Review by KFantasy017
"Slightly disappointing, but still fun."
Day of Reckoning is the latest title WWE game from THQ. Many had high expectations for this game. Did it reach those expectations? That's what I'm here to tell you.
The Story mode in this game is different then that of other wrestling games such as Here Comes the Pain or No Mercy. In Day of Reckoning, you do not get to choose a path, pick story options, or such as in other games. There is one set story, that various with the characters they have in the scene (meaning they are different for Raw and Smackdown!, and your character). Don't worry though, the story mode is still pretty fun.
Now, for the actual story itself. You start out as the your own created character, and begin to work your way up through the ranks. You start with house shows, then advance to Dark Matches. Once you are done with those, you wrestle on Heat. After you have impressed enough people, you choose to go to either Raw or Smackdown!. The show you choose only really changes the characters you interact with during the story, nothing much more. Anyway, you continue to work your way up until you become the World Champion.
Oh, did I mention that a character can only be entered in story mode once?
The most important feature of a wrestling game. Without solid gameplay, a wrestling game is plain garbage. Fortunately, Day of Reckoning's gameplay is spectacular. It is easy to get the hang of, and with the Gamecube controller setup, it is even easier.
The Grappling system is the same as it was in Here Comes the Pain, you set moves for controls like hold A and then hit A+Right to perform a strong grapple, and tap a for a quick grapple.
Punches and such are the same as well. Hit B or B+any direction for different strikes.
Very solid indeed.
Create A Wrestler
Sadly, this is one of the weaker parts of the game. At first, the customization is very limited, and the models you have to choose from are below ten. You must remove many accessories that come on the character or else many options can't be selected.
Also, it took me about 15 minutes to find a sweatshirt, as it was under a different name that I wouldn't expect it. Though, this may just be due to my lack of common sense, it happened when I searched for a variety of other things as well.
The customization does become more open after you complete the game, but, they are better off used for new characters, since there is not much of a point in customizing characters that cannot be re-entered in story mode. Thing is, it takes about an hour to create a decent looking, and decent performing superstar.
You can create a very detailed entrance. Anything from the music and entrance video, to the camera angles and lighting. The entrances can end up completely different just by the camera angle, so there is enough customization here for anyone. Don't worry though, if you don't like this much detail, you can pick an easier entrance, by picking the music, walking moves, and entrance videos.
Graphics & Music
The graphics in the game are awesome. On par, if not better then Here Comes the Pain. The animations are a bit off though. If you run at an enemy and go to grab them, but they go to kick you, you will stop the grab and instantly assume the position of being kicked in the stomach/face/etc. Some of the superstar faces are a bit strange, but those two things are the only real flaws I could find with the graphics.
The music is pretty good. It's mostly a mix of rap and rock, along with a lot of superstar's music like Evolution's theme, Triple H's Theme, Benoit's Theme, etc. One flaw I noticed is that the music stopped when saving and such, but it's not much of a big deal.
Buy or Rent?
I recommend renting it first, because not everyone will enjoy this game. If you enjoy the game, pick up a used copy. I really don't think you should dish out $50 for this game.
Final Score: 9/10
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 11/15/04, Updated 08/31/07
Game Release: WWE Day of Reckoning (US, 08/30/04)
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