Electronic Theatre In-depth Review: UFC Personal Trainer – Urijah Faber Workout Pack

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Despite having been available for nearly six months, THQ’s successful UFC Personal Trainer recently received its first downloadable content (DLC) pack. Looking at this situation from a consumer point of view and you might wonder why the publisher is bothering with a title which has arguably surpassed its heyday, but stepping back and taking the cultural aspect of marketing into account makes it much easier to justify.

After the winter holidays many people like to begin new fitness regimes, and so those who have already purchased UFC Personal Trainer have another reason to put that disc back into their console for another spin. For those yet to adopt the software, UFC Personal Trainer is available at most retailers for a very wallet-friendly price and the release of new DLC gets the press talking once again; in the last week, Electronic Theatre has presented two new articles covering a six month old videogame in addition to this in-depth review. If that wasn’t enough to justify such an interesting marketing plan,  Electronic Theatre isn’t sure what actually would be.

However, the road to release hasn’t been too rosey for UFC Personal Trainer’s first DLC, the Urijah Faber Workout Pack, as a hiccup with the pricing of the product on the Xbox LIVE Marketplace resulted in the listing asking for 800 Microsoft Points. A few days later this issue was fixed, and the Urijah Faber Workout Pack is now available for free as originally intended. However, after such a well paced marketing plan it’s not difficult to see how THQ might be disappointed in the hindrance the error caused, especially as subsequent DLC releases will be ‘paid for’ additions.

The DLC adds a fair amount of new content to the original product, with five new workout routines and fifteen new Hit the Matt drills included. The workout routines appear at the very end of the pre-made menu, and follows the same familiar pattern of the workouts included on the original UFC Personal Trainer retail disc. The familiar pattern of a pre-set series of exercises, with a goal in terms of amount of reps and a time limit to perform them in, returns as would be expected in terms of workout routines, the Urijah Faber Workout Pack is most definitely an expansion, not a revision. It’s another set of options for a videogame that already presents many choices.

The Hit the Matt drills are a little fresher, but still far from anything new. They help to rejuvenate the experience, offering a fresh personality and challenge, but still remain bound by the rules players will already be very familiar with. It might be part of an ‘if its not broken don’t fix it’ attitude, or it may be a lazy take on DLC development; whatever the case, fans of the existing UFC Personal Trainer set-up will be more than happy with the opportunity to experience it in a new way, whereas those disappointed first time around will find nothing to convince them otherwise.

The Urijah Faber Workout Pack is pretty much the quintessential DLC design: it expands the experience of the original title without disenfranchising the original content. The addition of an Achievement that unlocks a character in the forthcoming UFC Undisputed 3 is surely the DLC’s biggest innovation, but this isn’t necessarily a derogatory observation, for the familiarity of the additions presented by the free Urijah Faber Workout Pack will surely be praised by the greatest supporters of the UFC Personal Trainer videogame.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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