After a rather rocky first year 2K & WWE have finally found common ground with the release of WWE 2K16. With an actual introduction to NXT (compared to 2K15), 2K16 has an robust roster WWE talent from both the past and present, new gameplay, and a fantastic soundtrack.
WWE 2K16 is an 2015 wrestling game, it is developed by Yukes and Visual Concepts, and published by 2K Sports. It is available on Playstation 3, Playstation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.
Being a long-time wrestling fan and perhaps an even longer fan of the pro wrestling video game, you can’t help but feel like a lot was missing from last year’s WWE 2K15. With new arcade like gameplay mechanics, updated CAW & Superstar Threads, and a huge roster WWE 2K16 is one of the best wrestling games in years.
THE GOOD: WWE 2K16’s new game mechanics feature an arcade-like style including meters and and health bars. This year’s game features perhaps the most updated roster since the debut of the SmackDown vs RAW series. Containing over 120 characters to use from the past and present, this is the largest roster in WWE video game history. The Showcase mode heavily detailed Austin’s career from his days as Stunning Steve Austin to the birth of Stone Cold Steve Austin. One of my favorite things about 2K16 was the fact that it was actually far more difficult than previous titles, which was something that was heavily lacked. An legitimate introduction to NXT was also a major plus.
THE BAD: While the new difficulty was greatly appreciated there were times when the game felt a bit too difficult. And good luck trying to get an opponent to tap the first few hours of gameplay. Another story mode on Austin also feels redundant at this point, and I personally wish 2K & WWE would move past story modes focused on the Attitude Era, it feels like they’ve been done to death. Apparently there was a Hogan Showcase, but it was removed due to the controversy early in the year. CAWs, while improved, still look cartoony when compared to real wrestler models,
OVERALL THOUGHTS: WWE 2K16 is one of the best wrestling games to come out in years, and certainly an improvement over last year’s release of 2K15. New gameplay mechanics and an arcade feeling to the gameplay gives a fun experience. The huge roster is a plus, and a major complaint from fans is the roster being outdated upon release, however 2K16’s roster has severely rectified that issue. CAWs while improved still looked cartoony, and do we really need more AE focused story modes? At this point long-time fans of the games know the era from top to bottom.