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The damage systems in MMA games have come a long way.  We started with the arcade health bar aspect like Mortal Kombat and now we have health regeneration during rounds and multiple types of health events.  EA UFC also brought a probabilistic aspect where health events were calculated using variables like stamina and damage.  The result was a system where some strikes caused health events and some didn't.  For many of the players this produced a random feel to the game.  I will attempt to address this with a few ideas I think would not only make health events more clear but also more rewarding.



PERFECT/ NOT PERFECT STRIKES

In EA UFC all the strikes land flush.   When every strike lands flush it makes it very hard to accept why it didn't cause a KO.  My suggestion?  Add the element of strikes being able to miss the mark.  What I mean by "miss the mark" is grazing,  clipping or any strike that lands but not perfectly.  Here is what I mean by PERFECT and NON PERFECT strikes.


PERFECT - These animations will be the perfectly landed strikes we see now in the game.  These will be seen MUCH less than normal strikes.  Why?  Well bcuz you must earn them.  I'll explain that further down.  These strikes "can" cause a flash KO but they need a little help from other variables.  Regardless,  these strikes will ALWAYS cause some type of health event.

NON PERFECT - These animations will vary from slightly clipping the opponent to landing solid BUT not perfectly placed.  These strikes are what we will see most of the time in a fight.  They "can" cause a health event but only with the help of other variables.  Generally they will just do damage.


I'm sure the question now is how do we cause the PERFECT strike animations?  Well I'm not sure coding wise but one suggestion using real life is range.  What I mean is if you are too close or too far when you throw the strike it will land slightly off.  This means the challenge is for the player to input the strike from the perfect range which adds a needed element to the striking meta.  



VULNERABILITY WINDOWS

Basically windows where you can input a strike command and cause a health event.  These strikes "can" cause a flash KO but only with the help of other variables.  Regardless,  timing this window will ALWAYS result in some type of health event.  Here are some examples of real life vulnerability windows.

While not Blocking


While attempting a TD


While attempting head movement


While attempt to evade using footwork


While rushing in


While attempting a parry


While attempting a strike


As you can see,  in each scenario timing was key.  Timing is a major factor irl and should be in the game.  Now the other variables (ie. stamina, damage already taken,  etc) during the time of the strike will decide what type of health event happens.  For example,  say you are low on stamina when you timed the window.  It will most likely just be a light rock.



FLASH KNOCKOUTS

This is the ultimate goal in striking.  One strike and its alllll over.  This isnt to be mixed up with being death rocked (too hurt to recover).  This is when the strike puts them out cold instantly.  Here are some examples.









In all the MMA games so far unless you build the head damage up to where they were one punch away these were totally random.  There was no way to intentionally cause them when the fighters are fresh.  In real life you don't need to build damage up to cause a KO.  I think EA should add the ability to cause flash KOs intentionally.  How will they be done?  

Timing and range which are basically the things I mentioned above.  So in order to cause a flash KO you must not only throw the strike from the PERFECT range but also time it inside a VULNERABILITY WINDOW.  Do either variable wrong then you will need the help of variables to cause the flash KO.  I think this will not only explain things better on screen but also be a lot more rewarding since we actually have more of a say in causing health events.  Thoughts?
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