Michael Thompson On December 3, 2013 at 1:01 pm

WrestleMania 28: CM Punk vs. Jericho

WWE 2K14 is the latest yearly entry into the WWE’s wrestling game series and the first to be done by 2k who acquired the license after the demise of THQ. While it’s no secret that THQ had their ups and downs with the series, they seemed to finally be on to something with WWE 12 and then 13 but does this year’s WWE 2k14 hold up, or does 2k drop the ball? Read on and find out.

Gameplay wise while there are definitely some improvements like longer more realistic matches, and the fixing of the dreaded “1 count” glitch from WWE 13, the game plays very similarly to WWE 13 however this time around the AI likes to reverse everything and it seems like the developers have made reversing way more difficult this year. The controls are pretty simple and easy to figure out just like the other WWE games and you can perform moves in a similar fashion to last year. Another cool addition are more ‘OMG’ moments like some wrestlers (John Cena and Ryback for example) being able to save up finishers and perform their finisher to two opponents at the same time. Additionally you can also now irish whip your opponent, launch them into the air, and then catch them with your finisher unfortunately some of the animations for these ‘catapult’ finishers look sloppy at times though some such as Randy Ortons RKO and Mark Henrys Worlds Strongest Slam look pretty good. Reversals are done like last year by pressing the reverse button at the correct time but my main issue with the gameplay however is that instead of making the AI smarter when difficulty increases, it seems like the developers opted instead just to make them reverse everything and make it harder for the player to reverse, which is a killer me but if you can look past that then the gameplay is very similar to last years entry.

The games roster is definitely a strong point but a frustrating point as well because while they included quite an awesome roster with all the current main guys as well as a great roster of legends. However there are some choices that don’t make sense such as having Mr. Perfect in as a manager but not a wrestler, yet including his NWO personality which was far less relevant, and in the same family the game lacks Curtis Axel as well as the Usos both of whom would’ve been easy to include, thankfully you can always download Create-A-Superstars of them but its just not the same. Overall though thanks to the legends available and the inclusion of all the main event talent, I’d have to give the roster a passing grade.

There are a ton of different match types and modes in the game that can be played both online and offline, all the favorites such as Royal Rumble, Hell In A Cell, TLC, Money In The Bank, Extreme Rules, and Elimination Chamber are all there as well as many others. Additionally they have your standard Exhibition Mode, WWE Universe Mode, and replacing the Attitude Era mode from last year is 30 Years of Wrestlemania as the main story mode of the game. Universe Mode has been improved from last year you can now end rivalries and start new ones (so when that stupid Santino/Heath Slater feud keeps popping up you can finally end it) which is a nice touch, it still does get a little repetitive after a while though but it’s still a fun mode. 30 Years of Wrestlemania mode is a fair replacement for last years Attitude Era mode, this time instead of playing through an entire era you play through important and memorable Wrestlemania matches from each year thus going through several eras. Another mode brought back (or introduced since its got a new name) is Defend The Streak mode its essentially slobberknocker from the older Smackdown! Games but this time you play as the Undertaker and try to take out as many opponents as you can. On the other side of the coin is Defeat The Streak where you pick a Superstar and try to end Undertakers Streak but the Undertaker that you face is very difficult, reverses almost everything, and can even heal himself after taking a beating. WWE 14 definitely has a ton of modes and options available to its players and I feel 2k did their best to build off of what was already there in ’13, I’m sure some things will be kept and some won’t but its nice to see them adding more modes in. I’d definitely tweak the Defeat The Streak mode as it gets so difficult that at times it just isn’t fun anymore and its not like Undertaker is really hard to beat, he’s just cheap because they simply turned up his reversal ratio and gave him a little cutscene in the match where the lights go out and he comes back healed up from any damage you’ve given him.

The Online component in WWE 2k14 is solid, as with any other game you will always have your cheaters and spammers and the game will always lag if you go up against someone you don’t have a good connection with but it does seem like the servers are more stable this time. Where the online component shines however is the ‘Community Creations’ department where you can create and upload your own customer superstars as well as download other peoples creations and since there are some really good creators out there you can find virtually any wrestling personality to add to your roster.

Graphically WWE 2k14 is one of the odd situations where with a few exceptions its predecessor I feel actually looked slightly better. The crowd and arenas do look a lot better this year but it’s my consensus and the consensus of quite a few other fans of the series that I’ve talked to that many of the character models and move animations seem like a slight downgrade from what was given last year, for instance last year certain finishers felt like a ‘big’ move when you did them but this year when you perform them they feel rushed and definitely don’t look as flashy as they did in WWE 13. That said the game definitely isn’t ugly by any means but I still feel that they took a step back overall.

Overall WWE 2k14 is an average game with a great roster and few nice features here and there. I’m not sure if the transition from THQ to 2K had anything to do with it but it almost feels like they started to try and do something ‘big’ like was done with 13 but gave up half way through, though it could also be that WWE 13 was just a really great wrestling game experience and 2k14 just had the trouble of having to live up to its really successful older brother. With all of that said, 2k14 does have solid building blocks in it and hopefully next year the developer goes all the way and creates a truly epic WWE game.


The AI is better than last year but again it seems like there solution to harder difficulty is to jack up the computers reversing and make it harder for you to reverse.


The game isn’t ugly but really what current gen system game can you truly call ugly? The crowd and arenas look really good but the wrestlers themselves look either the same or worse than they did in 13.


All the wrestlers have their themes and the gameplay sound effects are nothing to complain about…there isn’t a really great soundtrack but its whats expected from a sports/wrestling game.


While sort of a let down after the great entry that was WWE 13, WWE 2k14 isn’t a horrible game but it’s nothing truly great either. I’d say unless you are a die hard wrestling fan you should probably just get WWE 13 and hold off for next years entry.

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