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Mar 21, 2024

WWE 2K24 Review

Lights Off
4 Awesome
Retails for: $59.99
We Recommend: $59.99
  • Developer: Visual Concepts
  • Publisher: 2K
  • Genre: Simulation, Sports
  • Released: Mar 07, 2024
  • Platform: Windows, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4
  • Reviewed: Windows

If you would have asked me in 2019 how popular Cody Rhodes would be in 2024, I’d have laughed at you, let alone the surprise that he’d be back in WWE, and on the cover of this year’s game. His meteoric rise to stardom since returning to WWE is nothing short of fantastic to watch. The Rhodes to WrestleMania 40 is where he aims to “finish the story”, WWE 2K24 is a triumphant continuation from where the last game left off. Everything leads us to the Showcase mode, focused on the 40th Anniversary of “the grandest stage of them all” is front and center here, and as a result WWE 2K24 feels prestigious and exciting in equal measure.

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I was pretty high on WWE 2K23 , as it hit all the right notes for me and a majority of critics and players alike with so many modes and ways to play, create, and even recreate your favorite moments. WWE 2K24 offers a familiar yet refined gameplay experience that will feel instantly recognizable to fans of the series. The core mechanics remain largely unchanged, with players engaging in fast-paced, yet deliberate wrestling action. From executing bone-crunching suplexes to climbing the turnbuckle for a high-flying maneuver, the gameplay offers a satisfying blend of strategy and spectacle of your own making.

However, while the core gameplay remains solid, there are areas where WWE 2K24 falls short. AI opponents can sometimes feel unresponsive or predictable, leading to moments of frustration during solo play. Additionally, the online multiplayer experience can be hit or miss, with occasional lag and connectivity issues hindering the overall experience. Timing is crucial when attempting to execute moves, and mastering the intricacies of the grappling system adds an extra layer of strategy to each match. Alternatively, this can often lead to frustration as timing is too important, and missing one counter could lead to an unexpected loss.

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The game also boasts an extensive roster of WWE Superstars, including both current favorites and legendary icons. Whether you’re a fan of classic grapplers like Stone Cold Steve Austin or newer additions to the roster like Grayson Waller, there’s no shortage of options when it comes to selecting your favorite wrestler as there’s a staggering 250 playable options. Cody Rhodes is once again playable for the second year-in-a-row, legends like Triple H, mainstays like John Cena, and rising heels like Dominik Mysterio. More recent returns to WWE like CM Punk are not currently playable, but are coming in future DLCs as part of the Season Pass.

I think an unexpected surprise was finding that you could play as the Special Guest Referee in matches. Simply having one is a nice treat in any match, but becoming a nonpartisan player in a match just really stands out as creative. Other new match types like the Ambulance and Casket Match are nearly identical in their goals: subdue an opponent to the point where you can shove them into the ambulance or casket to win. How they play out, are much different. Ambulance matches are great, because you can actually climb atop them for verticality of a match, and even throw them off for major damage. It’s so fantastic and devastating.

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WWE 2K24 offers a wealth of content for players to sink their teeth into, ensuring that there’s always something new to discover. The game includes a variety of match types, ranging from standard one-on-one bouts to more chaotic multi-man melees. Whether you prefer the fast-paced action of a ladder match or the technical prowess required for a submission bout, there’s a match type to suit every playstyle. In addition to the robust single-player experience, WWE 2K24 also features an extensive suite of creation tools that allow players to craft their own wrestlers, arenas, and storylines. The level of customization on offer is staggering, giving players the freedom to unleash their creativity and share their creations with the community.

Showcase mode is always a highlight of the WWE 2K games. There’s also a great presentation and historical significance given to each of them. This year’s theme is WrestleMania, and trying to recap 40 years of memorable moments and matches worth recreating. As a player, you’ll be tasked with a lengthy series of matches to play, not only for fun, but accuracy as you work to recreate the moments of each story to be told. While it is great, it can be frustrating when you can’t pull off a move or an opponent gets too much of an upper hand. For this, I recommend playing on easy to see it through with minimal friction.

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One of the most exciting things is the dual storylines to explore in the MyRISE mode, which puts players in the shoes of an up-and-coming wrestler striving to make it to the top of the WWE ranks. As you progress through your career, you’ll face off against a variety of opponents, compete in high-stakes matches, and engage in backstage drama that adds depth to the overall experience. For something deeper, you can try your hand at the Universe mode which gives you ultimate control at what happens.

MyGM puts you in charge of a WWE brand, and you’ll setup the matches and determine its success. Lastly there’s the MyFaction mode. Generally my least favorite as it’s a card game, somehow this manages to enthrall me for the past several years. Building up a team, naming them, designing their “brand”, and then playing matches with the cards you’re dealt is an exciting challenge and being able to level them up is so satisfying. It’s definitely a mode not to be missed.

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The audio design in WWE 2K24 is a mixed bag, with some elements shining brightly while others fall flat. The soundtrack features a diverse selection of music that captures the energy and excitement of WWE events, providing a fitting backdrop for the in-ring action. Voice commentary, however, can be hit or miss, with repetitive lines and occasional inaccuracies detracting from the immersion. While the commentary does a decent job of adding context to the action, it often feels disjointed and out of sync with what’s happening in the ring.

On the presentation front, WWE 2K24 delivers a slick and polished experience that captures the larger-than-life spectacle of WWE events. From the flashy entrance sequences to the dramatic camera angles, every aspect of the presentation is designed to make players feel like they’re part of the action.

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The game really performs great without any slowdowns or hitches, utilizing another next-generation version on PC. This year seems to look even more next-gen somehow. Character models are incredibly detailed, showcasing lifelike renditions of WWE Superstars past and present. Whether it’s the chiseled muscles of John Cena or the flamboyant attire of The Undertaker, each wrestler is brought to life with remarkable accuracy. The arenas themselves are equally impressive, featuring dynamic lighting effects and intricate details that capture the spectacle of WWE events. Whether you’re brawling in a packed stadium or duking it out in a smaller venue, each location feels distinct and immersive. While the graphics are undoubtedly impressive, there are occasional instances of clipping and animation glitches that break immersion. However, these issues are minor and do little to detract from the overall visual spectacle.

My PC Specs:

– Microsoft Windows 11 Pro
– Intel Core i9 13900K @ 5.8GHz
– ASUS ROG Strix GeForce RTX 4080 16GB GDDR6X
– WD_BLACK SN850X M.2 (4 TB)
– LG UltraGear 34GP950B-G (21:9 Ultrawide @ 3440×1440)

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WWE 2K24 delivers an electrifying wrestling experience that will satisfy fans of this series. With its stunning visuals, refined gameplay mechanics, and a wealth of content to explore, it’s clear that Visual Concepts has pulled out all the stops to deliver a championship-winning performance. While the game isn’t without its flaws, including occasional graphical glitches and lackluster AI, these issues are minor in the grand scheme of things. With its extensive roster, robust creation suite, and dynamic career mode, WWE 2K24 offers something for everyone. While it’s not as fresh as last year’s entry, WWE 2K24 really feels like the pinnacle of the simulation series.

A Steam code for the WWE 2K24 40 Years of Wrestlemania Edition was provided by the publisher for review purposes