Jump to content

Wrestlemania 21 Xbox - It's Out There


Stroker Ace
 Share

Recommended Posts

I've spent the evening fiddling around with WM21 on the XBox, and there's very little good to report, I'm afraid. On the plus side, the character models are very nice, and the areas are pretty good. The move animations are all more than acceptable. The camera is placed a nice way back from the ring, rather than about three inches away a la Day of Reckoning and there's a decent number of gimmick match modes.

But oh, then there's the bad.

The game is truly woeful. There are about a hundre moves in the game TOTAL - I mean, if you create a character, you can choose between about twenty light grapples, twenty heavy grapples, like two top rope moves, a handful of submissions, a handful of strikes and that's your lot. The CAW mode itself is laughable, with minimal options for tweaking and a selection of outfits as limited as the number of moves.

The presentation is cheap and amateurish, lacking the polish we're so used to seeing in WWE games. The menus are unresponsive, poorly laid out and slow to navigate. They've used all the same music from Day of Reckoning, it looks like absolute shit in menus and such, and to add insult to injury, has no widescreen mode.

The game engine itself is clearly inspired by the Aki N64 Virtual Pro Wrestling engine (released as the brilliant NWO v WCW, Wrestlemania, No Mercy etc. in the west), but has just missed the point entirely and is far more simplistic. There's no depth to it whatsoever, and matches tend to unfold in the exact same way every time. It's laughably slow, slower even than the PAL release of No Mercy. You never feel fully in control of your character for a variety of reasons - animations are slow and long, so you're out of control for extended periods and the collision detection is ropey at best so you'll often find yourself getting grabbed when you feel safe and missing grapples. Having said that, even if you did feel like you were controlling your little fella on-screen, you'd still have fuck all moves to do with him, so who cares? It's slow and unresponsive and clunky and as a competitive game proves little more than a game of chance.

Now, as you may know, I'm something of an elitist when it comes to wrestling games. I rate the Fire Pro games and the games using the Virtual Pro engine to be the best wrestling games ever. I frown on Smackdown, hated the Legends of Wrestling series and don't think a great deal of Yukes' No Mercy-inspired Gamecube WWE games. I even hated All Star Pro Wrestling 3 and Spike's King of Colosseum - it astounds me that they're not making Fire Pro games any more in favour of that tripe.

All that said, you need to understand that my tastes in wrestling games have no bearing on my dislike of Wrestlemania 21. I mean, you can have fun even with bad wrestling games like DOR - they're good for a bit of shallow fun; but this is awful. Unplayably so. The fact that 'eight is average, nine is pretty good' IGN gave it a six speaks volumes.

Avoid it as if it causes tumors.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wasn't development on this handed over to the guys behind Kakuto Chojin? FFS you've got the only platform capable of supporting ripped music for your CAWs so you can get that old WWF anthology out and they repeatedly balls it up.

Never thought i'd say this but when's the next Def Jam game out? :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wasn't development on this handed over to the guys behind Kakuto Chojin? FFS you've got the only platform capable of supporting ripped music for your CAWs so you can get that old WWF anthology out and they repeatedly balls it up.

Never thought i'd say this but when's the next Def Jam game out? <_<

Get this: EA are dumping the Def Jam element, and bringing in their own made-up characters/rappers.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'll bet that'll be almost as good as the original characters they've got lining up to fight Spidey & friends.

Not to say that EA couldn't possibly make an imaginative group of fleshed out videogame characters. No. It's just that they haven't. Ever.

[cue someone mentioning the girl from Road Rash]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Can anyone tell me if there been a wrestling game that is better than WM2000/No Mercy since they were released on the 64? I haven't really been paying attention for the past few years. Did anyone actually like the Smackdown games on the PS1? I thought they were terrible compared to the 64 games.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think the Fire Pro games are rubbish. Yeah thats right, rubbish - I'd heard for so long about these mythical games which were the pinnacle of wrestling goodness. But when I tried to play it - Man did it suck worse than Dot Cotton giving a blow job. I persevered, but there was no fun to be had with them at all.

Consigned to the coaster rack for me

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Instructions for THQ:

access_aki_e.gif

"AKI IS HERE --->"

giant_frying_pan

Those bridges have been burned I'm afraid.

Something along the lines of "Aki, we want you to make wrestling games for no-one but THQ. As a bonus, we're offering you no financial incentive whatsoever!"

To which the answer was "Fuck off".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nooooooooooo!

FFS, how hard is it to make a decent wrestling game? There we all were, looking forward to our online wwrllmuk championship and now... it's all shot to shit. Booooo, say I.

Anyhow, I'll still get my hands on it, even if it's only an extended rental, just to make up my own mind - but based on comments here, I'm not holding out much hope.

Oh, and for what it's worth, I kind of like Smackdown 2 on PS1, and still play it a lot.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Smackdown was passable back around SD2. Ever since then they've just tacked on crap to the control system that doesn't really work. The ridiculous countering comes from the fact that in SD:SYM so many moves had to come off the same stun type move the best attack was to toe-kick your opponent then hit them with a L1 grapple.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wrestling games have the potential to be so good. Creating belt and fighting for them on WM2000 was so much fun. If they let 4 players into some kind of story mode, you could form a stable etc, letting all four of you on the screen at the same time would have done it, then your mates could accompany you to ringside. Also, having the ability to beat up the fans would have been so cool. I remember thinking all this ages ago back when wrestling was briefly cool again.

I always though the SD games on the playstation were so bad compared to the 64 games. I think it was the animation of the moves that really did it. The Stone Cold Stunner looks perfect.

Anyone ever play All Japan Pro feat. Virtua on the sega saturn? It was the first game I ever imported, and was pretty good. Some of the moves looked so fittingly brutal.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

I really, really wanted this game to be good.

Despite all the shite reviews and opinions ive heard about it I'm still really tempted to get it as long as the live play works.

I really love wrestling games and can put up with a huge amount of flaws that they may have and still enjoy them.

The other Wrestlemania games on the cube got shite reviews and I still hugely enjoyed them.

Even if the game is utter tosh it could still be a great laugh on live, as even shite games are a good laugh when you play them with mates.

Might shop around and see if I can pick this up for around 25 quid and even if it does turn out to be complete shite I can always take it back for a refund.

How hard is it to better a 6 year old game anyway, what the fuck have THQ been doing the past few years? They need a serious kick up the arse.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...
I really, really wanted this game to be good.

The core gameplay is actually pretty good (in my opinion anyways). Sadly it's spoilt by unbelievably shoddy presentation (music and video keeps stuttering and breaking up in the menus, the menu system for create modes is a complete pain in the arse and if you load your profile then sign into Live you have to reload your profile), crashes (five times in five hours) and other annoying little things (like not being able to use the wrestler you're using in career mode in an exhibition match).

It really seems like a half-finished, horribly rushed game at points. Going to try the online in an hour or so. Will report on that later.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok, tried online. It works. That's about all I have to say about it really. It's all rather ho-hum, there's so much could be done with an online wrestling game, but I don't think anyone's told THQ. It seemed lag free, but the guy I played against obviously knew what he was doing so I got a grand total of two hits in during the whole match.

It's going back to the shop tomorrow. Going to get a game that actually works.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. Use of this website is subject to our Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, and Guidelines.