Thursday, November 7, 2013

WWE 2K14

I wasn’t planning on getting WWE 2K14 when it came out.  When I play a wrestling game I’m spending most of my time on created characters and don’t really need a yearly roster update.  I was very impressed by the new features that were being previewed.  I had begrudgingly changed my want level from “I don’t need it” to “I’ll pick it up when the price drops.”  And then I was pretty much gifted the game.  It’s been out for a week so I’ve been able to try everything out.  We don’t really do review scores, but I did want to talk about the game in depth.  There are some improvements over WW13 and there are missteps. 

Last year the main game play mode to unlock all the extras was the Attitude Era.  You played through the famous matches of DX, Stone Cold, and the Rock.  This year it is all about Wrestlemania, so the roster is a lot more varied.  It covers matches from each Wrestlemania so you get wrestlers from the past 30 years.  That include people like Andre the Giant, Hulk Hogan, Macho Man, Ultimate Warrior, Brett Hart, Yokozona, ect.  The presentation on the matches is fantastic although the announcing is a little strange.  Those older matches should have people like Gorilla Monsoon and Jesse Ventura calling them, but we get JR and King providing commentary for all the matches.

The most surprising thing is how much the game play has changed.  Basic strikes like punches and kicks have been sped up.  Actually they swung that pendulum a little too far.  Strikes went for super slow in 13 to super fast in 2K14.  Somewhere in the middle would have been much better, but I still prefer 2K14’s.  Reversals have been completely overhauled.  The biggest change is you can no longer go into long chains of reversals.  The window for actually reversing a move has been shortened too; they aren’t impossible to do, but they are more challenging. 

The create a wrestler is mostly unchanged.  I can copy down the options I chose in WWE13 and make exactly the same character in 2K14.  For some reason they decided to take away a major part of create an entrance.  In WWE13 I could create my own Titantron video for my wrestlers.  So when they walked down to the ring the video in the background actually had them in it.  I loved this feature and I have no idea why it was cut.  The create an arena also has some problems.  This deals with the ability to stretch logos across the ring mat and the announce table.  In 13 it worked perfectly, but in 14 the objects are limited to a much smaller area.  There are also a number of glitches that carried over from WWE13 that I really though would have been corrected in this version. 

So the short version is that I think 2K14 plays better than WWE13 but I’m still very disappointed with the lack of custom videos. 

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