WWE 2K22 Review – Bad Times Don’t Last

After the complete disaster that WWE 2K20 was,

Publisher 2K Games made the bold decision to give developer. Visual Concepts an extra year to work on the next game in the series. It’s very rare, if ever, for annual sports games to be given a year-long hiatus. But WWE 2K22 is proof of the benefits that can be gained when development isn’t constrained by hard annual turnover. It’s a huge step up from 2K20, improving almost every aspect of the long-running series. The action in the ring has been redesigned and improved. The variety and quality of its game modes have increased. And the number of unforgiving crashes affecting every aspect of the game has been greatly reduced. Some legacy issues persist and not all new additions are successful. But WWE 2K22 still represents a recent high-profile for the series.

It all starts as soon as you step onto the ropes of the square circle for the first time.

WWE Superstar Drew Gulak is on hand to help you figure out all the new changes. And his humorous and informative tutorial will prove invaluable. Whether you’re new to the series or a veteran of the series. This is mainly due to the fact that WWE 2K22 takes inspiration. From traditional fighting games with a focus on combos. Strikes have been completely redesigned to fit this new form. With light, heavy, and grapple attacks now adding to your offensive arsenal. You can perform light or heavy combinations by pressing the appropriate button.

For each attack or combining all three types of attacks. To diversify the attack and keep the opponent guessing. Finishing a combo with a grapple attack will cause your character to transition into a powerful wrestling move. Such as a suplex or a DDT while finishing a heavy combo will often trigger. A standard animation that involves multiple heavy hits in a row.

These changes result in a pleasant fast-forward and rewind

That is more reminiscent of the matches we watch on TV every week. They also make moment-to-moment gameplay a lot more dynamic as you really have to think about what your opponent is doing and also consider your own offense to ensure you’re not too predictable. The new stun mechanic helps balance these changes by making it impossible for characters to reverse when they see stars. The animations are also much smoother now, in addition to being especially jittery at times. There are still moments where characters awkwardly teleport into place or get tangled in ropes, and physics still tend to break whenever ladders or cages are involved. But these moments are not as frequent as in the past.

A few other legacy issues also persist, mostly affecting multi-person matches. The tag team AI is annoyingly inconsistent when it comes to preventing their opposite number from breaking a pin, and any type of match where four or more superstars fight at the same time ends too long because there are so many broken pins. . As a result, playing most types of matches is not very pleasant. Using weapons is also awkward, especially when trying to set up a table or ladder, and signing and finishers still require more than one button press, making running finishers excessively clumsy.

When it comes to game modes,

MyCareer has been rebranded as MyRise and invites you to create a male or female superstar to rise through the ranks. In addition to being a particularly bad career mode in 2K20, it was also strictly linear. This is not the case when you need to make many choices that will determine how the career of the character you created will turn out. There are two separate stories depending on your gender; all three brands – Raw, Smackdown and NXT – have about 20 storylines of their own; and your heel or face alignment also affects what side stories are available. There’s a ton of replayability inherent in this structure, and character creation is also not limited due to restrictive loot boxes, as was the case in 2K20’s unfortunate case. Now you have complete freedom of action to use the excellent set for creativity to the fullest.

Myers is also more down to earth than 2K20’s absurd career mode,

So you won’t be fighting in the depths of hell or fighting Samoa Joe and his cybernetic arm. 2K22 has some compelling wrestling storylines, especially as you dive into the many side stories that pop up on social media. One of the first things I encountered was that my heel character matched up with Shinsuke Nakamura and a fictional character who trained with me at the WWE Performance Center. By attacking Big E several times, I earned a match for his Intercontinental title, which I ended up winning after some interference from two members of my faction.

This, in turn, led to Big E taking some revenge until we settled matters with the ultimate title match inside Hell in a Cell. Things like this are attractive and set MyRise apart from other game modes on offer. The only downside is that all of the dialogue in this and many other storylines take place on fake 2K22 Twitter. The voice acting occasionally appears in cutscenes, but for the most part it’s either unnatural or sounds like it was recorded in someone’s bathroom, which could be the result of the pandemic.

While MyRise puts you in your rising star boots

MyGM puts on a button-down suit and tasks you with booking a successful show every week. You play as one of six on-screen bosses including Stephanie McMahon, Shane McMahon, Sonya Deville, or even a general manager you’ve created from scratch and choose from four brands to manage. Each GM and brand has unique bonuses to help you along the way. Then you’ll compete against AI or a human to see who can put on the best show, starting with a superstar draft that’s limited only by your starting budget. It’s tempting to just pick the best superstars available, but you have to be mindful of each one’s heel or face alignment and their synergy with each other. For example, fighters pair well with giants and cruisers, and you usually want your good guys to fight the bad guys.

However, instead of operating for an indefinite period of time,

MyGM is being cut back to a 15, 25, or 50 week season. This limitation seems to exist because the model lacks any meaningful depth. There are no secondary championships like the U.S. title or tag team belts, and the inclusion of popularity statistics means you’re forced to repeat matches between the same few wrestlers over and over again until you can run enough promos to lift some of the smaller stars. You can’t immediately put someone like Ricochet in the title picture because no one will care and your match ratings will plummet as a result. In many ways, this reflects the real WWE product, where only a handful of superstars are able to move the needle.

WWE’s inability to create new stars is also evident in the outdated 2K22 roster.

It’s certainly not Visual Concepts’ fault – and they’ve told us about how they’ve dealt with an ever-shrinking roster – but Vince McMahon’s scorched-earth policy does affect the game, ensuring it doesn’t feel like anything close to a current TV product. . So many roster members have been released during the pandemic that you could fill an entire 30-man Royal Rumble match with wrestlers who no longer work for the company. William Regal is one of the playable general managers and he recently signed with rival AEW, while Keith Lee, Swerve Strickland, Buddy Matthews, Kyle O’Reilly, and Jeff Hardy are most likely to appear in WWE and AEW video games this year. year.

On the other hand, the exclusion of other wrestlers is most poignantly felt in 2K22’s Showcase mode

Which chronicles Rey Mysterio’s storied career. This mode begins with a recreation of the phenomenal matchup between Rey Mysterio and Eddie Guerrero at WCW: Halloween Havoc ’97. At critical moments in a match, the action will seamlessly transition from gameplay to archival footage that not only looks cool, but puts the historical significance of the match in perspective.

Ray gives comments at these moments, but it’s all kayfabe, so there’s really very little understanding. The rest of his WCW career is sadly left out along with huge chunks of his WWE career. There is no Kurt Angle, no Chris Jericho, no Big Show in the game, so instead of going through Rey’s memorable feuds with the legendary trio, 2K22 settles for a random Raw matchup against Gran Metalic. Showcase is still enjoyable, but the lineup’s flaws keep it from reaching its full potential.


Elsewhere, MyFaction is a new mode where 2K tries to cash in on the Ultimate

Team concept featured in almost every other sports game. You open packs to earn cards and build a team of four men and four women, then compete in various matches to complete objectives and earn more cards and in-game currency. It’s very hard, and the regular four-on-four fights are lengthy and not particularly enjoyable due to the aforementioned problems. The popular Universe mode also returns, only now you can play as one WWE Superstar instead of focusing on managing the entire company. Whoever you pick works with Triple H to develop feuds, build tag teams, compete for championships, and more, so there’s still an element of redundancy in Universe Mode.

WWE 2K22 is an amazing return to form after the Shockmaster-sized disaster that was 2K20.

The extra year of development has done a lot of good for the world, and now the only hope is that the series doesn’t go back to a yearly schedule. There are still flaws when it comes to multi-person matches, and not all of the new modes are particularly exciting, but 2K22 sets a solid foundation for the future. Ideally, WWE will calm down when it comes to gutting their roster and the next game in the series won’t feel so dated. It will also be interesting to see how the upcoming Yuke AEW game fares. Competition can only be beneficial.

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