The fourth installment of EA Sports’ UFC series is yet another step in the right direction for a game that has the daunting task of making the complex sport of mixed martial arts both authentic for fans and enjoyably accessible for gamers.
“UFC 4” is far from perfect, but it certainly features improvements such as a beefed-up career mode and simplified striking controls. However, for each step forward, there’s another that doesn’t seem to go anywhere: The ground game, for example, remains a complicated and unenjoyable aspect of the game when compared to the standup.
The result is a game that is absolutely stellar — if it was a straightforward kickboxing game with a career mode. Otherwise, it falls short when trying to add the “mixed” part of mixed martial arts.
The pros are noteworthy, as the striking improves upon what was a marginal uptick in enjoyability in “UFC 3.”
A lot of work went into making the fighters act and move more like their real-life counterparts. There’s a certain weightiness that can be felt when controlling a heavyweight such as Francis Ngannou that isn’t present when playing with a more nimble, fluid striker such as Israel Adesanya. The impact of Ngannou’s punches is evident, but he’s unable to race across the cage and throw speedy combinations like his smaller counterparts.
You also won’t find CPU-controlled fighters doing many things out of character. The player will be rewarded for emulating Conor McGregor’s sniper fighting style, whereas Khabib Nurmagomedov’s smothering wrestling is his calling card. Attempt to fight a style that isn’t in a fighter’s DNA, and you’ll be penalized for it.
The clinch game has also been overhauled to be more reflective of the standup, rather than a grappling minigame. It feels a lot more realistic and fluid as an extension of the standup game. Clinches require pressing a single button; to escape, you simply need to pull away. But with locomotion technology in play, it becomes a game of cat and mouse as you try to escape with your wits intact while your opponent can trap you against the cage and punish you with knees and punches.
Once the game hits the mat, what was once a smooth and fun striking game gets a lot more complicated. And that’s even with a new grapple assist that relies more on a simple move of the right joystick rather than multiple inputs to transition. If you want to get up, push the stick in the right direction. Your opponent can stop your transitions by moving the stick as well. There doesn’t seem to be a great deal of rhyme or reason to escaping a takedown and changing positions, but it’s a lot more accessible than previous versions of the game.
The bigger issue is that the ground game still feels very robotic as fighters go from position to position. As much as EA Sports attempts to make it feel natural, it simply doesn’t. And the strikes on the ground lack the impact that is needed to really feel like you’re doing damage. Is it better than before? Sure. But it’s still a part of the game that is actively avoided by gamers more often than not.
Submissions have moved to a meter-based system reminiscent of “WWE 2K.” While it’s a great improvement, the ground game only makes you want to stick to the standup.
The commentary has been revamped with longtime commentator Joe Rogan being replaced with the team of Daniel Cormier and Jon Anik. You’ll immediately notice the duo clearly recorded their lines together, and their conversations feel a lot more natural than previous installments. Cormier is a joy with his genuine excitement and knowledge of the sport. That doesn’t prevent the game from repeating lines ad nauseam. But, again, it’s a step in the right direction.
Also included are two new venues: Kumite and Backyard.
The Kumite is inspired by “Bloodsport” and feels like a kickboxing and Mortal Kombat hybrid. There’s no commentary, but a looming voice barks at you when a significant strike lands. With the backdrop reminiscent of the 1988 film (with a nod and wink to “Kickboxer” as well), it feels right to hear “combo,” “staggered,” “huge punch” and “excellent” with an obnoxious voice.
Backyard fighting isn’t as nearly as fun, but the outdoor venue with sparse crowds and barking dogs is a fun departure from the Octagon.
“UFC 4’s” career mode has been given some additions to make it more interesting between fights. Rather than just train and fight, you can use social media to spark rivalries, make friends and stream sparring sessions where you destroy training partners. All of this enhances your fan base, which assists in contract negotiations.
The training itself is helpful when working through the nuances of the game. You’re given a task and, once you complete it, you can work on your other skills inside of the window. Be too aggressive and you can injure yourself or your training partner. Injure the latter and you won’t be able to spar in that discipline until the next training camp.
The relationships with fighters can feel a little arbitrary, but this year’s career mode has laid down the right foundation for the future of the game.
The graphics are fine, though nothing spectacular. There hasn’t been a great deal of improvement in fighter design and there’s something missing when it comes to knockdowns — fighters hit the canvas mostly in the same manner.
For MMA fans, “UFC 4” should be a welcome addition that takes some small, yet important steps in improving gameplay. It will get a lot of burn from players who enjoy the art of kickboxing. And something is needed while we continue to wait for the “Fight Night” series to come back.
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Is It Beneficial Leasing an Airplane?
If you planned on getting yourself a private jet or a fleet of airplanes, then you know your case the best. Better than anyone else can guide you or teach you about the pros and cons.
Buying a jet is not something that you do every day when you wake up; for some, it is once in a lifetime, and for some, it is just a daily business that generates revenue. Suppose you are starting to fulfill your dreams and aspirations by buying a luxurious plane or starting a small airline company. In that case, this article will briefly take you through the famous question of ‘is it beneficial leasing an airplane?’
If you can buy an airplane or put up a loan sanction against it, you must take that road because there is no better feeling than ‘ownership’. But if you do not want to invest a big chunk of money into buying an airplane, the best way to enjoy the experience would be to lease it for a couple of years.
Most airline companies nowadays lease at least some of the jets that they have. There are technical aspects intermingled with it as the lease price of 10 aircraft would certainly be almost ten times lesser than the actual price clubbed together. You can quickly get yourself to save a great deal of money while leasing a couple of airplanes, especially if you are in the airline business.
Often, the leasing companies offer you the crew, pilots, insurance, and other benefits covered in your leasing agreement. So, you can always take that trip around the globe whenever you want, as you will always have a cabin crew ready to fly. On the other hand, if the lease does not offer the benefits, you will need to look elsewhere.
Thankfully, recruiting a pilot and other crew members is not that difficult, especially if you are looking to get them for a private jet. What you can do is seek some professional assistance to find the right crew. Aerospace Union Limited can point you in the right direction.
But, on the other hand, if you choose to loan or buy a plane of your own, you will have to figure out everything starting from the operational costs to the training of crew and even pilots, which becomes an arduous process least. If your requirements are singular and not frequent enough, it is better to lease an aircraft rather than fully fund it. Because who wants to let go of all the additional benefits that really come in handy along with the lease agreement!
Freedom of Use
With business airplane renting or personal luxury plane renting, it’s yours to do as you will inside the rent term. Inside legitimate and protection limits and any rent conditions, it’s dependent upon you where the airplane flies, when it flies, and how frequently you take a trip. The only limitations are climate conditions, air traffic rules, booked upkeep, and the accessibility of your pilots and group.
Personal luxury plane renting gives you admittance to a more extensive scope of air terminals than business trips through carriers. This can permit you to land nearer to your final destination, decreasing the time spent and extra efforts brought about by booking and voyaging through road transport like cabs, buses, etc.
Renting an airplane liberates you from the endless formality and holding up occasions included when taking business flights. There are more and more additional benefits and a bubbling sense of luxury that you will experience if you go ahead with the plan of leasing an aircraft!
Most aircraft leasing options come to you with a choice- own or not to own after the period ends. Although you keep on paying a regular sum for years on end, you can decide if you want to complete the remaining payments and own the jet or try your luck with a new fleet.
On most occasions, after 10-15 years, airplanes with more recent technologies are launched, which makes the decision of keeping the aircraft previously on lease a decision that isn’t much feasible for people. But, the entire availability of having a choice is all you need when you are getting yourself in an agreement with a party. You never know if you can extract more benefits from the same flights.
As you can see, the benefits of leasing an aircraft are supreme as they come with a lot of additional growth points. You can always ride your plane with ease and comfort whenever you want without having the burden of financing a considerable amount of money for an aviation unit that will probably be replaced with new technology in the next couple of years.
So, if you are someone who’s just buying the jet for meetings around the globe or just because they want to feel the luxury, then the best thing to do is to lease the aircraft without thinking much about it. So, are you ready to fly and up to reach your world of dreams with zero hassles?
5 Things Every Entrepreneur Should Know
Your Product Should Fill a Need
Perhaps the number one rule of business is that your product or service should fill an existing need. And it should solve a problem in a better way than any existing product currently on the market. Do your research so you know what your competition is, and forge ahead.
42% of product launches don’t succeed because there is no need for the product or service. Can you think of examples of such failures?
- New Coke – Original Coke didn’t need to be improved so customers boycotted this new version.
- The Zune – Microsoft tried to compete with Apple iPod and failed to create a product better than what already existed.
- Google+ – Google attempted its own social media network, but became another example of a service that couldn’t outdo what was already available.
- Bic for Her – Women don’t need pens specifically designed for them, so this pen flopped.
- Hammacher Schlemmer’s Night Vision Camcorder – marketed toward children, this product doesn’t solve a practical problem; why do kids need to record things in the dark?
Sometimes a novelty product takes off because, although it’s impractical, it strikes a chord with customers. However, you may not want to take that risk! Your product or service should stand the test of time, and not just end up the gag gift at the next Holiday office party.
As soon as you have your idea, get started!
Research your brand or business name the right way to see if they’re already trademarked. Even if it will be a while before you launch, apply for the necessary permits and licenses now. Doing so will give you peace of mind while you secure funding or save your own money, develop a business plan, and work on your brand’s mission statement, slogan, and marketing strategy.
Keep it Simple
Your mission statement should be clear and concise. Everyone in your business should know what they’re working toward, and how to achieve it.
Examples of Mission Statements
A mission statement tells your employees and customers what your brand is all about. It should concisely share your brand values, your company’s actions, and your company’s objectives. It is not what you hope your company will become but, rather, what your company currently is. When drafting your mission statement, start by answering the following questions:
Mission statements are usually about three sentences long, and provide direction to your brand and its employees. Keep in mind that your mission statement should include attainable goals for your company, i.e. objectives you’re already working toward. Be sure to include inspirational messaging and personality without being cliche; avoid popular slang that may date your brand or phrases that don’t provide clear direction.
To get your creative juices flowing, here are some examples of mission statements that get the point across.
- To bring the best personal computing products and support to students, educators, designers, scientists, engineers, businesspersons, and consumers in over 140 countries around the world. – Apple
- Bring inspiration and innovation to every athlete in the world. – Nike
- Offering all women and men worldwide the best of cosmetics innovation in terms of quality, efficacy, and safety. – L’Oreal
- To strengthen our position in the marketplace by developing high-quality relationships with our supplies and customers and earning a reputation of dependability, innovations, and exceptional performance. – M&M’s
- Creating loving connections through our blankets. – Minky Mamas
- We deliver the promise of the digital world to our customers. We make their innovative lifestyles possible. – Verizon
Examples of Slogans
Can you name the brands responsible for these popular slogans (hint: some are listed above)? Chances are the simple phrases stand out in your mind and immediately make you think of the product or service they represent.
- Think Different
- Just Do It
- Because You’re Worth It
- Melts in Your Mouth, Not in Your Hands
- The Breakfast of Champions
- Can You Hear Me Now?
- What’s in Your Wallet?
- The Happiest Place on Earth
- They’re Grrrrrrreat!
- Nothing Runs Like a Deer
Slogans are catchy phrases, short and sweet, that are used in a brand’s advertising. We repeatedly see them on packaging and billboards and hear them on commercials. A lasting slogan can be used out of context and still conjure up thoughts of the brand it represents. You want your slogan to potentially offer a promise as well as make a lasting impression on potential customers.
Marketing your brand can seem overwhelming. Where do you start? How much do you spend? Customers may stumble upon your product or service with an Internet search, but how can they know your brand is reliable? This is where marketing comes in.
Once you know your mission statement, have a slogan, and a brand aesthetic, you have to get to work. Your message needs to not just reach people, but the right people. Social media makes it easier than ever to target your demographic with paid or sponsored content. It’s a less expensive way to analyze your customers’ behavior and engage with them. Your online presence establishes a connection with potential customers, building trust in your brand. Marketing is more than just selling your product or service; it’s telling your story to your customers. It’s an opportunity to further expand upon your mission statement and let your customers know why you started your business in the first place. Through this storytelling, you can share your passion for your product and build your reputation.
Also, it is important to speak the language of your target audience. Be buyer-centric, not seller-centric. If you are a company, for example, that offers power storage solutions for solar users, don’t drone one about your fancy stuff. Most buyers don’t care about the science behind the solution. Instead, talk about the importance of being prepared for natural disasters or illuminating your home renewably, etc.
Sometimes You’ll Fail
As an entrepreneur, sometimes you’re going to fail. There’s no such thing as an “overnight success” in business, so pull up your bootstraps and know that there’s a lot of work ahead.
Tips for Overcoming Failure
- Plan for failure – regularly analyze your business’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats to stay one step ahead.
- Manage cash flow – get a good forecast of your income and expenses so you can plan for the future.
- Focus on your customers – keep your customers at the forefront of your business so you have support in leaner times.
- Reframe failure – sometimes you can take a step back and see failure as a setback rather than a stopping point.
- Invest in your team – don’t go into business alone if you don’t have to.
- Invest in your business – be sure your IT systems and software help you work smarter and not harder.
With a clear vision, mission statement, and business plan, you can find yourself on a bumpy, but manageable path to success. Remember that it won’t happen overnight, but even the best ideas take time to catch on.
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