WWE 2K19 Xbox One Review
THE BIG KID’S ROUGH AND TUMBLE:
From developers YUKE’s Co and publishers 2K, comes the intense action packed, thrill roller coaster wrestling game WWE 2K19. Join wrestling legend AJ Styles, Daniel Bryan, among a plethora of others, on this crazy journey you won’t soon forget.
To say that WWE 2K19 is packed, would be an understatement. This game has an overwhelming amount of things to do, which is both a good and a bad thing.
To returning players of the franchise, this won’t be much of a problem, but new players like me, you may struggle at the start. There was no clear “tutorial” section I could choose to learn the ropes. I chose “Play” and started a One on One and immediately got my arse kicked. The learning curve was quite steep. Only afterwards, I found that the tutorial are integrated within the “2K Central” and “Million Dollar Tower” modes.
This means you learn on your feet and kind of have to pick up the pieces as you go along.
What I found out is that 2K19 has downright amazing graphics for the wrestlers themselves, and I mean stunning, but for the crowd, it’s almost like PS1 graphics. Now the models for the wrestlers should be applauded: every muscle, bead of sweat and blood stain looks so real, that you start to question whether this is a game at all.
The graphics of the crowd really wouldn’t matter, if they hadn’t have chosen to give them close ups every now and then. Take for example Forza: if you stop and look, the spectators are horrendously modeled, but at least it doesn’t make them the main focus point.
The animations for the wrestlers however, are amazing and the gameplay really does well to emulate how they fight. When you get taken down and stunted for a bit, you really do feel powerless, trying to get up off the floor to swing a hit.
The gameplay for 2K19 is what you’d expect from a wrestling game: button mashing and praying you get a hit. No, it’s not that bad, but if you don’t know your stuff, you’ll soon need to. Different wrestlers have different abilities, not to mention the size differences and experience. It’s about finding the right combination and skills your wrestler has, and lining them up against your opponent.
Ultimately, it’s how you play that determines who wins the match, but look at your opponents weaknesses and use them to your advantage. This style of thinking really draws you into the game, knowing every move could be one of your last. When you’re in the moment, in the ring and on your toes, you really start to feel immersed.
Apart from that, 2K19 delivers spectacularly well. The customization is wildly vast: you can create your own arena, wrestler, move-set, entrance, video among others and its insane. The character customization is so in depth, you have so much freedom with what you character can look like.
Granted, the faces are pretty generic, but 2k19 lets you photo capture your face onto your character. You can import your face, or anyone else’s face into the game using the website. At the start it will look a little menacing but you can mess around with the facial structure to get it just right.
The clothes for your wrestler are hilarious: you have so much option here, and as per usual, I went overboard. You can create some menacing looking wrestlers or, like I did, stick a horse mask on with some cowboy boots. The combinations are nearly endless.
The arena customization, however, I found to be a little tacky. I didn’t quite see the point in it, and yes you can edit right down to the audiences’ chairs, but I couldn’t get hooked. You can edit the screens, the little props on the side: you can even edit the ring itself. But I found myself asking why. I suppose it’s a neat little way to show off your creativity, but when your beating seven shades of holy hell into your opponent, you’re not really fussed on how decorated the arena is. That’s my opinion anyway.
2K19 does have sort of a story mode: you follow the career and life of professional wrestler Daniel Bryan. Starting in 2003, you relive the matches that made him famous, with the first level against John Cena. You learn as to why he took a break from WWE and the motivations he had for returning.
The story mode is actually well done, from someone who’s never really played a wrestling game, it caught me by surprise that there actually was a campaign mode. And yes, 2K19 does hold up better in the skirmish battles you have, the addition of the story mode is one to remember and would be a shame for players to ignore.
Overall, I found WWE 2K19 to be an enjoyable game. Coming in, this late into the franchise didn’t do me any favors, and I really felt the steep learning curve at the start of the game, but that disappears early on. You quickly learn the buttons and soon start to feel that adrenaline going when you’re fighting. The amount you can customize frankly blows my mind, even with the addition of the face capture, they’ve really made an effort to cater to you as much as possible. If you’re an avid wrestling fan, then I’d definitely recommend this. But to new players like myself, I’d have a look into it first and maybe by last year’s game, just so you can get to know the ropes and then if you like that, jump on this and start to beat your mate’s arse.
We’d like to thank Access the Agency for providing us with the game code.
Price – £54.99