The lights are on
This fall will see pro wrestling's debut on new-gen consoles, with WWE 2K15 scheduled to release on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. I've enjoyed the last couple years of the product, but would love to see a few things be shaken up with 2K's first full development cycle in the franchise. Here's my take on fantasy booking WWE 2K15:
Original Story – The Invasion, Done Right
With the last two installments, 2K (and before them, THQ) focused on two of the most important historical happenings in wrestling history – the Attitude Era in the late 90s, and the history of WrestleMania. A mode focusing on the "Ruthless Aggression" or "New Generation" time periods would feel like a step back in terms of historical importance, so I'd propose a different idea entirely.
In my opinion, one of the most mishandled events in company history was Vince McMahon's buyout of WCW. What should have been a dream scenario involving WWF going to war with their longtime rival turned into a massive disappointment. Instead of waiting for huge stars like Hulk Hogan, Kevin Nash, Ric Flair, Goldberg, and many more to be ready to move over to WWF, the company pulled the trigger way too early. Instead of dream matches like Steve Austin vs. Goldberg, we were supposed to care about mid-to-low carders like Shawn Stasiak, Mike Awesome, and Chuck Palumbo (the only truly big stars that WWF brought over at this early stage were Diamond Dallas Page and Booker T).
Thanks to the magic of video games and the fact that many of WCW's big names are now working for Vince McMahon, some VO work and an original script can allow gamers to play a rectified version of this pivotal era. Imagine if the NWO, Goldberg, Scott Steiner, Ric Flair, Curt Hennig and more invaded an episode of Monday Night Raw without warning, sparking a months-long storyline. The only way we could see something like this at this point is via a video game, and I'd love to see it in 2K15.
Alternate Story Idea – Follow The Career Of One Superstar
Another option for a cool story mode would be to follow the real-life path of one veteran superstar. To make things easier in terms of copyrights, it would need to be someone that came up primarily in the WWE system (for example, someone like Daniel Bryan would be difficult because of his work in numerous independent promotions). The two best options I can think of would be The Undertaker and John Cena. Both have long, storied careers, and the majority of their time has been spent firmly under WWE branding. It would follow along with 2K's sports games that have recreated the career of Michael Jordan or focused on a player-created basketball star. Highlights like WrestleMania matches and title wins would be playable as the player takes the superstar through the many years of his career.