Please support Game Informer. Print magazine subscriptions are less than $2 per issue

e3 2010

WWE All Stars Looks To Be The NBA Jam Of Wrestling Titles

by Dan Ryckert on Jun 17, 2010 at 02:15 PM

Back in 1993, NBA Jam did something few sports games have been able to do - it won over gamers who didn’t even care about basketball. It didn’t matter if you couldn’t tell Shaquille O’Neal from Wayne Gretzky; all that mattered is that the game offered fast-paced and over-the-top arcade action. Sal Divita was one of the key figures behind that title, and now he wants WWE All Stars to strike that same chord. Even if you haven’t seen a second of Vince McMahon’s testosterone-soaked circus of athleticism and theatrics, the game’s ridiculous action and explosive moves should win over gamers looking for a great arcade-like experience.

The most noticeable trademark of All Stars is the action figure look of the grapplers themselves. John Cena and The Rock may be massive in real life, but they’re downright cartoonish in this new title. Wrestling’s already-ridiculous finishers like The People’s Elbow and the Attitude Adjustment are enhanced with 10-foot jumps and mid-air flips.

Gameplay takes an entirely different approach than Smackdown vs. Raw, almost resembling a fighting game more than a wrestling sim. Juggle combos are possible, allowing you to toss in a couple quick hits or an additional slam after bouncing your opponent off the mat with a powerbomb.

So far, the only officially revealed characters are John Cena and The Rock (although The Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase may have accidentally revealed his inclusion during an event on the show floor). As its name implies, the roster will be made up of superstars from WWE’s past and present. While it’s unknown if stars currently signed to TNA (Hogan, Hall, Nash, Flair, Angle, etc) will be in the game, legends like Stone Cold Steve Austin and Bret Hart are likely.

In the mid-'90s, a cartoonish take on WWE (then WWF) was attempted in the form of WWF Wrestlemania: The Arcade Game. It featured the Undertaker breaking tombstone over people’s heads, Doink the Clown electrocuting foes, and fish flying out of Yokozuna’s pants. However, Davita doesn’t want to go that over the top this time around. Exaggerated moves and the cartoonish art style are the main focuses, not props and fish pants.

WWE All Stars doesn’t have a release date yet, but fans of fighting games or arcade titles in the vein of NBA Jam should certainly keep an eye on it.