Over the last couple of months, EA Sports has been promoting a new dramatic story mode for the next installment of its critically-acclaimed Fight Night franchise, Fight Night Champion. Teaser trailers narrated by Andre Bishop, the protagonist of the tale, revealed a new Hollywood-style presentation for the single-player experience akin to that normally seen in games developed by Rockstar Games. The "Champion" mode teaser trailers, while intriguing, were pretty short in duration and created more questions than they answered. EA Sports has remedied that by releasing an expanded story trailer that will literally knock you out. Complete with the trappings of your typical boxing movie, (i.e. the old and wise trainer, the cocky rival, the evil boxing promoter), Fight Night Champion looks to create a compelling narrative that will separate it from your typical fighting game:
When asked why the dramatic story line was added to Fight Night Champion, the lead producer of the game, Jeff Atienza replied:
"Everyone loves a great boxing movie and that’s what we wanted to bring to our fans. We wanted to combine the story, drama and characters of a great boxing movie with our award winning Fight Night gameplay and visuals to create an experience never seen before in sports gaming. We didn’t set out to add things like prison brawling and bareknuckles fights it happened organically as we worked with the writer (Will Rokos) on the script. I think we have accomplished something that and old and new fans of Fight Night will be pleased with."
Still unclear is how extensive the Champion mode will be. That is, will it be merely a fun diversion or the meat of the game? EA Sports previously provided a list of 54 licensed fighters that will be included in the game, but it is unclear if any will be involved with the story mode. More likely, these fighters will be making their appearance in the Legacy mode, Fight Night's version of a career simulator.
One thing that has been confirmed is that the Champion mode will be completely linear and will not have branching storylines, which is somewhat disappointing. Nevertheless, if the story is well written, this mode could be a big hit with gamers. After all, boxing movies still have appeal as the recently released The Fighter has proven.
Does the new Champion mode interest you? Or will you be sticking with Fight Night's Legacy mode?
Fight Night Champion enters the ring on March 1, 2011, on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.