Thursday, July 10, 2014

Wrestling Games Moving Forward...

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So if I haven't made it clear in videos and amy previous "Pretty Little Liars" review, I am a HUGE wrestling game fan, they're practically the only games I play on a consistent bases. Pathetic, yes, I know, but to each their own and all that. Anyways, I recently purchased a PS3 and the first game I brought was none other than "WWE2K14". Now I understand "WWE2K15" will be coming out later this year, but I imagine it's an extremely short amount of time to fix the multitude of problems with the WWE games as it stands now. So in this article, I'll be listing those problems and offering solutions on how to solve them. So let's dive in;

It's very rare where I get bored with a wrestling game, but "WWE2K14" has managed to not only bore me but frustrate me to no end. Some of these issues are game bugs, like for whatever reason my CAW in slot #31 won't work in Create-A-Story Mode, freezes the game. and I'm pretty sure there are some other bugs that I'm unaware of but will discover eventually. But anyways, as it's now 2014, wrestling games should be entering a golden age, but instead they're regressing and "WWE2K14" is proof positive and it's probably the most disappointing wrestling game I've ever played. Before I continue, I should say that I'm loathed to calling it out and out bad because I am very much enjoying the fact that I can FINALLY use my own music for my CAWs, and while I understand that has more to do with the PS3 than it does the actual game, the fact nonetheless blows my mind. So here are my major issues with "WWE2K14" and how to correct them.

Honestly, what the hell is this?! I understand this is a major selling point for some people but I cannot for the life of me understand why. I'm not just crapping on Universe Mode, there are SOME things I like about it. For example, I love the fact that you can customize EVERYTHING, from the shows, the titles and who has them,the roster, the PPVS and what days they're airing, rivalries and so on so forth, that's AMAZING to me and is definitely a step up above the other games...however...there is NO story. Sure there is the occasional cut scene here and there where your rivals will snuff you from the back or he'll come out and applaud one of your matches and a few other things, but they only last about 20 seconds and they really don't pack much of an impact. At the end of the day, you're just playing through matches and it felt like a suped up version of  N64's "WWF Attitude's" Career Mode.

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Similar, no ?

I'm praising Universe Mode for it's full on customization but the experience LACKS HEAVILY because it's basically the same experience I have in exhibition mode and a different game mode SHOULDN'T BE LIKE THAT! There have been some very EPIC career/story/season modes in previous WWE games. I didn't have a Playstation so I never played any of the old SMACKDOWN titles, but when I got a PS2, I started playing "SMACKDOWN: Shut Your Mouth!" and the career mode there was AWESOME (for the time it had come out). They did the whole storyline of the brand split, The n.W.o's return, The Rock vs. Hogan (of course with yourself replacing The Rock), it was fun, it was an experience and I enjoyed playing through it. Then came "SMACKDOWN!: Here Comes the Pain" and if you wanna talk about story mode! This was another great one! From being approached by Taz and given a manager and starting a stable and hooking up with your manager, it was a really cool experience. And how could I talk about story modes WITHOUT mentioning the unsung hero of story modes, "WWF No Mercy" for N64!

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My solution to fix Universe Mode is to combine the concept of GM Mode with the experience of Story Mode. Picture this if you will, you got your Universe mode ALL SET UP, now you have some new options. Rivalry Managers, who's The Heel? Who's the Face? Who's a Tweener? If you play through the story with a Heel character, you'll get Heel options, if you play through the story as a Face, you'll get Face options and you can toggle between characters, that's another great thing about Universe Mode, the fact that you're not confined to one character. And that's another thing! Multiple storylines. Like in "WWF No Mercy" if you lost certain matches, the course of your story would change and branch out to a new section. I'm talking about selecting actual story angles with inconspicuous titles or putting the story on Random and letting the computer choose a story for you. After all you already set up who the heels and faces are in your Universe, now all you gotta do is sit back and play through the mayhem. Put a stable in Universe Mode, and watch that stable actually have your back, fight against a stable in Universe Mode, don't be surprised if you get jumped in your next match.

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Video games HAVE the technology to pull this off, they've done it in the past! Shouldn't be too difficult to do it now, since technology has come such a long way. None of what I'm saying are novel concepts either, branching storylines with multiple threads were around in "WWF No Mercy" and alternate endings for storylines BASED on YOUR CHOICES throughout the game has been a staple in MOST video games OUT TODAY! Why can't wrestling games emulate this? So that we can get an experience similar to the ACTUAL shows. This will increase the replay value and warrant very high kudos. Also if you wanted to keep the match objectives like you have in "30 Years Of Wrestlemania"...that's cool too. Adds a little extra difficulty.

"WWF No Mercy" & "SMACKDOWN: Shut Your Mouth!" both have functions where you could beat the crap out of your opponent in every location possible! While "WWF No Mercy's" mayhem would conclude in the loading dock, "SMACKDOWN: Shut Your Mouth!" enable to actually LEAVE THE STADIUM and go down the street to "The World" and pin your opponent in the interview spot. I miss seeing those floating blue triangles that let me know that piece of the world could be explored, and this is definitely due for a comeback. Although not a MAJOR issue, it is something I miss greatly.

One of my biggest gripes about Universe Mode is that for some reason whenever I set up a tag team rivalry, somewhere down the line, members of the team end up on the other team. For example say if I set up a rivalry between The Dudley Boyz & The Hardy Boyz, somewhere down the line, it'd be D'Von & Jeff vs. Matt & Bubba Ray...and I'm left going WTF?! The computer shouldn't be doing this nonsense, ESPECIALLY IF THE CHARACTERS ARE THE TAG TEAM CHAMPION AND THE OTHER TEAM IS THE NUMBER CONTENDERS FOR THE TITLES! When I set people up as my allies and enemies I SHOULD NOT BE TEAMING WITH THEM, UNLESS THERE IS SOME WACKY STIPULATION THAT SAYS I HAVE TO! When I make a team, I should be able to expect them to act and function as a team, which means backstage vignettes of us together or when I come to the ring to make an announcement, they should be by my side. On the flip-side, I should be able to betray them at anytime I desire, either by interfering in their matches and causes them to lose.

Anyways, those are just some ideas I have for future wrestling games that I don't think are too far-fetched and too difficult to execute. Let me know what you guys think. Anyways, I'll be over here trying to end the Undertaker's streak. Latersville, ya'll.

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