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What We Want to See in eSports Boxing Club

We’ve finally made it to the holiday season. It’s felt like three years since the quarantine started in March, but it’s finally the season of making lists. We’ve covered eSports Boxing Club a lot this year. Steel City Interactive’s boxing simulation game enters early access on Steam in late December, and it looks promising. In anticipation, we’ve put together a wish list of the things we want to see in eSports Boxing Club when it releases in 2021.

A Dynamic Career Mode

Previous boxing game career modes have felt a little too scripted. EA’s last boxing title, Fight Night Champion, suffered from this. Champion Mode played more like a Rocky movie than a boxer’s career, with fights that required certain conditions be met to move on. For ESBC, we’re hoping for a true career mode that thinks more outside the squared circle.

Our created boxer should be able to start as an amateur and work their way up through the ranks. Find local bouts, make regional rivals. Eventually make their professional debut with some momentum. Or, maybe our boxer skips the amateur scene entirely. Start from the bottom and rank up fight by fight.

Popularity is important in the fighting world, and it should be reflected in ESBC. Progression here could unlock new sponsors, new managers, access to new gyms, trainers and promotional companies. Rivalries are important, too. A well cultivated rivalry should increase popularity, and raise the stakes (and revenue) of a televised match.

Dedicated boxers should be able to dominate their weight class. Still not satisfied? Unify titles or go up to other weights (or down if possible) to solidify your legacy as a GOAT in the sweet science. Ideally, defending those belts shouldn’t be easy forever. A robust enemy AI that continuously improves to challenge you for the crown would be incredible. Maybe even add the ability to unify sanctioning bodies or fight for one overall belt to really prove the cream of the crop.

eSports Boxing Club Dream Roster

What is the ideal boxing game roster? Who do we wanna see in eSports Boxing Club? Well, everyone. Put’em all in.

That’s the short answer, at least. Obviously, some fan favorites deserve a spot on the roster. Auturo Gator, Israel Vasquez, Mickey Ward, Ricky Hatton, Prince Hamed Naseem, Diego Corrales and Meldrick Taylor should be locks, in our opinion. Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr. are two great options as well, especially given they’ve both stepped into the ring very recently. We have a more specific list of boxers we’re hoping to see in ESBC when it drops next year.

Current Boxers

  • Shakur Stevenson
  • Teofimo Lopez
  • Canelo Alvarez
  • Errol Spence
  • Terence “Bud” Crawford
  • Gervonta Davis
  • Tyson Fury
  • Vasiliy Lomanchenko
  • Anthony Joshua
  • Naoya Inoue
  • Manny Pacquiao
  • Miquel Berchelt
  • Deontae Wilder

Legends

  • Muhammad Ali
  • Lennox Lewis
  • Evander Holyfield
  • George Foreman
  • Joe Frazier
  • Rocky Marciano
  • Juan Manuel Marquez
  • Erik Morales
  • Salvador Sanchez
  • “Sugar” Ray Leonard
  • Thomas Hearns
  • Marvin Hagler
  • Roberto Duran
  • Pernell Whitaker
  • Lennox Luis
  • Julio Caesar Chavez
  • “Finito” Lopez
  • Floyd Mayweather
  • Miquel Angel Cotto
  • Andre Ward
  • Bernard Hopkins
  • Oscar De La Hoya

If licensing all these all-star fighters becomes an issue, a robust create-a-boxer system can pick up some of the slack. Looks are important, but a truly great system would let us customize fighting styles, tendencies and AI decision making as well.

Venues and Arenas

Again, let’s toss in as much as we can. In a perfect world, we could travel all over the world from Manila to Las Vegas. Large scale indoor arenas like the O2 Arena in London, MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Madison Square Garden in New York City, Azteca Arena in Mexico. Old Famous Arenas like Caesars Palace Outdoor Arena. Football Stadiums like the Dallas Cowboys, MetLife Stadium. So many to choose from. How about a create a stadium option too?

But how does the boxing feel?

As far as gameplay goes, we need to have great fight physics. Progressive damage throughout the fight that shows over the rounds. If your boxer is in a slugfest, they should look like it. For example, if I’m getting peppered with jabs to the eye all fight, the game should show the accumulation over the area.

Ideally there will be a ton of options for fighting style. Does my boxer fight on their toes or flat footed with power? Are they a defensive wizard with the shoulder roll or do they fight Philly Shell style? Hands down matrix style reflexes like RJJ or The Prince? The game should deliver on all this. If we can have running styles in Madden, Shooting Styles in NBA 2K, and batting and pitching styles in MLB: The Show, there’s no reason we can’t hope for it in ESBC.

eSports Boxing Club releases in early access later this month via Steam. You can check out what we know about ESBC’s early access here. ESBC will be coming to Xbox One and PlayStation 4 sometime in first Quarter 2021. The Xbox Series S/X and PlayStation 5 release dates will be sometime in Quarter 4 2021.


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