Look in my eyes, what do you see? Love for W-W-E ’13. I know your anger, I know your dreams, I’ve played everyone you want to be. Oh, I’m the cult of W-W-E ’13. It has taken quite a while, since WWF: SmackDown! Just Bring It in 2001 to be precise, but they have finally created a wrestling game which recreates the greatest matches of the Attitude Era. For that reason alone I recommend buying a copy of WWE ’13. The rest of the game is pretty good as well.
I don’t care what any fan of current WWE says; 1998-2002 were the golden years of the WWF. That’s right, I said it. WWE ’13 has a mode called ‘Attitude Era’ and it’s the best thing Yukes has done for the franchise in years. You get to play the biggest and best uprisings and momentous moments in history, ranging from the rise of DX and Mankind to the on going feud with Stone Cold and Vince McMahon, and recreate those hard hitting events which were burned into our memories during those matches. The ‘cutscene’ clips between major events is an excellent touch, as many of these moments were negated to 240p YouTube watermarked extracts before now, and if you happen to be one of the younger sprites who missed it all the first time you’ll certainly get a healthy dose of awesome enjoying it for the first time.
The objective of the Attitude Era mode is to play through the key matches in WWE’s history, which, by the way, include The Montreal Screwjob and The Rock/Mankind’s I Quit match, and make sure that the epic jaw-dropping moments occur. Mankind taking a swan dive off Hell in the Cell, Paul Wight accidentally winning Stone Cold the steel cage match, Undertaker turning on Kane and vice versa – all these moments must occur and you have to get them done. Your reward? Aside from all the enjoyment of reliving the matches, you get unlockables. A lot of them. Completing Attitude Era probably unlocks about as much old school content as there is current generation content on the disc. All your old favourite wrestlers, attires, arenas, and championship belts are in there. Finally, the ability to have the Road Dogg Jesse James fight CM Punk for the WWF European Championship has come to fruition. The only downside is the editing of “WWF” to either “WW” then a straight cut of audio, or having it simply changed to “World”. That niggle aside, though, I can’t think of a single criticism of the mode.
The rest of the game is essentially the same stuff as WWE ’12 but with a very required level of polish. WWE Universe, ridiculous levels of Create-A-Something options, and Xbox Live where the RT button is king – as reversals are your only hope in Hell of getting a 3 count – are all still here and doing fine. WWE ’13 uses Predator Technology 2.0, though, that, aside from sounding totally bad-ass, has made the character models, moves, grapples, and specialty matches all the smoother. Gone are the days when wrestlers would bounce off the ropes and go through them, climb an invisible ladder, or be given a rope break because their toe is underneath the bottom rope. No, WWE ’13’s action is crisp and pristine. Even with the huge range of custom creations of wrestlers, finishers, championship belts, and rings looking as if they belong. Unlike the previous years when they looked like a badly cut out piece of felt a three year old child stapled onto a piece of paper, forcing parents to smile and pretend it was a work of art as they placed it somewhere they hoped the kid would forget about it so it could be banished to the trash.
At its core, WWE ’13 is a more polished, updated, version of WWE ’12. This alone is already a very good thing. What gains it the most points, though, is the Attitude Era mode. It’s been demanded for years, and after all the fan desire Yukes and THQ have delivered it in style. Adding more content than any fan would’ve imagined for this installment in the franchise. A tremendous wrestling package which is sure to give hours upon hours of mat-bouncing entertainment. For extra enjoyment gather a bunch of friends together, crack a drink, then chug every time you Stunner somebody. The best wrestling game there is, the best there was, and (possibly) the best there ever will be!