Fight Night Round 4

It's easy to think back on how great Fight Night Round 3 looked for its time, but a lot has changed in the three years since its release. Luckily, Round 4 is no slouch.

  • Review
  • Specs
  • Images
  • User Reviews
  • Buy Now
EA Games Fight Night Round 4
  • EA Games Fight Night Round 4
  • EA Games Fight Night Round 4
  • EA Games Fight Night Round 4
  • Expert Rating

    4.50 / 5

Pros

  • Improved controls and presentation, robust feature set including online modes/integration

Cons

  • Legacy mode could use some variety, not quite as much a step up as Round 3

Bottom Line

Fight Night Round 4 lacks some of the wow factor of its predecessor, but it builds upon the strengths of Round 3 and corrects most of its weaknesses. Three years is a long time to wait for a sports sequel, but Round 4 is an excellent and necessary upgrade for all Fight Night fans, and it reasserts the series as the (relatively) uncontested titleholder across all simulation-style boxing games.

Would you buy this?

It's hard to forget the first time I landed an orbital-crushing haymaker in Fight Night Round 3: my vicious blow sent ripples across the opponent's cheeks and bodily fluids flying towards the canvas. No other boxing sim since has come close to recreating that amazing combination of visual brutality and gameplay finesse until now — Fight Night Round 4 is finally here and while it may not have the same revolutionary impact of its predecessor, it's a major step up in nearly every imaginable way.

Stunning Punches

It's easy to think back on how great Round 3 looked for its time, but a lot has changed in the three years since its release. Luckily, Round 4 is no slouch: the fighters look better than ever, with increased detail and more lifelike animations, and the upgrade to 60 frames per second irons out the clunky movements and other hiccups from the last game. Fighters still show visual damage and fatigue over the course of a match, but unlike Round 3, the user interface (with health, stamina, and damage meters) is on by default, so you'll have to manually disable it if you're looking for a less intrusive on-screen experience. With or without the meters, the knockdown punches remain a highlight, with the action slowing down and the camera zooming in for that exact moment that your perfect punch reaches its destination.

Well worth noting is the increased emphasis on peripheral details outside the ring, which help create the sensation of fighting on the world stage. As you weave around the ring, you'll see photographers lining up their shots, judges keeping score, and even trainers shadowboxing near the corner. Also appreciated is the presence of Teddy Atlas who joins play-by-play man Joe Tessitore to offer compelling insight about the fighters and the current state of the sport. The dialogue gets recycled but it's worthwhile and interesting.

Frenzied Fists

From its outset, the Fight Night franchise has always revolved around the Total Punch Control analog scheme, but it reaches a newfound level of speed and fluidity in Round 4. Launching basic jabs, hooks, and uppercuts requires simple movements of the right analog stick, and they're more easily chained than in Round 3. You'll link together combinations with just a little practice, and a freshly tweaked physics engine means even off base and glancing blows will have some impact on your opponent. Haymakers are now executed by holding a shoulder button in concert with analog movements, giving you a bit more control over when exactly to take a chance and throw a potentially round-changing punch.

And 'chance' is the key word here: should you miss, you may leave yourself wide open for a counterpunch, which can turn your powerful attempt into a quick trip to the mat. Should you find yourself on the floor, you'll need to regain vertical orientation using the analog sticks, which becomes increasingly difficult as the fight rages on. Assuming you make it through a round, you'll find a much different corner experience than in previous series entries. Rather than physically address swelling or cuts, you'll earn points from each round (for landing a high percentage of punches or stunning/knocking down your foe) that can be spent to recover your health or stamina, or reduce your accumulated damage.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?