Contact sports like boxing and mixed martial arts are one of the most gruesome things to behold, especially up close. Yes, watching fighters try to counter each other’s moves is a thing of beauty, especially the footwork, but it is nevertheless a bloody affair. Replicating them in a low-scale, low-budget game can be quite difficult due to the amount of control it would require to properly execute moves. Ultimate Boxing, however, managed to replicate it in a rather immersive way, at least compared to other boxing browser games.
Ultimate Boxing gives you five different control options to utilize during the match. So, yes, you’re not going to be stuck simply throwing straightaway punches and blocking punches. The punches come in four different varieties: a left and right jab, and a left and right hook. The fifth control is, of course, defending from incoming blows. The punches can be executed by doing a specific action on the screen. For example, a simple tap initiates a left jab, while a swipe coming from the left side initiates a left hook. You are free to do combinations however you want, but also remember that your opponent can similarly do the same (he’s not a punching bag, you know).
The one lacking thing in the game is the ability to move around the ring. But that would have been too much for a browser game, wouldn’t it? The camera angle is simply stuck in a third-person perspective and it will stay that way the entire match. The game switches to an overhead shot when a fighter is knocked down or knocked out.
Carefully watch your parameters!
There are two parameters in the game that affects your fighter: the energy bar (represented by the orange bar with a lightning bolt icon) and the stamina bar (represented by the blue bar with a battery icon). The energy bar reflects your ability to stay in the fight. Taking punches with no resistance depletes it fast, so it’s basically your life meter. The stamina bar reflects the amount of punches that you can throw in one sequence. It depletes every time you throw a punch and the less stamina you have, the more likely you are going to get knocked down. Once the stamina bar is fully depleted, you can no longer throw punches. It does recover quickly, however. But don’t count on it to save you immediately from incoming blows. Another tricky thing is that you can’t see your opponent’s stamina bar, only their energy bar. So you generally have no idea when your opponent is most vulnerable, unless you are carefully analyzing their every move.
Ultimate Boxing, despite its title, isn’t really the ultimate boxing game, at least when you consider ALL gaming platforms. But for a browser game, it’s clearly a step up from the rest. You only need to look at its non-cartoonish and smoothly refined graphics to know that. But graphics aside, Ultimate Boxing is a must-play if you’re looking to dish out some in-game punches with the ability to be creative with them.