Metroidfan6 / Member

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My Wrestlemania XXI Predictions!

  1. Akebono vs. Big Show (Sumo Match)
  2. Batista vs. Triple H (World Heavyweight Championship Match)
  3. John Cena vs. JBL (WWE Championship Match)
  4. Rey Mysterio vs. Eddie Guerrero
  5. Undertaker vs. Randy Orton
  6. Pipers Pit w/ Stone Cold Steve Austin
  7. Shawn Michaels vs. Kurt Angle
  8. Kane vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. Christian vs. Chris Jerico vs. Chris Benoit vs. Edge (Six Man Ladder Match)
  9. Christy Hemme vs. Trish Stratus (Womens Championship)

Now heres my predictions:

  1. Hmmm I dont really know or care. Probably Akebono but who knows?
  2. Definitely Batista. For one thing HHH has held the title for too long. And also everyone wants Batista to win sooo...
  3. John Cena for the exact same reason as Batista.
  4. Another toughie but I'd say Eddie Guerrero maybe due to interference from Chavo?
  5. Undertaker. as much as I'd love and want Randy Orton to win the WWE didnt give Taker a 12-0 record just to lose undefeated streak to the so called "Legend Killer."
  6. Well all I can say is Im seeing a few stunners being thrown here! Dont be surprised to see Piper, Daivary and Hassan all geting stunned!
  7. Hmmm this one will be close! I have to say... Kurt Angle.
  8. This one is way to close to call so im going to pick 2 possible winners. I can see Kane winning, feuding with Batista (New Champion) and Edge will join Evolution. My other prediction is that Edge somehow wins.
  9. God who really gives a crap about this one? Well although I really could care less im going to say Christy Hemme.

Well thats my Wrestlemania XXI predictions! Hope you enjoyed. Following 'Mania I'll post how accurate they were. Enjoy!

WWE Day of Reckoning (GC) Thoughts

Yeah so I'm about 6+ months late with these comments, big deal. But it's a game I play quite a bit and feel comfortable talking about in great detail. I'll try and break this into three parts: the good stuff about it, the bad stuff about it, and the stuff that could make the whole thing better.

The Good Stuff

DoR has a ton going for it, especially compared to Yukes previous GameCube efforts. First off, the graphics engine has improved quite a bit; going from WM XIX, which looked like a higher poly update of the N64 Aki engine, to a nice next-gen worthy engine. Characters animate fluidly for the most part, and the detail in the WWE wrestlers in phenomenal. Much better than say, Smackdown Vs. Raw (IMHO of course).

The CAW function is excellent. From my little experience with the CAW in WM X8 and WM XIX, it's much less confusing to jump in and get started crafting a superstar. Tons of clothing and designs to mix and match, and you can create your own stuff which is great. A CAW whore myself, I tend to fill up all the alloted character slots with my own creations and do my own thing with those, so all this is a big plus for me.

The licensed music is greatly appreciated. Wrestling games had become almost synonymous with mediocre MIDI tunes, and it's nice that has come to a change. Although I heard Yukes got a little lazy and reused all the same tracks for Smackdown Vs. Raw, that doesn't concern me.

Yukes finally gave GC owners a real story mode as well. Gone are the days of wrestling WWE janitors and construction workers! To tell you the truth, in all honesty I don't feel the XIX "story" mode was such a bad idea now as I used to, after seeing "street wrestling" executed much better in Def Jam: Fight for NY.

There's other good stuff, but the late hour is making me forget, so I'll just move on.

The Bad Stuff

There's a story mode yes, but it's far too linear and can get repetitive very quickly. I also dislike the lack of effort put into the story for the Smackdown route, as it's exactly the same as the Raw route, only with different wrestlers. This wouldn't be so bad if the Raw storyline wasn't so heavily geared for Triple H and his faction Evolution. Undertaker's character is nothing like HHH, so it's very odd seeing him portrayed the way he is.

Several problems with created wrestlers as well. One, when you win a belt in story mode, the game strips all the hard work you put into creating an entrance for something totally generic. This hurts because you spend at least two thirds of the game with a belt, and thus really never getting to see your entrance during the most prime stages of the story. This wouldn't be an issue if your player came out with the belt around their waist like all the other WWE superstars do in story mode, as opposed to on their shoulder. Now of course most people would skip the entrance after a few watches, but a CAW whore like me wants to see his hard work as often as possible.

Another problem, which doesn't seem to happen during story mode but all the time in Exhibition, is the "muddifying" of textures on created players with 3 or more wrestlers in a match. Take a look at your wrestler in the CAW and practice mode, and you'll notice he's nice and clean and shiny-like. Now take a look at your wrestler in a one-on-one exhibition match. You'll notice the shine is gone, and the quality drops a little bit, but it still looks good. Understandable since the character is in a higher poly environment with a ref and everything. But now do a triple threat or a fatal 4 way, and you'll notice the texture quality drops quite a bit. This would also be understandable since there's more characters to deal with, but you'll notice this drop does not happen (or if it does, it is much less noticeable) with anyone on the regular roster. This leads to your characters looking inferior to the regular wrestlers.

And speaking of inferior, surely everyone must notice the inferiority of skill in created wrestlers compared to the regular roster. Even with your charisma maxed out, anyone with an overall 70 or higher will still be able to fill their special bars faster than you. While this makes for a nice challenge, it's a challenge brought out from a cheap factor, which is never fun. Plus in an all CPU match (which I happen to use a lot in order to watch "fair" matches) a WWE superstar is almost guaranteed to win because of this.

Going back to that "hard work" of creating an entrance I was stressing earlier, it's hard because there is no documentation or in game help at all to help you construct one. The game manual is basically a moves and match list. A CAW this large definitely needs to be better documented in the game manual, or at least make the functions more user friendly. For example, the camera listing shows a rough starting position of the camera, but gives no details of movement. Previewing every angle through the full intro preview adds to the tediousness of the game. Plus, all the angles aren't even available. Try recreating Shawn Michaels or Randy Orton's ramp section of their entrance, and you'll find it impossible because there is no stationary front angle camera to create it with. The only way to get these angles is to use Easy Creation and pick their entrances, but this takes away almost all the finer points of creating an entrance.

The sound quality of the entrance music is poor when compared to the licensed music used in the background and menus. Now I realize the GC discs aren't as hefty on space as it's console counterparts, and you'll hear the wrestler themes far less than you will the menu music, but some better effort could go into balancing the quality of the music offered in the game, since you can use the licensed music as entrance music. It's just a little jarring to hear a slight tinny and much lower volume wrestler entrance, and then hear a nice, clear song for another wrestler. Some of the pyro explosions are extremely loud as well.

If you read this over a couple times you'll realize that most of these complaints are small nitpicks and don't detract too much from the overall game. You'll also notice that "small roster of characters" wasn't on my list of problems. Truthfully, I don't play with them at all after I start making my stable of characters, so as long as the moves are there I am personally satisfied. My next section will be dedicated to adding to the foundation we have here, as well as improving on what was already offered.

Let's Improve

I find it hard to come up with stuff to write here without bringing up WWF No Mercy. A fantastic (albeit short) multi-path story mode, creating your own PPV, belts and etc. All that should be in there. To me, the games of the next generation shouldn't be steps back of what the previous generation had to offer, and the Smackdown series has this stuff, so it should definitely be in the next game, only better implemented than others previous efforts.

How about an all CPU Royal Rumble? You can watch all the other matches except this one, so let's try and do that. Full customization of the Rumble would be nice too. Instead of always being over-the-top-rope elimination, you could customize it to be submissions, KO, pins only, etc. That one is easy, and adds a high degree of replayability. Also, being able to control multiple characters in the Rumble would be cool too, to help cut down on frustration of waiting if you lose early. Should you still be in when your alternate character comes in, it could just default to a CPU.

There needs to be more music, and the game should cycle all the songs instead of only some being for the menu, some being for the background while wrestling. Having Bring The Noise play only at the beginning of the game is a waste of a good song. The other 10 tracks get repetitive after a while, especially when you can spend nearly three hours creating a character.

Nice, but not a necessity, would be if the created players of DoR could be transferred to the next game (provided it's coming out this gen; but we know it is right?). The current graphics engine doesn't seem like it'll need any serious overhaul (unless it needs one to fix those muddy textures I spoke of earlier, then do that instead), so maybe this might be possible.

Then comes the other obvious things, like more clothes, more moves, more match types. The game already has a plethora of moves, but there's a ton out there not used. Perhaps look toward Japan more, and the NWATNA and ROH factions for some inspirations. The WWE would be none the wiser.

With that said, just because the WWE is playing it safe in the ring doesn't mean it's games have to (hopefully), so I would hope for some more creativity in the match types and moves, matches in particular. For example, a 30 ft high cage in addition to the 15 ft, It would be amazing fun to dive off one of those onto your opponent, and hear the crowd chants of "Holy [clap]". How about some (insert random objects) on a pole matches? After adding the Elimination Chamber (because you MUST), run wild guys. You might even inspire the WWE to try something new themselves.

Another thing that nagged at me was the "down" mechanics of the gameplay. I'd be eternally grateful if this was fixed. In general, wrestlers stay down on the mat much too long, even early in the game. To get up you have to either mash buttons like a madman or wait for a reversal opportunity. Then all of the sudden when body damage gets too great, after any special performed on them they get up instantly. This is a very annoying part of the game that I don't know if is intentional or a glitch, but assuming it's intentional I put it here for improvement. When you're hit with a powerful special on a heavily damaged part of your body, you shouldn't be able to move for a while. If I do five straight Stone Cold Stunners, you shouldn't be getting up immediately after each one, but yet you'll stay down from a strong punch? That and the extreme button mashing that can take place needs to be remedied.

The AI in this game is spotty in many areas. In triple threats, fatal 4 ways and sometimes in the royal rumble, the CPU mercilessly kicks their opponents out of any and every submission hold, even if the victim can't tap out from the hold; even if the match has submissions disabled. It's annoying and unnecessary. When KO's are active, sometimes in fatal 4 ways and triple threats when a player is KO'ed, the other wrestlers not involved in it will just stand around and do nothing, as opposed to picking up the struggling wrestler in attempt to not lose the match by KO. I wish the CPU also prevented others from doing specials when it's not in their benefit (First Blood matches for example). I haven't even brought up how bad the Tag Team AI is. I won't go into detail about that, but it's horrid, and everyone knows it.

One more thing I'd like to note is that I hate Tag matches. Tornado Tag is cool, but I can't recall a time I've ever had fun playing a tag match, in any wrestling game ever. If you're on the outside you have to wait your turn and do nothing, and on the inside if you're dominating and going for a win, the opponent's teammate will come to their rescue. There's various tricks and things to get around this, but in years of gaming I've always found the whole thing very tedious. I personally have no idea how to go about making this more fun, but I hope that either Yukes, or ANYONE can do this game mode some real justice one day. Well, one idea. How about a tag timer? A timer that says you have to tag your teammate within a given amount of time. This would keep the action fresh I think. Or maybe not. It's just a suggestion.

Final Thoughts

Well that pretty much wraps up my thoughts about this game, and my first journal entry YAY! I seriously doubt Yukes (or anyone period) will be reading this at the time being, but I still hope the best for the next wrestler they put out for the GC. Note that I never brought up online once in this, simply because at this point it's not even a remotely realistic option. For the record, yes I'd love to have it. Sucks, but that's life. Hopefully next gen will solve that problem, as well as a few others that have seemingly been not possible this gen (Survivor Series mode!).

Come back NHL! We miss you! :cry:

Ya. I miss the NHL. I miss my Sens. Oh well. Stupid lockout. Anyways I got ESPN MLB 2K5! Its really good if your a baseball fan. If not look elsewhere. I really like it so i'd give it an 8.7. The next game im getting will be NHL 2005. Oh how I miss my hockey! :cry:! Sportacus10 is also making me a new avatar and sig. Im happy because hes really good at them. Well thats all for now, I gotta go cry in my corner because of the NHL lockout! :cry:
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