WrestleMania didn't acquire the nickname 'Showcase of the Immortals' for nothing. WWE's premiere event has played host to some of the greatest names and greatest games in grappling history. Announced earlier this month WWE 2K14's '30 Years of WrestleMania' mode promises to relive all of the main event magic, when the game hits the ring on October 29th.
Bursting with brawny superstars both young and old - check out the game's full roster reveal - 2K's first take on the former-THQ franchise (developer Yuke's! is still on board) has so far focused on consolidation over innovation. Without the time necessary to reboot the aging icon, the mega-publisher dipped deep into its pockets to sign up all manner of fan favorites, from longtime series holdout The Ultimate Warrior to the late-great champ 'Macho Man' Randy Savage.
Featuring 45 'classic' bouts from the biggest stage of them all, WWE 2K14 will give gamers plenty of opportunity to play around with these latest additions. Following Sunday's sensational SummerSlam Pay-Per-View, 2K debuted an all-new trailer for the game (available up top) as well as a handful of exciting screenshots showcasing the new mode in action.
Confirmed bouts include:
- Ricky Steamboat vs. Randy Savage (WrestleMania 3) - WWF Intercontinental Title Match
- Hulk Hogan vs. Andre the Giant (WrestleMania 3) - WWF Championship Match
- Ultimate Warrior vs. Hulk Hogan (WrestleMania 6) - WWF Championship/ Intercontinental Unification Match
- Razor Ramon vs. Shawn Michaels (WrestleMania 10) - WWF Intercontinental Title Ladder Match
- 'Stone Cold’ Steve Austin vs. The Rock (WrestleMania 17) - WWF Championship Match
- The Rock vs. Hulk Hogan (WrestleMania 18) - 'Icon Vs. Icon' Singles Match
- Edge vs. Mick Foley (WrestleMania 22) - Hardcore Singles Match
- Ric Flair vs. Shawn Michaels (WrestleMania 24) - Singles Match
- Triple H vs. The Undertaker (WrestleMania 28) - Hell in a Cell Singles Match
- John Cena vs. The Rock (WrestleMania 28) - WWE Championship Match
With a whopping 35 match-ups still to be revealed, many 5-star bouts are currently M.I.A. What are the odds of seeing these following classics in action?
- 'Macho Man' Randy Savage vs. Hulk Hogan (WM 5)
- The Ultimate Warrior vs. 'Macho Man' Randy Savage (WM 7)
- 'Macho Man' Randy Savage vs. Ric Flair (WM 8)
- Diesel vs. Shawn Michaels (WM 11)
- Bret Hart vs. Shawn Michaels (WM 12)
- Bret Hart vs. 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin (WM 13)
- Shawn Michaels vs. 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin (WM 14)
- 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin vs. The Rock (WM 15)
- Triple H vs. The Undertaker (WM 17)
- The Undertaker vs. Ric Flair (WM 18)
- Shawn Michaels vs. Chris Jericho (WM 19)
- The Rock vs. 'Stone Cold' Steve Austin (WM 19)
- John Cena vs. Triple H (WM 22)
- Shawn Michaels vs John Cena(WM 23)
- Batista vs. The Undertaker (WM 23)
- Edge vs. The Undertaker (WM 24)
- Batista vs. John Cena (WM 26)
- The Undertaker vs. Shawn Michaels (WM 25 & 26)
- Triple H vs. The Undertaker (WM 27)
It'll be interesting to see whether Yuke's! opts to recreate the absolute 'best' bouts from Mania history over more hype-heavy efforts. Would fans rather forget about Goldberg vs. Brock Lesnar from WrestleMania 20 or try re-energize it? Like the WWE's own Hall of Fame, a number of peculiar absentees are always assured. Legendary performer 'Rowdy' Roddy Piper recently reacted to his glaring omission by tweeting his disappointment.
Similarly, company owner Vince McMahon, a major WrestleMania presence both in the ring and out, will no longer be playable this year, preventing gamers from re-enacting some of the snarling villain's most memorable matches. However, with daughter Stephanie confirming her appearance on Friday (despite not being part of 2K's initial reveal) there is hope that the big boss will appear as part of a later DLC package.
The game’s Phenom Edition collector's set is now available for pre-order at select retailers, priced at $99.99. Grappling fans who pre-order WWE 2K14 will also receive day-one access to unlockable 80s icon 'The Ultimate Warrior.'
Are you excited by WWE 2K14's '30 Years of WrestleMania' mode? Will it include any classic tag team matches? Which 'blacklisted' bouts will you miss the most? (i.e those featuring an ex-employee) Have your say in the comments below.
WWE 2K14 releases October 29, 2013 for PS3 and Xbox 360.Follow Sam on Twitter @GamingGoo