‘UFC Undisputed 3’ hits stores today in North America (17th February for those in Europe) and the feedback from the critics so far suggests that the extra time THQ took to perfect the latest release was worthwhile.

IGN gave the game a glowing 9/10 review for the PS3 version, praising the “staggering” amount of new content and declaring it “the deepest and most realistic MMA experience around.”

Another respected gaming site Gamespot awarded it 8/10, stating that the title, “is well-rounded and impresses in a lot of different areas. It improves upon its predecessors at practically every opportunity and, for the moment, is the undisputed champion of MMA video games.”

Meanwhile based on 25 reviews so far the XBox 360 version has an overall 87/100 rating on the MetaCritic site.

Including amongst those is a 4.5/5 review from Joystiq who say, “THQ and Yuke’s bring the sport to life, and it says something about their efforts when the worst aspects of their product are minuscule in comparison to its overall value,” while G4TV describes it as, “A superb experience, sure to both delight fighting game fans and bring complete newbies into the fold.”

Now it’s time to find out if the gamers themselves feel the same way. UFC Undisputed 2009 was a big success sales wise for THQ, but the 2010 edition failed to meet expectations so there’s a lot resting on the shoulders of the third edition of the franchise.