For many of us, it’s hard to believe that 2011 was 11 years ago. It’s also hard to believe that the last AAA boxing game was released in 2011…Yeah, it’s been a while. Today we are mono y mono with the game Fight night Champion to see if it can still hang with the modern day sports games or if should it be retired like a fighter passed his prime. So how does Fight Night Champion measures up a decade later? Should you play Fight Night Champion in 2022?
Let’s check it out.
The one major pro of this game is that it has aged like a fine wine. Playing this game on Next-gen (PS5, Xbox Series S, Xbox Series X) hardware feels like this older game was pumped full of Captain America’s super soldier serum. Everything feels fluid and performs without a hitch. The game runs consistently at 60 FPS and feels smoother than ever before.
I can’t stress enough how much the Next Gen consoles improve the experience. Load times are damn near nonexistent. In every mode, you can get into training, sparring, or into a match in less than five seconds. If you can play this on a Playstation 5, or Xbox Series S and X. It’s the new definitive way to play this game. Now I’ll never go back to playing on older consoles.
This game’s controls holds up remarkably well. Even after all this time the controls still feel responsive and tight. EA truly captured the “sweet science” of boxing. The controls are simple enough for those who want to casually channel their inner Mike Tyson and go for quick high reel knockouts. They are also complex enough for those that want to expertly outclass and pick apart their opponents. In boxing, there are so many different styles, and this game encourages embodied that to the Tee.
The biggest Plus of Fight Night Champions is its Legacy Mode. Which is the career mode that has been a long-time staple of sports games. Champions’ Career mode feels deep yet simple. It’s not layered with activities in a city to explore like the modern NBA2k games but there is a simple charm to this smaller-scale Career mode. There are mini-games and sim training to level up your boxer but the game remembers the goal…to get you back into the action fast. In 2022, it’s a breath of fresh air to play a career/franchise mode that’s not buggy and loaded with Microtransactions.
One of the few flaws in Fight Night Champion is the game’s graphics. Just with most games, the graphics look worse as time goes on and this game is no exception. While the graphics have aged a bit in the last ten years, most of the boxers still look pretty good all things considering. The ring also looks good, but that is about it. The extras around the boxers look bowling show ugly. The fans looked bad when the game first released in 2011 and its no different here. The referee and the ringside boxing girls really look rough. However, if you focus on what counts, aka the boxers and the ring then you shouldn’t have a problem with the game’s rough presentation edges.
Another area that is a bit lacking is the Narrative in the game’s Champion mode. While it is serviceable enough that you’ll likely play through it, it isn’t anything to write home about. It’s a simple story mode where you follow the main character, Andre in a generic and typical rags to riches and overcome the odds narrative. If you seen a sports movie in the last 40 years then you’ve seen a story just like this one. Honestly the narrative feels like a low-budget Netflix movie. Almost like a low-budget Creed movie.
One last drawback is the this game is indeed a game from 2011. As a result, the roster isn’t going to be the modern roster of boxer stars that you see today. If your a fan of the legacy boxers then this won’t be a big issue for you.
Overall/Should you Play Fight Night Champion in 2022:
Let’s answer the question though: Should you go and play this game in 2022? Hell Yeah…Especially if you are a fan of sports games and boxing games. While the game does have it’s flaws and is showing its age in certain areas, this is still the best boxing game on the planet right now. Its gameplay has aged well and the game’s Legacy is one of the best franchise modes that you can play in the sports genre.
Another reason why you should check this game out in 2022 is because nowadays you can find this gem for cheap. You can often find it under $20s and I’ve even seen it on sale for around $10s. It’s also on the game pass if you are an Xbox gamer and EA Play if you have that subscription.
Overall Fight Night Champion is a great example of how the next-gen consoles are giving older games new life. It is the best boxing game you can play in 2022 and still to this day one of the best sports games of all time. Yes, you should play Fight Night Champion in 2022.