Def Jam: Icon

Download Def Jam: Icon and fight your way to the top of the hip-hop world! Choose your favorite artist, battle it out in brutal brawls, and build your music empire in this action-packed fighting game. Turn up the volume and play now!
a game by Electronic Arts Chicago
Platforms: XBox 360 (2007), Playstation 3
Editor Rating: 7.3/10, based on 2 reviews
User Rating: 6.7/10 - 20 votes
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See also: Fighting Games, Arcade Games, Def Jam Games
Def Jam: Icon
Def Jam: Icon
Def Jam: Icon

Def Jam: Icon is the third game in the Def Jam series from EA. I freaking loved the first Def Jam Vendetta as I am a huge wrestling fan. By this point, the series had gotten away from wrestling and was more of a fighting game now. That though does not mean I lost all interest in the series.

Style And Profile

The presentation of this game is great. As I write this review, Def Jam: Icon is over 10 years old and it still looks great. The leap from Def Jam Fight for New York cannot be exaggerated as it is like night and day. The game has a ton of different rap stars in it including the likes of Big Boi, Fat Joe, Redman, Ludacris, The Game and many more.

As this is a game about music, you will not be surprised to know that the soundtrack is great. It is on par with the other games in the series, but I like how much more “involved” the music is with the action.

Let Me Tell You A Tale

One of the things that the past two Def Jam gamed (especially Vendetta) did was tell an engaging story. This one is not quite as cinematic as the two that came before it. I will say that the voice acting is once again fantastic, but the whole Build A Label mode that is the main single-player mode just does not do it for me as the last two games did. To be fair, those previous two games set the bar very, very high and I would not say this one misses it altogether, but it is just not quite as good.

Piledriver? I Will Just Punch You In The Face Instead

The people who made the previous games, AKI are not part of Def Jam: Icon which is a shame and probably why the game is not a wrestling game. AKI are the masters of wrestling games after all. Instead, Icon goes for a more standard kind of fighting game and in many ways, I would say it is more similar to EA’s Fight Night series than the last two Def Jam games.

As a result, the fighting feels more about strikes and using the environments that it does performing badass wrestling moves. It feels much more simplistic as a result and dare I say… not quite as much fun. One thing that is fun is the way the background moves in time to the music and how certain stages when there is a certain kind of beat will have something happen like a big fireball. This is a cool effect and can be used quite cleverly while you are fighting.

The most fun that I had with this game was in the multiplayer mode where you and a buddy pick your favorite rappers and just beat the heck out of each other. The simpler gameplay I feel makes this a game that anyone can pick up and enjoy, perhaps more so than Vendetta or Fight for New York.


I know that this review may seem negative, but I still enjoyed my time with Def Jam: Icon. I still feel that the previous two games, especially Vendetta were better, but to be fair that is because I am a massive wrestling fan. As an actual fighting game, Icon is a lot of fun and even though the fighting system is simple, it is fun and can be quite brutal when you learn how to dish out some of the more extreme attacks. I would still say that this one here is worth checking out.


  • A great roster of rappers to fight with
  • The presentation is fantastic
  • Awesome soundtrack
  • I like the way the backgrounds move with the music
  • Multiplayer is an absolute blast!


  • It feels simpler and more scaled back compared to its predecessors
  • The story is not as engaging as before

Download Def Jam: Icon

XBox 360

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP
Playstation 3

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews

Rocking jaws in Icon takes more than a pair of hurtin' bombs--the real pain belongs to the beat. "The music driving the environment is not just a visual effect," says Executive Producer Kudo Tsunoda. "It's a core element of our gameplay." Each level houses a slew of dangerous booby traps that are triggered by the tempo of the tunes, so throwing punches is only half the ass-kicking. "Every environment plays differently depending on what music is playing while you are fighting," says Tsunoda. "Since the music is different, and since the environmental hazards are triggered by the music, the rhythm and beat of each environment changes when the music changes." You can even upload your own songs, in case you ever wanted to bash heads to Barbra Streisand or Britney Spears--your pick.

Snapshots and Media

XBox 360 Screenshots

Playstation 3 Screenshots

Other Games by Electronic Arts Chicago