A couple of weeks ago, I bought the latest incarnation of WWE’s franchise of wrestling games – Smackdown vs RAW 2008. It’s the first of the franchise that features the recently resurrected ECW brand, and promises new legends including every mother’s favourite: the late great Ravishing Rick Rude! It also promises all the bells and whistles associated with the biggest sports entertainment company in the world, but bollocks to all that, what’s it like to play?
Well, let me start with the one and only good point (and it is quite major). The control system. Once you get the hang of it which takes about half an hour, it is quite innovative and fun. The way you have to perform moves by mimicing them is a step in the right direction. It’s not perfect, and at times you are furiously waving
But, unfortunately, it’s the only thing that saves this game.
The characters are all there (except for the brilliant Santino Marella – come on THQ, Italian Stereotypes = Sales!), but the amount of depth in the game is about a teardrop’s worth. There is only about 3 match types, which – when you consider I’ve been used to all sorts of matches – it is shockingly weak. We’re going back to NES days here.
The other thing I don’t like is the weak Create A Wrestler. Sure, it’s there, but it doesn’t have the ability to create your wrestlers’ “Just So”. For example, and compared to XBox 360′s version where I can create my tag team (The horribly politcally incorrect “Nordic Combined” – consisting of “The Swedish Sensation” Sven Blomqvist and “The Gunman” Egil Gunnar Leonardsen) you can’t in the Wii version. Instead the wrestlers come out individually, and it looks a bit silly. Also, you can only pick a style of fighting and 2 or 3 extra moves, and the entrance is limited, and you can’t use the music on your SD card as your theme music. Come on, Excite Truck can do it, why can’t you?
All in all, this game is a bit disappointing. It’s fun for a weekend, but I really wouldn’t recommend buying it. Rent it maybe, but save your cash for something more fun.
Should you not like heeding my warnings, you can buy this game from Amazon here.