The quality of the WWE 2K games could charitably be described as hit-or-miss. Some games have managed to come close to the high watermark of wrestling games like No Mercy, or WWE Smackdown Vs Raw: Here Comes The Pain, while others have been buggy, broken messes that were missing vital features from the series' history.
Well, apparently, 2K wants to try to turn this trend around, and with the news that longtime developer Yukes would be departing from the series (and possibly working on an entirely different wrestling game), they're trying something drastically different.
This year's installment of the series will feature DLC packs that will introduce different kinds of story modes for the game. For example, one of the story modes, titled "Bump In The Night", tells a tale of a swamp-man who tries to recruit a demon to wrestle for him. Here is the description:
An alternate "Swampfather" version of Bray Wyatt has amassed otherworldly power, becoming an embodiment of the swamp itself. He lures Finn Bálor to his compound to recruit Finn's Demon into his group of powered Superstars, which he calls his "Family." Finn is forced to fight in a series of matches against members of Wyatt's Family until finally, the power within Finn Bálor is unleashed. Exclusive commentary brings the story to life.
There's a lot to unpack here. For example, nobody knows what a "Swampfather" is, nor why they would want to hire a demon. Also, it's reasonable to ask why he would pit the demon against his own family and why the commentators would offer commentary on the match, rather than acting on what would appear to be a scary and alarming situation.
As this is pro wrestling, such questions are likely to be answered with a chair to the head. In the "Bump In The Night" DLC pack, which sadly has nothing to do with Mr. Bumpy, players get this storyline, along with the DLC character of "The Fiend" Bray Wyatt, whose Summerslam entrance was fairly impressive.
There's also a mode called Story 2K Towers, which seems to be a series of unique stories. These include another Bray Wyatt story called "The Fiend", "Nowhere To Run" which seems to star Nikki Cross as some sort of Jigsaw-like figure, "Nowhere To Hide" which has Mandy Rose try to take out the aforementioned Cross, and "One Of The Family" where the "Swampfather" edition of Bray Wyatt tries to recruit Daniel Bryan. There's also a scenario called "All Fed Up" where Sheamus fights other superstars who have all become zombies.
Wrestling fans will also get some horror-themed versions of wrestlers, like "The Demon" Finn Balor, "Unleashed Apex Predator" Randy Orton, "Wicked" Aleister Black, "Fed Up" Sheamus which is a delightful Shaun Of The Dead reference, and some terrible monster known as FrankenStrowman. There will also be creepy arenas like a Cemetery Brawl Arena, and the Wyatt Swamp Arena, although those are less like arenas than their names imply.
Overall, it's definitely an entirely new idea for the WWE2k series, and it could be pretty cool. Plus, WWE 2K20 comes out on October 22nd of this year, meaning this DLC will be perfect for fans of both wrestling, and Halloween, although the lack of a Halloween Havoc arena seems like a missed opportunity.