For someone who once approached the upcoming video game “EA Sports MMA” with an incredible amount of hesitation, now more and more I’m thinking that October 19 can’t get here soon enough. In order to generate interest and encourage fans to open their wallets and put down a pre-order, EA Sports is revealing the entire roster of the game on a week-by-week, division-by-division basis. The Heavyweight and Light Heavyweight roster has already been revealed, and recently the Middleweights took center stage. EA Sports also recently revealed a teaser image of a famous venue that has yet to see a Mixed Martial Arts event.
But first, here’s how the Middleweight roster breaks down. Looking at the title picture from left to right, the EA Sports Middleweight roster features Benji Radach, Lyman Good, Matt Lindland, Luke Rockhold, Frank Trigg, Joe Riggs, Kazuo Misaki, Scott Smith, Murilo Rua, Tim Kennedy, Pat Miletich, Jake Shields, Nick Thompson, Melvin Manhoef, Robbie Lawler, Dan Henderson, Gegard Mousasi, Jason Miller, Cung Le, Nick Diaz, Frank Shamrock, and Ronaldo Souza.
It should be noted that eight fighters in the Middleweight division are carry-overs from the already-announced Heavyweight and Light Heavyweight divisions. There’s some debate going around the internet gaming forums as to whether or not this is a cheap move in order to cut the time down on coding and creating different fighters, or a good way to ensure quality cross-division super-fights. I personally think it’s a little of both: I think the roster is a little limited, but the fact that you can play as your favorite fighter in several different weight classes mostly balances that out. Plus, with download-a-fighter being included, I think this game’s roster will be massive once people start creating famous MMA fighters are putting them online for anybody and everybody to download.
Much like the UFC including the famous Madison Square Garden in their “UFC Undisputed” games, it’s recently been confirmed that EA Sports MMA will have the Cowboys Stadium as an in-game venue despite the fact that a major Mixed Martial Arts event has never been booked there. An online image has already surfaced, which you can view here. Even as a huge fan of UFC Undisputed 2009, I think Madison Square Garden was really under-played in both UFC 2009 and 2010. Not so with Cowboys Stadium- the images revealed so far look downright amazing. I may actually get goosebumps when my Create-a-Fighter either defends or tries to get at the Strikeforce Championship in that mega-arena.
The last time I was this excited for a sports game, my hopes met quite the rude awakening. So, even with all the hype I’m buying into, I know that there’s still a chance for EA Sports MMA to let me down in much the same way that UFC Undisputed 2010 let me down. But until that day, I have to say…this is shaping up to be a genre-defining game. Every time I hear something new about this game, it’s something I think I could find myself enjoying immensely. When October 19 hits, I’ve got a pretty good feeling that there’s going to be a new Undisputed Champion of Mixed Martial Arts video games.
But what about you, fans and friends? How high would you rate your anticipation of “EA Sports MMA”?