boxing sims have been few and far between over the years. Flashes of gold
has been found in the murky depths of fight gaming of the past however,
from the ground breaking polygon based 4D boxing and the Atari ST's World
Championship Boxing Manager to the console hit KO Kings 2001 on the Playstation.
It now appears Title Fight 2001 will become the new star of the
PC boxing ring, boasting perhaps the most accurate boxing simulation ever.
TF2001, which took over two years to implement and fine tune provides the
gamer with a whole boxing world of matchmaking, training, pre-fight and
in-fight management, fight card organization, purses and even a touch of
Las Vegas gambling - but that is just the tip of a very large iceberg.
Either match together two legends of the past (There are literally thousands
of them from 17 weight classes!) or create your own fight world with their
own names, styles, boxing abilities and even temperament.
simulator allows for the matching up of fights across the weight divisions.
Put together fights from different weight classes and TF2001 will make
the sufficient adjustments to compensate for the weight differences - a
nice touch. I had Tito Trinidad in a 3 round exhibition with heavyweight
veteran Garing Lane and a swinging Lane took out Trinidad's legs with literally
the only punch he landed in the 3 minutes. Trinidad up at 3 went on to
make him pay and had Rudy Ortega jumping in between them waving it off
10 seconds before the 3 minutes were over.
the major governing bodies (WBC, WBA, IBF) and as many others as you wish
to add can be in the game. TF2001 also uses an intelligent ratings system
based on performance points - not dissimilar to the IBO, so doing a Brian
Nielsen and blitzing clubfighters and tomato cans will get a padded record,
but your rise up the ratings will be a slow one. This may sound simple
but so many other fight games have fallen short here.
Fight 2001 is incredibly flexible, even down to changing the referees/cut
mans/cornermans competency ratings. Selecting the venue of the fight is
also to the gamers discretion and this in turn noticeably effects the purse
and TV coverage of the fight card. Again a *very* nice touch. TV revenue
provides fighters with an increased purse and training a fighter in one
of five different areas has the media providing their pre fight reaction
to its effectiveness and condition of the fighter before the bout. This
all adds to the atmosphere of the game.
game allows you to mould your own fight world, something that has never
been sufficiently achieved in any of the other major boxing sims to date.
So where is the challenge, you may ask? Well.before fight time toggle the
"computer controlled opponent" and you go head to head with the computer
AI, which doesn't just control the boxer, but uses the boxers corner to
do its damnedest to get its guy's hand raised at the end of the fight (within
the fighters and corners abilities of course).. and its smart.
your fighter to jab and move and the PC will much of time get his guy to
press (although it might well be the fighter has other plans) or maybe
your guy is home and dry going into the last round, then dont be surprised
to see the computer get his fighter to go all out and seek the lucky punch.
developers have brought across all the characteristics of the real life
boxers nicely. I've already had Andrew Golota thrown out 3 times while
working his corner. Which while frustrating, is very true to the volatile
Poles boxing career. Such realism makes you realize TF2001 has certainly
been designed by true fans and experts of the sport. The detail to not
just the boxers, but the events surrounding a bout is very refreshing indeed.
judges are excellent. Some are very different, giving their own sense of
uncertainty, with their own preferences and perceptions of what is a won
round. Judges are also subject to 'hometown favourites' and 'defending
champion' bias which mystifies things further.
fight gives you a break down of the action in the round in terms of punches
landed, knockdowns etc. Fight action is described by commentary and the
ongoing fight report is pretty good fun. Alot of the text intelligently
draws from what happened earlier in the fight, giving a true sense of realism.
References back to earlier knowdowns and good/bad training are all touched
upon during the fight.
fun for me was to create an Olympics or local Golden Gloves championship
for 16 of my leading (self generated) amateurs over four, two minute rounds.
This is made possible by using the Tournament mode of TF2001. Which allows
for 16, 8 or just 4 boxer brackets.
the most impressive thing about TF2001 is the customization. Almost anything
can be edited whether it be a fighters punch power right down to the likelihood
of him fighting as a slugger/boxer or orthodox/southpaw. All this together
with the realism, the ability to be the governing body, the manager, the
match maker and the coach if you choose to be ...all make this one a little
three updates already and a lively fan following behind it, it looks like
Comp-U-Sports and the Trunzo brothers have come up with a winner to best
even their previous creation, APBA Boxing which was released in 98. Graphical
masterpiece it is not, so dont expect ground breaking visuals to test your
new 64Mb graphics card. Hardened boxing junkies and statisticians however
will simply love it!
those wondering, Muhammad Ali outpointed Joe Louis over 15, but was dropped
in the second round, Roy Jones stopped Felix Trinidad in the 12th and final
round after being behind on points, De La Hola took a close decision over
Ray Leonard, Hearns dropped Mosely in the 2nd and 3rd rounds and TKO'd
him in the 8th and Lennox Lewis vs Mike Tyson... well .. I'll leave that
for you to simulate for yourself...