Supremacy MMA Review
The premise of Supremacy MMA is fairly sound: take the much-loved sport of mixed martial arts, remove a majority of the rules and let the blood fly. It sits uneasily between two epic franchises – THQ’s brilliant UFC Undisputed series and Mortal Kombat. It entirely misses the point of either.
Supremacy MMA’s main story mode consists of picking a character from a gallery of hard-nuts who each specialise in a single fighting style. That each combatant only has one style effectively turns MMA into just ‘MA’.
You can certainly have a wrestling guy going up against a karate guy, say, but the adaptability of a real MMA fighter is nowhere to be seen. This is the least of the game’s problems, however. Clearly developed on a shoestring budget, Supremacy MMA looks and plays like an XBLA download game. A terrible XBLA download game.
Mechanically, it’s redundant. Each fighter’s moves can only be executed if you luck out and launch them within a narrow timing window allowed by the combos of your opponent.
These are never made explicit by what’s happening on-screen. The upshot is that it’s quite possible to hit the punch button thirty times in a row and your fighter not move a single muscle, his head instead pulped-in by a CPU that has a far better idea of when these invisible timing windows exist.
Clinching and floor work are no better. If your opponent gets you onto the floor, chances are he’ll pull repeated submission moves. To escape these you’ll need to waggle the thumbsticks. The problem is, the game doesn’t give you enough time to switch the position of your hands.
“Help me Vinnie. I can’t move my fingers.”
Likewise, button prompts that flash up throughout gameplay do so for only a fraction of a second, denying you the time needed to register what button it is, let alone actually press it and have anything meaningful happen as a result.
It’s crushingly difficult if you approach it as a fighting game. Approached as a ‘see how many times you can repeatedly hit Y’ game, on the other hand, it’s pure win – a fighting game flawed in a way we thought we’d seen the last of in Yie Ar Kung Fu on the Speccy 48k.
The ‘story’ mode for each fighter is a horrible grind punctuated by comic-book still-frame animation (lots of zooming in and out and depth of field effects) that gave us no greater reason to fight on other than to get to the point where we no longer had to play it for this review.
We’re all for fighting on the side of the little guy, and Kung Fu Factory and 505 Games are minnows in a world of giants, but the little guy needs to give us something to work with. It’s difficult, nay impossible, to defend a product this awful.
Five minutes with it is enough to hurl anything within reach at your Xbox. The several hours we spent playing it for this review, however, are now the mainstay of our conversations with our therapist