Supremacy MMA: Unrestricted Review
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On 04/15/2012 at 11:08 PM by Nick DiMola
Didn't you know that you can only knock out your opponent to win an MMA match?
If you’re going to create a game based on a specific sport, you usually want to make sure it’s replicated properly. Real MMA matches revolve around brutal submissions and painful, high intensity fights, but this is not the case with Supremacy MMA Unrestricted. Here, things are slow moving and tap-outs are impossible, as you merely chip away your opponent’s life bar until you knock them out. Furthermore, despite the varying disciplines of the sport, each and every fighter plays nearly the same, with the exception of grapple-based fighters who are at a distinct advantage. With its inaccurate portrayal and unbalanced roster, you’ll quickly find that Supremacy MMA Unrestricted is not only a bad MMA game, but a bad fighting game as well.
Upon starting story mode - which tells the brutal back-story of each combatant - I chose a fighter whose style matched my own. My fighter, being a master of Karate, should easily be able to compete; after all, it’s a fighting style that encourages defensive maneuvers and explosive attacks at the ideal moment. However upon starting the match, it became clear that he was nothing but weak. Punches didn’t land with any amount of force, kicks fell flat, and for some odd reason, grapple moves were the only ones to make an impact. Given that Karate is not a sport based on grappling, this truly made no sense. My opponent, a wrestler, was clearly very good at grapples and he defeated me without breaking a sweat.
It was at this point I realized that it was time to switch away from my Karate master and move instead to a wrestler. Lo and behold, in my next match, I wiped the floor with my opponent. Not only did I take him down fast, but I took him down without losing much life in the process. After figuring out the solution to victory, the rest of the game was simply a matter of spamming the grapple move.
Even if you choose to ignore grapple-based fighters and focus on the game’s core controls, you’re bound to find issues. It’s a very stiff fighting game, so you need to be in tune with the underlying rhythm in order to execute attacks. You also need to be on your toes in order to reverse and block enemy attacks, as they too are constantly on the offensive. Because you have such a small window of time to react, this can be particularly tough, and the consequences for missing a key button press are high.
Before moving to a wrestling character, I was convinced Supremacy MMA Unrestricted was actually impossible. Computer-controlled enemies are much better than you and will execute their full move set during any given match. Without any means of making someone tap out, there’s very little strategy involved, as you must merely figure out your fighter’s most effective moves and execute them as frequently as possible. Latency issues also hamper online play, so there’s no opportunity to eschew fighting the computer and enjoy the game exclusively among friends using a custom rule set.
There’s truly very little to appreciate in Supremacy MMA Unrestricted. It’s an experience with a broken underlying implementation of the sport and severe balance issues that invalidate a large portion of the roster. If you're looking for a game in which you can only wrestle to win, buy a wrestling game - there’s no reason to suffer through this unfulfilling experience.