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Why Now is the Time for WWE All Stars 2

WWE All Stars is one of the most beloved wrestling games of all time, but it hasn’t been seen in a sequel in 11 years. Now is the time to change that.

The WWE is of course correcting itself back for more fun-filled entertainment and there’s no better way to capture that energy in the gaming space than bringing back 2K’s fan-favorite title, WWE All Stars. Simulation-style wrestling games have their place but the arcade-style wrestling experience has been sorely lacking recently.

WWE All Stars is a high-octane wrestling game from the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 console generation that ditched the simulation style experience of Smackdown Vs. Raw in favor of depicting these legends of wrestling as the larger-than-life gods the WWE projects them as. The colorful renditions of WWE icons mixed with the over-the-top gameplay make for an unforgettable experience for WWE fans. However, WWE All Stars is 11 years old now without any kind of sequel following it up to improve upon and evolve the stellar framework of the original.

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While the current WWE 2K franchise still has its fans, the dedication to treating the WWE realistically instead of leaning into the unbelievable fantasy of its many bombastic characters and storylines has turned many long-time fans away from the self-serious franchise. WWE All Stars took kayfabe to the maximum by creating a story mode that treated wrestling storylines like they were fables of the world’s mightiest warriors. This attitude permeates all across the game and is exactly what a sequel could capitalize on to draw in more of the fans who come to the WWE for pure spectacle.

2K has not been opposed to the arcade-style wrestler, having released WWE 2K Battlegroundsbut that game fell short of everything WWE All-Starit’s accomplished. For starters, the art design of Battlegrounds was ridiculed for its cheap toy look, paling in comparison to All Stars‘beloved god-like caricature designs of classic wrestlers. Battlegrounds was treated as a budget experience compared to All Stars‘ release, which was a full-priced AAA title at the time. 2K failed to capture the arcade combat crowd with Battlegrounds not just because of its visuals, but more importantly, because of its gameplay. critics slammed Battlegrounds for its shallow gameplay full of simplistic combos that catered toward more of a party experience.


All Stars excels in arcade wrestling combat in all the places Battlegrounds faltered, with desirable depth in its combat mechanics that’s still more approachable than its simulation counterparts. The game added air combos to the WWE formula, which opened up intense combo possibilities never seen before in a wrestling game. Modern wrestling games tend to struggle by overcomplicating their grappling systems — a vital attack in a wrestler’s repertoire. All Stars‘solution was simple execution but endless possibilities. Grappling was done with quick button presses that flowed into punches, kicks, and aerial moves seamlessly, creating a satisfying flow state during combos


.

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Balancing its pick-up-and-play nature with detailed combat design is what makes WWE All Stars so popular with every wrestling fan and is why a sequel would find even greater success today than All Stars did 11 years ago WWE 2K22 is the closest the 2K series has come to making combat accessible to all ages, proving that the developers already know what to do to capture the accessibility of WWE All Stars‘fight 2K22‘s massive success is greater than any previous 2K entry, which proves that the fans are looking for a more satisfying and approachable wrestling game that an All Stars sequence can easily accomplish.


WWE is at its best when it amplifies the bombastic creativity that the greatest wrestlers have and doesn’t take itself so seriously. Arcade-style wrestling games like WWE All Stars embrace this playful side of wrestling with some of the most satisfying combat the WWE games have ever seen. WWE All Stars deserves a next-gen sequel for its endless depth and accessibility that drives every WWE fan wild no matter their age.

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