Watching two great fighters going head to head is exciting, especially when they’ve been building up the hype in the run up to the match, or just mucking around and not really taking things seriously (we’re looking at you, Tyson Fury). Recreating your favourite boxing moments is all part of the fun, and there’s a decent selection of boxing games out there that let fans step into the ring themselves to see how their fighting prowess stacks up against their mates and other players across the world. Here we’ve cherry-picked five of the most fun and best boxing games to play.
Fight Night Champion
Although it’s looking its age now, Fight Night Champion, the last title in the Fight Night series that came out in 2011, is definitely the best in the series. Available on PS3, Xbox 360 and even iOS, this EA title changed boxing games completely by allowing players to fully customise their own journey through the ranks – from the boxing club to Madison Square Garden.
Using an in-depth story mode that sees the player go from nobody to world champion, everything feels more like a Hollywood blockbuster rather than a standard boxing game, but there’s still a choice of 50 (at the time) famous boxers, and the opportunity to recreate big fights like Klitschko vs. Haye and Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley. There’s also a selection of different modes, including bare knuckle matches, and the ‘full spectrum punch control’ is pretty innovative, bringing the right control stick into action for a wider variety of jabs.
For many people, Fight Night Champion is the best boxing game ever created, and still has plenty of replay value today, seven years after its release. Although limited compared to the console version, the iOS game is still pretty good too, and provides an option for boxing fans who got rid of their older consoles years ago.
Mike Tyson Knockout slot game
If you like a bit more excitement when gaming, then what better way to get your blood pumping than the chance of winning some money as you play. Online slot games are not only great fun, they provide the player with an opportunity to win some serious money if they strike lucky – or at least enough for a ticket to the boxing with enough perseverance.
The Mike Tyson Knockout slot game is a brilliant 5 reel, 20 payline slot game with great 3D graphics that bring the champ to life with every winning spin. Players need to link together symbols that include speed bags, gloves, belts, and of course scattered wilds that unlock the bigger coin wins.
There’s also a bonus round, where free spins and cash pay outs given for ‘knockout wins’ make action even more intense. Online slots have grown in popularity in recent years, with everything from slots based on famous musicians to Vikings, so it is little surprise that Tyson himself wanted a piece of the pie – boxing fans will certainly be impressed with the gameplay, it could even result in a win!
EA Sports UFC 3
OK, so it’s certainly not pure boxing, but for PS4 and Xbox owners, this AAA title is the best combat game you’ll get until the Floyd Mayweather boxing game potentially makes an appearance. With incredible graphics and an octagon that looks pretty close to the real thing, MMA fans can select their favourite fighter and compete in tournaments, exhibition fights or even an entire career.
Controlling fighters is super easy – and like other fighting games, combinations, punches, kicks and holds are available with a bit of button bashing. The animations are also the best around, with flying kicks and knockouts looking the real deal with blood and sweat flying around when you land a really satisfying hit!
World Boxing Manager
Playing retro games is more popular than ever, and the best boxing management simulator of all time is now available for next to nothing on steam. The graphics may be as old as the dinosaurs and the interface certainly doesn’t look great on a HD screen, but find us another game where you can take your prize fighter from obscurity to the top of the boxing world, picking the tight training schedules and lining up fights with other boxers along the way.
World Boxing Manager is one of those great little games that everyone seems to forget about, but in reality, would make for a great remake thanks to its simplicity and replay value. Sure, there are loads of sports management games out there, but nothing as in-depth and addictive as this classic title.
If you enjoy gaming on-the-go, then Real Boxing is quite simply the best mobile boxing game out there. From the great graphics and in-depth career mode all the way to the multiplayer that lets players take on competitors from all over the world, Real Boxing has picked up the mantle left behind by titles like Fight Night. Available on iOS and Android, the great thing about Real Boxing is that it has licensed some of the best boxers of all time, as well as a standalone Rocky title that lets you guide Mr Balboa through his own story mode, taking on Apollo Creed, Ivan Drago, and even Adonis Creed. This game is a must for any true boxing fan, and a great placeholder while we wait for a decent boxing game to arrive on console.