You have to be impressed with the final product that Yuke's and THQ. It's tough to start a game completely from scratch and build it up to what you want. While there are still some modifications that need to be made for future titles, the final product for wrestling fans is one that is worthy of main event status.
WWE '12 is the best fan-service game in the business right now, and I think the rest of the game development world could learn something from such a pure, wholesome dedication to giving fans what they want.
What THQ has done here serves its audience spectacularly. WWE '12 retains and improves upon the already-great presentation of its predecessors, capturing a likeness of wrestling that is uncanny. And it plays just as well as it looks. This should be considered a milestone for the wrestling simulation genre. It's certainly a much-needed breath of fresh air.
WWE '12 is a step in the right direction. The arcade controls make the game more accessible, there's a nice selection of superstars and the multitude of options for content creation is incredible. However, many gamers simply want to play, and unfortunately, the restrictive Road to WrestleMania campaign is the biggest weakness. I note that with a wooden expression (like an ingame superstar) and have to deduct points. A shame: the game offers tons of wrestling atmosphere and is a must-have for WWE fans.
Yuke's tries to start over, but doesn't fully succeed. It's still a game full of content, but the new control and physics systems still have a ways to go.
The developers took a gamble in revamping their wrestling series, but it didn't quite pay off. Fans will love the expansive roster, variety of match options, extensive customization features, and the assortment of painful looking strikes, signature moves, and submissions. Yet the imprecise reversal system, online issues, and cheap A.I. will irritate everyone else.
This WWE franchise overhaul is held back by some serious control issues.