What we want from Fight Night Champion

Better story + better punch impacts = better game

Today, EAannounced a brand-new addition to theirelite boxing series -Fight Night Champion. Little has beengiven away about this new bout ofpunching except for the following...

-LaunchETA is2011
-There will be 60-65 fighters included in the roster
- Fight Night Championwill'break the mould of what is expected of a single-player sports game, where players will be introduced to an entirely new way to step between the ropes and experience the drama, emotion, excitement and tragedyof the world of championshipboxing'. And according to Gameplay Producer,Brian Hayes [Source:
IGN] 'it's something people won't expect from an EA sportsgame'

With this in mind, and while we can fantasy about what's going to be in Fight Night Champion before our dreams are smashed, we decided to put together a wish list of what we want. DING! DING! Let's go...


Better contacts



Above: "FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU..."

No, not of the lenses variety but the fist to face explosions. Fight Night has always nailed the haymaker impacts to great effect - contorted faces looking like Jim Carrey being hit with a bat - but the jabs and straight crosses felt weak. Super-fast but ultimately unfulfillling - a complete contrast to UFC Undisputed's meatiness. If EA can up the power stakes on each boxers standard arsenal then Fight Night Champion could reign supreme once more.

Training minigames


It's not that Fight Night's minigames have been particularly shit or anything, it's just that there are only limited ways to beef up your character and they're all present from the off. However, we would like more variety in the regimes you need to work with to spice things up.


Above: Because no boxing feature is complete without at least one Rocky snap

This may sound dull as dishwater, but how about a full set of weight-lifting machines to play with? Each one with a different method to progress, thus catering for everyone. Or a bike to up your endurance. Saying that, boxers are forever running up hills and steps to increase stamina maybe these could be options? The moral of this entry is that there needs to be more fun stuff to do in-between scraps.


A bigger roster


One of our biggest gripes with the series is each iterations fighter line-up. While worthy boxers such as Roy Jones Jr, Mike Tyson and of course G.O.A.T. Muhammad Ali all make an appearance more contemporary sluggers seem to miss the cut. Startling really since EA are famed for license grabbing. Where's Amir Khan, David Haye and Nikolai Valuev? It took DLC just to bring in the Klitschko brothers. Let's get this sorted EA.


Above: One for the ladies


A more engaging story


If you've ever seenThe Contender TV series then you'll know what we're angling at here. for those of you who don't, it's essentially a reality TV show where the contestants go through rigorous training camps and emotional turmoil as they fight for a place on the professional circuit. Imagine the Rocky movies condensed into a television special. It's packed full of emotional problems like a father trying to earn a living for his mother/daughter/wife and solemn shots of them shadow-boxing in-between the floods of tears.


Above: Taking part in a tough amateur tournament could really add a new dimension to things

It sounds cheesy as hell but the format may just work in Fight Night Champion. After all, the devs have already claimed that it will feature 'something people won't expect from an EA sportsgame', so it could happen. We'll have to wait and see, but at the very least we'd like far more build up to bigfights and rivalries that could follow you around and shape your career likeGatti versus Ward.

You've read the piece, now have your say. What would you do to make Fight Night Champion amazing or do you think it's fine as it is?Are there more features you'd add to make it more compelling? And if you're not a boxing fan anyway, whatcould the game provide that would swayyou to give it a shot. Place yoursuggestions below, you beautiful people.

July 20, 2010

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hi, I’m Nathan. You may remember me from such websites as, erm, this one circa 2011. Been hustling in games for over a decade and write for Official PlayStation, Official Xbox, Gamesmaster and more.
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