Word on the street (Wall Street, that is) is that UFC Undisputed 2010 didn’t sell nearly as well as the previous game. There could be a few reasons for that, chief among them that people already had their UFC thirst quenched, so to speak: it was genuinely exciting to play a game with the modern roster (the last game before UFC Undisputed 2009 came out in 2004). The question now becomes, is the world ready for yet another MMA game? I speak not of EA Sports MMA but of Supremacy MMA, a game being developed for the Xbox 360 and PS3 by Kung Fu Factory, published by 505 Games.
Note that, despite looking high and low, I could not find the game at E3. Maybe I’m blind or maybe I was too busy waiting in line to see Dusty Rhodes, but I could not find the booth. So this isn’t a reaction to the game, but more of a reaction to the idea of the game.
You figure the average MMA fan is merely a UFC fan. To the people who watch pay-per-views with their friends once a month, MMA = UFC. Other leagues like Strikeforce or Dream don’t exist to these people. It’d be like expecting people to be familiar with some indy football league in addition to the NFL. Or, to make a fun science comparison: the UFC is like the Sun in the daytime sky: it’s so damn bright, so damn big, and so damn close to Earth that it blocks out all other starlight.
If EA Sports MMA does well it’s because EA, the largest video game publisher on the planet, will spend an incredible amount of money promoting the game. (It helps that the game isn’t half bad, either.) EA Sports MMA isn’t going to fly off the shelves because people are dying to re-create Overeem v. Rogers. Go into your local sports bar and mention the name Alistair Overeem and you’ll find people asking you if he plays for the Team USA soccer team. Go into that same bar and say the name Brock Lesnar and people will instantly know who you’re talking about.
Never mind the rumor that refuses to die, that EA will throw Dana White & Co. a giant sack of money for the UFC license in the coming year.
I guess all I’m trying to say is: to the average gamer out there, is there enough general interest in MMA to warrant three games when the latest game based on the biggest license didn’t even sell?
I would be shocked if that’s the case.
As for Spuremacy MMA, well, I see, judging by the teaser trailer, that it’s shooting for a more “aggressive” feel, which I patently have zero time for. I much prefer to treat my MMA consumption like a chess match between two well-trained athletes rather than OOO HEAVY METAL MUSIC FAST CARS GIRLS BLAAAH. That type of mentality will only hold the sport back, methinks.
Good luck to everyone involved, of course, but it seems unlikely that there are enough MMA fans to support three games at the same time.