Now that WWE 2K15 has released on all of its platforms, it is safe to do a deserving review of the game.
I own it on the Playstation 4. I know the reviews of the PS3/Xbox 360 version weren’t as good, but we’re deep into the next generation of gaming and I would expect only shells of games to be released on those platforms going forward the next year or so before they’re gone. WWE was exactly the example of that. Full blown career mode is exclusive to Xbox One and Playstation 4 versions.
Playing the game, I was taken away by the graphics. Although the fans and wrestler’s hair still looks a bit off, this game is as polished and as beautiful as any wrestling game. Muscle definitions, facial expressions and reactions to each individual blow or move will cause a different reaction. It’s amazing. The gameplay is something that some love and some hate. You start each match with a collar and elbow tie up mini game (like paper, rock, scissors) that will do little in terms of hurting your opponent, but will give you a head start on the momentum needed to perform your signature and finishing moves.
The reversal system is tweaked for this year’s game to give a more realistic approach to reversing moves. Some of the old animations are still there, but you’re going to notice that this game plays more like a real life wrestling match than some arcade video game. Part of taking away the arcade feel is you have slower strikes, grapples and running. This is something that any of you who play online have noticed. In prior games, you’d play online and all someone would do are running grapples and cheap strikes. This game nerfs that in a way that doesn’t give an advantage to the slower player, but creates a possibility to build a really good match instead of just squash matches.
The hiccups that I’ve noticed are some of the animations screw up sometimes. Sheamus’ head was once backwards for one of my matches…which was pretty freaky looking. The announcers, although more natural and flowing this year, are still repetitive and annoying after a while. The roster is another so-so point. I, personally, have no big issues with it. There are a handful of NXT guys (Rusev, Zayn, Neville, Dallas and Graves) and then some legends (Nash, Flair, HBK, Stone Cold, Warrior) and the rest are just current roster. This is cool because it allows the roster to stand on its own instead of being supported by yesteryear stars like prior games. The upcoming DLC packs will satisfy fans looking for more legends, especially the WCW pack giving us Lord Steven Regal!!!
The game modes new to this are Showcase and MyCareer. MyCareer plays like the NBA 2K game’s career mode. You start from nothing and claw your way to the top. This game rewards you with VC (used to purchase special moves, managers) and then regular evolution points to level up your attributes to make you a stronger and better-rounded superstar. You start in NXT then get called to Superstars, Main Event and then Smackdown. It’s very rewarding but can be very time consuming. Showcase mode, for now, has CM Punk vs John Cena rivalry and HBK vs HHH from early 2000’s. Along the way, you’ll play pivotal and random matches involving either of the two. It’s really cool because you get to relive moments that don’t always stand out, but were still so important in the long run. The unlockables from here are cool, too as you get alternate costumes and the early/mid 2000s versions of people like Kane and Batista.
The online servers have been having issues, so as of writing, they’re intermittent on when they’re online or not. But, the Universe mode has returned. This is my personal favorite as you can generate weekly shows and can sculpt rivalries and also get scheduled dream matches (Sting vs Taker).
This game is far from perfect and will definitely have a mixed bag of emotions from fans new and old. However, we have a great starting foundation to go from for the next generation of video gaming and wrestling. Give it some time and enjoy this game.