Do you know what the favorite pastime of MMA fighters is? Video games. Now, while the type of video games MMA fighters like to play varies, they all have one thing in common – fighting video games. Whether it is MMA-based realistic games or fantasy fighting games, they’re on top of every combat athlete’s list. The trouble with fighting games is that if you pick the wrong one, you might really end up disappointed. To avoid such a scenario, we bring you the best MMA video games of 2020, at least when it comes to one-on-one combat games!
There are two main questions when it comes to video games, whether they’re shooters, fighting, or racing games. The first one has to do with the game itself, and whether or not it is fun and worth your time (and money). Secondly, you need the best platform that’ll allow you to play as many of the best MMA video games of 2020 as possible. When it comes to gaming platforms, nothing beats the Sony PlayStation, and in particular, the PS4. All the best fighting MMA video games are supported on it, and it is the most used platform of today! So, if you have your PS4 ready, it is time to start looking at some game titles.
The Evolution Of Fighting Video Games
Depending on the generation you are from, you remember different types of fighting MMA video games. By fighting, I mean the “classic” one-on-one match. Whether you’re playing against the computer/console or a living opponent, you need to control a fighter with a special set of skills against an opponent that has different specific skills. As far as I am concerned, there were two main games back when I started discovering the world of fighting video games.
The first one I got into was Street Fighter. This was the perfect blend of fantasy and realism, at least for the time. Very soon I moved to a more fantasy-based game which I still play to this very day – Mortal Kombat. For a while there, this type of fighting video game with a strong fantasy background was the norm. Tekken was a successor to Mortal Combat that truly raised the bar of fighting video games. After that, games in the form of Manga fighting games started to dominate, although they never reeled me in, personally.
With the rise of the UFC, Pride, and MAM in general, the world of fighting games also changed. First and foremost, realism came to the forefront. Now people wanted to control fighters that looked like real-life MMA fighters rather than fictional characters. Moreover, the technical complexity increased, as grappling was now introduced to an already huge striking array. The moment this happened, PS became the best platform to play fighting video games and remains one to this day. So, with that in mind and a PS4 in front of us, we go into the ultimate guide to the best MMA video games for 2021!
The Best MMA Video Games in 2021
Seeing as there are different eras of fighting video games, we decided to include a bit of everything in our best MMA video game guide. That said, we did not opt for the original edition of Street Fighter or Mortal Kombat. there’s not a platform that would be able to play them anyhow. Instead, we paid great respect to legendary fighting video game franchises and included their best stuff in our guide. Give the high requirements for graphics and motion we set, nothing but PS4 (for the most part) is going to do the trick. Well, not if you want to play the best MAM video games of 2021 anyway.
AS far as reality is concerned, you’ll also find a lot of variety below. From fantasy games with fictional characters, either based on comic books or legendary franchise characters, through Manga and Anime all the way to modern-day UFC stars, we have them all. From complete fantasy to real-life realism, you’ll find what you’re looking for below. Or, even better, get them all and you’ll own the ultimate PS4 MMA video games collection of all times!
INJUSTICE 2: LEGENDARY EDITION
- Downloadable content characters
- Variety of game modes
- Personalize iconic DC characters
- 5 Premiere Skins
- For PS4 platform
First, up in our best MMA video games, the 2021 guide is a game I never really played before. It came up a lot during the research so I had to give it a try. Suffice to say, I was hooked, so much so, that this article was supposed to be ready a couple of weeks ago. Injustice 2: Legendary Edition is one of the best fighting games you can play, period. It is fantasy-based and offers as much personalization to your character as you can imagine.
Injustice 2 is actually based on the DC universe. So, everyone into the DC superheroes (and there’s a lot of those among combat athletes), rejoice! This game has downloadable characters that you can use to constantly widen your “fighters stable”. Plus, you get everything from the DC universe, from Batman and Hellboy all the way to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. The best thing about it is that the more you play, the more you can develop your character in terms of gear, abilities, and customizations. The graphics are flawless, there’s an interactive world and the motion of the characters is breathtaking!
MORTAL KOMBAT XL
- New character packs
- Cinematic story mode
- Completely unlocked MKX roster
- Next-gen fatalities
- High definition
- For PS4 platform
As far as the best MMA video games of all time go, there’s no way to omit Mortal Kombat. This is the game that started it all, from an unbelievable number of characters all the way to crazy graphics and interactive arenas. “Mortal Kombat XL” is the one game in our guide that I’ll recommend to anyone, but you should probably know that I am very biased towards it! Once again, there’s no better console than PS4 to really get the feel of this fighting game!
The story here is a brand new one. As always, there are also new characters on top of the old ones we know so well. This time the central role goes to the daughter of Johnny Cage and Sonya called Cassie. She also has the perfect combination of skills, as a result of her parent’s unique abilities. Some crazy, never-before-seen fatalities feature in this game, guaranteed to have you jump! The game features every possible skin and variation as well as the complete roster of Mortal Kombat characters. Motion is crazy good, with the latest 3D technologies employed to work. The combat skills and combinations are also of the highest grade, with some slick grappling moves integrated with all the weaponry and special powers.
EA SPORTS UFC 2
- Knockout physics system
- Dynamic grappling
- Highest quality character visuals
- Huge fight roster
- For PS4 and Xbox One
Time to skip from the NetherRealm and the Mortal Komat Earthrealm to our present reality. That means turning to EA sports and one of the most anticipated games of all time – EA Sports UFC 2. This game not only features real-life fighting skills inside the octagon but also features the entire UFC roster, including stars like Ronda Rousey and Conor McGregor. Not to mention that you have special unlockable characters that open up as you play!
The biggest quality of this UFC game is in the technology used to design it, particularly the graphics and the motion of characters. The Knockout Physics System is as real as it gets, delivering the most authentic knockouts seen so far in a video game. There’s a lot to say about the motion in this game, particularly the grappling. Every exchange on the ground involves both fighters simultaneously, bringing a whole new dimension to playing against friends or training partners. The defense is also a great caveat and requires a lot of getting used to as you can’t get away with just holding the “block” button. The roster includes not only active UFC fighters but also MAM legends as well as some surprise special characters. One of the best modern MMA games in existence!
GUILTY GEAR XRD – REVELATOR
- One button Combo Carnage
- 2D style animation
- Next-gen cell shading
- 6 new characters
- For PS3 and PS4
If you are into this type of fighting video game, you most certainly know all about Guilty Gear. Well, guilty Gear XRD – Revelator is the best installment in the franchise so far. This Unreal engine-driven game offers you all the old characters, plus some new ones, as well as some crazy new features when it comes to controlling the characters. Although this game was released in2017, as far as the best MAM video games for PS4 goes, it is right up there on the very top!
In terms of characters, the game features all 13 Guilty Gear characters we know and love so far. What’s new are six additional characters, four of which are console exclusive (that’s why PS4 is the best). The engine is an Unreal engine and the game is in 2D graphics, given that it is an Anime-style game. As far as the matches go, this game guarantees much more brawling carnage than any other in our 2021 guide! In fact, one-button frenzy combinations are available that’ll leave you with your mouth open. The latest technology graphics and immense amounts of never-ending content are just a further guarantee that you’ll never grow tired of this video game! Perfect for both pro players as well as noobs!
- Unreal Engine 4
- Over-the-top cinematic action
- All-new fighters
- Epic franchise mash-up
- For PS4 and Xbox One
Along with Mortal Kombat, this is one of the original fighting games that stormed the world. To this day, Tekken remains a favorite in the realm of fantasy fighting games. It was the first game to include actual fighting styles like wrestling, boxing, Capoeira, etc, giving the characters very specific strengths. Not to mention all the cool weapons and complete environment interaction.
The Tekken 7 Standard Edition is a PS4 game that employs the latest Unreal Engine 4 taking fighting games to new heights. The graphics and motion are something that is pushing modern consoles to their limits but delivers an unforgettable gaming experience. In fact, the visuals are so refined that it feels like guiding movie characters rather than video game ones. Not to mention the epic battles you can get into. The roster includes many of the fan-favorite characters but is also enriched with brand new ones. That brings about a new array of weapons, movements, and skills for an even better experience. Complete 3D graphics further set this game among the best MMA video games of 2021.
UFC UNDISPUTED 3
- Pride environment included
- Japanese MMA league rules
- The brand new submission system
- New camera positions
- More than 150 UFC characters
- For PS3 and Xbox 360
Finally, one more realistic MMA video game, and one more UFC edition. This time, the main difference is in the console. This is an “old” game, requiring a PS3 to work. it is, however, the best realistic fighting video game released up to date, at least according to players worldwide. If you’re thinking about getting your very first MMA video game, then UFC undisputed # is where you should start.
What sets this game apart is the crazy wide environment that it offers. It is not just the UFC octagon, but also the legendary old Pride ring when it comes to fighting arenas. They even went the extra mile and included the original Pride announcers, along with Buffer. Also, you can fight according to both UFC or pride rules, meaning soccer kicks are legal, among other things. This brings us to the actual gameplay. The movement in this game is nothing short of groundbreaking. The way every technique, standing, on the ground, or in between works is breathtakingly accurate. The camera positions are also much more versatile and numerous compared to other UFC games. The roster offers more than 150 fighters to choose from, including the bantam and featherweight divisions. A real classic that every self-respecting gamer-fighter needs to own.
Consoles, Platforms, And Technical Specifications
We already touched a bit on consoles and platforms. The fact is, that lots of games still work perfectly on PCs. However, controlling characters with a complex set of skills, like in the UFC games or Tekken, is much more difficult with a keyboard than a game controller. That brings us to all the different consoles out there, with PS4 taking the title of the best console by a mile!
The things we took into account while looking at the best MMA video games were not just popularity or the fact they work on a PS4. They both played an important role, as did price, but we went much deeper than that. Of course, the franchise is very important, as certain franchises have been on top for decades now. Such is the example with Mortal Kombat and Tekken. There’s actually another reason why certain franchises are constantly on top of the video games world – characters. Both the type, number, and specifics of each character decide the fate of fighting video games. To that extent. wall fo the entries in our best MMA video games guide are as versatile as possible.
There’s also the question of interaction with the world. About 15 years ago (perhaps even more) Mortal Kombat introduced an open world of sorts, where you can use objects to aid in your fighting. This makes for much more interesting games than just a painted background. This brings us to graphics. While there is still someplace for 2D graphics (anime-style games) in MMA fighting games, 3D is by far the norm. As you can see, all of the video games above fulfill each of the high standards we set for our 2021 guide.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best UFC game to buy?
In terms of specific UFC fighting games, UFC undisputed 3 is the best option to get, as voted by fans. The game is truly one of the best MMA video games ever, featuring both UFC and Pride arenas as well as more characters than any other game.
Is there any MMA game for PC?
At the moment, there’s no MMA game for PC that is worth looking into. The gaming consoles such as PlayStation and Xbox are absolutely unrivaled when it comes to the experience of playing MMA video games. Ther is a BJJ game that is available for Android, but then again, it is just to keep you entertained until you can get close to a proper console.
What fighting game should I play in 2021?
Any of the options above will do the trick. the only question is whether you want to play real games like UFC2 and UFC undisputed 3, or fantasy-based Tekken and Mortal Kombat like ones? That, and it will be down to the console you own. You certainly have all the options among our reviews above.
What is the best fighting game in 2021?
I would go for Tekken 7 as the overall best fighting game you can pick up in 2021. But, then again, that is just me, and if you’re a fan of UFC games, Undisputed 3 should be the first one in your basket.
Whether you’re into realistic MMA fighting video games or fantasy worlds with special powers and crazy weapons, we got you covered. This best MMA video game guide brings you the absolute undisputed champions when it comes to fighting video games. With quality and affordability in mind, all of them are PS console specific, with the majority requiring a PS4. All in all, if you get one, you’ll have a great time. Get more or all of them and you might put your real-life MMA career in jeopardy. They’re that good!