Creation and Campaign Modes
A wrestling game is absolutely nothing without a creation and story mode. AEW Fight Forever has both but with varying degrees of success. I went into creation mode to make the indie darling B3cca. I had 12 hair types, 5 body types, a handful of face options, and a couple of wrestling bras to choose from. The internet has been up in arms about how little there is in creation mode. This mode seems like it was created to spite players. The WWE 2K community has gigs upon gigs of customization options that make wrestlers look exactly the way you want them, but AEW Fight Forever went in the opposite direction. I still can’t believe that my female wrestler can only have 5 different bras to wrestle in. Women wear suits, shirts, and jackets! It’s the world’s largest oversight.
Then again there are some incredibly obscure things that you can change in creation mode. You can pick which explosions and fog come out during your entrance. You can pick which fingers the wrestlers are holding up during their entrance pose. How in the world are there over twenty finger variations but only 5 bras???
The game has decent customization for choosing what the announcer will call you (better than WWE 2K23). You can name your wrestler after anyone in WWE or NJPW. Your wrestler won’t look anything like them, but at least they will have the name. The mind-boggling problem I ran into was having to sort through over 500 names to find the word I wanted. There’s no way to skip letters. If you are trying to find a name for your wrestler be prepared to spend two minutes cycling through every single name. Another problem is that your wrestler MUST have a first name and a last name. If you leave the last name blank the wrestler’s last name becomes Wrestler. I had to use a dash. These are dumb choices.
Another thing that confused me about the character creator. The game would not let me put a jacket over my wrestler because she was wearing the wrong shirt. I was not allowed to hold a prop in my entrance video because my wrestler was wearing the wrong clothes. It made no sense and honestly, it baffles me.
There is also an arena creator. The most interesting thing you can do is recreate the New Japan or Impact wrestling arenas. Don’t think that you will be able to perfectly recreate the Smackdown or Raw stages.
The campaign mode rockets you right into the action. You pick a wrestler, you determine if they eat meat or not, and you start wrestling. The cutscenes between matches give you the history of AEW. It will be the only spoken dialog in the story as everything else is word bubbles. This lack of voice acting is supposed to make us feel nostalgic for the N64 days, but it also feels like AEW made this game on an incredibly low budget.
I let my female wrestler start her campaign. By her second match, she won the Women’s World Championship on Dynamite. Between matches, you can sit down for a meal to gain energy points. The restaurant scenes are a weird flex and whoever designed them got really excited about what food the wrestler was going to eat. Your wrestler can train, go sightseeing, cut promos, or do a mini-game before a wrestling match. These give you points so you can level up your wrestler. Every so often a wrestler will show up and cut some dialog with you.
Note: if you want your created wrestler to do half the things the main roster can do then you have to play the campaign. The campaign lets you unlock extra moves and perks. It is annoying for anyone who just wants to make a wrestler and play with them.
I am having trouble recommending the campaign mode as of now. It seems like your wrestler eats, goes sightseeing, and wins a match (repeat). You earn unlockables every time you progress so if you like shirts with the word Texas on them then you will get richly rewarded.