After those pictures were released yesterday of Bas Rutten, Rickson Gracie and Randy Couture instilling fear into the hearts of MMA hopefuls, we knew we had to contact Randy Chase over at EA Sports MMA to see if he could give us a little bit more insight into the ‘Career Mode’. Here’s what he had to say:
So tell us about the career mode.
“Basically the way career mode works, you start of creating your own fighter, you can put yourself in the game. Like a lot of EA Sports titles we have Game Face so with a camera you can put your face in the game on the fighter and do whatever you would like. You have a lot of design control, you can place tattoos, designs on the shorts tons of options for your create a fighter. So the first thing you do, you meet Bas Rutten and he’s like the intro to your career and he kind of helps you learn the basics and helps you get started in your career. Once you get your basics down you can pick a smaller level US promotion to go into and you start your career there, you will start making money. As you start making money you can afford to travel so you can go to different gyms, like a licensed gym like Xtreme Couture, you can go to Rickson Gracie or Pat Miletich. You can also train in different parts of the world. Judo in Japan, work on your jiu-jitsu in Brazil. The way our career mode works, you don’t just get powers or get moves because you added a number to a stat, it’s not like my BJJ went up from 60-65 therefore I learn a move. You have to learn moves in order to do them. So say you go and train with Rickson Gracie to learn a specific move to bring to a fight.”
Can you tell us more about the monetary system? So you are going to start out broke and have to earn your way to travel?
“You start out with $0 and Bas is there and he helps you along. There is a cellphone you get that you utilize to do a lot of things and get messages and Bas will let you know when you have a fight. Then in your phone you can view travel and see if you’ve been invited to a gym or if you have enough money to travel to one. Then within that training you can work on different things you can work on your ground game, standup or clinch and what you can also work with that trainer to bring someone in to replicate your upcoming fight. So if you are fighting against a wrestler your trainer can bring in a wrestler for a sparring session.”
Depending on whose gym you’re at, will they be in your corner during fights?
“Yes, if you are training with a licensed trainer they will be in your corner and they will be yelling out instructions and encouraging you during your fight.”
Can I choose to just stay in Japan if I want? Is Strikeforce the ultimate goal?
“You can really bring your career where ever you want it. The ultimate goal is to make it to one of the two premiere promotions, Strikeforce or the Japanese promotion we are calling “Mystic“. What Mystic does is it embodies all of Japanese MMA within the game, within our game we have fighters from Sengoku and fighters from Dream, we also have a Japanese ruleset and we wanted to have all the Japanese rules like head stomps and soccer kicks. So if you want to go to Japan and stay in Japan you can do that. If you want to go to Strikeforce and stay in Strikeforce you can do that as well.”
What feature about the career mode gets you the most pumped?
“I think the cool thing about our career mode is that nothing will be the same twice. One of the things that’s cool is that in the career mode you’re in a dynamic world and fighters are rising and falling around you, so fighters are winning and fighters are losing. You’re not going to get in the situation where you win the title and then you face the same 3 guys over and over. Guys are going to be moving up in their career and others falling as they get closer to retirement. Guys are gonna retire. It’s a dynamic world. If you create the same guy every time you go into the career mode it will be different. It keeps it fresh. Then the connection between career and online; you make your character and you make him the best fighter you can and then you bring him onto our Live Broadcast feature creating a fighter that’s dynamic and has a cool entrance, you make a fight video to go along with it and then you bring your fight online and have fights that people can watch online as well as on the console. We try to make sure that our game is all interconnected and there is a reason to go through career to impact the online experience.”
In the career mode, what is the time-line like?
“You will have time between fights and damage will factor into that, also contracts you’ve signed will play into that as well, like you may have to fight a guy and its only 6 weeks out or 8 weeks and then you train. You might move from a tier 1 league to a tier 2 league and lose 5 fights in a row and get cut from that league and then you move down to the lower tier again and have to work your way back up.”
Anything else to share?
“Yeah, we wanted to let everyone know that the trainers we have in the game, Pat Miletich was at our studio multiple times, Rickson Gracie came out a ton and those guys were great in not only replicating their training but by passing on their knowledge to our staff. We’ve been working really closely with the fighters and its been really great and the last few years have been great as far as getting the approach to the sport right. A lot of the guys on the team train, and it was great for them to roll with Rickson and get some advice from him so its been a really cool experience.”
“We realized early on that people wanted Japanese rules, you know head stomps, soccer kicks, so we went the extra mile making sure that all got in. We have a lot of hardcore guys on the team that put these things in the game because they wanted to see it from the beginning themselves.”
It’s also important to note that DREAM and Sengoku will not be in EA Sports MMA. Both organizations will only be represented by the fictitious premiere league called ‘Mystic’. The second-tier league is a choice between an organization in the UK and Brazil. Two other organizations will also be included in the game as third-tier.