

As is the norm, the analyses are backed up with a comprehensive range of assets: full 24-bit RGB framebuffer dumps of each game (including 1080p shots where supported on PS3), embedded comparison videos using the very best in h264 compression, along with new high-definition clickthroughs in order to get the full picture. These Eurogamer Face-Off features have been gradually evolving over time, and once more the range of available data has increased: discrete frame-rate and v-sync readings have been added to the HD videos.

Onto the gaming line-up then:

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THQ: Natal to launch late next year

THQ: Natal to launch late next year

Plus: UFC to expand onto handhelds.

THQ boss Brian Farrell has said he expects Project Natal to be released "late next year".

His statement was made during a financial earnings call (via Kotaku).

Farrell went on to say that he expects "a price cut would be in order by at least two of the three manufacturers" in the future. When pressed, he added that a PS3 snip in the range of $100 "wouldn't surprise us".

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Moore hits back at UFC copycat calls

MMA will bring "innovation, authenticity".

EA Sports boss Peter Moore has brushed off UFC copycat allegations by explaining that Mixed Martial Arts has been in development for at least two years already.

UFC is "at war" with Electronic Arts

"EA told us, 'You're not a real sport.'"

The president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship has declared the organisation is "at war" with Electronic Arts - but says they started it.

THQ tackling UFC 2009 cheaters

Multiplayer patch coming soon.

THQ is working on a patch to stop people cheating by disconnecting from UFC 2009 Undisputed online bouts when they are about to lose.

UFC 2009: Undisputed

UFC 2009: Undisputed

A challenger appears.

Why isn't the UFC as popular as boxing? Are the MMA (mixed martial arts) fighters of the UFC not superior in overall combat, demonstrating that fighters of a single discipline invariably have inherent weaknesses when their respective rulebooks are thrown out of the window? Well, the UFC certainly fields some of the world's most talented combatants, but it doesn't always deliver the most entertaining fights. For every bloody slugfest - where two stand-up fighters beat each other senseless for three rounds - we get a first-round submission finish, where a dominant ground fighter trips up his opponent before forcing him to submit with some manner of ankle or arm lock. An impressive demonstration of hand-to-hand combat, yes, but not as entertaining as seeing someone knocked out with a tornado kick to the face.

In videogame terms, the challenge Yuke's faces with UFC 2009 is even more daunting. Gamers, rather than being limited to what the human body is physically capable of, can dragon punch a giant Russian wrestler 40 feet into the air. With a character wearing little more than an Elvis costume, they can shrug off several hits from a claymore - whilst wielding nunchaku with even more flair than the late Bruce Lee himself. Comparatively, a UFC game must toe the line of a simulator like Fight Night. Its value is measured on how well it represents the sport, but it must also be entertaining to play. Thankfully, then, UFC 2009 is a more enjoyable experience in terms of tightness and entertainment than any wrestling or boxing game I've ever played (with the notable exception of Fighting Mania).

Undisputed's fighting system focuses on the six main standing and ground styles used in the UFC. On their feet fighters have a proficiency in boxing, kickboxing or Muay Thai. And whilst grappling or wrestling on the floor, fighters can utilise techniques from wrestling, judo or Brazilian jiu-jitsu. The dual styles of your chosen fighter generally dictate your best chance for victory. If your style is kickboxing and judo, you'll be able to zone your opponent with long-range kicks, and should you get in close, you'll have the means to throw them to the ground for a submission. In contrast, Muay Thai and Brazilian jiu-jitsu is all about in-close fighting with deadly knees to the face. And if a judoka or wrestler takes you to the ground, jiu-jitsu gives you the means to dominate with counters and submissions - even if in the defending position.

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UFC 2009 Undisputed

Stop trying to hit me and hit me!

Back when weekends involved nothing more than GoldenEye and Mario Kart, I remember renting a Dreamcast after my stingy parents refused to upgrade my N64. One of the games that came in the box was the intriguing Ultimate Fighting Championship. As a group, my friends and I had a fair amount of experience with Tekken 3 and WWF War Zone, but UFC was unlike anything else. The standing combat was a less flamboyant Tekken, but the intricacy of the ground game eluded us almost entirely. If one player managed to pin the other to the floor, frantic button-mashing ensued, with the dominant fighter usually battering his opponent for a KO. It clearly had depth that rewarded skill and good timing, but ultimately I was too smitten with Soul Calibur to care.

UFC stars dumped for refusing THQ

Wouldn't sign away likeness rights.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship has dumped some of its most promising stars for refusing to sign lifelong image-replication deals for the THQ series of official videogames.

UFC 2009 Undisputed

The Ultimate Fighter?

It was human burger bar Elvis Presley who, in 1964, sang the immortal lines: "Viva Las Vegas turnin' day into night-time/ Turnin' night into daytime/ If you see it once/ You'll never be the same again." Apparently, American songwriter Doc Pomus wrote these lyrics having never been anywhere near Sin City. He knew enough to know better. With its signature sprawl of mega-resorts scattered through the arid desert basin of Nevada like toys across a sandpit, Vegas beggars belief.

THQ reveals UFC 2009: Undisputed details

THQ reveals UFC 2009: Undisputed details

MMA fighter already in training.

Those of you who like a bit of ultimate fighting will be pleased to hear that THQ has announced a new UFC game.

Ultimate Fighting Championship 2009: Undisputed is the latest in series of games based around the leading mixed martial arts competition.

The latest one will feature more than 80 of the sport's top fighters as well as popular commentators, referees and of course 'octagon girls'. Photo-realism has been bandied about with regard to the graphics - watch the trailer to see for yourself.

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THQ unveils Legends of Wrestlemania

THQ unveils Legends of Wrestlemania

Plus new UFC game due in spring.

THQ has torn the Spandex pants off a fresh WWE game only for PS3 and Xbox 360.

It's called Legends of Wrestlemania and will launch alongside the annual sporting entertainment event in March 2009.

The best bit is that it lets you play as all the old heroes from the golden era of wrestling, and so will appeal to people like us who, would you believe, don't actually watch wrestling any more.

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