History of WWF/E Games Part 19
WWF Wrestlemania 2000
Nintendo Game Boy Colour
Time to look at the first WWF game from THQ.
Before getting the WWF license THQ produced games based on the WWF’s competitor at the time WCW ( World Championship Wrestling). They released WCW vs NWO World Tour, and WCW/NWO Revenge. Both of these games were greeted with huge approval by wrestling fans. Many still consider these to be some of the best wrestling games of all time. This did not go unnoticed by the licensing people at the WWF, and a behind closed doors a deal was done to get THQ to produce WWF games.
These THQ games actually have a Japanese counterpart called the Virtual Pro Wrestling series. It is debated that the little differences make the Virtual Pro Wrestling a better series, but this is all down to personal preference. One amazing fact about this game is that the roster was just so bang up to date. Chris Jericho was featured despite only debuting in the WWF a little while earlier.
As far as the hand held version of Wrestlemania 2000 goes it is worth noting that this is also the very last WWF game that was ever made for the Game Boy before THQ started putting the WWF games on the Game Boy Advance.
The THQ wrestling games looked very different to the games that Acclaim would put out, and it was a pretty big improvement over the WCW games. They really went all out with the WWF License. I would probably say that the wrestlers faces did not look as good as they did in the Acclaim games, but overall the whole look is better.
The arenas look fantastic, and there is seven different ones. They did a fantastic job overall in recreating the real WWF arenas. There was a rabid crowd going crazy for the action in the ring, and this was the first WWF game that had actual full entrances for the wrestlers. They were complete with a terrible looking titan tron video; which at the time was the coolest thing ever. One downside is the sound. There is no commentary, but the actual wrestlers entrance music is really bad in comparison with the Acclaim games.
The actual wrestling moves look amazing. They have a much more realistic feel to them than they did in the Acclaim games. When you hit someone with a Rock Bottom it looks just like it did on TV. Perhaps the biggest thing about the presentation in Wrestlemania is the fact that this was the first game that let you edit actual WWF wrestlers. Lets say you did not like the colour of Steve Austin’s gear, then you could change it. This was huge, and it let you keep the look of the wrestlers up to date.
Wrestlemania 2000 on the Game Boy Colour I always felt was amazing as far as presentation goes. It has these awesome little entrances for the wrestlers. Also the text depending on who you pick will also change. They really did do a fantatsic job in making this game look great on the hand held. All of the wrestlers of which there is a great selection look good. You can easily tell who everyone is supposed to be. If you have been reading all my reviews then you will know that I have never felt any WWF hand held game has come close to looking as good as the fist WWF Superstars on Game Boy. Well Wrestlemania 2000 really does come close to beating it.
While Wrestlemania is a good looking game it is its game play that still keeps fans going back to play it to this day. Its really hard to say what makes the THQ Nintendo 64 WWF game so much fun to play. Yukes the actual developers understood what makes wrestling so great. Wrestling is not real, but as a TV show it is a hell of a lot of fun. They did not try to make a simulation style game. Instead they made a game that featured a ton of back and forth wrestling action where sometimes a match can last half a hour, and other times you can destroy a guy in just a few minutes. You never knew what you were going to get with the game play.
Wrestlemania had a good amount of game play modes. You had your single matches, tag matches, triple threat matches, and of course battle royals. You could also wrestle inside a steel cage, and with weapons. It is in multi player that this game really shines with the amount of hours my friends and I would spend on this game is unreal. We could easily spend a whole Saturday just playing this game with four players. This is easily one of the best multi player games on the Nintendo 64. Being the party animal, me and my buddies on a Friday after University would spend all night eating pizza, and trying to become the WWF Champion.
Wrestlemania had a season mode that was kind of weird as it never really ended. You never had to even win your matches in order to progress. You had a win/loss record that kept a record of your matches. The idea was to win as many WWF championships as you possible can. If you are the current holder of lets say three different championships then you may have to defend them all on the one show.
The Game Boy Colour version is surprisingly fun to play. WWF games on the Game Boy always suffered I felt because they tried to be far too ambitions. Wrestlemania 2000 however manages to offer a very simple control scheme, but also give you a decent amount of moves to use. One really great feature is that not all the wrestlers have the same moves, and they all have there own finishing move.
Wrestlemania 2000 on the Game Boy Colour also has a great selection of game modes for you to chose from, but the real fun is in the championship mode. This is a great single player campaign, and I would go as far to say that it is better than the single player campaign that was in the Nintendo 64 version of the game. It really is a lot of fun to play through, and I cannot praise the game enough.
While Wrestlemania may have been upstaged by it’s sequel WWF No Mercy. At the time this was a fantastic game. It is just a great multi player game that with three buddies you can spend hours and hours playing this game. Even if you just bought it as a single player game then you still would have a great deal of fun, but its multi player where Wrestlemania 2000 really shines.
I would also go as far to say that next to the first WWF Superstars that this is my favorite hand held WWF game. THQ got it right with there very first try on Game Boy, and it always made me wonder just how good a job they could have done had they made a WWF game for the NES.
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