Metascore
69

Mixed or average reviews - based on 48 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 17 out of 48
  2. Negative: 2 out of 48
Buy On
  1. While Icon is the best looking of the Def Jam games, the combat system isn’t quite as entertaining, dropping the previous games’ over-the-top wrestling moves for more straightforward street fighting. It’s not a bad system, but it’s just not as wild and entertaining.
  2. For me, there's too much 'on paper' that is wrong with this game – the music, the characters, the clichés, the lack of options and lack of variety. Yet, in practice and in spite of all this, I did enjoy Def Jam Icon.
  3. Too bad the slow-as-molasses combat (and too-savvy computer-controlled opponents) keep this fighter from rivaling classics like "Tekken," "Street Fighter" and "Soul Calibur," but the innovative use of music, as both an aesthetic and a weapon, adds depth.
  4. 70
    Weak fighting moves, a lackluster story mode and inconsistent game mechanics complicate what would otherwise be the evolution of the franchise.
  5. Fantastic visuals, a decent plot and an interesting music-based fighting system are hampered by some tacked-on non-features, iffy controls and a thinner roster of rappers. Bring back Lil Kim!
  6. 70
    The Xbox 360 version of the game lets you import your own music, but besides only being able to use your music in one game mode, the game just doesn’t do a very good job of bumping the background to your music.
  7. It's just a pity there isn't as much variety in the fighting as there is in the outfits, as we could've been looking at an even higher score. [Apr 2007, p.91]
  8. There is no doubt that Def Jam Icon is a fun game that is easy to play and full of neat ideas for a fighting game. However due to the lack of depth and variety to the game play means you are left with a basic brawler that simply looks very nice.
  9. Overall, DEF JAM ICON is a decent game, although a little disappointing in that the story line is unaffected by your actions and decisions throughout.
  10. The move towards the slower paced boxing style of Fight Night was an interesting concept, but everything else in the game screams wrestler. The combination just doesn't work well.
  11. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    68
    Like the previous Def jams, Icon can't decide what kind of game it wants to be. [Apr 2007, p.88]
  12. 68
    The whole thing feels like something of a work in progress, full of interesting and potentially brilliant ideas that somehow just fail to live up to their billing.
  13. Even if you don't own every Ludacris album, watching the rich environments rattle to the music is reason enough to give this a play. Just don't expect much depth from this beat 'em up.
  14. 65
    This one's fun, no doubt about it, and the way the beats bang the environment is a must-see. But its lack of fighting depth definitely keeps it on the casual tip.
  15. Def Jam: Icon is undeniably stylish, sporting wondrously surreal next-gen visuals and bumping the latest and greatest of mainstream hip-hop. But for all its flash, the fighting engine disappoints, coming off as sluggish and unrefined.
  16. Play Magazine
    65
    There's no way to imagine these fights as anything but someone's absurd rap fantasy that was somehow shoehorned onto a fighting game. [Mar 2007, p.53]
  17. Despite a few different fighting styles, matches tend to play exactly the same way no matter what environment you’re in or who’s doing the fighting. It’s like an album where every song sounds the same.
  18. While the visuals are amazing, the game just doesn't deliver as well in the fighting as it should.
  19. 60
    For anyone who feels like hip-hop is more than the soundtrack to the suburban mall thug experience, the game is really a disservice to a rich culture that involves more than misogyny and violence.
  20. 60
    Icon is serviceable, but it’s not something you’ll be spinning in your disc tray for very long.
  21. The DJ system is unique and intuitive, the visuals well polished and, even with my rock/punk roots, the soundtrack is a commendable mix of uncensored beats. Nevertheless, the broken fighting mechanics and sluggish pacing are enough to keep this game from reaching true icon status.
  22. It’s strange that EA Chicago responsible for the amazing Fight Night series couldn’t capitalize on the Def Jam series.
  23. 55
    This isn't fun, this is sloppy. Fights devolve into senseless button and stick mashing, and often lead to a lot of controller throwing moments.
  24. 360 Gamer Magazine UK
    50
    Stylish it may be, but ICON's core mechanics are simply too slack for us to recommend it to anyone that wants to splash out on a decent fighting game. [Issue #23, p.55]
  25. Edge Magazine
    50
    Thanks in no small part to the slavish love of motion capture over more manageable keyframe animation, the fights in Icon are sluggish, crude and practically underwater when it comes to control. [Apr 2007, p.79]
  26. ICON may look the business, but it falls down in that most crucial of areas - it makes fighting a chore rather than an enjoyable experience.
  27. 50
    This game feels more like "Fight Night: Street" than a next-gen Def Jam game, regrettably. All we ever wished for were new moves, new fighters, better graphics and online and EA gave us all that but in the process they broke the main thing that made this series interesting in the first place; the fighting engine.
  28. X-ONE Magazine UK
    50
    It's just about throwing people at stuff. And it's dull. [Issue 18, p.78]
  29. The controls are slow and unresponsive, the kiss of death for a fighting game.
User Score
6.2

Mixed or average reviews- based on 109 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 26
  2. Negative: 7 out of 26
  1. Sep 10, 2017
    5
    Un juego de combate muy normalito, el combate es original pero no es gran cosa, la "historia" la pusieron solo para rellenar y tampoco es queUn juego de combate muy normalito, el combate es original pero no es gran cosa, la "historia" la pusieron solo para rellenar y tampoco es que hay muchos personajes.
    En fin, no me gusto y no lo recomiendo, ya que hay juegos de combate mucho mejores.
    Full Review »
  2. Jul 20, 2014
    6
    Def Jam Icon is good but very disappointing. It has better character Customization, graphics, a better plot, and clothing than Def Jam NY, butDef Jam Icon is good but very disappointing. It has better character Customization, graphics, a better plot, and clothing than Def Jam NY, but it fails to b better it. Full Review »
  3. Oct 29, 2012
    7
    If you consider yourself a fan of rap music, you're almost guaranteed to have a good time using your favorite artists to beat the snot out ofIf you consider yourself a fan of rap music, you're almost guaranteed to have a good time using your favorite artists to beat the snot out of your least favorites. Even if you're not a fan of the music, there's still a lot of fun to be had here due to a solid, albeit somewhat flawed fighting system. The story is excellent for a fighting game, and the voice acting performances are among the best I've seen, with every major character voiced by their real life counterpart. The graphics are great for the most part, although the color filters that flood the screen after the musical track is switched can be a bit jarring. The audio is outstanding, with the most impressive licensed track library I've ever seen and some phenomenal voice acting jobs done by the rap artists in the game. While there's a few issues that hinder the game, it's still a perfect addition to any fighting fan's library. Full Review »