Submissions have been completely overhauled to give the most authentic experience to date, but how easy are they to master?
RealSport spoke with EA's Creative Director for UFC 4, Brian Hayes, to find out more about this immersive and improved feature.
"Relax and use technique"
The submission game has been revamped for the UFC 4, but in a way which still makes it very accessible to all players.
"The controls themselves are pretty simple, it's not hard to figure out what to do with the stick or what to do with the button," Hayes explains.
"From a control standpoint, it's either, move your wedge with a stick around a circle, or move your wedge across a little bar using triggers."
DON'T GAS OUT! Stay calm and control your movements - just like in real life!
Sounds simple, but don't be fooled, there are some pitfalls that some players may fall into.
"So if you move too fast, you'll be creating a bigger wedge for your opponent to stay on top of. So in particular, with the trigger game, people are very often pulling the triggers really fast, and going back and forward really quickly, which is causing their wedge to expand."
So if you're a player who tends to panic and button-mash (guilty as charged), what would be the best advice? Appropriately, the answer is the same as when encountering a real-life situation!
"Part of the reason we put these things in there is that if you are training in ju-jitsu and you get into a dangerous situation, I guarantee you your coach is not going to go - okay, panic now! Freak out! Just lose your mind, frantically flail as much as you can to get out of the situation." laughed Hayes.
"Relax and use the technique - that's where we put our head-space when we added these nuances to the controls..."
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It seems that EA is pulling out all the stops to make this truly authentic MMA experience, and Brian Hayes goes on to speak about some other gameplay mechanics players should consider too.
"Stamina plays a vital role in your success"
Unlike some other fighting games, UFC 4 won't let you throw a seemingly endless assault of strikes against your opponent, without consequences that is.
"For a lot of people, one of the biggest things they fail to recognise is that while mixed martial arts is a fight and is the sport of fighting - this isn't a fighting game and stamina plays a vital role in your success."
"A lot of people continue to throw strikes when their stamina's tanked - it has long-term effects, it has short-term effects in terms of making your more susceptible to damage from a counterstrike etc."
LEAVE SOME FUEL IN THE TANK! Just like in real-life, you'll want to strategically pace yourself through the match
So knowing when, and how, to use your energy is important. Performing a powerful move too early on, could leave you unable to escape a submissoin, for example.
Thankfully Hayes gave us one more tip, a simple but very useful piece of advice grounded once again, in real-life combat sports.
"keep your eye on your opponent, as he's the one you're going to need to make reads off of." explained Hayes.
"It's about shifting your focus to seeing what your opponent is doing and reacting, as opposed to watching the work that you're doing,"
"That's something boxing trainers will tell you - don't just stand there and admire your work. After throwing a combination don't just sit there and go, 'wow, that probably looked pretty good!' he laughed.
KEEP YOUR EYE ON YOUR OPPONENT! Wise words indeed!
It certainly looks like UFC 4 has taken from its real-world counterpart in more ways than one, and we can't wait to get our hands on it!
UFC 4 releases on 21 August 2020, and you can pre-order the game by following the link below.
PRE-ORDER NOW: UFC 4 for Xbox One and PS4