Dominate the Octagon in ‘UFC Undisputed 3’
SYSTEM: Microsoft Xbox 360 (PS3)
ESRB RATING: Teen
REVIEW RATING: 4.5 stars (out of 5)
As a seasoned fan of Mixed Martial Arts, I really appreciate a good ground-and-pound! Sure, I cringed the first time I saw blood dripping down a fighter’s face, but I couldn’t look away. With two MMA games already under their belt, THQ is ready to unleash “UFC Undisputed 3” upon the loyal masses, and the result is one of the most complex fighters available.
Anyone looking for a button-mashing experience like what’s found in most modern fighters should look elsewhere. Just like real MMA, the combat found in this title is robust and ever-changing, so using the same strategy over and over rarely works well. However, the addition of pro and amateur controls, as well as an in-depth tutorial, definitely makes it easier to learn the intricacies of combat.
“UFC Undisputed 3” lets up-and-coming challengers prove who really has the goods in the octagon. Players create their own ultimate fighter from scratch and can customize their fighting style, stance and much more. Players can customize their fighter even more and gain new moves by participating in various training camps. In addition to custom characters, over 150 pro fighters are available from around the world.
Taking combat to the ground opens up many more options, including submissions and reversals. Watching two good players engage in ground combat resembles a fast game of chess, with constant attacks and blocks from every direction. I really appreciate how the frustrating stick rotation previously used for submissions has been replaced with a more user-friendly system.
The UFC became undisputed both in real life and in cyberspace when it bought out the Pride league. That’s why I’m glad a novel Pride mode that pays homage to the older days of MMA is included. It’s great fun to watch the cheesy intros as well as the alternate-rule-fighting that the league is known for.
Featuring an improved ground game, several gaming modes and a vast array of fighters, “UFC Undisputed 3” is definitely the best in the series.
‘Plants Vs. Zombies’
DEVELOPER: PopCap Games
PUBLISHER: Sony Online Entertainment
SYSTEM: PS Vita Download
ESRB RATING: E10+
REVIEW RATING: 4.0 stars (out of 5)
Tower defense games are all the rage nowadays, and everyone loves the living dead, so why not mix the two? Toss in a few perturbed plants and a perfectly rectangular backyard, and the result is the wildly addictive game, “Plants Vs. Zombies.” Who could have imagined that these two species would engage in a blood feud more interesting than the entire “Twilight” series?
There isn’t much story to this game beyond the fact that the unseen players are trapped inside their house, and plants are their only savior from waves of hungry zombies. These cranially challenged, lumbering hunks of flesh must pass through the backyard before they enter the house. If players don’t grow enough plants to fend them off, they’ll be pushing up daisies instead.
Dozens of various plants and fungi are available to fend off the brain-eaters, including: Peashooters that literally shoot peas; frozen Peashooters that slow zombies; the Fume Shroom, which shoots fumes through screen door shields; and the Melon-pult, which works like a catapult. In addition, players must plant sunflowers and sunshrooms to create enough sunlight to grow more plants.
Each level is divided into horizontal planes, and somehow all zombies know to stay within their designated plane whether they’re lumbering forth or riding a lawnmower. It’s great fun to blast different types of zombies that include newspaper-reading businessmen, pole-vaulters and brain-dead football players. New to the series is the ability for players to create their own zombies and then fend them off.
Fans of “Plants Vs. Zombies” won’t find much new content in the PS Vita version, but newcomers should dig right in!
REVIEW SCORING SYSTEM
5 stars = Must-Have
4 stars = Very Good
3 stars = Above Average
2 stars = Bargain Bin
1 star = Don’t Bother
Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB)
E10-plus: (Everyone 10 and older)
T: Teen (13 and older)
M: Mature (17 and older)
To find out more about Jeb Haught and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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