WWE 2K16 review: Comprehensive effort at recreating the melodramatic psychology of professional wrestling

To paraphrase the advocate of the Beast Incarnate: Eat, sleep, play, repeat

Oliver Cragg
Monday 02 November 2015 19:48
Comments

Part sport, part soap-opera, professional wrestling is a sometimes bizarre and often silly representation of men or women having a good old fashioned fight. Last year’s debut effort from publisher 2K Sports at translating this showcase of muscles, adrenaline and ego was a solid attempt at bringing the technical aspect of wrestling to the forefront. What it forgot in the process was that a wrestling clinic in the world of WWE is nothing without a sufficiently enjoyable story behind it.

WWE 2K16

  • Developer: Yuke’s
  • Price: £49.99
  • Platform: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360

WWE 2K16 thankfully manages to build on this in-ring quality present it its predecessor with the introduction of a rechargeable reversal meter and rest holds while also building its centerpiece MyCareer mode (exclusive to current-gen consoles) into a genuine long-term boon for the franchise. As your custom character progresses through their journey to becoming WWE Champion you’ll be stuck with the kind of decisions that define WWE programming: Will you be a face or a heel (good/bad guy), side with the ruling Authority or fight the powers that be, will you be a mid-card jobber or a 10-time title holder?

Equally impressive is the 2K Showcase mode that focuses on WWE’s most famous wrestler (aside from that other guy who turned out to be a bit racist) Stone Cold Steve Austin, where the singular focus allows for a detailed representation of the Rattlesnake’s historied career.

The overall generosity of content is also a welcome change after the dearth of match types and customisation options in 2K15. Creation suites like create-a-diva, create-a-championship and tornado tag and handicap matches all return after their inexplicable absence last year, while an expanded WWE Universe mode and a roster of over 120 wrestlers make this a comprehensive package for squared-circle aficionados.

While the omission of several notable rising female prospects, niggling hit detection issues and a woefully disinterested commentary team keep WWE 2K16 from being instant Hall of Fame material, this is a comprehensive sophomore effort from 2K Sports at recreating the in-ring action and melodramatic psychology of professional wrestling. To paraphrase the advocate of the Beast Incarnate: Eat, sleep, play, repeat.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in