WWE has always been consistent with how they continue to release another wrestling game every year and have continued to grow the franchise up to contend with other sports franchises like Madden, NHL, and NBA.
2K has revolutionized simulation basketball with NBA 2K18 and continues to dazzle with amazingly accurate graphics, physics that are right in line with how most basketball games actually play out and the presentation is that of a broadcast on TNT or ABC.
That is why it is all the more confusing that WWE and 2K have had a very rough time meshing together since they took over the development in 2014.
Perhaps it is a shift in culture or some restrictive rules that WWE generally places on anyone who works with them but there have been a plethora of mistakes, non-inclusions, and embarrassing bugs.
With the way the NBA franchise series has caught massive success as one of the most consistently well-sold games and a solid staple of the console market, it seems straight up lazy that there are this many times that WWE 2K18 makes no sense.
From objects disappearing to nonsensical storylines, from limitations on the game to outsourcing development work to players, these are the top twenty-five ways that WWE 2K18 just makes no sense whatsoever.
Expect to be taken back by how bad these mistakes are because they leave a huge stain on the reputation of an otherwise fantastic title that checks all the boxes of a great wrestling game.
25 Championship Glitches
Seeing as we are in the new era of making video games and the developers at 2K are known for being especially futuristic with their daring ventures with the NBA game franchise, but some of the details that they nail in that franchise do not seem to get the same treatment.
Starting off the list here, we have the usage of the championship titles in the game, and how wearing them on characters almost never looks good.
You can have all the entrances that are specially designed to have them carry championships and even have smaller characters but it almost always looks awkward and almost always phases through character models, clothing, and even ring accessories. It just seems so peculiar to have something as visually important as championships not react realistically to their environment.
24 Tag Teams That Don't Team Up!
Yeah yeah, apparently this was the year that WWE 2K was going to finally carry over stables and tag teams as group contenders that actually help each other. For those who do not know, if a wrestler was aligned with another, (ex. The Usos) then they would attack each other as if they were just another competitor without any dramatic turn of a brief alliance. This is an example of the game not picking up where it promises because while there are slight moments where you will see groups actually coordinate an attack it is more or less a rarity and takes many playthroughs to see in Royal Rumble. It is a shame too because it allows for no type of fantasy team warfare match of sorts. You just sort of have to imagine.
23 And Some Tag Teams Are Just Not Included!
So Undertaker and Kane are in a game, you pick them as your tag team and they come out separate. Why are they not billed as the Brothers Of Destruction as they were known? Who knows?
The developers at 2K strangely decided to cut out a few factions, stables, and tag teams, in the section for it in the game, despite most characters still being available.
Undertaker and Kane are an obvious one but there are many more like the lack of a New World Order faction despite a great deal of the original stable being in the game (except for the unmentionable Hulk Hogan who is still exiled from the WWE for racist remarks he made in 2012). There is such a lack of unity in this game, some of the tag teams like Enzo and Big Cass are no longer a team and it is just sad.
22 Where Is The Energy?
Now, it is difficult to try and criticize the way that the motion capture is done in a video game. It must be difficult to get all the wrestlers in the office and have them do their signature struts to the ring but there must be a better way than to have what is done in the game. Constantly, you will see slow-moving wrestlers lumber to the ring with an acute lack of charisma that is present in the WWE locker room. This writer is available for motion capture booking and will work for free if that means we will see a more accurate portrayal of some of these moves. It just comes off as odd when the game should be all about accuracy to the presentation and bombastic style of its television predecessor.
21 Leaving Out A Huge Star
This has been discussed before at great length but it is so undeniably dumb that it deserves to be brought up again. Andrade “Cien” Almas is a wrestler that has been on the roster for over a year prior to the release of the game and won the NXT championship just a few months after the release of the game.
Why was he not in the game if others like Drew McIntyre had debuted later?
Probably because Andrade Almas was not exactly a power player on NXT until as of late, so it kind of makes sense to leave him out. However, that reasoning is nullified when the theme for Almas is in the credits of the game. This indicates that he was originally going to be in the game, so what happened? Looks like a lot of fans are going to have to stick with created Superstars.
20 Universe Mode Is A Terrible Looker
We as a society have made great advances in technology to better the entertainment of ourselves. Universe Mode is definitely an advancement this year and is an upside to the game despite one glaring flaw that simply cannot be avoided. Universe Mode is designed to put on matches that would give compelling storylines to the player so that they can enjoy it from start to finish as it unfolds from the beginning. It is just not that reasonable when you see that Jimmy Uso and Randy Orton are in a singles feud while Jimmy is holding the tag team belts. Sure stuff like this could happen in real life but do we have to do this ALL the time? Seriously, it is unavoidable to see strange matchups that no one would want to see.
19 Game-Breaking Bug That 2K REFUSES To Address
One of the strangest glitches to ever exist in a wrestling game (and this is a bad one that deserves a spot on this list) is the manager DQ glitch in WWE 2K. The reason why 2K is mentioned is because it has been prominent since WWE 2K16 and has remained in the game. Basically, if the player has a manager and the wrestler facing the player in a singles match attacks the manager of the player, the player is awarded a disqualification win.
This is a pain for a lot of players for multiple reasons with the first being that it has been here for 2 years!
Finally, it makes no sense at all in terms of the rules of wrestling and to justify this kind of booking would be Vince Russo levels of wild.
18 Disappearing Table Act
Is it really that hard? Is it really that hard to just get a table that breaks and stays in the game? For many years players have broken tables and seen their broken pieces fade away into tiny bits of video game particles in an unrealistic way. Of course, this is done for the limitations of the game but just exactly how limited are we in 2018 when we have such advanced games? Take a game like Overwatch, for example. It has a large environment with 12 characters loaded in at the same time with unique objects that react accordingly and it runs extremely well. Perhaps it is apples and oranges, but there appears to be no excuse for 2K as fans have already clamored about how the game has lacked in the graphical department this year.
17 Restricted Hardcore Modes
Speaking of breakable objects disappearing, there is a strange limitation on the weapons that are unbreakable and refuse to disappear. For one, there are only a handful of weapons in the game and most of them are nothing special really but there is a strange limit this year that makes it odd for multi-man matches that feature hardcore stipulations. If you see a WWE match like a 6-man ladder it will generally feature six ladders for the wrestlers to use for spots and that is what adds to the exciting unpredictability of those matches and gives it that unique aesthetic.
Not being able to have more than 2 ladders when there are 8 wrestlers in the ring is just boring and it is a shame we are restricted to such a limit.
16 Sometimes They Just Stand There...
This game is quite good to watch. It is compelling to see the way the artificial intelligence battles against each other in a way to make themselves put on a show for the virtual audience. Most of the time, at least. This is because there is a really bad glitch that seems to occur at random. When in certain spots, the A.I. will just stand there and do nothing for a good 30 seconds. It is quite embarrassing really. Imagine if Tom Brady just didn’t move in Madden or LeBron James stopped dribbling in NBA2k? It would certainly be a much bigger deal for those games but WWE seems to have a more understanding audience. It is just a shame because it can really ruin the momentum of matches that are really good.
15 ..Or They Just Pose
It is quite common to see wrestlers pose in the middle of a match. This can be done to get some attention from the crowd or get in the head of their opponent and adds a lot to the drama and storytelling that goes with these matches.
It is seen in WWE 2K18 and has a whopping 12 slots for taunts in the Create A Move-Set mode for the player to customize.
It is too bad that it is horribly abused by the artificial intelligence whenever they are in matches. You will see guys like Shinsuke Nakamura do his finisher and then turn to the crowd to gloat. It is out of character and goes against everything that he stands for as a wrestler and this goes for a lot of wrestlers in situations where they would pin normally. Sheesh!
14 Just Plain Impossible To See Stuff Like This
Of course, it is difficult to gauge just how strong a person is and as the adage goes: big things can come in small packages. Still, there have to be some limitations to this in terms of how the game reacts to the larger characters in the game. For one, there is a weight detection physic in the game that can be turned off and on. Then there are moves that can be assigned if your character is not strong enough. Seems like enough to counteract the problem but it is unfortunately thwarted by in-game matches. See, most counter and generic holds are equal for all when it comes to their ability to perform basic moves so not every move can be countered correctly. For example, a cruiserweight could suplex a super heavyweight if it is in the animation of a counter to a move. This ruins the suspension of disbelief and ruins would-be David vs. Goliath matches.
13 You Cant Do Moves In The Crowd
Fighting in the crowd is an amazing feature and the WWE universe should be grateful that it is in the game.
But if we are talking serious here, it is a poor man’s mini-game and is rarely utilized for the sheer tediousness of it.
First of all, the hitbox on the barricade that leads to the outside is small and is not available in every arena. Second, no regular moves or holds can be applied and both characters that are bound to the outside can only strike with generic punches (only two, by the way). One can argue that this is how a lot of outside brawls happen and that it is an accurate way to depict it but the rebuttal to this is that wrestlers also do maneuvers on the outside to capitalize on the entire affair.
12 An Inanimate Object With Otherworldly Properties
Also covered before was the use of a glitch/hidden secret that allowed the player to accurately use the steel steps. What does this writer mean by the accurate use of steel steps? Well, quite simply, whenever a character was slammed onto steel steps brought in from the outside of the ring, their bodies would push the steps away and not react to them as their invisible hitboxes (which we will get to) safely make a space on the ring mat. It is a truly strange problem and makes little sense.
Worse yet, the idea that a glitch must be done to bring more REALISM to a SIMULATION game is quite appalling and inspiring at the same time.
11 Who Needs Physics?
Ah yes, the stacked tables. A staple of ECW and WWE when they were in their hardcore phases, respectively. This saw some of the most intense stunts ever done because we normally see only one table broken but when two are stacked and crash down it has double the massive impact. You can stack tables in WWE 2K18 but unfortunately, it is just a visual aid because the second table on the bottom will never break. There is one OMG moment (the Big E spear) that can put someone through both tables but what kind of strange trickery is that? It is too bad because this year they added the smaller ECW venue from One Night Stand 2006 and it would have been a great year to debut some better hardcore physics.
10 Wacky Warping Wrestlers!
Speaking of physics, it is about time that the in-ring warping problem is mentioned. For the most part, they make sense and react to things accordingly but other times they are just an invisible wall that rarely gets touched. See, if a wrestler does a move to another wrestler close to the ropes or turnbuckle then they will both warp farther from the ropes so the animation can end in the ring as opposed to say, one of the wrestlers actually hitting the rope. Not only is this super unrealistic but it ruins a lot of spots that happen in actual matches and it takes away from the presentation of the game. It may seem like nitpicks at this point, but this is the kind of criticism that will drive this game to be the best it can be.
9 Ropes That Don’t Work
Ropes in the game are quite tricky. They bounce quite wildly but they never seem to come into play when it comes to storytelling throughout the game. Normally in wrestling, you will see people try to do spots with the ropes like choke their opponents or have a wrestler get their leg caught to be unable to do something. None of these things are really a possibility and overall, the physics are wonky on a general level.
If players run into the ropes they will bounce back but they can only do this once.
Why there are unlimited rope runs and a cancel button to add more control is still unknown. It just seems so odd that something as important as ring rope physics seem so odd in the game yet many other triple-AAA titles have no problem doing even more.
8 Hitboxes That Don’t Work
Striking is a weird mechanic in WWE 2K18 and it one of the most inconsistent in the entire game. On one hand, it kind of makes sense to have ranged strikes that do not have a chance of connecting sometimes but it just throws off the pace of a match when someone as skilled as Daniel Bryan or AJ Styles whiffs a striking elbow. It ruins the reality of the game and that is the running trend with a lot of these things. It just does not make sense why things like striking are not looked at on a more careful level because it should be a huge priority for the makers of this game. It is about time that WWE fans get the game they deserve and it is best we start with the basics.
7 Wrestlers Don't React To Massive Humans Being Thrown
As is the same with the hitboxes that are almost nonexistent when it comes to striking, there is another glaring flaw that ruins the game.
When one is being thrown or catapulted into the direction of another Superstar that second Superstar does not react to the speed or force of the thrown character.
Instead, they will be gently moved to the side as the character falls past them. It is a truly awkward experience and completely ruins the magic of characters like Braun Strowman who can chuck wrestlers around the ring like nothing and it seems like there will never be a fix for it. It has never been brought up by the developers and fans rarely say anything about this because there are just so many other things that get brought up.
6 The Problem With Submissions
Two submission mini-game types is a good thing on paper but it actually does something quite harmful to the community. Having a wrestling game that can be competitive would be a nice thing to say but it is just impossible with mechanics like this. First of all, the online portion means that it must adhere to one type or allow the players to use their respective one when they are being submitted with a submission. Second of all, it makes no sense to have this option because the state of tournaments can be left in the air because of rules like this. That is a huge obstacle that 2K needs to climb up if they want a WWE 2K league like they have an NBA 2K league.
5 Hair Still Does Whatever It Wants
Hair is a difficult thing to animate in video games. That is an understandable issue that most games still have to this day. How hard is it to recreate the thousands of small hairs that stand on the top of our heads to make our beautiful locks? Very. And few developers have got the magic of hair down and unfortunately, 2K is not one of them, they are not one of those in that lucky group. Character models with long hair generally have a strange physic to them where they bounce wildly in accordance to how moves are done to them.
Characters like Maryse have a strange rubber look to them and short Mohawks like Sheamus' look as if they're made of clay.
It is truly a strange affair, this hair.
4 Outsourcing Work To The Gamers
Now, the Create an Arena mode is fantastic. It is very detailed and allows for all sorts of possibilities and customization options for days that are astounding in scope. One thing that has become quite strange, however, is the fact that the player can find set pieces in complete from past events. Not just a small part of a set, but a whole template that makes the arena. These are not pre-made and must be customized and made by the player themselves and when players have to spend their time creating things that the developers should do is that not a problem? Charge more for some DLC arenas if you would like, that would be a lot better than spending hours doing things it would have taken the developers minutes to accomplish.
3 Leaving Out General Manager Attire
One of the last things (but not the last) to be noted once again is the weird non-inclusion of the general manager attire for Mick Foley and Daniel Bryan. It is an obscure thing to not add into the game and there was definitely going to be the two appearing as they have images in the game that show them textured and can even be accessed on the PC version of the game. It remains a mystery to all the players of the game and makes no sense whatsoever.
Why leave out anything?
Was it really going to be that strenuous on the computing of the game to put in two extra attires that can be made by the player anyways? Just another example of making the player work for things that should already be in the game.
2 No Intergender Wrestling
Intergender wrestling, while not seen in a WWE ring for a long time, was once a huge part of programming. Of course, it makes sense to not include it in the later games but with the introduction and obvious impending success of the Mixed Match Challenge from WWE (a tag team tournament featuring co-ed tag-teams), it was a huge disappointment to the fans to not be able to recreate what they see on WWE programming. Not only is the game now out of date, but it also allows for no replication of some classic women-vs-men matches like Andy Kaufman’s run as a heel or Jeff Jarrett losing the Intercontinental Championship to Chyna. Of course, there is a glitch to allow for singles matches to take place between men and women but it is quite complicated and can only be done in Universe mode.
1 The Downfall Of MyCareer Mode
Ah, the thing that makes the least sense out of all the things on this list; MyCareer. After 2K removed the Hall of Fame showcase to focus on MyCareer this year there was a huge bit of fanfare from people who have been wanting to see a return to an RPG-style mode.
Unfortunately, WWE 2K18 does everything they can to milk the player for dollars as the mode is riddled with pay-to-win strategies and loot boxes that are given out at random.
On top of this, certain items are locked from the start and take a lot of matches to unlock. Did the developers really think that they were doing the right thing by making players do 10 matches to unlock wrist tape? It is unreasonable, tedious, annoying, and the most nonsensical mode in wrestling game history.