UFC on Xbox Live launches in under two months, letting anyone with Xbox Live stream pay-per-view fights right onto their Xbox 360. But beyond watching the fights live, you’ll also be able to view the fight cards for upcoming UFC events to make your picks. At any time before the PPV begins you can pick a winner, and guess whether it will be a victory via Knockout, Submission, or Decision. You can upload your choices to your Facebook page (a feature that might miss launch, but only slightly), letting you show off your picks to your friends and family.
Your Xbox Live friends, however, can get even more involved, with leaderboards that let you track your picks against theirs. UFC on Xbox Live will even show notifications on-screen during UFC events to keep you updated on your friends’ rankings to show who knows the sport the best.
There’s a similar competitive game available on the UFC’s website, but it’s much more complicated, asking players to choose the actual minute and round the win will take. Looking at two monstrous competitors and deciding how one will topple the other is fun for everyone, but figuring out the point in time it will take place is significantly more complicated. Removing this detail simplifies the choice, and makes it much more manageable to casual UFC fans. “We can expand it later,” said Mike Mahar, Producer on UFC for Xbox Live, “but it was a conscience decision we made to start it off more accessible.”
Being able to make these picks creates a level of gamification not found on any other Xbox Live entertainment services, which let the creators add another welcome feature: Achievements.
Sadly, Mahar wasn’t able to elaborate much on the details of these Achievements. He couldn’t confirm how many there would be, what they would be rewarded for, or if they would actually reward points at all – just that we will earn them through UFC on Xbox Live. Mahar told us that he, obviously, wants the Achievements to reward actual points, but he couldn’t confirm that they would just yet.
He explained that UFC on Xbox Live is an entirely new type of service, and that, unlike Netflix, it actually does have a competitive mechanic. The fact that there’s an actual game to it allows Achievements to be in the cards, but since it’s such a new concept for Microsoft they’re not 100% sure what they’re going to do with it just yet. We’re guessing they will just break it into seasons like they did for 1 vs. 100, which would let them adjust it every few months, but so far there’s no official word.
Oct 7, 2011