WWE 2K19, the review

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Alejandra Rangel
@alejandrarangel
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WWE 2K19 is the latest episode of a controversial franchise, which unfortunately has been dragging on for several years without introducing substantial innovations, giving users the feeling of being faced with mere updates of a formula that today appears particularly tired and burdened. There is no doubt that the guys at Yuke's, who have been dealing with the series for almost twenty years now, are driven by a great passion for the world of wrestling and its facets, literally obsessed with representing in the most likely way possible the features and movements of an increasing number of fighters, as well as by making available to players as many options as possible to shape the experience in a different way according to tastes and needs. The problem lies in the core of the gameplay, in the obstinacy to carry out a simulation approach that is less and less attractive to our eyes, linked to slow and woody mechanisms that have little to do with the idea of ​​a dynamic and spectacular show, created to entertain and excite the public. How does the new edition try to shake off this heavy legacy? And what does it actually do to enrich a structure that lately had also lost its most representative contents? Let's find out together.



modality

The first impact with WWE 2K19 is positive: the developers have redesigned the menu interface, using modern and attractive solutions, capable of literally filling the screen. The only thing we didn't like is the scrolling list for character selection - the game boasts a huge roster and it's a pain from time to time having to go through all the names to get to the one we're going to select. . In short, the old scoreboard worked much better from this point of view. Speaking of rosters, relegate two notable superstars like Ronda Rousey e Mistery King A preorder bonus unfortunately represents a questionable choice for anyone who decides to buy the title after the launch, with all the calm that such a full October requires.



However, let's continue with the positive aspects, because there is no lack of content on the content front. The modality has in fact been reintroduced , the story mode that in this episode will see us retrace the troubled career of Daniel Bryan: an atypical superstar, who had to face a thousand obstacles and gain experience in the indies before being able to prove his worth in the WWE, to win the world title, having to retire following an injury and finally return in recent times with the green light of doctors. Accompanied by the comment of Bryan himself, often irreverent towards certain situations, we will have to try our hand at his most important matches and therefore follow the not always positive trend of what stands as a real epic.

The only problem, not insignificant, is that in order to overcome the various phases it is not necessary to simply win the matches, but to complete a series of specific objectives that tend to repeat themselves ("damage the opponent", "get a hold on the head" , "do a front hit", etc.) and that really leave a big bitter taste in the mouth: if the developers had made such actions optional, as an extra to get more credits, it would have been infinitely better. Sin. The mode Career has undergone an interesting narrative revision: instead of starting from the usual downtown Orlando, we will find ourselves playing the role of a penniless wrestler, who lives in an old van and fights in front of a few people for a federation on the verge of failure. One day, however, he manages to get an audition for a development contract with WWE, and will have to do his best to win the trust of Triple H and the company.



The story is interesting, the dialogues manage to involve and there is a spartan growth system triggered by the experience points earned on the field. This makes you turn a blind eye to the decidedly old-gen creation of many assets, but here too, unfortunately, the mandatory objectives have been included that leave little freedom of action during the matches and indeed force you to take a lot of risks in an attempt to put to sign this or that specific maneuver. Finally, the new mode has been added Dice Towers, with a series of thematic mini-campaigns with an increasing degree of difficulty, and the whole package can now count on a Spanish localization of the texts (it is no coincidence that the Showcase has become "Presentation" ...).

Of course there is no shortage of traditional contents of the series: a very complete editor for the creation of characters, moves, income and so on (with the possibility of sharing their creations with the community and downloading customized superstars), the Universe, local or online multiplayer (complete with league and special events) and any type of match for performances: from one-on-one matches to Royal Rumble, passing through infinite variations with different rules, including a new version of Hell in a Cell. The game includes the well-established system of credits that are obtained by winning matches and which can be used to unlock past stars such as Ultimate Warrior, Mr. Perfect, "Macho Man" Randy Savage, Big Boss Man, Lex Luger, The Rock, Bret "Hitman" Hart, Goldberg and several others. There are also reward boxes with extra customizations for use with the editor, unlockable in-game or purchasable with real money.



Gameplay

The element that makes the WWE 2K19 experience controversial, as mentioned at the beginning, undoubtedly remains the simulation vocation of the franchise, which clearly distances itself from the arcade approach that has also made some classics of the past unforgettable. In a nutshell, this translates into an experience completely based on the timing of the reversals: when they fail, performed too early or too late, you find yourself staying glued to the mat for a long time waiting for the opponent to make a ' another move, perhaps a pin that condemns us to an undeserved defeat.

The assignment of such an important and delicate maneuver to the triggers is another aspect that we have never understood and that is re-proposed in the new episode, together with some important news concerning the size and organization of controls. The feeling of frustrating helplessness that the series notoriously produces when you find yourself controlling an athlete, perhaps a highflyer, who however moves like a tank and requires complicated key combinations to perform even trivial actions, has fortunately been smoothed in its sharper edges. While moving in the wake of the previous chapters, the new system is therefore simpler and more immediate, especially in contextual actions, while maintaining the same amount of moves and attacks that can be launched during a match.

Mind you: the road is still very long and it is difficult to define WWE 2K19 as a fun title even for users who do not appreciate the simulation vein, but at least some steps have been taken in the right direction. Speaking of progress, one cannot but appreciate the introduction of payback: these are special skills that allow you to get an energy boost, an extra finisher, an instant recovery or even perform a painful low blow against the opponent, hoping that at that moment the referee is not looking. Each fighter has two specific paybacks, which, however, can be edited before the match and which are loaded while fighting, giving us the opportunity to immediately exploit the less effective of the two or to hold on and be patient to use the more powerful skill and overturn the fate of the match: an interesting tactical element, which undoubtedly adds something to the experience.

PlayStation 4 Trophies

The forty-seven WWE 2K19 Trophies can be earned using all Payback skills, performing spectacular actions during certain matches (breaking through the roof of the cage in Hell in a Cell, collecting Money in the Bank), completing all Career chapters and others. single player mode.

Graphics and sound

WWE 2K19 continues to make great strides on the technical achievement front, with almost every effort focused on making as many superstars on the roster as realistically as possible. Also in this edition some exceptions stand out: if on the one hand the most famous fighters seem to come directly from an episode of Raw or Smackdown, on the other there are also quite sensational examples of characters made in a more hasty and superficial way, using in all probability the same editor that the authors make available to users for their creations. In any case, we are talking about the episode with the highest number of "premium athletes" seen so far, and considering the total number of usable wrestlers it is not a trivial matter.

The audience has also improved, which now at least does not move as a single entity, and the scenarios for the matches that take place in the backstage or outside have been expanded. It is almost superfluous to talk about the revenue: it is one of the most accurate aspects of the series, and in this edition it is also possible to appreciate an improvement in the effects, see for example the "puffs" of Triple H or the smoke in general. As for the sound sector, the aforementioned audience appears to be quite involved and there are environments recreated in a very faithful way, such as the NXT arena with its limited spectators and the frequent "silences" between one action and another. in the ring. Not particularly brilliant the comment of the team chaired by Michael Cole, with only a few new sentences and a certain inability to excite.

Comment

Tested version PlayStation 4 Price 72,90 € Resources4Gaming.com

7.5

Readers (17)

7.3

Your vote

WWE 2K19 has the undoubted merit of representing a turnaround compared to the last episodes of the series produced by 2K Games. In fact, this edition sees the return of the Showcase mode, the introduction of the Towers mode, an interesting Career from a narrative point of view and some guessed news regarding the gameplay, finally a little simpler and more immediate. Positive aspects that are partially neutralized by some unhappy choices (see the mandatory objectives in the main single player content) and that unfortunately do not change the nature of a product that remains controversial due to its simulation vocation.

PRO

  • Many wrestlers identical to their real counterparts
  • New modes, Showcase is back
  • Improved gameplay ...
AGAINST
  • ... but the road is still long
  • Some questionable choice
  • Several elements appear dated
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