WWE 2K22 | Review – Videogame wrestling starts from here

WWE 2K22 is a video game born with high expectations on its shoulders. After years of more or less good, but still decent, titles, WWE 2K20 he had in fact broken the spell, presenting himself at the launch in pitiless conditions.

WWE 2K22

Exit date:
11 March 2022
Visual Concepts
Take-Two Interactive

Of course, the fault was not entirely attributable to the new developers of Visual Concepts, as to the troubled game development and the handover with the old developer Yuke’s, which took place during construction; in any case, however, the fans were burned, and the reaction was strong enough to convince the developer and publisher to cancel the episode 2K21 to dedicate an extra year of development to the next title.

Here because WWE 2K22out March 11 on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X | S And PC, is an important title for the series: it is not just the umpteenth episode of an annual sports series, but a relaunch chapter, a sort of reboot that could relaunch the series or mark its definitive collapse. Fortunately, things went the right way: we explain why in our review.

Let’s quickly forget WWE 2K20

The tagline chosen by the developers for this WWE 2K22 (only 2K22 henceforth) was “It hits different”, To clearly underline the gap between this chapter and what came before. And the detachment actually exists: surely we are not facing a revolutionary chapter, but many things have changed, and fortunately almost always for the better.

Let’s start first from thetechnical aspecttrue cross of the last 2K20. Fortunately, the game is presented at launch in good condition. We tested it on PlayStation 5 and the game can make you forget the last episode immediately. Of course, this does not mean that the bugs have disappeared or that everything is going well: you will occasionally run into some ridiculous graphical error, in some not really successful collision, but in general things have significantly improved.

On a visual level, then, there was a leap in quality: while not fully exploiting the power of the new generation of consoles (inevitable since it is a cross-gen title), 2K22 still offers a A whole new level of realism for the seriesespecially as regards the realization of the wrestlers, never so similar to their real counterparts.

Let me be clear: we are not yet photorealism, on the contrary. The characters still seem very “puppet” and, above all, problems remain in the management of the wrestlers’ hair, an element that has always caused thunderous laughter in the players even in the historical episodes of the series. All in all though, things work and Visual Concepts definitely has in the right gear to bring the series into the new generation.

As for the audio sector, the qualitative leap is less perceptible; if you are a fan of the hard rock / metal musicmoreover, you will be happy with the selection of songs, which includes artists such as Motorhead, Asking Alexandria, Bring me the Horizon. We would have preferred a larger amount of songs present, but since they are only played in the game menus, and given the presence of all the great entrance music of the wrestlers, this is really a minor complaint.

In training we will be led by Drew Gulak.

“It hits different”… more or less

As we have seen, “it hits different“Is certainly true for the technical sector, but the developers had also talked about a gameplay rebuilt from its foundations. And here, honestly, the changes are relatively minor, but the game is still a big step forward for the series thanks to some apparently small changes that deeply affect the gameplay.

In general, the combat system has remained the same as in the last episodes of the series: we have light attacks, heavy attacks, different types of holds, parries, discards, special moves and finishing moves. In short, the classic moves you would expect from a wrestling title. Obviously, there are still the stamina bar, the health bar, the indicator of damage received to the various parts of the body and everything else: the basics have remained just the same.

The changes, as we told you, concern apparently minor aspects, but which on the whole give a very different feeling than in the past once you have the pad in your hand.
First, the game is much smoother compared to its immediate predecessors: we are far from the fast and dynamic action of arcade titles (and obviously this is no longer the goal of the series, excluding the recent spin-off 2K Battlegrounds), but there is a decisive step towards a more frenetic pace of play compared to the excessive slowness of the last few episodes.

Theelimination of annoying mini-games that appeared when submissions or other moves were performed: now everything is entrusted to the simple repeated pressing of a few keys. This is apparently a more simplistic choice, but we greatly preferred it to the old mini-games precisely because it does not break the rhythm of the action.

The system of countermoves has been revised: to cancel an opponent’s attack, or even to overthrow it, you have to press a button (guessing what kind of move the opponent is using, because each move corresponds to a different button) at the right time. It was like that already in the last few episodes, but here the time frame for the answer it is slightly more generous, and that pays off It is also possible for a neophyte to play without becoming a dummy prey to the opponent’s blows.

Of course, having to guess the move your opponent is going to use (without any visual cues to help you figure it out) is still pretty tedious but, again, it’s a step in the right direction.
In terms of gameplay, therefore, 2K22 it does not revolutionize the formula packaged and perfected over the years, but it touches upon various aspects, easily becoming the most entertaining title among the latest ones, and constituting an excellent basis on which to build the future of the series.

MyGM mode is certainly the most anticipated return of this year.

Superstar, rookie, general manager, absolute boss: choose who you want to be

There are many game mode present in WWE 2K22, some of which will take you tens and tens of hours if they manage to capture you, due to their depth. Let’s start first with the most anticipated return, that of MyGM modeabsent from the old Smack down! Vs Raw 2008. In this mode we will be able to choose a general manager to impersonate among those available, after which we can choose which show to manage.

Our goal, therefore, will be to beat the opposing show in terms of ratings, week after week. To do this, we will have to take into account many aspects: the response of the public to the matches, the requests of the superstars, the orders of our superiors and so on. All this, of course, always keeping an eye on the available budget, managing which we will be able to call legends to fight under our aegis, use more flashy arenas and so on.

It is undoubtedly about one of the funniest modes present in the game, and its return is really extremely welcome. Unfortunately, however, the mode is back more stripped than it was now more than a decade ago. For example, only two titles can be assigned, one for the men’s division and one for the women’s division; only three matches can be scheduled in each episode. Let’s be clear, we are very happy for this return and the mode is really a lot of fun already like this, but we hope that in the near future it will really be restored to its luster.

Let’s move on to the other main modes. We obviously have the inevitable Showcase mode, this year dedicated to the San Diego elf, Rey Mysterio. Here we will relive some of the highlights of Rey’s career, playing him in some of his most famous matches.

To embellish this mode there are the interviews with Rey, who will comment on the matches on several occasions, and the choice to insert real fragments of the matches within the match, an element that will inevitably make the joy of those who have seen and loved those matches at the time.

The modality WWE Universe it certainly needs no introduction, having been a staple of the series for several years now. This year, however, there is something new that will delight many fans. On the one hand, in fact, there is the classic sandbox variant of this mode: in it we will be able to build our WWE universe by essentially acting as the supreme leaders of the company, deciding every single aspect of the show.

We will be able to relive some of Rey Mysterio’s historic matches in Showcase mode.

The novelty is the second mode, which instead allows us to choose a single superstar and to follow only his path within the WWE universe. It is a fun mode and above all a good compromise for those who felt lost in the face of too many possibilities offered by the classic sandbox mode.

Then we have the mode MyRise, which despite the name change is simply the old career. Here you can create your personal superstar and build your path to the company’s top card, starting from the Performance Center. You will find yourself interacting with other rookies, building alliances and rivalries, to come face to face with the most important names in the company and with real legends.

In this case, the novelties are really small, but the fact remains that it is still a very fun mode to play, which could easily steal you, already by itself, around 30-40 hours of play, especially considering that there are two stories different, one dedicated to the male division and one to the female division.

Finally, we have the modality Myfaction, dedicated to building your own fighting faction through playing cards reminiscent of those seen in WWE mobile titles. Unfortunately, we couldn’t test this mode because it wasn’t available yet, but you should already be able to try it by the time you read these lines. Obviously, at the end of these main modes we find the classic exhibition mode, where we will be able to face quick single matches, choosing from the many stipulations present.

Summing up, in short, the game is really vast in terms of content, just like its predecessors. Not everything is perfect and certainly some modes could take some steps forward, including the MyGM mode itself. In general, however, the offer is of excellent quality and allows any type of enthusiast to find bread for his teeth: WWE 2K22 will keep you company without too many problems until the release of the next chapter.

Version reviewed: PS5

If you want to make it yours WWE 2K22we advise you to take advantage of this offer.

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About Eric Wilson

The variety offered by video games never ceases to amaze him. He loves OutRun's drifting as well as the contemplative walks of Dear Esther. Immersing himself in other worlds is an incomparable feeling for him: he understood it by playing for the first time in Shenmue.

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