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SuperWidzy

Been playing videogames for over 20 years and I have pretty much owned every console going. If I'm not playing games, I've probably got my head in a engine bay... You can follow me @SuperWidzy2 on twitter.

UFC 4 Review (PS4)

  • Genre: Fighting, MMA
  • Developer|Publisher: EA Sports Swiss Sarl
  • Age Rating: PEGI 16 | ESRB T
  • Price: UK £59.99 | US $59.99
  • Release Date: 14th August 2020

No review code was provided. This was purchased by myself, and my full opinion based on a full comprehensive playthrough.

I’m a big fan of MMA in general. I follow UFC, Bellator and of course Cage Warriors which is by product of UFC for the UK MMA scene plus many more. I have played all the UFC games going back to when THQ were behind the gloves. This is the fourth entry from EA with the UFC. Lets find out if UFC 4 stands the 5 rounds with me eh?

Career

UFC 4 does have a career mode which all fans of UFC will mostly be putting their skills to the test. Just as of late with other EA Sports games, the career mode does have acting from your trainer. Even you’re very own created fighter has a voice, bar that be a few words, but its still something I guess! Career mode will see you rise from the amateur leagues to the glitz and glamour that the UFC has to offer. If you lose your opportunity to sign a Dana White contract with his contender series, you can opt to fight in the WFA until you earn another attempt at the UFC. Once you are in the UFC, you fight, get ranked and earn the chance to fight against the champion of your chosen weight divison.

You can cause rivaliries with other fighters causing the hype to increase. Via hype, you can earn more money and fans too. Create your very own rivalry such as the famous ones like: Liddell vs Ortiz, Lesnar vs Mir, Mioic vs Cormier (literally just finished this wekeend gone at UFC 252) and more.

Gameplay

UFC 4 gameplay is spot on. Each button is easily mapped out on the corresponding buttons. Like any fighting games, practise makes perfect which still applies here. Regardless of saying that you can just pick up and play. EA are still little short on the ground and pound game, its never been their strongest point. Throwing punches and leg kicks are just as fluid and great as per usual. The transitions are better, fluid and precised too. Going from half guard to side control to even say top mount is easy to pull off. Defending from these transitions can be daunting at first, but you really have to watch your stamina to be even able to successfully get out of those tricky situations. Of course you can KO them out, TKO, submission or simply win by points. With all the different fighting styles at your disposal, you can really create something unique with your fighter. Experiment, explore and have fun.

To improve your skills, simply keep landing the moves on the opponent to improve say, superman punch, spinning elbow, roundhouse kick etc. It’s level is a 5 star tier rating system per move. The more you use the move, the better it becomes. You earn evolution points from training in career mode. These points will allow you to upgrade your health such as chin, recovery. Compared to previous UFC games, this system works and is a welcome change too.

With the more simplified controls this time around. Submissions are more easier to pull off, especially to newcomers. When you do submit someone it is a great feeling, like a one punch KO never gets old either.

Graphics, sound, performance

The visuals are quite good and this shows once you are in the Octogon. However the fans look nasty for a game such as this, but then again, EA hasn’t always been great in this department and a few fighter likeness look half arsed?

It can let it down really, which is kinda of weird and disappointing. Some fighter likeness is spot on whilst the rest is a mix bag of fruit. Maybe upcoming patch could fix this issue perhaps. The rest of the game is rather good in the visual department and continues the eye candy which EA have done with this game and previous instalments.

Each hit with a punch, kick or takedown is accurate with the sound and not something out of a comic book. When you land a punch for example, KO material let’s say. You can hear it connect which does makes you go woooah! UFC 4 does come with licensed tracks such as eminem with godzilla, which I play all the time or a bit of Stormzy. The usual UFC themes are also in the game and lets not forget Bruce Buffer, the voice of the Octogon. Daniel Cormier and Jon Anik are the commentators this time around as Joe Rogan hated his experience of doing voiceover work.

To be honest I haven’t actually come across any bad framerate or glitches, freezes etc with my time with UFC 4. Sometimes when you are in the mix of it when fighting, it does however become slightly choppy for a brief second and rectifies itself and you can happy continue pummeling your opponent into the ground. Overall its a well presented game, not being something it isn’t and just sticking to what the UFC does best.

Difficulty

You can select which difficulty you can play on. I played on roughly hard for me personally. I like a challenege to feel at any moment you could win or lose, or have a massive battle and come out victorious. If you want a true authentic experience, the harder difficulty settings is what you want to opt for. Please bare in mind, the AI is clever and damn right outrageous at times. Watch your stamina, and I would improve your health skills to max via those evolution points you earn in training or hit a new level with a certain move.

Conclusion

Overall, UFC 4 is a good game. With career mode that can get stale over a period of time. You do have fight now, online and blitz mode to play around with. The online netcode seems pretty stable and I havent expereinced anything bad just yet. If your preorder the game you will receive Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury to be playable in the game. To me that screams out a new fight night, as there is definitely a market for it! UFC 4 boasts a huge roaster of fighters with the list of weight divisions at its disposal, so you can always go into career mode and play in different weight divisions.

With no other MMA games on console other than UFC. It will provide many hrs of enterainment and fill that fighting game needs which is true to the sport.

Verdict

A great fighting game and keeps true to the sport. The simplified controls is a welcome to newcomers to the MMA world of UFC on consoles and not feeling daunted by the complexity which this game has to offer. If you want fun and be able to fulfill that long awaited match been Joshua and Fury thanks to a preorder bonnus. UFC 4 is exactly what you need!

8/10

Gaming Square Exclusive: PND Mustard interview

We sat down with PND Mustard, known as Jake Neal. Mustard and his brother Ketchup are known for pro commentating on Mortal Kombat and even competitively. We asked questions to Mustard which we hope you all enjoy!

GS: Hey guys thanks for allowing us to speak you. How you both been in these unpredecented times and what been doing to keep yourselves busy?

M – I’ve been well thanks! Despite being in lockdown due to covid I’ve been able to keep creating content and commentating events from home so I’ve had no problems keeping busy.

GS: So, lets begin. What got you pair into fighting games in the first place?

M – Mortal Kombat was our first FG we ever played as kids, but we did play things such as Tekken 2 and Street Fighter EX2+ and Killer Instinct, though we were definitely mainly MK kids, MK9 was the first Fighting Game that got us into competitive.

GS: Personally for me Mortal Kombat was like, wow! When I saw it for the first time on the megadrive for example. I couldnt fathom what to say. What made you guys fall in love with MK, what was so special about it compared to other fighting games at that time for you both?

M – To be honest MK was just the most fun for us, the visuals, the audio, the characters, we just found it really cool overall.

GS: You guys played it competitively, how was the transition from pro competitors to pro commentators?

M – Going from pro player to commentator wasn’t as hard as we initially thought but it was still a change, the main thing for me was how your outlook on your gameplay changes, you’re no longer playing to improve as a priority you’re ultimately just trying to learn so you can equip that information on commentary, however we also started grinding as content creators around the same time so that really helped things too

GS: Whats your opinion on the FGC today compared to 10 years ago?

M – The scale of things is the biggest change from 10 years ago to now, everything is bigger/more more players, more tournaments, more money, more games, everything has just been dialed way up, which is great in my opinion as it shows much growth.

GS: From MK9, MK10 to now MK11. I personally feel the NRS scene/community has grown. Do you feel the tournaments has continued that growth?

M – You can basically take my previous answer and apply it here, everything is just bigger and in higher number, one big change for the nrs scene however was the netcode improvement to MKX, ever since then the online experience has been useful for players to improve and make a name for themselves in online tournaments, which definitely helps in the grand scheme of things.

GS: I have to applaud you guys with Hyper Combo. Seeing as we are all local, it was great to finally come out and experience what you guys were cooking. How do you feel about HC? And what’s the latest on the HC front and will we see it returning anytime soon be that online other than local?

M – Hyper Combo has been one of my proudest achievements in the FGC and it certainly isn’t only my doing! We have a great team of dedicated organizers and regular attendees that make it what it is. We always have plans to make things bigger and better though things have hit a standstill until things become safe to do again due to covid. But we’ll be back eventually absolutely.

GS: If you can, whats your favourite MK games to the least favourite?

M – I’ve always found it hard to pick my specific favorite MK, but more often than not I lean towards MK9, it’s just fun to play and has such a special place in my heart for how much I enjoyed it and what it meant to my progress as an individual in the mk world, MK9 and MK Shaolin Monks are my two favorites!

My least favorite is MK vs DC, to this day the only MK game that I actively do not like playing at all.

GS: Lets talk about the new MK movie! From a fan perspective Im sure they will get things right and of course there always be one that will hate it because it hasn’t stay true to the lore. What do you guys reckon?

M – I think it’s too early to tell what the MK movie is going to be like, we can speculate but it’s easy to set up false expectations or apprehensiveness, I’m just keeping an open mind and looking forward to seeing it, the cast is stellar so I’m optimistic, but we all know how videogame movies often turn out. I guess we’ll see!

GS: Moving to Injustice, another cracking game produced by Netherealm. Injustice 1 set the bar, Injustice 2 exceeded by miles, especially competitively. Can we see Injustice 3 going to a place where perhaps MK11 fell short of doing?

M – To be honest I disagree with the wording of this question, Injustice is a solid fighting game franchise and offers something completely different to MK, but that also means that it won’t have the same appeal universally and vice versa. MK11 continues to be one of the best selling and heaviest supported games NRS has ever made, as Injustice 2 was before it. I think it’s less about picking up where games slip up and more about the ongoing continuation of growth from game to game. That being said I actually don’t know if I think that we’ll be seeing Injustice 3 soon, NRS have said many times they want to break the cycle of a new game every two years and this could definitely be the case from what we’ve seen.

GS: What characters would you like to see Injustice 3 that haven’t been in the series yet?

M – I’m not Sure huge DC guy so my character requests haven’t always been so heavy, but I’m a big batman fan so I’d LOVE to see Mr Freeze, Clay face, maybe Judge Dredd as a guest due to the comics link? Could be cool!

GS: Going back to the UK FGC scene. As a whole, do you think more can be done to make it as popular like it is in America, Japan and S.Korea?

M – I think the UKFGC is doing just fine honestly, you have to remember that the UK is absolutely tiny in comparison to North America/Asia, considering the UKs size as a country I think the scale of things is more than healthy, VSF remains to be the biggest tournament in Europe, almost every fighting game out right now has at least one tip level player from the UK with impressive results and the community overall is great, always growth is nice but I don’t think the UK has anything at all to worry about.

GS: Where can we keep upto date on what you guys are doing and is there any future projects you got going on?

M – Social media is the easiest place to find us! Twitter @PNDMustard @PNDKetchup We’re always staying busy in the content space so we’ll always be around!

We greatly appreciate Jake for doing this. You can catch Mustard and Ketchup on twitch too!

We hope you enjoyed the read. Expect more content from Gaming Square, stay tuned!

Control Ultimate Edition Annouced and no free upgrade to PS5 & Xbox Series X with the standard copy

Control Ultimate editon has been announced for PS4, Xbox One and PC. Steam will be getting the game first on August 27th and the 10th of September for the rest of the platforms.

If you own a copy of Control and all the expansions, you wont be getting the free upgrade to PS5 and the Xbox Series X.

According to their FAQ on 505 games, this is what it says.

“Will Control Ultimate Edition give me access to Control on Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5? We will offer a free next-gen digital upgrade for those who buy Control Ultimate Edition on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. For more information on eligibility, stay tuned to our website and community channels.

“What if I purchased the original version of Control previously? The free upgrade path to Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 version of Control is only available for Control Ultimate Edition.”

Source: Eurogamer

Halo Infinite delayed 2021

343 Industries has today confirmed Halo Infinite will be delayed till 2021. Announced via their twitter, they want to make sure the team has adequate time to deliver a Halo experience that meets their vision.

With the gameplay footage reveal last month. Halo Infinite got off to a rocky start with the public via its visuals. It has came to no surprise that Halo Infinite would get the inevitable delay. As Microsoft are definitely pushing the worlds most powerful console envelope, another dink in the release window with a game to really show off its capabilities come launch.

Source: Halo twitter

EA is removing fitness cards from FUT for FIFA 21

A welcome change to the formula of FUT is finally happening. Yes, fitness items is going to be no more for FIFA 21. Nothing has been mentioned about contracts for players you have brought from the transfer market place, packs you have purchased or via rewards.

Alongside fitness items, training items have also been given the boot.

“Fitness items have been a light management element in Ultimate Team since the very beginning,” EA said. “The decay of players’ fitness was put in the game originally to encourage rotation in the squad and to simulate some of the management decisions that football squads have to consider.”

“However, we’ve evaluated these mechanics and have decided that it wasn’t creating the desired effect in rotation and players were spending time doing a management action that was frequently required and, ultimately, not very fun.”

“So this year, while Fitness and Player Stamina will still be important factors inside of a match, dictating, for example, how much you can sprint and for how long, you will no longer have to manage that mechanic in the menus as well.”

Source: Eurogamer

Street Fighter Producer Yoshinori Ono leaving Capcom after 30 years

The Street Fighter series executive producer, Yoshinori Ono has today confirmed he is parting ways with Capcon after 30 years at the helm.

Ono, made the announcement via twitter thanking the people who he has worked with over the years and of course the Street Fighter fans all over the world. Ono said in his statment “I’ve been with the Street Fighter brand for a long time, experiencing good times, bad times, and even non-existent times. My heart is filled with appreciation to those players who’ve been giving warm and kind support on the brand especially little over the past decade or so as all the activities on the Street Fighter brand regained sunshine and grew its liveliness.”

He continues “And now, after serving almost 30 years at Capcom, I am leaving the company in this summer. This means that I will resign my position as the brand manager for Capcom’s various titles including Street Fighter.”

“Capcom staff in the new generation will continue taking care of the Street Fighter brand and leading the World Warriors,” he added.” And, I do believe that they will continue making Street Fighter extraordinary. I will look forward to seeing the new Street Fighter brand and how it’s going to be expanded, as just one of regular gamers next time.”

“trying to contact those whom I’ve gotten to work with in the past” about his resignation, but acknowledged “it’s quite difficult to reach out to all of the people I’ve associated without throughout my career for almost three decades”.

Personally, its sad news to see such iconic figure leaving a franchise that I have grown up with. From playing Street Fighter II on the megadrive all the way to current day consoles, Street Fighter V. I hope Yoshinori Ono wont be a stranger and all the best to his future endeavours.

Source: Yoshinori Ono twitter

Prehistoric Dude heading to consoles next week

Prehistoric Dude, developed by Ratalaika Games. Is heading to Nintendo Switch, Xbox and PS4 next week.

Prehistoric Dude is a metroidvania type game, explore the stone age and recover Dude’s ham.

Throughout the course of Dude’s adventure. You will be able to upgrade, fight bosses and explore different scenarios in a 8-bit style graphics.

Prehistoric Dude will be priced at $4.99 / € and £4.51 for the UK.

It will launch on:

  • PS4 America: August 11th
  • PS4 Europe: August 12th
  • Xbox One: August 12th
  • Nintendo Switch (NA & EU): August 14th

Source: Ratalaika Games press release

Street Fighter V Last Season details announced

Today, Capcom have announced the details for the very last Street Fighter V season pass via their live stream known as the summer update.

5 new characters have been announced with the last character yet to be revealed at a later update. As you can see below is the SFV Season 5 roadmap going into Fall 2021. For me personally, this is great to see and of course characters such as Dan and Oro returning!

Street Fighter league is expanding. Not just in the US, players from across the world will be participating in 3 vs 3 and become the best in the world. If you missed out watching the stream from earlier you can watch it below.

Another video for your viewing leisure is the first gameplay footage of Dan!

Source: Playstation Blog

Skater XL Review (Xbox One)

  • Genre: Extreme Sports, Skateboarding
  • Developer|Publisher: Easy Day Studios
  • Age Rating: PEGI 3 | ESRB Everyone (Mild blood)
  • Price: UK £34.99 | US $39.99
  • Release Date: 28th July 2020

No review code was provided. This was purchased by myself, and my full opinion based on a full comprehensive playthrough.

Gameplay

Lets grind straight into it shall we. Easy Day Studios have made a solid attempt at a skateboarding game. With its intuitive controls the player can use the left stick and right stick to go in any direction to move your feet individually. Such freedom can make certain tricks look epic and real too. Ollie and want to grind the handrail and do transitions? You can. Do you want to kickflip down a 12 step set of stairs to land on a rail and finish off into manual? You can. However… As much as the controls is its main star attraction. Most times the input doesn’t exactly register and you will end up in a crumbled mess on the floor.

You can make some brillaint set pieces as you can see below from my footage I have recorded.

Graphics, sound, performance

Skater XL isn’t the prettiest game to grace the Xbox, Playstation or PC. Again, if you were expecting eye candy then this game isnt it. Saying that it isnt a bad thing either as this game doesnt need to be spectactular. The graphics/visuals is good enough for me. The game does come with a tracklist from bands I have never heard off, which is good for those indie exposure, plus EDS (Easy Day Studios) is independant studio themselves. So please dont expect the tracklist to be like Tony Hawks Pro Skater 1 & 2 days.

The performance of the game can be hit and miss. The framerate drops like a sack of spuds at times and the game becomes all choppy as well. Not only some of these issues apparent, glitching underneath the map and smashing through walls and other items is rife. Shame, game performance is hindered by these issues but on the flip side the game is actually fun to play.

Difficulty

There is no difficulty. The only thing I can say about the ‘potential’ difficulty is the player. Constant playing and getting use to the controls is the best advice I can give on such a game. With both sticks being able to be used freely does create the possibility of great tricks like I have said previously, plus those great set pieces.

Conclusion

I would say overall Skater XL isnt a bad game. Rough around the edges, huge canvas to improve and add to the game. You can customize you’re character to the liking. The game does have licensed clothing from DC, Independant, Etnies, ES, Element and skateboards such as Blind (classic reaper, brings back memories when I use to skate awful lot in my youth) and even spitfire wheels. Yes, you can customize your skateboard with the griptape, trucks, wheels and the vinyl of the board itself. EDS has hit the customization to a T. With the above issues of performance, controls and the emptiness each map provides plus missed opportunties. Skater XL falls short, but, it has huge potential to be great when these improvements and more added content hits the game.

Verdict
Don’t forget to wear your helmet, elbow pads and kneepads as you will be falling off quite a bit. Skater XL is a nice fill with the lack of skateboarding games as of late, though less we speak about Tony Hawks Pro Skater 5 the better. Maybe wait until the game goes on sale in prep for the remaster of Tony Hawks Pro Skater 1 & 2 and of course Skate 4.
5/10