Like all WWE games, 2K14 uses the Yukes engine commonly called the “Smackdown” engine, since it’s been used now dating back to the Smackdown! series on PS2. However, while it was a fun series at a time (Here Comes the Pain!), it’s been pure garbage for a while. The latest jumps so far off of the quality-cliff, that as I write this, it’s developer is jobless. There may be justice in this world!
First of all, if you haven’t played a wrestling game in a decade, you might think something is wrong with your system or the frame rate. Actually, the frame rate could possibly be fucking up, since it does that too in this game, but my point is that this game runs so slowly, it seems like a bad dream. You know, the kind where you try to throw a punch and it’s slow and does no damage. The timing on moves, wrestlers getting up and the like is off too. If you pin a computer opponent, he will ALWAYS get up before you do. This makes no sense, but is done because of balancing.
See, in the past, you would just block someone trying to grab you on the ground. You can’t in this game, because the blocking system is fucked up. Like Obamacare, the concept itself is fucked from the beginning – but it’s also marred by technical glitches too. There is only ONE block button in the game. R2 on PS3 (the spongy fucking L/R2 buttons are the worst choice for a blocking button, fool idiots. Play your own game for once). This block button often fails when you try to use it, even though you are quite certain you’ve hit the button at the perfect moment (a psychic feat, considering how fucked up the animations are. They’re either slow or jerky so you can’t tell when you’re supposed to block unless you just know the game. Logic begone). I believe Yukes realized that those of us who block well wipe the floor with those of us who do not, and evened the playing field by screwing up blocking. Be warned – this foolish thought process of making things equal for both the stupid and the successful alike results in catastrophic failure in both video games and society.
In Here Comes the Pain, you had a button to counter strikes and a button to block grapples. They almost always worked perfectly and it was a fantastic system. In the following title, the system was broken and they failed to work so often, it wasn’t fun anymore for those of us who knew we were blocking the shit right. It’s gotten worse since then, eventually being combined into one trigger/spongy button that makes no real sense as to being used for a block. If the goal is to hit a button during an exact frame of time, why would you use a button requiring a small frame of time to be triggered.
You can also play this game and tell that the people making it didn’t know their WWE history that well. Bret Hart’s Wrestlemania 13 theme was not in fact written until after Wrestlemania 25. Stone Cold’s Wrestlemania 13 theme is also incorrect, although less noticeable. Ric Flair’s Wrestlemania 8 theme is incorrect – and the correct version has been in games before, so I know they can use it. Stone Cold’s Stunner is referred to as a “jaw breaker” in commentary. Doing a “chop block” is called as “blocking the chop.” Many other idiotic mistakes litter the shitty commentary and folks – JR sucks dick at reading his lines. He should be sent to acting class or given an inflection/dialect coach so that it doesn’t sound like he is reading this shit. He may be the best commentator ever but he is clearly the worst line-reader ever.
The Randy Savage Wrestlemania 5 promo is amazing. The best part of the game – so it was done only once more and never again.
Online is unplayably bad. It lags nonstop. The kickout meter, requiring you to trigger a meter and release it during the right moment, lags by 1-2 seconds so is nearly impossible to use online in a bad match. Unless it is real time, it’s not fun to play online. And this year is just as bad if not worse than years prior. Someone should be fired over this (oh wait – they were).
I noticed on Twitter @RealCoryLedesma that the clown-resemblant proud videogame director had gone unusually silent around October 15. My guess is that someone at 2K management got a copy of the game around then and played it. Cory then Tweeted that his Twitter account was his own and removed the 2K affiliation from his biography (but left his IMBD.com profile, like he’s a fucking movie star). So he obviously was canned and it’s about time.
Ledesma was part of what has become a rather corrupt practice of bribing online reviewers with trips, gifts and expenses-paid such as trips to Summerslam and Axxess, or Wrestlemania and Axxess, etc… He even flew @RAWFShowtime, who heads up an unknown Website, out twice in a year to offer “feedback.” I can hear it now. “It’s great guys just great!” Keep in mind, RAWFShowtime was once sent a Tweet by me that the music for Bret Hart was wrong in WWE 13 and he became so angry with me, he blocked me. This is an emotional boy! But he’s also a loyal fanboy (no surprise, an XBOX loyalist). Hopefully, 2K is removing these shitty elements that helped lead to the downfall of THQ.
WWE 2K14 sucks ass and if it weren’t for the story mode and Universe mode, would have no value. 5/10.
After playing the game online in an attempt to wrestle 10 wins from this clunker piece of shit, I’ve analyzed a few new, interesting elements of gameplay that anyone of talent would have noticed before releasing a video game.
In an online match, fair fight (no stats adjusted), I had an opponent’s legs RED. They were critical from two figure fours – Ric Flair style. I would apply a leg twist and my character walked so slow, I couldn’t physically get to the feet in time to do my finisher. In fact, when I ran, I couldn’t either – because after having a move applied to a body part that was critical, Bret Hart still instantly got up.
It also occurred to me that this game, which uses triggers/spongy R2 buttons to block, never allows you to block utilizing your eyes. You have to guess when someone will be grabbing you and the prompts are incorrect – blatantly. My cousin and I turned the prompts off and blocked more effectively, because we weren’t being mislead.
Last year, I asked THQ help reps what buttons I was supposed to tap during the Breaking Point sequences. They said “ALL OF THEM” – which will make you let the move go of course. Also, if you try tapping only the directional or R2/L2 buttons, you noticed it does NOTHING. So ALL OF THEM is fucking bullshit and the people making this series (the same that was at THQ moved over to this first 2K game) don’t even know what buttons you’re supposed to press.
Remember – this department gives out free gifts, games and trips to people reviewing it. Let’s see what they had to say about the game!
Armchair Empire – 90
Destructoid – 90
IGN – 87 “It still lacks the brains to deliver competent AI and commentators, but WWE 2K14 has more than enough brawn to make up for it.” – Total fucking bullshit. When buttons don’t work, it doesn’t make up for other bad elements.
NZ Gamer – 85 “WWE 2K14 isn’t a huge improvement over WWE ’13. It does a great job of representing the events of past WrestleManias, however, packing a roster that has almost as many legends as modern superstars – it might even rely too much on nostalgic appeal.” – Yeah, it’s not a single iota of an improvement over 13 because it’s identical – except blocking fucking sucks in this title immensely. Even though the same button was used in the past, there was more of a sense of timing with it. Move’s animated with opportunities to see when you should press block – instead of just guessing when someone pressed a button during a 10 second chain grapple. Also, there is NOTHING resemblant of a story mode for modern day superstars. This game is openly saying WWE in 2013 sucks (it does, though).
Now, Gamespot was a little closer to the mark. 60. “It’s a shame the wrestling isn’t up to par in WWE 2K14 because the elements surrounding it are so interesting.” – Unfortunately, the fool reviewing the game openly says he hasn’t played a WWE game since Wrestlefest.
I’m still glad to see they didn’t get bribed this year…err…they were a little more honest. The bottom line is that if EVERY SINGLE GAME gets a 75-85 review, then they are all meaningless reviews because you’re not telling me anything. And you can’t tell me a glitchy game with a broken online (again, every year it’s been this way. Why are we being kind to these fucking people? They don’t listen) is worth an 8/10 or as some of these suckers wrote, a 9/10. That’s just shameful.