I got just one question for you… Are you ready? I SAID ARE… YOU… READY?!?!?! you know I am! its October. For most people that means Halloween, Pumpkin Spiced everything, the return of Walking Dead, and Mtn Dew: Game Fuel. For me it’s all of these plus one big game release, WWE 2k. WWE video game releases have become a fall time tradition for me dating all the way back to SmackDown! Here Comes the Pain. How does WWE 2k15 Stack up to previous years? Find out below.
I’m not going to lie, though the graphics were better than the 360/ps3 version, they were a disappointment. In fact I dare say they were as good as WWE ’12 since the graphics quality dropped from ’13-2k15 to make space for all of the features that Yukes, THQ and 2k Games were trying to fit in. This year, it seems that Yukes has been able to take advantage of the current gen hardware as the game looks so much more polished. Granted some characters more than others have greater detail but what I’ve seen so far I am impressed with.
Over the years, Yukes has made strides on trying to improve upon their system. At it’s heart it always seems like the base is the old SmackDown games just tailored and tweaked. This years engine definitely seems more refined than 2k15 but they have added some new gameplay elements. The kick out system and submissions have totally been revamped into something that looks a kin to the “Madden Field goal meter” with pins and kickouts you get a circle dial where in order to kick out you must stop the edge of your blue indicator with in a red area, if you mess up the timing, you’re pretty much screwed. I’m not a huge fan of this one. I miss the days of tapping like a madman to get out like in Here comes the Pain or No Mercy. But then again this type of meter does even the playing field a bit when you’re playing against your friends that have a little too much “Fireman Time”. I do kind of like the new meter for submissions. it’s a little weird to get used too. it’s similar to the pin meter but with this one, a player will control either a blue field or a red field. The purpose depends on whether you’re in the submission or applying it. Other than these changes, the gameplay is the same just a bit more refined.
2k16 see the return of the same modes as last year. You get your standard Play mode which allows the user to create and play various match types with whoever they choose from this year’s monstrous roster (Minus CM Punk unfortunately, but I didn’t expect him in there anyway). We also see the return of standards such as Universe mode, online, Creation mode and Showcase Mode.
Showcase mode seems to have been updated in terms of presentation. In previous years, we’ve scene additions such as “Era Presentation” where in Showcase mode (and in match making) the audience and the color/clarity would reflect era of wrestling it comes from. For example, the first match in showcase you play is Stone Cold vs Jake the Snake at King of the Ring ’96. In this match everything is grainy and color is washed out to simulate what the match looked like back then on standard def televisions. the crowd was also wearing merch of that era instead of your Cena and Bryan merch you’d see on TV today. This year they had included something that I never would have expected and REALLY liked. It seems that the WWE has included in these showcase matches actual “cutaway” footage from the real story lines. This inclusion hit me right in the nostalgia button and loved it because it brought me back to watching wrestling as a kid.
Match Presentation also got a noticeable improvement in the entrances department. Normally between wrestler’s entrances you’d get like a brief loading screen and then the next entrance would start or the match would start. Not so in 2k16, Yukes using the power of the current gen systems was able to either hide or get rid of the loading screens in such a way that one entrance ends you either get a 5 second crowd shot or a shot of the announcers then the next entrance. this makes it more like you’re watching an actual match and even toward the end of the entrance you have the option to “Break out” if you choose this option in time, you can interrupt one of the entrances and Jump your opponent.
Last year’s creation mode was a little disappointing. Sure you had some really cool advancements that opened up creativity to a whole new level but at the sacrifice of options that made previous years very robust. As of writing, I did not go as in depth as I would have liked to or explored the updated Logo manager for a couple of reasons. the logo manager was experiencing some server issues at the beginning of the week so I really was not able to explore that. As for the Create a Superstar mode, Yukes has overhauled and made modifying the appearance so in depth it borders 3D animation and game design. I got caught up and intimidated at just messing with my character’s face. In the revamped mode, you can edit points on the face that changes the shape and position of things like you left eye or right nostril. I would not be surprised if I see a very convincing “Sloth” from Goonies up on Community Creations. Entrance Creation has been improved since last year as well, Making it much easier to control elements like Pyro and nameplate.
If what I’ve already explored is indication of the rest of the game’s quality, then I look forward to getting the chance to dive deeper. I still have yet to explore the improvements to Universe mode (my favorite) and I’ve only just started Career mode which the only noticeable difference in that mode that I’ve seen was the replacement of Bill DeMott with Matt Bloom (Tensai/A-train/Prince Albert). If you are a Wrestling Fan and play the games occasionally, this is one to pick up.