Review by Alvin Go
"Smackdown is not the best wrestling game in a lot of aspects"
WWF Smackdown....based from the weekly Thursday WWF show. It was supposed to be better that Acclaim's WWF Attitude. Many people say this is the best wrestling game on the Playsation. My two cents: not exactly.
It is better than Attitude in some aspects, but not in all aspects. First, many hail Smackdown's controls for being so simple. D-button plus 0 equals one grapple move. Yeah right! It's so simple that one wrestler can only possess a few moves. Also, it's so hard to irish whip when you are moving. Sometimes, instead of whipping your opponent, you do a grappling move. Also, you can't have a lot of moves when moving out of the ring. I prefer Attitude's ring than Smackdown's. But Smackdown's tied-up to the ropes and sitting in the turnbuckle features are simply great!
The backstage areas are great. This is where Smackdown excels. Having the chance to move from one room to another is better than Mayhem. Also great is the plenty weapons in the game. You can choose your weapon below the ring. It's better than having weapons fall from nowhere (Attitude and Warzone). Yet, it's not realistic enough. I pound Debra with the steel steps 20 times and she was still able to knock me down with just one punch.
In the graphics department, it's just average. Nothing new, just ordinary plain 3D graphics. But there are some good spots, like the wrestlers' hair moves while running and two wrestlers or more getting hit by just one single move. Bad spots in the graphics include Big Show chokeslamming his opponent without touching his neck! Besides some glitches, Smackdown's graphics is quite okay.
Create a wrestler. Man! This is the worst CAW I have ever seen. You are only allowed to choose from a few heads, upper and lower part. And to top that, you choose other wrestler's heads, trunk and lower part! Poor CAW! The only things saving the feature are the personality, logic, height and weight features. Other than that, I'd still prefer Attitude. Also, it's not so good having to achieve a certain level before being able to use a certain move. What if your wrestler's finisher is level 5? You certainly can't put all your points there just to be able to choose it!
The Season and Preseason features are new, that's why they seem to be great. But they tend to be repetitive. In the season mode, we are always treated to a scene where you have to use your imagination on what two wrestlers are talking about. Nonetheless, it's still a cool addon to the game.
Modes of the game are nothing new, except for the Special Referee (I love this part), the Singles/with Manager and the I Quit match. Other than that, all of them are old, and still fewer modes to choose from than Attitude. Because of that, the replay value diminishes. The Royal Rumble of Smackdown is better than Attitude's because you can select up to 40 wrestlers to compete.
Another flaw here is that you can only create 4 wrestlers at a time. Bad move! Smackdown doesn't feature the Radicals, Too Cool, Rikishi, Tazz and Kurt Angle, nine of the most used wrestlers in the WWF today! You can't create all of them because the game limits you to only four. Also, you have to use your imagination in creating them because of the limitations in the head part. Heck you can't even choose the colors of their shirt! Their bonus wrestlers are nothing but additional heads for the CAW, and is not good.
Sound, well is there sound? I mean, having TitanTron Videos as entrance is great, but after that, pure silence, no commentary. That's why it's so boring in long matches. The Smackdown meter is also new to the wrestling games, but nothing to write home about. The belt records and ranking system is cool, and it makes you want to play more often.
In conclusion, I can say that WWF Smackdown is not the best one in all aspects. If you are not a wrestling fan, don't buy this game. If you are, this is a must.
+ Season and Preseason
+ Height and weight in CAW
+ Special referee matches
+ Many trademark moves (People's Elbow, Running Knee Strike, Boss Man Attack...)
+ Tied up to the ropes feature
+ Belt Record and Ranking system
+ Backstage area, and weapons
+ Real entrance videos
- CAW feature
- Many glitches
- Not very updated superstars
- Can create only 4 stars at a time
- Limited moves per wrestler
- Repetitive season screens
- Limited modes to play
- Just one outfit per wrestler
- No bio data
OVERALL - 7/10
Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 04/11/00, Updated 04/11/00
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