Players who pre-ordered specific editions of WWE 2K23 from developer Visual Concepts can get their hands on the game immediately, while the global launch of the game will take place on Friday.
As in previous years, there are three distinct iterations of 2K23. If you pre-order either of them, you can use Bad Bunny as a playable wrestler, but only the Deluxe and Icon editions will get early access to the game.
The Deluxe Version of the game includes not only the Season Pass but also additional game mode goodies, such as bonus cards for the MyFaction mode. The Icon Edition comes with all of those elements, in addition to a content pack called Ruthless Aggression, which highlights legends from that time period.
Those who have been considering participating in the most popular professional wrestling series should probably do so right away. After a lengthy break brought on by the low sales and reception of the 2K20 version, it has just had a big comeback to form with the release of WWE 2K22.
— #WWE2K23 (@WWEgames) March 15, 2023
Now WWE 2K23 looks to build on that momentum with the legendary John Cena on the cover and the inescapable Roman Reigns as the first-ever 99 overall-rated wrestlers.
No great shocker there given the potential GOAT championship run The Tribal Chief has been on as a unified titleholder and as part of the amazing Bloodline storyline.
That sets the tone for what seems like a pretty fair roster when it comes to ratings and general robustness. The obvious names sit near the top of the rating list, such as Becky Lynch (96) and Brock Lesnar (97).
Sasha Banks and Bray Wyatt are two huge talents that come to mind whenever the topic of conspicuous exclusions is broached. However, the former competitor left WWE, and the latter has been back in the company since only October.
In addition, there is no way to have a discourse about omissions without bringing up post-launch downloadable material (DLC). The following individuals, in addition to Wyatt, will be added to the already enormous roster through the purchase of one of the game’s five specialized post-launch DLC packs:
Steiner Row Pack (April 19)
- Rick Steiner
- Top Dolla
- Ashante Adonis
- B-Fab (manager only)
Pretty Sweet Pack (May 17)
- Karl Anderson
- Luke Gallows
- Tiffany Stratton
- Elton Prince
- Kit Wilson
Race to NXT Pack (June 14)
- Harley Race
- Ivy Nile
- Wendy Choo
- Tony D’Angelo
- Trick Williams
Revel with Wyatt Pack (July 19)
- Bray Wyatt
- Joe Gacy
- Blair Davenport
Bad News U Pack (August 16)
- Eve Torres
- Wade Barrett
- Damon Kemp
- Andre Chase
- Nathan Frazer
It is very much hard to find a flaw in the roster that spans decades, which successfully brings the past to life and does an excellent job of keeping up with the entrances, music, and costumes of contemporary wrestlers.
Those who have been following the series for a while might remark that the gameplay doesn’t feel all that different from the version they played a year ago when the entire roster finally enters the ring (or when the WarGames match is eventually added, for example).
And this is a very positive development.
WWE 2K23 makes only a few tweaks to the gameplay that completely transformed the series in 2K22 and was universally praised for being an absolute delight. The entertaining combo system, which is reminiscent of even 2D fighting games, has been brought back, and it requires players to chain together a variety of various attacks into larger combos and grapples.
The Breakers are also returning, and with them comes the ability to create a counter chance by correctly predicting an opponent’s assault press. Players risk being on the losing end of a large combination if they make an incorrect guess.
Once again, physical endurance plays a significant part in the events that unfold. The longer about goes on and the more damage a Superstar takes, the slower their attack attempts fly and the more slowly their grappling gauge fills.
Since Superstars genuinely perform like their real-life selves, gamers shouldn’t anticipate the 7’3″ and 403-pound Omos to climb turnbuckles for a reckless dive like he did last year. This is because Superstars actually perform like their real-life selves.
And in the event that he does for whatever reason, players have the ability to tailor the actions and tendencies of each Superstar in the game to their liking. The player’s ability to control kick-outs while they are pinned is likely the most significant addition to the game’s mechanics.
The gameplay from the previous year consisted of simply slamming buttons, and while players can continue to do that this year, there is also a new timing window. If you miss the shot, the game is finished. To kick out, use the button in that window.
The window of opportunity to kick out gets smaller as a fight goes on, which can result in some realistic late-match circumstances and near-falls. stamina and the amount of damage absorbed also play a role in this aspect.
It is reassuring to see that 2K23 will not include any additional gameplay complexities, considering how well-received the gameplay redesign from the previous year was.
On March 17, gamers who did not pre-order the game will be able to get their hands on one of the most magnificent lineups ever to grace a video game and alter it. They will also be able to begin testing out the sequel to last year’s improved gameplay at that time.