Just played the game with a friend, and I think it's pretty awesome. Not sure how you guys, who thought the 2010 one sucked, will like it, because many things are the same, but damn, PRIDE mode is the shit! And is it just me, or grappling is much more fun than it used to be? The transitions seem smoother to me and it's harder/more interesting to hold someone down, and lay'n'praying practically doesn't exist, since you can get out of guard very fast if your opponent doesn't do anything (previously it took a few tries before you shook him off).
Oh, and the most important thing - Bas' commentary is hilarious, sometimes doesn't make any sense, but you can get a laugh out of it.
Can't wait for the full roster, I don't see myself playing the UFC mode too much though, except when I'll play Career mode or something.
P.s. Soccer kicks/knees to a grounded opponent FTW!