EA’s MMA videogame isn’t going to be the only one with some promotion variety. It looks like the UFC has dug the World Fighting Alliance out of the grave they put it in back in 2006 – the defunct promotion will appear in UFC Undisputed 2010 as a ‘minor league’.
The WFA shared a similar crazy spending / red ink mania history as EliteXC and Affliction and officially died when Zuffa bought the promotion to get at the contracts of Quinton Jackson and Lyoto Machida. As is usual with rivals, Dana White trashed the company incessantly and gleefully chop shopped it for parts as soon as they bought it, so it’s kinda funny that it’s now made a comeback as a B league in the UFC’s video game. Here’s the game’s project manager Neven Dravinski talking about the situation:
Woods: It seems like everything has definitely been streamlined and improved but at the same time, I want to talk about something else that stuck out during the presentation, which is the WFA [World Fighting Alliance] is the minor league promotion. I know Dana White has a strong influence on the game; did he walk in one day and say, “Hey the minor league is going to be the WFA. Those guys were jerks back in the day!”?
Dravinski: No, not at all. The way we looked at it is, we didn’t want you coming in with your Create-a-Fighter in Career Mode, jumping right into the UFC. We thought that there needed to be this aspect of earning your way into it. Last year we kind of just had you fight one amateur fight and then you’re obviously, all of sudden in the UFC. So we utilized the WFA –it’s an organization that the UFC actually owns right now– so we utilized them to kind of create a minor league system that you fight in the WFA and then once you’ve kind of proven yourself, then you work your way up and fight in the big leagues with the UFC. And the cool thing is that you can kicked out of the UFC if you’re not performing–you get kicked back down to the WFA and have to work your way back up. It is just another gameplay aspect that we added in there to kind of shake things up a little bit, give you more options, more variety and keep the UFC as what it is: the top-tier area for athletes in MMA.
Also touched on but ‘neither confirmed nor denied’: the possibility of PRIDE related stuff in the game. Now that’s something I’d be down with but I have my doubts THQ and the UFC are willing to go to the trouble of sorting out ring mechanics just for the sake of more variety … especially since they seem so damn proud of their new ‘against the cage’ combat system.