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WWE 2K14 Preview

by Diogo Miguel October 14, 2013

This year’s WWE outing is also the first time that a new title is released under the 2K Sports brand. It’s a good sign considering the popularity of other titles under 2K Sports. There are a few new ideas being added to WWE 2K14, but do they make for an even better experience?

It’s not a wrestling video-game without all kinds of different modes based around how many players are in the ring. Each new match mode brings about different ways to go about playing. For example, one on one matches are mainly about wearing down the opponent and then attempting to tag him/her.

It gets a lot more complicated once taking on two or more opponents at the same time. It’s thrilling to just narrowly avoid one opponent, whilst fighting another, or perhaps letting opponents fight and then swoop in to defeat whoever is left standing. It also seemed like it was possible to hold a match with up to four wrestlers.

The wrestler roster is nothing short of impressive with classic/modern version of popular wrestlers, such as Triple H, and wrestlers that haven’t been stepping in the ring as long. It pretty much includes just about every major wrestling superstar.

There are various costumes and other customisation options for each of the wrestlers. In fact, there are so many options that it’s like creating a custom wrestler. It’s a fantastic idea to give players the ability to have this much choice over a wrestler’s appearance. Specially since most of the costumes used looked like they were often used in matches by the wrestlers.

It’s very important to have a functional control scheme for a fast paced video-game such as this. At first, it was somewhat difficult to learn how to properly pin down an opponent. In fact, it was the same when attempting to get out from underneath an enemy pinning the wrestler.

But it’s all down to waiting for an on-screen animation prompting the player to press a button at the right timing. This is sometimes tougher in certain situations, since the window of opportunity for successfully hitting a button at right moment is smaller.

Rather than have a cluttered user interface, button prompts only appear when necessary. It might explain why it was confusing to understand how such mechanics as pinning down an opponent worked at first. Yet, it worked exceptionally well in ensuring that the focus stayed on fighting opponents and making players more aware of surroundings.

It’s fairly easy for new players to learn the basics. But mastering each wrestler’s different fighting technique is only feasible when making effective use of the controls given. Specially when having to quickly press the correct button whenever an on-screen prompt appears – such as avoiding a dangerous attack.

The action never slowed down during a match. It gets crazy at times as wrestlers wander off the ring to grab items like chairs – in an attempt to hit opponents. It’s just as chaotic as watching live wrestling matches, and this makes it all the more entertaining.

Fighters eventually started sweating from all the demanding physical actions and reacted differently as they received more damage. Each moment never failed to make it feel as if it was all a part of a live wrestling match. Even the smallest of details are captured – such as tattoos on muscled torsos and arms.

Do you smell what the Rock is cooking? You should do if you are a fan of wrestling, but you will probably know what it’s about once viewing one of the many individual intros for each wrestler. Nothing gets the crowd going like an intro and it’s done properly in WWE 2K14.

As already mentioned there are various match modes that makes it simple to quickly get in on the wrestling action. Such modes include 1 vs 1, Two vs Two(Tag Team/Tornado Tag and so on. It’s quite impressive to see what is on offer.

Each of the characters has a unique signature move just like in real life. This is truly impressive considering how many there are. Each comes with unique animations for the wrestler that never cease to impress. Try to imagine a fully grown man being lifted from behind and then thrown onto the floor as if he is a sack of potatoes. The world of WWE 2K 14 is filled with such moments. It’s not even that difficult to do such signature moves – given that the player attempts to learn the various controls properly.

The inclusion of female “Divas” is not only a great idea but they are presented in an appropriate manner. Even if there is a far smaller number when compared to the male “Superstars” wrestlers. It’s rather enjoyable to fight as one of them because it feels like a different kind of wrestling.

One of the other modes, WWE Universe, lets players manage certain aspects of wrestling, such as rivalries and setting up matches. It seemed like a attempt at a much more interesting sport management – without the dreadfully boring walls of text. Instead it’s more like hands-on management given that it’s possible to play any matches set up and so on.

A new mode dubbed 30 Year of Wrestlemania is one that should prove popular with fans. It makes it possible to re-enact iconic fights from wrestling history. This is very important for fans who have stuck around from beginning or just want to learn.

It’s necessary to complete certain objectives to successfully re-enact exactly how each match went. Some more complex objectives seem completely optional. It’s safe to say that it will take some skill to complete each historic match with every objective completed. But in doing so, there is also a certain sense of accomplishment. Even if it’s only possible to complete the mandatory objectives at first.

It was captivating to relive one of these matches as it even included video clips from the time. It’s clear that the development team wanted to give fans something special and it might just work.

It’s easy to mash buttons but it takes a few matches to truly appreciate the ideas that went behind ensuring that only those who learn can progress properly.

The time spent in the ring was brief, but it really seemed like this the wrestling game that fans have been dreaming about.

It’s early but this might even win back the attention of fans who have not been so keen in wrestling for a couple of years. It certainly has all the right ingredients to make WWE 2K14 the essential wrestling video-game. It’s been a turbulent time for the franchise, but it really feels like 2K Sports is serious about making it an experience that no wrestling fan will want to miss out on.

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