The lights are on
CM Punk, famously estranged from the WWE since walking out in January, will be one of four headliners in WWE 2K15’s new 2K Showcase mode. The single-player campaign focuses on two big rivalries from WWE history: CM Punk and John Cena from 2011 to 2013 and Triple H and former DX partner Shawn Michaels from 2002 to 2004. The two rivalry threads will be presented as mini-documentaries, using plenty of real-life footage of the feuds combined with commentary from the wrestlers involved to set up the matches.
Players will battle through a total of 33 matches in 2K Showcase mode, unlocking content along the way by completing historical objectives that match up with what really happened in the ring. For those dreaming of other epic rivalries, 2K may just grant your wish further down the line. The publisher has already promised story-based rivalry DLC packs post-launch.
CM Punk remains a fan favorite, regularly eliciting chants at live WWE events, despite being off WWE programming for most of 2014. The former wrestler has shown no interest in returning to WWE publicly and was moved from the current roster to the alumni section on WWE.com following his formal contract expiration in July. On a recent conference call, I asked WWE executive director Mark Little about how the team came to use CM Punk given his current status with the WWE.
“Each year we try and create the best WWE 2K roster possible and even though CM Punk is not currently appearing on WWE programming we’re really happy that we’re able to still provide for everybody this rivalry against John Cena and CM Punk as part of 2K15,” Little said. “As much in the same way that Shawn [Michaels] currently isn’t active for the WWE either, but he’s still able to be part of WWE 2K15 because the WWE universe extends through all of the time and history of the company. One of the great things about being able to do the 2K Showcase and look backwards at some of these previous rivalries is to be able to share with the WWE universe all the people that might not be on current programming."
Shawn Michaels sits for a facial scan for WWE 2K15
WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels appeared on the call as well to promote the game and his part in the rivalry campaign. The dev team went to Texas to scan the wrestler with its sophisticated rig so that he wouldn’t have to travel far from home.
“I don’t think in all the 25 years that I wrestled, I don’t think I’ve ever been in front of more cameras at one time,” Michaels said. “I sat in front of more cameras in that one session capturing literally every wrinkle in my face, which may not be great, but the graphics have gotta be amazing in this game because the setup that they had for me when I went down was fantastic.”
Stay tuned for more on WWE 2K15 in the coming weeks as more details and access to the game is expected. To learn more about the game, check out our E3 coverage.
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