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UFC Undisputed 2010 - - Preview

UFC Undisputed 2010 Screenshot - 88568

As the crowd disperses throughout the sold out arena, THQ waits in the backstage eagerly awaiting their theme song to kick start their second entry into the sport of mixed martial arts. Fans are shouting what they want to see and it’s apparent the hype has increased after the stellar performance in their debut in 2009.

One fan shouts out, “Give me cage control or give me death!”

Little does that fan know that THQ has that move already packed in their repertoire for their 2010 installment and will execute it with grand fashion. It’s with preparation such as this that gives evidence that THQ has their heads on straight and are ready to give the fans everything they have pleaded for in their second title.

The cage control is going to be one of the lauded features of 2010 and, frankly, it works well in relation to fighters who want to smother their opposition. When in the clinch, fighters can push and pull their opponents in directions that are favorable to their offense. Let’s say you are using Tito Ortiz and are enduring the blunt end of Shogun Rua’s striking to the point of a broken nose, cut underneath the eye and blood spurting from your mouth. Well, if you can manage to grab Rua for a clinch, you can push him into the fence and relax for a breather. If you want to go on the assault, you can use the cage to assist in a takedown or throw knees into Rua’s side to test the cardio of the Brazilian fighter.

The cage control is one of many things that THQ has up their sleeve for UFC Undisputed 2010. If a fighter is dazed, they can potentially lean against the cage to keep the fight standing. It’s within this stance that returning fans may find that cage control could lead to fighting against tougher competition as the player in the fazed (grayed out screen) stance is prone to damage as if they were lying on the ground. So while the cage is there for a safety net, it’s also a brutal tool in aiding one player to get the fight to the ground or using Muay Thai.

THQ isn’t only preparing cage control, but they are readying themselves for making it through a tournament in one piece. New to this year’s title is the ability to create and jump into online and offline tournaments of up to 16 competitors. While the demo only featured four fighters (Rashad Evans, Rampage Jackson, Shogun Rua and Lyoto Machida), the tournaments are bound to be one of the most popular additions to this year’s title. THQ doesn’t want players sitting around on their hands as they watch a match get simulated; players are eligible to watch the CPU v CPU matches in their entirety. For fight fans who don’t know much about Roy Nelson’s gameplan, they could watch him take down Kimbo in the tournament and exploit his weakness in the upcoming match.

The only issue with the CPU v CPU matches was that the fighters didn’t behave like they would have in real life. This is only a small issue, but when Machida is striving for a takedown on Evans – and does so multiple times in a row – it has to be pointed out.

In rebuttal though, each fighter stands dynamically different than the other (Machida has his karate stance, Shogun with his guard up high to make room for high kicks, etc.) and are associated with signature moves that are unique only to that specific fighter. No longer will fighter A feel like a palette swap with fighter B – they look different, they fight different. Enough said.

Before THQ heads out to the octagon to face off their new opponent that is set to make its first ever debut in the genre (hint: EA MMA), THQ has determined that they wouldn’t throw in new fighters and a few features and call it a day. The ground game has been revised with no more button-mashing the face buttons for submissions or takedowns, fighters are able to switch between submission holds (Triangle Choke to Arm Bar being a smooth transition), and new positions have been added in along with old ones being tweaked to look different. From the mount, the top fighter now tucks his face closely to the downed opponent’s chest and is able to ignite for elbows and punches to the face. Also, it needs to be asserted that the fighters from the mount are still able to attack the mid-section of their opponent, but it’s more around the likes of peppering them with punches to the kidney rather than going all out on their abdomen.

THQ has a long entrance ahead of them and will continue to show their fans that they are ready to step back into the octagon and eliminate their competition before they ever knew what hit them. Later this week, GameZone will be visiting THQ to see what they have in store for the multiplayer and career modes of UFC Undisputed 2010. If you have any question (there’s no such thing as a bad question, just a silly one) that you’d like answered, please feel free to e-mail me at dgrabowski@intergi.com.

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