With the announcement of WWE 2K21 being cancelled this past week, we have learned that WWE 2K will be moving in a more arcade-style direction with WWE 2K Battlegrounds.
This past week, 2K announced on Twitter that there was some exciting news regarding the future of the WWE 2K franchise coming on Monday, April 27th. The exciting news was released this morning, with 2K announcing a brand new video game called WWE 2K Battlegrounds. Instead of releasing WWE 2K21, they will be going in more of a arcade, cartoon-style video game.
WWE 2K Battlegrounds kind of reminds me of THQ’s WWE All Stars video game that released back in 2011. All Stars was very cartoon-like and focused on being more of an arcade game rather than a sports simulation. I am getting that same vibe with 2K trying to repeat the same type of game that THQ made.
The trailer for WWE 2K Battlegrounds looks more unrealistic than any wrestling game of the past. In the small 25-second teaser you are able to witness The Rock tossing John Cena over the top rope into a swamp filled with Alligators. You also witness Becky Lynch go ablaze as her fists turn into massive fireballs. Looking at the trailer it seems as if the possibilities are going to be endless in terms of what crazy ring fights you’ll be able to create.
It is clear that 2K is trying to stall for another year, hopefully creating a better simulation game down the line. With all the criticism that previous wrestling game of theirs got from their fans and critics, it is no surprise that they are trying to move in a different direction for the time being.
Despite the cancellation of WWE 2K21, it doesn’t look like 2K is completely done with the series. They are simply taking a year off to give Visual Concepts time to develop a quality game worth. In a made a statement on their website 2K explained:
"“All of that being said, we hear you and we know you want more from the franchise, so here’s what we’re going to do: we are applying what we’ve learned to the next WWE 2K simulation game with a renewed focus on quality and fun. As part of that commitment, we are extending the production timeline and will not be releasing a WWE 2K simulation game in 2020 (T2 fiscal year 2021). We want to ensure the development team at Visual Concepts can create a great game that will entertain grizzled WWE 2K veterans, as well as newcomers who want to climb through the ropes and step into the ring for the very first time.”"
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WWE 2K Battlegrounds is being developed by Saber Interactive (NBA 2K Playgrounds), which should hopefully give Visual Concepts time to create a fantastic wrestling game with good graphics, minimal glitches, and amazing mechanics. With the plan to go in an arcade type of direction, I don’t want Visual Concepts to give up on creating a wrestling simulation game. I am hoping that this is just a “see you later” type of situation instead of a “goodbye,” from the simulation style wrestling games. Maybe this is what the franchise needs in order to give it a success boost.
Who knows, maybe WWE 2K Battlegrounds will be a massive hit to where we see new games similar to it be released every year. Maybe it will be a giant bust. All we can do at this point is to wait and see what the new game brings!