If you’ve been wanting to play as the legendary martial artist Bruce Lee in a video game again, or if you’ve ever wanted to see him throw down in the UFC’s iconic Octagon, well, you, my good sir or madam, are in luck.
Electronic Arts has announced that Bruce Lee will be a playable character in their first UFC game, simply titled EA Sports UFC, and has also released a new trailer for the game including Lee.
You can find out why they chose to include Lee, how they built him (in a game where most of the athletes were scanned in order to achieve the most realistic digital representations possible), how you can gain access to him, and watch the new trailer below.
So why Bruce Lee? A entire blog post was dedicated to answering this question, though the answer is pretty obvious. The game’s Creative Director, Brian Hayes, explains:
“I feel like this is the most ridiculous question. Why put Bruce Lee in a UFC game? It’s. Bruce. Lee”¦
You have the premier organization in the fastest growing sport in the world, the UFC; and the most iconic martial artist in the history of the world, Bruce Lee – a martial artist renowned for his philosophies that laid the groundwork for modern mixed martial arts. I can’t conceive of a universe where bringing these two things together doesn’t make sense. I know there are going to be countless fans that feel the exact same way and they will be eager [to] play with such a legend in the UFC Octagon. I am one of them.”
When it came to actually creating the digital form of the late Bruce Lee, Art Director Ian Lloyd explains how they did it:
“There were many eager artists who wanted the chance to tackle this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity but Stephen Chan was our man to realize Bruce Lee. He had built several UFC fighters from scratch and relished the challenge.
We were quickly connected to Bruce Lee Enterprises who provided us with not only an impressive catalog of digital references spanning Bruce’s acting career, but many behind-the-scenes and candid shots that helped us identify the specific era we wanted to capture as well as the iconic elements of his face and body. A real bonus was the life-cast they sent us that gave us a truly definitive three-dimensional reference that would prove to be the next best thing to having Bruce scanned.”
And what we can expect from the result:
“Seeing Bruce Lee walkout and enter the Octagon to fight in the UFC for the first time is a surreal and truly sensational experience. It is hard to deny the influence he has had on the development of MMA and ultimately the UFC.
This does not just look like Bruce Lee. It is Bruce Lee. The way he carries himself, his fighting stance, his rippling physique, devastating speed, signature strikes and accompanying yells, whoops and shrieks.
We have summoned this pinnacle of human strength, speed and spirit into our world and it has truly been an honor and a career highlight for us to do so.”
Usually when a video game offers a special playable character like this you’re required to pre-order the game in order to get them. That’s the case here as well, if you want to be able to play as Lee from the very start. But there is also another way to obtain Lee, which is always appreciated. You can play through the game’s career mode on Pro difficulty or higher, which will unlock Bruce for use in the Flyweight, Bantamweight, Featherweight, and Lightweight divisions.
You can pre-order EA Sports UFC for Xbox One and PlayStation 4 now, and the game will be officially released on June 17th.