If you’re a wrestling fan or gamer that has been living under a rock for the past few months, you should probably know WWE 2K20 is a really bad game.
From the get-go, it was a broken mess. With crazy out of place CAC parts and even a missing ‘Create a Championship’ feature, fans were furious. While this was later uploaded in a patch, even that has come with its issues. The base color of the reliefs makes them almost unusable. This doesn’t even begin to cover how when I personally tried to create and use my own wrestling promotion, show an indie promotion, or even show Universe mode, my game would crash. I’m on the Xbox version, so when it crashes, I harken back to the good old times of the Smackdown vs. Raw series.
And that’s only barely scratching the surface. Here are my top 5 reasons for why WWE should drop the 2K name.
5. Brand warfare!
The state of WWE currently is back on par with the old brand warfare, with Smackdown and Raw fighting each other in the ratings. Throwing NXT in the mix adds to the appeal of a brand v.s. brand v.s. brand style game, like when we have SD v R with ECW. Having the option to choose your brand and fight for what championships you want— whether it’s a Singles, Tag, or World title— would be amazing.
4. The wheel doesn’t change that much
Going back to when WWE switched over to 2K, most of the games have had little-to-no changes until 2K20, with the exception of adding and taking away superstars, changing the superstars to match their look, new entrances and granting titles to current champions at the time of the game’s release. But these UI changes are incredibly minor. They all feel the same, with the controls not changing too much if at all. It took them years to bring a championship back into the series, and this ended up being one of the fan favorites. But even then, while creating rival promotions in the universe mode is a step in the right direction, it hasn’t really changed from game to game.
3. The ‘My Career’ mode
So, about the ‘My Career’ mode. Back when it was SD v.s. Raw, you would choose which brand you wanted to be on. At the time it was Raw, Smackdown, and ECW. And you would choose what title you wanted to battle for: Singles, World, and Tag Team titles. With a new SD vs Raw, it would be NXT instead of ECW, and with the addition of a Women’s Tag team titles, there are just as many options for a women’s version of ‘My Career’ mode as well.
This made it possible to have any wrestling character possible. With no linear story to follow, you could choose what and how you wanted to be. You choose your own backstory and choose whether you were a face or a heel (good guy or bad guy). However, with the latest installments in the 2K series, you’d only ever be forced to stick to a story and objectives that likely didn’t fit the type of wrestling character you wanted to be. As a result, it creates a lackluster experience for those wanting to progress through a ‘My Career’ with multiple championship choices and brand options.
2. AEW’s success
With WWE’s now top competitor on the rise (even beating out the fan-favorite of NXT in the ratings during its television premiere), as well as the rumor mill spreading all around that the Yukes who ran the Smackdown v.s. Raw series and all WWE 2k’s until 2K20, everything spells bad news for WWE. In fact, there are even more rumors going around about the development of an upcoming wrestling video game that is not related to WWE at all. This means that AEW could swoop in and take a contract with Yukes to work exclusively with them. TNT has also granted AEW a second branded show, meaning that they could make a similar-style game as the SD v.s. R series but under the AEW Brands. If that were to happen, it could spell bad things for WWE, not only in terms of their video games franchise, but also their television products.
1. The utter failure of WWE 2K20
Listen. I know what you’re thinking: Of course, this is the reason why WWE should move away from the 2K series. You, me, and all of us are right to say so. With Sony even giving refunds for downloads, Yukes no longer being apart of the process, and all of the bugs that came with the game at launch, it’s very hard not to put this at number one.
With it having some of the most expensive marketing from any WWE game, the fan reception and overall game outcome are truly a tragedy. While the new team tried hard to get the game out on time, the bugs and problems were too many to count. I’d just stick to WWE 2K19. The fan backlash of this game has tarnished the foreseeable future of WWE 2k games.
Although I hope that WWE decides to go in a different direction with this massively popular franchise, I seriously doubt they will drop the 2K series and go back to Smackdown vs. Raw. But as they have shown wrestling fans over these past few years, they’ll continue to shove awful products in our faces because they know we’ll just continue to buy it or watch it.