The WWE 12 was released a little over a month ago for the X-Box 360, the WII, and PS3 and it has gotten mostly good reviews. The control system is very different from Smackdown vs. RAW 2011 and it is a step up in a few days. Are there problems? Well no game is perfect and there are a few glitches in the game, obviously those who have played more than I do, will have noticed more.
Road to Wrestlemania was revamped this year. In past years, there were five separate paths for different superstars. In 2011, it was Chris Jericho, John Cena, Chris Jericho, Rey Mysterio, and also an attempt to end the Undertaker’s streak, with a twelve week run off until Wrestlemania. Sometimes there was a slightly split path as well like for Christian in 2011 for instance, you could challenge WWE Champion Shawn Michaels or World Heavyweight Champion Edge either on one of the shows leading up to Wrestlemania or at Wrestlemania itself, and the story would be adjusted. For Rey’s path, you could either be good siding with Evan Bourne or evil siding with Jack Swagger.
In WWE 12, it is one linear story split into three parts. I thought it wasn’t bad, but the fact is once you’ve play it once and got all of the unlockables, there really is not much point of going back through the mode. There was a lot of cut scenes which I’ll be bringing up constantly and a lot of handicap brawls as well. Universe Mode does seem to be the main drawing card for the game this year, and Road to Wrestlemania, while put together in an interesting fashion, does seem to be put in.
I personally enjoyed the championship mode all the way back in WWF No Mercy, where you could pick any wrestler and challenge for any of the major titles, with a few different paths available. Or the mode of Wrestlemania 2000 which funnily enough was like Universe Mode about ten years before it was actually named such, only limited to one wrestler that you chose but you could choose to watch the computer play the other matches. Although tag team matches were screwy in those games, because of that screwy camera angle went really wide.
While this isn’t a guide to the Road to Wrestlemania, more so a review, there will be a few spoilers, so if you haven’t played the Road to Wrestlemania on WWE 12. I’ll try not to go too specific when I can but if you don’t want to be spoiled, then it might be a prudent idea to play the game before reading this.
We start with John Cena backstage, but the real star of the story shows up, that being Sheamus, fella. Sheamus destroys John Cena to set up the storyline for this mode. The lead up to Bragging Rights just seems by the numbers, but a great set up for things to come. Of course, there can only be six men on screen at once for programming reasons, and there are a lot of cut scenes throughout this match. Something that happens a lot in this game and something that I’m not that much of a fan of, which kind of hurt the Road to Wrestlemania this year. It leads to Sheamus, William Regal, Drew McIntyre, and Wade Barrett turning on their team members and the Bragging Rights Match ending in a no contest.
Survivor Series is set up, with the new stable, of Sheamus, Drew McIntyre, William Regal, and Wade Barrett taking on the Big Show, Alberto Del Rio, Jack Swagger, and Edge. Show gets taken out, setting up a six man tag, with Regal on commentary, but Big Show returns and kills Wade Barrett something fierce by nailing a chair into his face. Sheamus finishes them off, which is good, leading to the newly dubbed United Kingdom getting title shots at all of the belts.
Yes, the United Kingdom, surely months and months of creative planning must have gone into that name.
The European Title gets brought back, when Sheamus wins the United States Championship. Then the United Kingdom wins all of the belts, with Sheamus destroying John Cena in a TLC Match, using the cut scene of doom. Did I mention they’re a lot of cut scenes this year? It must be something like thirty percent matches ended by player and seventy percent cut scenes.
Arn Anderson shows up and whatever vitamins he’s taking to look so young in his wrestling attire, I want some. I wonder if they're accepted by the WWE Wellness Policy. . It lead to another John Cena and Sheamus match at the Rumble, but Arn Anderson after standing up to the UK, turned heel and helped Sheamus win. Triple H later wins the Royal Rumble but Sheamus destroys him, foreshadowing what is to come.
The lead up to Elimination Chamber has the UK having their problems, with Wade Barrett screwing up. Barrett keeps the WWE Championhip but then Regal and Sheamus beat on him. Barrett returns to cost Sheamus the title and Drew McIntyre wins the World Heavyweight title, which is about the third most unrealistic thing to happen in this video game in the Road to Wrestlemania mode this year.
It leads to Wrestlemania, with the members of the United Kingdom fighting with all of the belts on the line. One man as the tag team champions, which proves that someone was watching TNA from 2007-October 2011 to get ideas for this road to Wrestlemania, with stables fighting, swerves, and a callback to Samoa Joe and Kurt Angle for all of the belts at Hardcore Justice 2007. Sheamus wins the belts and then Triple H comes out, going right into the next part of the Road to Wrestlemania, which is a nice touch.
Overall, I thought that this was a pretty fun storyline to play through at least once, despite all of the cut scenes and the flaws I talked about. The rigid game play did kind of hurt this one by a game playing standpoint, as with wrestling games, you need a certain amount of flex space (no pun intended). Regardless, this was my second favorite Road to Wrestlemania storyline this year. Sheamus has a pretty solid effort, fella. 7/10.
Coming up later, we’ll discuss the next part, The Outsider Storyline, featuring Triple H. Also my belief that the next two storyline names probably should have been switched.
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