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Fight Night series on hold for EA Sports UFC, says EA Sports boss

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

Electronic Arts has put its long-running Fight Night series of boxing titles on hold while it works on the upcoming EA Sports UFC, said Andrew Wilson, head of the EA Sports label, in an interview with IGN.

"Right now, a great portion of the core of the Fight Night team are actually the team that are building UFC," said Wilson. He added that EA is focusing on UFC because of its ever-growing prominence as an international sport; boxing, on the other hand, is much less popular than it used to be.

"Do I see a future for Fight Night? You know, sure. But right now, UFC is where our fighting focus is," said Wilson.

EA announced at E3 2012 that it had acquired the UFC license from THQ and signed a multi-year exclusive agreement with UFC to produce UFC games. Prior to that, EA released EA Sports MMA in 2010, which did not include UFC combatants since THQ held the UFC license at the time. EA Sports MMA was made by EA Tiburon, the studio behind the Madden series, but EA Canada is the home of Fight Night, and EA Sports UFC is being developed there as well.

The last entry in the Fight Night franchise was Fight Night Champion, which was released on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in March 2011. EA said earlier this month that it does not plan to release EA Sports UFC before April 2014; the game is in development on Xbox One and PlayStation 4 on the new EA Sports Ignite engine.

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