UFC: Sudden Impact
Once you start, you go about choosing a dojo to train at, which essentially dictates what kind of fighting style you'll practice. Every aspect of your training and story is told through barely-coherent-talking-head boxes at the bottom of the screen that are really only useful for gameplay tips and not much else.
Additionally, you really don't ever get to actually do anything very interesting in the mode. Each aspect of your training requires you to perform a specific challenge, such as landing three left punches or taking an opponent down twice in a match, and more. Winning challenges earns you stat points and new moves.
Unfortunately, the list of actual challenges is fairly short, and they repeat from year to year. Every once in a while, you'll be presented with an evaluation challenge at the end of the month, but you don't actually do anything during these evaluations except hit a punching bag in a timing-based minigame or you do nothing at all while your created character sits in the corner of the screen, punching and kicking at thin air, which is supposed to represent sparring against another recruit or fighter.
To be fair, at the end of each year, you do get to take part in a real UFC-style tournament against a bunch of generic characters, though the outcome of the tournament doesn't seem to have any real bearing on whether or not you graduate to the UFC level.
Additionally, graduating to the UFC level only means that you can use your created fighter in the remainder of the game's modes. Once you've hit year three, if you make it to the UFC, the mode ends. Again, the idea of a career-based training mode to design your own fighter is a great idea, but Sudden Impact's career mode barely scratches the surface of a mode of this type's potential, and the mode ultimately fails to be anything more than a tepid, dull waste of time.
Fans of the previous Ultimate Fighting Championship games don't need to run out to buy Sudden Impact, because chances are, you already own a better version of this exact game. Though the UFC games up to this point have always managed to sport some generally attractive graphics, Sudden Impact's visuals are decidedly lackluster. Most of the basic character models for the fighters look roughly the same as they always have, though the faces seem a bit lower in resolution, by comparison, and the body types seem more exaggerated and less-to-scale than in previous games.
The fighting arenas look almost exactly like they always have, and nearly all of the same fighting animations from earlier games have been recycled as well, save for the animations for the few, new fighting positions. Overall, the look of the game just seems extremely dated.
The same can be said for the game's less-than-stellar audio, which mainly just consists of the standard theme songs that play during fighter entrances, the usual grunts and impact sounds of punches and kicks, and the flat ring announcing of Bruce Buffer. When it comes right down to it, UFC: Sudden Impact is just another languid translation of the exact same game you've been playing since the days of the Dreamcast.
Sudden Impact is pretty much on autopilot in every aspect of its execution, presenting just the bare minimum to make a playable UFC game. If you own any other entry in the UFC franchise, you don't need to own Sudden Impact, because the minimal number of additions--such as the few added fighting positions and the incredibly lame career mode--do absolutely nothing to further the UFC name in any meaningful direction.
Get the latest news and videos for this game daily, no spam, no fuss. An addition made to Sudden Impact' s gameplay is an added focus on fence positioning. When backing an opponent into the cage that surrounds the Octagon ring, attempting a grapple maneuver will put the player into one of several different possible positions, including a standing face-off as well as a special ground-mount, where the bottom fighter's head is literally pressed against the cage. The overall gameplay is also slightly faster in comparison to the previous games.
In Arcade mode, the player choose a fighter and fights against CPU controlled opponents for an unlimited number of fights. On Versus, up to two players fight against each other.
In Story Mode, the player can create his own mixed martial artist. The player start as a street fighter who is found by a MMA trainer. The trainer sets the player on the path of making it to the UFC within three years. The player then chooses one dojo out of eight, each with their own fighting styles.
Each aspect of the training requires the player to perform a specific challenge, such as landing three left punches or taking an opponent down twice in a match, and more. Winning challenges earns stat points and new moves. At the end of each month, the player will be presented with an evaluation challenge, which varies between hitting a punching bag in a timing-based minigame or a simulation of the created fighter sparring against another recruit or fighter. In December of each year, the player take part in an amateur Open Weight UFC-style tournament against a number of generic characters.
The mode ends after three years of training are completed and the player successfully reaches the UFC. Additionally, graduating to the UFC level means that the created fighter will be available in the remainder of the game's modes.
In Champion Road, the player picks a fighter and must win four fights before having a title match. On winning, the player receives a Silver Belt. If the player choose the same fighter again, Champion Road will become Legend Mode and it is needed to win nine matches before receiving a title shot and winning the Gold Belt.