Greetings and Salutations everyone and welcome to The Shoot number eleven! Let me start out by saying that I didn?t see Lockdown back on Sunday, but I did hear about it being a pretty good show. I was shocked that TNA put the title on Mick Foley and I don?t think anyone really expected that to happen. Nevertheless, I will share my TNA Picks results toward the end of the column. Up first, though, it’s that time of week again to dive into the news headlines so were off to the land of Quick Shots.
So Bobby Lashley made the jump from the WWE to the world of MMA and now back to the world of professional wrestling by debuting at TNA Lockdown this past Sunday. This was quite the surprise as many were expecting Taz to show up in some form or another, but instead we get Lashley. I wasn?t really a fan of Bobby Lashley in the WWE and don?t know what he can really add to the mix in TNA, but this just continues the trend of bringing in ex-WWE guys to help get the company over instead of trying to develop their own original talent roster. Then again, I may be quick to jump the gun on this one, but we?ll wait and see.
Looks like Gabe Sapolsky has found a new job as the vice president and mouth piece for Dragon Gate. For those who don?t know, Dragon Gate is a Japanese wrestling (puroresu) promotion run by CIMA. Dragon Gate will now be doing shows in the United States under the banner of DGUSA. Gabe has the ability to make talent look phenomenal. If you are into Japanese Juniors action, then I strongly urge you to check out any of the shows that come out on DVD. You will be in for a treat nevertheless!
Lance Storm is back at it. He reviewed ROH on HDNet and I have to agree with everything he has said. ROH cannot sell this as a TV Show. Yeah, it’s nice that there is great wrestling on it, but the show is nothing but wrestling. No video packages, recaps, or anything to get the fans to know what is going on with Ring of Honor other than quick blurbs by the announcers. ROH needs to re-envision the television show if they want to gain popularity. While I am a fan of just straight up wrestling matches, that’s fine for straight to DVD shows. This is television? you need characters, stories, and meaning here. As an aside, even Lance Storm praised TNA for a phenomenal show back on Thursday of last week. I saw it, too, and again, I can?t agree more. I wish TNA put this kind of show out every week.
So this brings us to the meat of the column. This is going to be an interesting column because there has been talk lately about wrestling video games. I mean we have Smackdown vs Raw 2009 and Legends of Wrestlemania from the WWE. Then we have TNA iMPACT! Mobile (a TNA Game? What’s that!?) . Midway is losing money more than stuck hemophiliac and a TNA iMPACT! 2 will never see the light of day (not to mention a new Mortal Kombat!). So that’s going to leave us, again, with the WWE brand of games and Fire Pro Wrestling.
Also, if those are unaware, I am about 2 weeks away from completing my degree requirements for a Bachelor of Arts in Game Development through the University of Advancing Technology. During my tenure there at the University, the though did cross my mind about developing a new, yet, innovative wrestling game for the masses. If you read my e-Wrestling trilogy of columns here on WrestleView, the video game really centered around the hobby in the essence that the rosters would have contained a bunch of e-Wrestlers. While that may have been my original idea, I believe I can take the shell of that idea and bring together a new WWE game that may seem very appealing.
The first step in creating ANY game is to create your Initial Design Document (IDD). The IDD contains basic thoughts, features, overviews, etc. Most IDDs can be a paragraph to 10 pages in size. Full Design Documents will then reach into the thousands of pages. For column length sake, I?ll skip the intro from my IDD and go straight to the feature list I came up with for this game.
General Game Features
Choose one of three (3) federations to play
Create your own unique wrestler
Create your own unique federation
Compete with your created federation online
Create your own championships
Put your titles on the line against friends or online
Fight in arenas or brawl backstage or in a variety of locations
Compete in federation exclusive match types
Your actions determine your status
Create-A-Wrestler levels up in RPG Style System
Draft System to swap wrestlers between brands
Face/Heel System to switch your status at your own will
Explanation of Game Features
Choice of Federation ? At the start of the game, you will have five choices to choose from. New Campaign, Continue, Create, Online and Options. Selecting New Campaign will bring you to the Federation Selection Screen. You can choose between the Raw, Smackdown! and ECW brands. Once selected, you will be taken to that brand’s choices.
Each brand has two modes. Season Mode and Exhibition Mode.
Season Mode: This mode will take you through one year of that federation’s storylines. Your ultimate goal is to select one wrestler from that federation’s roster and compete in one year of storylines which, if successful, will end with you holding that federation’s version of the World Heavyweight Championship.
Exhibition Mode: This is where you can challenge your friends or the computer to a series of matches. Each federation will have the same matches plus their own unique match. These include:
Single Match (1 vs 1)
Handicap Match (1 vs 2)
Handicap Match (1 vs 3)
Tag Team Match (2 vs 2)
Tag Team Handicap Match (2 vs 3)
6-Man Tag Team Match (3 vs 3)
8-Man Tag Team Match (4 vs 4)
Tornado Tag Match (2 vs 2)
6-Man Tornado Tag Match (3 vs 3)
8-Man Tornado Tag Match (4 vs 4)
The difference between a normal tag and a tornado tag, is that in a tornado tag match, there are no tags because all members of the team are allowed in the ring at the same time. This is also, in Mexico, known as a Lucha Libre Rules match.
Selecting Specialty Matches will bring you that federation’s list of special matches. There will be a generic list as well as well as a list of that federation’s unique matches. I will use ECW as an example here.
Steel Cage Match
Hell in a Cell Match
Special Referee Match
Iron Man Match
First Blood Match
Buried Alive Match
Bra & Panties Match
No Disqualification Match
Falls Count Anywhere Match
Open Season Match (ECW Exclusive)
Twin Ladder Match (ECW Exclusive)
Xtreme Violence Match (ECW Exclusive)
Crystal Nightmares Match (ECW Exclusive)
The Open Season, Xtreme Violence, and Crystal Nightmares were match types I created when running my own e-Wrestling fed. I left them in here just as examples of what could be possible.
Create-A-Wrestler ? You can access this feature by selecting the Create option on the main menu. This will bring you to the sub-options screen which will have Create-A-Wrestler, and Create-A-Federation. Create-A-Federation will not be selectable until you have filled all twenty of your Create-A-Wrestler slots. More on that in the next explanation. Right now we will focus on the Create-A-Wrestler feature.
This has been a very widely popular option among wrestling games. Perhaps you didn?t like what you saw on the roster and wanted your own character. Something that reflected who you were and what your attitude was. This option gave you the ability to do just that.
In this version you will have access to literally, hundreds of different types of clothing for your character ranging anywhere from hats, glasses, accessories, shirts, shorts, pants, tights, knee pads, elbow pads, socks, boots, and athletic tape. You will also have your choice from hundreds of hairstyles for both men and women. You can also add text to your clothing or add piercings and tattoos to your wrestler as well.
Plus with a morphing tool, you can shape your wrestler’s body in any way you want to give them that perfect marketable look to them! You can also give your wrestler a name, a nickname as well as choose how you want that name displayed during their entrance to the ring or how it is displayed on their damage meter while playing.
Once you are done creating your wrestler’s appearance, it is now time to give them a moveset. Since your wrestler is just starting out, there will be a very very small amount of basic moves available to choose from.
Once you have the look, profile, and moves picked out, you can choose the wrestler’s entrance theme. Either select from pre-determined themes or use your console’s CD Ripping ability to upload your own custom tracks for your wrestlers to use.
Now that you have all of that set and ready to go, it is time to build your wrestler up. Your wrestler will not start out in one of the five federations just yet. The player will need to earn that ability by building up their character in the independent circuit. The player will start out wrestling in small locations such as Bingo Halls, Recreation Centers, High School Gymnasiums, Parking Lots, and other small, low budget venues. You will be wrestling in front of 30-50 people sized crowds.
When or if you win a match, you will receive ?Over Points?. Over is a term used to describe a wrestler’s popularity. Someone would say about a popular wrestler, ?Wow.. that guy is really over with the crowd!?. The more points you accumulate, the more popular you become. Once you reach a certain popularity, you may begin to receive offers from those five federations to come be a part of their roster. You will have the choice to either accept or decline the offer.
Over Points are also used to purchase things from the shop. The Shop can be accessed from the menu system that is brought up after each match, regardless if you win or lose. In the shop you can purchase new wrestling moves for your created wrestler and purchase ability points into increase your wrestler’s strength, speed, stamina, dexterity, endurance, and power when using strikes, power moves, reversals, or submission holds. When it comes to purchasing moves, you can either buy single, high impact moves, or a moves package which would contain several variations of basic maneuvers such as punches, kicks, suplexes, and clotheslines.
The player will have a number of options to choose. They can collect over points and take the first contract offer they receive and start at the bottom of the federation they choose and work their way up. (They will still collect over points after they leave the independent circuit). They can spend over points and build up their moveset and skills, while declining offers and then take them and start a little higher up in the federation they choose, or they can continue on and repeat the process until they reach the status of ?Indy Legend?. Once they have achieved Indy Legend status, you will be offered big money contracts and start off by feuding with a mid-card champion upon your arrival into the company. Once you sign onto a company, you are injected into a half season mode of six months. Once you complete the half season mode, you become officially a part of that federation’s roster. Be careful! Lose too many matches and they will terminate your contract and send you back to the independent circuit.
Create-A-Federation ? One the player has filled up all twenty of the Create-A-Wrestler slots, the Create-A-Federation option will become available. Using your twenty man created roster, you can build your own federation, give it its own unique name, create up to five championships for that federation, name the staff from owner, to broadcasters, to the referees.
Choose from a list of match types to build your own federation’s unique style! Even build your own arena using modifiable templates! Create your own Pay-Per-Views, name them, build the cards, book your weekly television shows. You create it, you own it, you run it.
Create-A-Championship – This feature is available in the Create-A-Federation option. Create your very own championship. Modify templates, give the title a name and build its prestige!
Online Play ? Using Playstation Online or Xbox Live, you can take your created federation online and use the following features:
Exhibition ? This mode allows you to compete with other players online in all available match types from the five federations as well as the unique ones from the Create-A-Federation feature.
Title Match ? This is the same as Exhibition, except you put your created championships on the line! If you lose your championship, it is gone forever unless you find the person who won your champions, rechallenge them, and beat them to win it back!
Tournament ? Set up an eight man single elimination tournament for one of your created championships. You and up to seven other people online can participate in this tournament!
Face/Heel System ? More and more games are utilizing this type of feature in their games. Games such as Fable and Jade Empire allow the player to be good or evil based on their actions. We would like to bring this type of system to a professional wrestling title. Hit a popular superstar with a chair, and your popularity dwindles until you are hated by the fans. Interfere in a match and kick the bad guy’s butt, and you are cheered as a fan favorite! However, one must be aware of their actions because the more hated you are, the less ?Over Points? you collect in order to better your character! But this feature will not just apply to the C-A-W feature. It will also impact every superstar in the game as well. People who start off as a Face could turn Neutral or Heel!
Draft System ? On Raw, Smackdown, or ECW Story Mode, the Draft will be incorporated into the game’s story. Once you have completed the Draft in Story Mode, it will be unlocked as a permanent feature where you can hold a draft between the brands whenever you so shall please. If you have a created federation, you can also draft wrestlers to and from that created federation. Also, building off of the previous Trade a Superstar feature, you can now hose online drafts between created federations. That option will also unlock after playing through Draft on Story Mode. With the Draft, you can select either 5, 10, 15, or 20 wrestlers to be drafted per brand as total. This will allow for small tweaks to complete revamps of entire rosters.
The controls would be similar to Smackdown vs Raw’s arcade system with one little tweak. I LOVED the WWF No Mercy system where if you character was next to the ropes all you would have to do is press toward the ropes and an action button to perform a springboard maneuver or to hop over to the apron. It was so simple, yet, so much fun. That would be back in this game. No more running toward the ropes and some awkward button combination. Get near the ropes, press toward them and the appropriate button and watch the high flying action begin.
Basically what I have done here was simply take the Smackdown vs Raw engine and added a lot of much needed features, expanded on the customizability of the game, and given more options to the players. I could go on forever (seeing how my document is well over 220 pages), but these are the main core features of the game. These kind of features would really encourage replayability which is what a lot of the wrestling games lack these days.
So? how did I do with TNA Lockdown you ask? Well?
PRE-SHOW: Danny Bonnaduce vs. Eric Young
Winner: Eric Young
Pick: Danny Bonnaduce
Queen of the Cage: ODB vs. Sojournar Bolt vs. Daffney vs. Madison Rayne
IWGP Jr. Heavyweight Title Triple Threat: Motor City Machine Guns (c) vs. No Limit vs. L.A.X.
Pick: No Limit
TNA Knockouts Title Triple Threat: Awesome Kong (c) vs. Taylor Wilde vs. Angelina Love
Winner: Angelina Love
Pick: Taylor Wilde
TNA X-Division Title Xscape Match: Suicide (c) vs. Kiyoshi vs. Sheik Abdul Bashir vs. Jay Lethal vs. Consequences Creed
Doomsday Champer of Blood: Matt Morgan vs. Abyss
Winner: Matt Morgan
Pick: Matt Morgan
Title vs. Title: IWGP Tag Team Champions: Team 3D vs. TNA World Tag Team Champions: Beer Money
Winners: Team 3-D
Pick: Team 3-D
Lethal Lockdown: Team Angle (Kurt Angle, Scott Steiner, Kevin Nash, & Booker T.) vs. Team Jarrett (Jeff Jarrett, AJ Styles, Samoa Joe, & Christopher Daniels)
Winners: Team Jarrett
Pick: Team Jarrett
TNA World Heavyweight Title: Sting (c) vs. Mick Foley
Winner: Mick Foley
Better than my Wrestlemania picks which placed me at 4-5 So now I?m 9-9 even on picks. Meh.. I will need to fix that with Backlash.
“David, 40 year wrestling fan here. Dude, that fantasy booking was work of genius. You need to quit hanging out with us smarks and get to work curing cancer or fixxing the world economy-put that talent to better use!!”
Loyal Reader Suzanne Abshire writes:
“Nash should shut up because for once Bischoff is right.
This doesn’t bother me too much because in my opinion the first night ROH should be doing a set of TV taping and the second night should be what they did this year a PPV taping.
I don’t believe the Rock/Cena thing is a storyline. I think it was just Cena shooting off his mouth and since then I think its likely WWE is telling Cena to keep it up to get the Rock to eventaully accept the challenge.”
That’s going to do it for me this week. This week’s feedback question pertains to the video game idea. I?d like to hear your thoughts, what you would do different, or any ideas you may have in your vision of a wrestling game. Be sure to send those along with lots of money, beer (yes, I no longer am straight edge…just don?t tell CM Punk), or anything valuable that is shiny and worth enough to live off of to email@example.com.
Until next time…
Because I can!