With nearly two and a half years of development time under its belt instead of being under the yoke of an annual release schedule, WWE 2K22 was a reinvigorating turning point for the WWE 2K franchise which up until that point had been struggling with progressively less inspiring yearly releases. With WWE 2K23 now set to arrive in the near future, here are ten things that any sensible person would want from the latest entry in the WWE 2K franchise.
A Randy Orton Showcase Campaign Mode
Easily one of the best workers in the industry today, Randy Orton has been a main event fixture in WWE for over twenty years and so it makes a whole heap of sense for the ‘viper’ to get his own 2K Showcase campaign in WWE 2K23. From his Legend Killer days through to his unlikely recent team up with Matt Riddle, an in-depth 2K Showcase for Randy Orton that chronicles his extensive history and produced to the same standard as WWE 2K22’s superb Rey Mysterio 2K Showcase would be a compelling prospect to say the least.
GM Mode To Include Additional Championships
Though GM Mode was a whole heap of fun in WWE 2K22 and allowed players to concoct some truly odd alternate universe timelines, it was hamstrung by the fact that it only allowed players to manage the top titles, rather than the mid-card and tag team championships that are so often contested in real-life. As such, allowing players free reign to manage title pursuits across all the available championships would be a fantastic addition to an already engrossing game mode.
Allow Pins And Submissions In The Royal Rumble Match
Ok, hear me out. Back in the days of No Mercy on the N64, some of the most blissful fun you could ever have would be to crack on a Royal Rumble match, disable over the top rope eliminations and enable pins and submissions. The net result was this glorious, hours-long gauntlet which encouraged all sorts of tactical decision making and arguably became a focal point of No Mercy’s multiplayer offering. WWE 2K23 needs to bring this back, stat.
Bring Back Create A Finisher Suite
One of the best things about WWE 2K14 was that it allowed you to craft your own set of signature and finishing moves. However, WWE 2K14 released all the way back in 2013 and the Create A Finisher suite has not been seen since. WWE 2K23 should absolutely bring this feature back because after all, who hasn’t wanted to do three rolling piledrivers into a five powerbomb combo as a single, ridiculously overpowered finisher?
A More Reactive Crowd
For the longest time the crowd in the WWE 2K games have been a fairly boring and uniform bunch that wave their arms occasionally, shout, boo and, well, that’s about it. So in a bid to replicate the real-life television spectacle much more closely, WWE 2K23 should feature a much more reactive crowd that attempt to lean over the barricades to embrace babyface wrestlers when they get close and be seen to actively boo/throw food at heel competitors respectively.
Make It Easier To Use Custom Arenas
One of the most welcome features of the more recent entries in the WWE 2K franchise has been the ability to create your own arenas using a wealth of different art assets. While it’s certainly a whole lot of fun to play with, actually putting your customised creation in the selection alongside other arenas is quite fiddly and not at all straightforward to achieve in WWE 2K22. In WWE 2K23, choosing to play in a custom arena that you’ve spent potentially hours creating should be as easy as simply selecting a custom wrestler over a premade superstar. Let’s make it precisely that easy, eh?
Give Us War Games
Though the War Games match, which has two ringed cages placed side by side resulting in all manner of innovative and entertainingly violent pursuits, has been a staple of NXT since 2017, no WWE 2K game to date has yet been able to replicate this match type. WWE 2K23 should change all that and bring War Games to the WWE 2K franchise for the first time and with it all-new ways for players to absolutely demolish one another in all sorts of fiendishly clever ways.
Different Commentary Teams For Different Shows
It’s certainly fair to say that the Raw, Smackdown and NXT brands all have their own identity, with each boasting their own commentary team to hammer home the notion that you are in fact watching a different show with a markedly different aesthetic. Since the inception of the WWE 2K series this distinction has seemingly been lost on the developers, with the same commentary team being wheeled out no matter the show you happen to be wrestling on. WWE 2K23 needs to be the series entry that breaks the mould and finally addresses the issue, aiding the sense of realism that you should be getting in the process and making each brand feel truly separate.
A Bang Up To Date Roster
Though WWE 2K22 was undeniably a success overall, the roster was an absolute mess in terms of how closely (or not) it hewed to the real-life, on-screen product. Comprising superstars that had left WWE and headed to its competitor AEW, such as Keith Lee, Kyle O’Reilly, William Regal and others, together with an absence of massive stars such as Cody Rhodes, the WWE 2K22 roster bore little resemblance to the superstars that folks were familiar with at the time. Though it’s fairly common knowledge that the WWE 2K games have an early cut off point for finalising rosters, WWE 2K23 should still (hopefully) have an array of superstars that much more closely resembles the current selection of sweaty folks that are doing their thing on our television screens.
Sort The AI Out Once For All
A common bugbear for the longest time with the WWE 2K games has been the oftentimes dunderheaded AI that can make playing against CPU opponents something of a bore. Though WWE 2K22 improved upon this somewhat with AI controlled wrasslers that were generally more reactive to what was happening around them, there’s still an Andre the Giant sized amount of work to be done on this front to say the least. Certainly as of WWE 2K22, enemy AI players almost always forget to tag out when they’re getting battered into paste, inexplicably hop out of the ring for no reason and never fail to use their signature and finishing moves immediately instead of conserving them. For the love of Mankind, please let WWE 2K23 be the game that puts all of this nonsense to bed once and for all.
If you’re looking forward to some squared circle action this year, head over to the Green Man Gaming shop and grab your copy of WWE 2K23 on PC.