Fight Night: Round 3 Review

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dblock's review of Fight Night: Round 3

★★★★★

“Often boxing games suffer from button bashing syndrome...”

Written on: 02/04/2007 by dblock (25 reviews written)

Often boxing games suffer from button bashing syndrome which virtually renders them as arcade beat em ups like Street Fighter. Fight Night 2004 changed all of this by introducing 'Total Punch Control' system, this was subsequently enhanced in the follow up version , Fight Night Round 2. Rather than have each button enable a specific punch, the game took full advantage of the controller's dual analogue sticks. One analogue stick was designated to the use of the fighter's legs and body movement, while the other was specified to various punches and combinations. This created the indisputable champion of boxing games.



EA Sport's Fight Night Round 3 builds on the success the its previous versions, obviously people were looking and expecting additional improvements to the game, to a large extent they delivered on this but there still remained features which stayed distinctly unchanged. I suspect that the versions due on the Playstation 3 will attempt to improve upon these flaws, however there is a suspicion with EA Sports that they never release a flawless game you can still console yourself with the fact you have an exceptional game.



The game features 36 professional fighters, the vast majority legends of the ring such as Muhammad Ali, George Foreman and 'Sugar' Ray Robinson. In addition to this there is a 'create your own boxer' section. This is vastly improved on the last game, and the face morphing ability resembles games like 'Smackdown vs Raw', overall its gives you a lot of flexibility in physical features of your created boxer.



The Career mode is where all the fun is at though, you take your boxer as a complete amateur barely making a few hundred dollars a fight, through rigorous training and ever increasing difficulty of opponents. Finally you have the chance to lift the World Championship belt in your own division as well as in higher/lower divisions. There are many titles and awards to aim for during your career and these include undefeated spells, punching accuracy awards and defence accuracy. This all keeps you motivated and improves different aspects of your game.



In terms of the in-ring action, technique is all important. You wield explosive knock-out power in both gloves thanks to the new "power punch system.". Haymakers are key in this game and not only do they spice up the action, but also make one-sided matches more competitive, and offer out-matched competitors "a puncher's chance."



True boxing fans will appreciate the fact that a greater emphasis has been placed on boxing strategy. You no longer can continue a barrage punches disregarding the condition/ability of your opponent. Having a good defence is essential when you come up against the big punchers and you must also adapt your style to counter your opponents strength. Thus patience is required, if you attempt an explosive first round knock-out you quickly find that your boxer will fatigue and will be vulnerable for the rest of the fight.



Overall Fight Night Round 3 is an exceptional boxing game, even if you are not a fan of the sport you will still enjoy this game on some level. For hardened boxing fans, some aspects may not be up to scratch. But boxing games are still in the development stage (unlike the Fifa Series say) and what EA Sports have produced is head and shoulders above any other boxing game. A slight improvement could be in the number of boxers available in particular in the recent era. For example the like of Lennox Lewis and Mike Tyson are nowhere to be seen. There are however plenty of legendary boxers to satisfied. I would recommend this game to all boxing fans looking for an accurate depiction of the game.

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    Multi-player

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