Three “Huh?” Moments in MMA Last Week: Video Games, Regulations, and the Return of XFC

UFC Philade;phia octagon
Credit: Jay Anderson/Cageside Press

Fans of the most recent run of UFC video games got some good news, as did supporters of potential federal MMA regulations, while a forgotten promotion makes their return. Huh?

Finding the proper response to much of the news finding its way into our social media feeds is becoming a tougher task every day. Nothing is surprising anymore, and there’s always more to the story. Leaving us with one reply: “huh?”

Last week, the UFC and EA Sports re-upped their video game publishing partnership through 2030, former 2020 US Presidential candidate Andrew Yang’s MMA views returned to the news, and XFC is back after several years away from the fight game. Huh.

The reason “huh?”, in its various forms, is such a quality reply is simple. The word is as versatile as a response gets, and while it may require some explanation, “huh?” is sometimes the only way to react to the news of today. Defined by Merriam-Webster as an interjection that’s “used to express surprise, disbelief, or confusion, or as an inquiry inviting affirmative reply”, “huh” or “huh?” can mean a lot of different things.

Despite some of the follies of evolution (see: Trapt vs. EDM), the development and growth of “huh” is something we should embrace. To be the change we want to see in the world, here are a few MMA stories last week that made us go “huh?

UFC 4 EA Sports
Credit: EA Sports

Another decade of EA Sports UFC video games

Following up the recent release of EA Sports UFC 4, the UFC announced a ten-year extension with video game publisher EA Sports through 2030. Huh.

“We’re thrilled that we will continue our partnership with EA for the next 10 years,” senior vice president, UFC global consumer products Tracey Bleczinski said in the release. “EA SPORTS has become a natural extension of UFC’s brand and an important way to engage with our fans.

“We’ve just launched our most successful game to date and EA keeps proving there’s room to grow and introduce new fans to the sport. We’re going to keep pushing the boundaries together and make incredible games that UFC fans love to play.” – via MMA Fighting

If the UFC and EA Sports are happy to continue the partnership, they must be selling alright. EA doesn’t have the best reputation in the gaming world, despite their impressive global sales with franchises like Madden and FIFA. Either way, we’re in for ten more years of EA Sports-built UFC games.

I’ve played some of the UFC video games in the past and enjoyed them fine, but there’s literally one thing EA Sports needs to do in order to give fans the MMA game they deserve: Pride mode.

UFC Undisputed 3, published by THQ in 2012, featured such a mode, and it was glorious. Any game that comes out sans Pride mode is a disappointment.