Little is currently known about this years WWE 2K18 game, but speculating about it is a lot of fun. The WWE has delivered many weird and wonderful variations on their traditional match format throughout the years. Most of these can be attributed thanks to Vince Russo. We look at 7 of these we’d desperately like to see incorporated into this years WWE 2K18 edition. Keep on reading to see our top picks for new WWE Game modes and our musings on how they’d be applied.
#7 Good Housekeeping Match
To our knowledge there’s only ever been one Good Housekeeping match. The original took place in what would be WWE Attitude Era Icon, Chyna’s first Intercontinental Championship win. The match came about due to the awkward story of Chyna’s insertion into the male wrestling division and competing for the IC title. The story focused on then champion Jeff Jarrett’s constant degradation of Chyna in her quest to make history. It was pretty shameful stuff and exhibited WWE’s awkward opinions about women at the time. They probably thought it was all fine because Chyna went over and made history, but it wasn’t really was it?
That said the match concept itself is a hoot. Imagine the standard 2K series extreme rules matches, but instead of kendo sticks and tables you have ironing boards and a kitchen sink. Not much else would need to change to facilitate this game mode bar swapping out the items models and animations.
#6 Punjabi Prison Match
Signature match of the Great Khali, the Punjabi prison match was a visually impressive match gimmick that involved enveloping the ring in 2 bamboo cage structures. The rule set seems like it was tailor made for a computer game experience and would easily translate in our opinion. There are 2 cages to escape, the first surrounds the ring immediately and the other expands to the ringside area. To escape to first cage participants can initially opt to leave via one of 4 doorways moderated by a match official. The catch is that once a wrestler requests the cage door to be opened they have only 6 seconds to exit before the door is closed and padlocked for the remainder of the match. Should all 4 doors be perma-locked then the only option is for the wrestlers is the climb over the cage wall.
Once wrestlers have escaped the inner cage zone the second cage can only be climbed to escape; the wrestling restricted to the ring side floor. From a gaming perspective these regulated match phases and transitions open up many options for mini-games and unique animations. More elaborate move options would be possible too that would otherwise be too dangerous to attempt on live TV.
#5 Russo’s Revenge Triple Cage Match
Held at the Slamboree 2000 PPV, “Russo’s Revenge” or “Ready to Rumble” cage match, saw an end to David Arquette’s controversial title reign. The match involved Arquette, Jeff Jarrett and Diamond Dallas Page. The rules were fairly simply to this one, scale the three cage mega structure and retrieve the WCW World Heavyweight Championship from the top. For an in-depth and hilarious review of the PPV itself check out OSW Review‘s coverage.
Implementation into WWE 2K18 Seems like it could be a fairly straightforward process. Hell in a Cell already allows match participants to scale the cage structure and Ladder Matches provide precedence for belt retrieval mechanics. Add into this some special moves designed to knock wrestlers down and you’ve got a recipe for chaos and fun! Personally I’d like to see a recreation of The Warrior’s King of Hillgame mode atop the mega structure, but that doesn’t really suit the WWE 2K18 game engine.
#4 Tower of Doom Match
Almost the inverse concept of the Ready to Rumble Triple Cage match; competitors start at the top of three cages and work their way down. Two teams of 5 must make their way down the cage structure until one team has completely escaped from the lowest tier. Visually the structure is different as the cages don’t taper. The prospect of faction vs faction in such matches is very appealing; Bullet Club vs DX in a Tower of Doom match? Yes please.
I will say the idea of needing to collaborate with 2K series AI chills me to my core, though a 10 person match offers little alternative. AI gripes aside the match concept would be a welcome edition to the series. The more exciting prospect would be online play pitting player against player if the game could handle 10 players simultaneously. Also, why not take it forward and give players the option to add even more tiers to the structure. Would you play a 10 story Tower of Doom match?
#3 Kennel from Hell
Another cage within a cage match, but this time with dogs! Al Snow and Big Boss Man’s infamous match pitted the two wrestlers in a caged ring flanked by K-9 attack dogs, surrounded by a roofed cage. Winning the match came when either competitor managed to escape both cages, avoiding the dogs on their way. The match itself at 1999’s Unforgiven PPV was troubled by fairly passive animals; it failed to deliver on the brutality it promised. This is probably for the best as a savage dog attack on TV wouldn’t be good PR for the WWE or dogs in general.
In games things are a little more wild west and the dogs easier to train. In my ill qualified games designer brain I see the dogs in game form roaming the cage outskirts ready to deal damage to those who cross their path. Any dog encounter could trigger a QTE mini game that if failed results in damage being dealt and the victim escaping back to the ring. Or perhaps the dogs could be ‘equipped’ like other in game weapons and dog based attacks initiated by the player. If you want to get seriously meta have multiple breeds of dogs unlock-able for in-game achievements.
DISCLAIMER: Wrestlethings in no way advocates the presentation of dog’s as inherently dangerous animals. We love doggos and are simply keen to see them incorporated with our Wrestlethings.
#2 Hair vs Hair
Ever dreamed about putting AJ Styles luscious locks on the line against Enzo Amore’s cranial abomination? Perhaps one the more awkward match concepts to implement with potentially some of the more fun outcomes is the hair vs hair match.
Hair vs Hair wouldn’t mean an change to the actual match mechanics, rather the outcome. Changing a wrestlers character model to lose their hair would presumably be a fairly simple process, the question is how long would it last for?
Kurt Angle has famously never regrown his hair after his 2002 match-up with Edge. Would it be fun to permanently put a character models hair on the line? Alternatively character models could regrow their hair over time with transitional lengths and styles available throughout. Are we really suggesting Yuke’s spend time, money and resources working out the convoluted workings of a hair regrowth system? Yes, yes we are.
#1 War Games
What’s better than 1 ring and no steel cages? How about 2 rings and 2 steel cages! WCW’s famed War Games match seemingly combined the best parts of the Royal Rumble and Hell in a Cell. War Games is a team affair with opposing factions of 5 Wrestlers, each entering the match at 2 minute intervals. Once all of the wrestlers enter the match the contest continues until one team submits or is rendered unable to compete.
And there in lies the problem, how do War Games matches end in game? With no pinfalls, submissions, escape or other tangible success clause to this match type there is little to build a solid mechanic around. Our proposition would be something like this:
- After receiving enough damage a wrestler will be rendered KO’d on the mat. By all intents and purposes this wrestler is now eliminated from the match.
- Once one team has all 5 wrestlers KO’d they lose the match.
- To avoid tedium, at any point there is a 3:1 wrestler ratio or greater, the team with the fewest wrestlers can opt to submit.
The rest of the match is fairly simple. The wrestler entrance sequence can be randomised. Participating wrestlers will be able to move freely between the two rings. The cage walls can be used to slam wrestlers into and inflict greater damage. You could even look into options to have wrestlers escape the cages and wrestle atop the structure. There could also be options to include weaponry too.
The wonderful thing is that these options don’t even scratch the surface of the sorts of bananas matches that have happened in pro wrestling. See below for our honorable mentions of matches that could have, but didn’t, make the list:
- Crybaby Match
- King of the Road Match
- Steel Asylum Match
- House of Horrors Match
- Monster's Ball
- Barbed Wire/Exploding Land Mine matches - Note, these match modes will be available in the new Fire Pro Wrestling World game.
See anything that you think should be on our list but isn't? Let us know in our comments.