Community Review: Fight Night Champion

Community Review: Fight Night Champion

I just walked into the office this morning to find a copy of Fight Night Champion sitting on my desk, and I’m positively giddy. My plan this evening? Eat crap loads of Mi Goreng on toast and play this game until I collapse in an MSG-induced coma. Have any of you guys played it yet? Is it worth existing solely on a diet of starch to get more time with the game?

Despite the fact that some fans had issues, I really liked Fight Night Round 4 – loved it in fact. I spent ages building up the stats of my user created fighter, wasted hours trying to recreate Makunouchi Ippo from the ‘Hajime No Ippo’ anime/manga, smashed all my brothers in-law (including our Kotaku designer Ben White) in multiplayer. How does Fight Night Champion compare to its predecessors?

And how is the new single player campaign? I found myself quite intrigued by the whole storyline mode. I’ve had a couple of people say they’ve really fallen in love with that aspect of the game – what say you?

Let us know in the comments below.


  • I’m loving it, despite the fact I hated Fight Night 4.

    It takes me back to what I found fun about Fight Night 1 and 2: Beating the shit out of someone so badly their face is swollen, bloody, and landing 4 hits on their head after I knock them out.

    Brutal and Awesome.

  • This game has the potential to change the face of sports games forever. I have finished the single player champion campaign and it is brilliant. It adds a story and campaign with different challenges to a sports game

    I’d love to see a FIFA or Madden go down this path as well. Have the main game but also have an awesome hollywood style story 🙂

    The gameplay itself is off the hook as well. This is no doubt the best boxing game ever made. I am not the biggest fan of boxing but this game has taught me why boxers go for the gut instead of the head and proper boxing strategies as well.

    Can’t rave about this one enough.

  • I’ve only been playing the demo. But the game is growing on me. At first it seemed like the game was almost punishing me for trying to play in the most fun way (just throw haymaker after haymaker). I was pretty much getting my ass handed to me every fight using that technique. But after I figured out the blocking system, how to move around the ring effectively and counters, the fights started to feel like real bouts. I found myself actually strategizing and waiting for that one opportunity to land that knockout punch.

    I’ll probably pick this up when I’m not too broke.

  • It’s good, seems to appeal to both the arcadey people and the hard sim group as well, thanks to various option sliders.

  • This game is great. The added story and objectives in each fight make all the difference. Loved the bare knuckle boxing part as well. I also liked how it showed the greed and corruption in sports that people would never usually see. Two thumbs up

  • Actually it’s aimed squarely at the arcade fans to win them back. As for the sim – all finesse is gone. There is essentially “somewhere upper”, “roughly hooks” and “uppercuts” and it’s a matter of who can get the most hits in a combo they have no control over. The jab is now useless and for some reason body shots seem harder and leave you more exposed. Don’t get me wrong – it looks sensational and the Champion story is unique (not a game changer as stated above) but the ability to land exactly the shots you want, which was an acquired art in FN4, is now gone. I’ll keep playing as I have every title since Knockout Kings but it’s an over correction and the series hasn’t hit that sweet spot yet.

  • Champion Mode is truly excellent, it didn’t feel like it was just tacked on or an afterthought. The last fight was a bit annoying though.

    The fighting system feels great as well. Parries have pretty much been removed completely, so there’s no waiting for someone to punch into your guard so you can counter them. It’s all about movement and how you slip and avoid their shots, and taking advantage of their misses. One-hit knockdowns/KO’s are great fun to land as well, you really feel like you’ve hit at the perfect opportunity and are rewarded by seeing your opponent hit the ground like a sack of potatoes.

    So far though, Legacy Mode seems very similar to FNR4. You can’t auto-train anymore either which is a bit frustrating as I hate the training games. Choosing what aspects you want to put your XP into though (left hook/right hook/jab/chin/etc) is a nice touch to help shape your boxer how you like to play.

    Loving it so far!

  • Over a few hours of both Champion Mode and online play I am loving Fight Night Champion, as I did Round 4.

    The Champion mode is a breath of fresh air for a series limited by it’s subject matter. I do feel that an injustice has been done by introducing the face button punching as default. I guess there’s plenty of players out there who’d rather mash some buttons rather than calculate movement and punches via the total punch control. Each to thier own I guess.

    Round 4 saw a much more complicated punch control and in some ways it is still the better boxer. However, the sense of speed in Champion and the simplified control allow for a far more fluent boxing experience (provided you are selecting your punches as opposed to simply flailing around randomly stabbing the analogue stick any which way). The auto blocking is also something that irks me however I do not think that it detracts from the overall experience too much. It simply means you rely on your stats far more than your reaction speed.

    Presentation is much like previous iterations but there’s enough shine to make it look fresh. Coupled with the recognisable improvements to the character models everything seems to fit well and nothing seems to be out of place.

    2 things if any that bother me is the ref getting in the way when your fighting at the back half of the ring. It’s an unnecessary distraction and really irritating. The second is when viewing the between round animations, I’ve noticed that no water comes out of the water bottles, ever. Surely in today’s age of gaming we can expect to see some form of liquid representation when all other animations are of such high quality? Not so much game breakers but a thorn in the thumb of an otherwise engrossing and extremely enjoyable experience.

    My favourite thing about Fight Night Champion apart from the newly introduced Champion mode as a whole?

    The bare knuckle boxing rounds in prison are extremely satisfying. The developers have done a fantastic job portraying the gritty, unwelcoming prison feel. Just the look of the Arayan Brotherhood characters does enough to instill a sense of danger and/ or hatred in the game world and assuming it is played on a hard difficulty, would certainly be one of the most enjoyable pieces of the game.

    I’ve yet to discover that you can play bare knuckle fights either online or exhibition yet but if not I will return to Champion mode time and again for the bare knuckle bouts.

    In short:

    Loving it.

  • First let me say I love this game….but EA has sunk to a new (greedy) low. If you play online world champion you gain exp points when you win or lose which you can then use to upgrade your boxer. Fair enough right? Or you could just go and buy exp points and use them to upgrade your boxer. So basically if you want to be competitive online you must spend money. No longer are you rewarded just from playing the game you are rewarded for how much you pay. I hope this is not the future of gaming.

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