2K and Visual Concepts have announced WWE 2K23, and ahead of its launch a little less than a month from now, several new details on this year’s entry in the wrestling series have already been unveiled. Last year’s WWE 2K22 served as a solid return to form for the franchise after several years of poor releases, and it seems like developer Visual Concepts is hoping to keep that momentum going with a number of improvements and changes in WWE 2K23. Here, that’s exactly what we’ll be talking about. These are the 10 biggest differences players are going to see between this year’s instalment and its immediate predecessor.
NEW SHOWCASE STAR
Every new WWE 2K game brings a new Showcase mode and brings its own unique blend of wrestling gameplay and documentary-style storytelling, with each focusing on the career of a different wrestling star. Last year, Rey Mysterio took center stage, and in this year’s mode, we’ll be diving into the wrestling career of perhaps the biggest superstar of them all, with John Cena confirmed as the star in WWE 2K23’s Showcase mode. Of course, series fans will remember Cena having a key role to play in WWE 2K15’s Showcase mode, which focused quite a bit on his rivalry with CM Punk, but this year’s game is going to be all about him and his rise through the ranks. Cena will, of course, be narrating the events portrayed over the course of a twenty year period. Some of the matches you can expect to see recreated are WrestleMania 34 featuring The Undertaker, WrestleMania 28 featuring The Rock, SummerSlam 2021 featuring Roman Reigns, Hell in a Cell 2009 featuring Randy Orton, Backlash 2003 featuring Brock Lesnar, Night of Champions 2008 featuring Triple H, New Year’s Revolution 2006 featuring Edge, and many more.
MORE SHOWCASE CHANGES
With WWE 2K23, Visual Concepts is also putting a unique twist on the Showcase mode formula. While past years’ modes have seen players taking control of the featured star through a series of fights over the course of their career, this year, players will be playing against John Cena. Each match in the mode will see you taking control of a different wrestler as they go up against Cena in the ring. 2K and Visual Concepts have yet to confirm the full list of who these playable stars are going to be, but a few have been revealed, including the likes of Rob Van Dam, The Undertaker, Brock Lesnar, and Triple H. Needless to say, if you’re a Showcase fan who’s been hoping for a shake-up of the formula, you’re going to want to keep an eye on 2K23’s mode.
One of the biggest additions WWE 2K23 is introducing is WarGames, which is a completely new match type that’s likely to pique your curiosity. Each match in WarGames will see two teams of three or four players squaring off against each other. And the big twist? There will be two rings side by side, and both will be enclosed by a steel cage, and depending on how both sides are performing, teammates will be allowed to enter at certain intervals. Weapons will, of course, be part of the proceedings, while NXT and Survivor Series will both be available as arenas. It’s also been confirmed that WarGames will be playable both, solo and in multiplayer.
Moving back to series staples, MyGM is, of course, coming back in this year’s game, and as you’d expect, it will be making several improvements over last year’s mode. The biggest, and the one that fans will be happiest about, is the inclusion of multiple season, as opposed to the mode spanning just one season like it did in 2K22. However, whether that means you can play the mode endlessly or if there will be a cap on the number of seasons you can play through remains to be seen. Meanwhile, unsurprisingly, the mode will also add new GMs for you to play as, while players will now also have the option to create their own custom GM. On top of that, the mode will also feature more match types, expanded match cards, and support for four players.
For many, MyRISE is going to be the main attraction in WWE 2K23, given the fact that the mode allows you to create your own superstar and chart their path through the ranks to wrestling stardom. And while Visual Concepts and 2K are yet to provide details on how this year’s mode will build upon WWE 2K22’s offerings, one very particular improvement has been confirmed, and it’s one that many fans have been hoping for. While 2K22’s MyRISE required a new character to be made specifically for the mode, this year, players will be allowed to import any and all created custom wrestlers from outside the mode. Meanwhile, just like last year’s game, 2K23’s MyRISE mode will also feature two distinct storylines dubbed The Lock and The Legacy, depending on whether you’re playing as a male or female wrestler.
MyFACTION was one of the bigger and more curious addition to be made in WWE 2K22, and though it proved to be somewhat divisive due to its emphasis on card collection-centric structure, there were, nonetheless, plenty who enjoyed it. We don’t yet have a clear picture of how this year’s game is going to improve upon the mode, but one particular detail has been confirmed. While last year’s MyFACTION was an exclusively single player mode, this year’s mode will make multiplayer an option as well.
Customization mechanics have always been a crucial part of the WWE games, so it’s no surprise that WWE 2K23 will once again arm players with a robust customization toolset to create their own superstars and tinker with a variety of options. We don’t yet have the specifics on exactly what sort of improvements and additions we can expect from the game on this front, but one thing that Visual Concepts and 2K have confirmed is that advanced entrance customization options, which were missing in WWE 2K22, will be coming back. Series fans have, over the years, spent a lot of time customizing the entrances of their wrestling stars with a vast range of available options, so here’s hoping this feature’s comeback proves to be a solid one.
Each year’s WWE entry introduces new playable superstars to its roster of wrestlers, and this year’s game is going to be no different. 2K and Visual Concepts have confirmed that WWE 2K23 will feature a roster of over 170 superstars at launch, which is a little bit more than what its predecessor had on offer upon release. As you’d expect, the vast majority of this roster will feature returning characters who featured in last year’s game as well, but of course, several of newcomers will also get a seat at the table, including the likes of the Bella Twins Nikki and Brie, Kurt Angle, Queen Zelina, Cody Rhodes, and Molly Holly. Meanwhile, it’s also been confirmed that with the Bad Bunny Bonus Pack and the Ruthless Aggression Pack, a handful more characters will join the roster as well. The latter will include 2001’s Brock Lesner, 2002’s Randy Orton and The Prototype.