Def Jam: Icon

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Def Jam: Icon
The game that killed the Def Jam Franchise
Protagonist: Playa
Genre: Fighting
Platforms: Xbox 360
PlayStation 3
Release Date: March 6, 2007
Developer: EA Chicago
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Franchise: Def Jam
Next Game: Def Jam: Icon 2 (Canceled)

Def Jam: Icon is a fighting game, the third in Electronic Arts's Def Jam-licensed hip hop video game series. The game was developed by EA Chicago and released on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 on March 6, 2007.

Why It Sucks

  1. The development of the game was given to a different development studio named EA Chicago instead of AKI Corporation who developed the previous two games. Which is mainly the cause of the game not being as good as the two previous games
  2. The fighting system for the game is revamped, but into making the game way less realistic unlike the other 2 games in the series Vendetta and Fight for New York. In Icon they can taunt to set off explosions to the world around them. As for Blazin moves, they got removed from the game.
  3. Your character only has 1 voice choice for this game, which is a major downgrade from Def Jam: Fight for New York which allowed you to choose between 6 different voice choices.
    • As for character customization, there are less stuff to choose from.
  4. Very small roster, it only has 29 playable characters. In which many of the original characters from the other 2 games didn't return.
    • In Def Jam: Fight for New York, that game had 67 playable characters. There was no excuse that the roster had to be slimmed down, since Icon was on more powerful hardware unlike Fight for New York.
  5. Lackluster story, in which is somewhat rehashed from Def Jam Fight For NY: The Takeover. As your character always gets harassed by 2 detectives Wheatly and Greer in which are rehashes of Jervis and Starks from that previous game.
  6. Very poor hair and chain physics, in which the hair ends up glitching for a bit and the chains around a character's neck clipping right through a character's torso.
  7. Very poor lip-syncing in the cutscenes, sometimes the character's mouth doesn't move at all when they speak.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. Amazing rap soundtrack, from multiple artists. Just like the previous games.
  2. The graphics look pretty decent, despite not aging well.
  3. Great voice acting from the main character himself, as well as other characters in the game.


While the game received mixed to positive reviews from critics and game critics, the game received "average" reviews on both platforms according to video game review aggregator Metacritic.

IGN praised the uncensored soundtrack, "beautifully rendered" visuals and the "My Soundtrack" feature on the former version, but criticized "weak fighting moves" and "inconsistent game mechanics". GameSpot, however, became more positive, stating that it "plays well enough, but it really shines thanks to its crazy story and healthy roster".



  • The voice actor of the main character Playa, also voiced as the main character of True Crime: New York City Marcus Redd.
  • Def Jam: Icon 2 was originally going to be made as a sequel to Def Jam: Icon but was later canceled due to poor reception from fans and critics and Electronic Arts losing the Def Jam license.