The WWE video games have generally been received poorly over recent years, but WWE 2K22 might represent a second wind for the franchise.
While the ceiling for WWE titles over the last few years has been decent at best, most of the games have been just plain bad. That changed with WWE 2K20, which saw the franchise become downright abysmal in the eyes of many fans and players. A clumsy transition from longtime wrestling game developer Yuke’s to the new studio Visual Concepts led to a half-baked and buggy game.
This became even worse over time, as gameplay updates introduced new bugs that marred the experience further. #FixWWE2K20 trended on Twitter, with fans equally mad and amused over the various game-breaking glitches that became an inescapable part of the game.
The poor reception to 2K20 prompted a full backend reboot of the franchise. Though another poorly received title, WWE Battlegrounds, was slapped together to maintain the streak of annual releases, WWE 2K22 has been given the proper time to actually come together in a way that might yield a new and improved experience.
Here’s all the information you need to know ahead of the release of WWE 2K22.
WWE 2K22 release date
WWE 2K22 will launch on March 8 and 11, 2022. The exact date varies based on the version of the game.
While simultaneous worldwide releases are the norm for AAA titles these days, this game will work a bit differently. WWE 2K22 will see its “Deluxe Edition” and “nWo 4-Life Edition” versions drop on March 8, while the standard release will release on March 11.
The Deluxe Edition contains the DLC season pass, a Starrcade 1996 version of Rey Mysterio, and three alternate versions of The Undertaker. The nWo 4-Life Edition has all of this alongside various WCW-inspired additions to the game. This includes:
- nWo versions of Hulk Hogan, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, and X-Pac
- Arenas based on Souled Out 1997 and Bash at the Beach 1996
- Eric Bischoff as a playable character
- The nWo Wolfpac Championship as an in-game championship
WWE 2K22 platforms include everything except Nintendo Switch
WWE 2K22 will launch on PlayStation 4 and 5, Xbox One and Series X/S, and PC via digital download.
At present, there is no word on a Nintendo Switch version of WWE 2K22 and it’s very likely that there won’t be one at all. WWE 2K19 and 2K20 never received Switch releases. This followed WWE 2K18 releasing on Nintendo Switch and receiving unanimously poor reviews due to consistent performance issues with the Switch port.
The comparatively weak hardware of the Nintendo Switch presents various challenges for developers, and many ultimately opt to ignore the platform rather than jump through the hoops required to successfully port their games to the Nintendo console. It’s likely that Visual Concepts would rather not release anything for the Switch rather than a stripped-down or buggy version of the game.
WWE 2K22 roster hammered by WWE releases
WWE 2K22 is confirmed to have 118 wrestlers available for play at release including various alternate versions of some characters.
The game will feature a mix of various current WWE, NXT, and NXT UK wrestlers as well as a long list of names from the past. This number is down considerably from other recent games, which have had rosters of well over 200 in some cases. The number of playable wrestlers in WWE 2K22 will increase with DLC releases, but odds are that it will have the lightest roster in some time.
WWE fans likely know the reason why. Through 2020 and 2021, the promotion released dozens of wrestlers across all of its brands despite reporting record profits and preventing talent from earning income elsewhere. The list of released wrestlers ranged from main eventers like Bray Wyatt and Braun Strowman down to trainees at the WWE Performance Center.
Most of the wrestlers that were released have been scrubbed from the game, though there are a few cuts that sneaked into the game. There’s no clear rhyme or reason as to which released wrestlers were kept in, but notable names that will be playable despite being cut from the roster include Nia Jax, Ember Moon, Karrion Kross, and Keith Lee. The full list of wrestlers and their ratings can be found on the official website for the game.
WWE 2K22 multiplayer includes couch co-op, eight-player online matches
WWE 2K22 will have the usual roundup of multiplayer options alongside expanded online play. According to both the PlayStation and Xbox websites for the games, the game will support up to four players for local multiplayer and couch co-op.
Notably, WWE 2K22 will allow up to eight players to play with each other through online play. Different modes and match types will have varying levels of support for multiplayer.
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