WWF SmackDown! 2: Know Your Role review
Very addictive with tons of replay value
Even more Superstars
More moves, unlockable movesets
Still simple to play
Only one finishing move per characterSummary:
This game is the sequel to the SmackDown! Game for the PSX. It added "Know Your Role" to the title, which is one of The Rock's catchphrases. This game added more Wrestlers from the WWF (as it was then) and more moves. The graphics have been enhanced, but the gameplay is still as simple as it was in the last game. The basic idea is the same as it was in the first game, to pin your opponent's shoulders down for a count of three. What THQ have tried to do in this game is give more variety and more things to do.
For a start there are more Wrestlers in this game than there were in the last one. You still have all the more famous ones like The Undertaker and Kane, but now there are a lot of lower card Wrestlers like D'lo Brown. The Create-a-Wrestler mode has also been upgraded. There are more parts to choose from and more moves. There are some moves you can't initially select. As you progress through the story mode you will fight "Unknown" characters. If you beat them you will unlock some extra parts for the CAW mode and an entire moveset. Certain moves will then become unlocked and you can tell which ones they are because the name of the move will be highlighted in yellow.
There are also new matches to choose from like Hell in a Cell, Table and Ladder matches but they still included the "I Quit" match which is highly frustrating because you usually have to knock them down multiple times before they give up and once usually does it for them. I personally never did this match that much unless I had to. The introduction of the Table and Ladder matches was a good move. They can provide entertaining matches. The only problem with them is that they can be completed very quickly. While the Table or Ladder matches on TV are scripted to have lots of exciting things happen, it's very easy to knock your opponent down, jump outside and grab a ladder, set it up and get the belt. Later games fix this problem somewhat, but nevertheless they do provide good matches at times. You can still only have 4 people in the game at once due to the fact the PSX wouldn't be able to handle any more on screen at once. But 4 is usually more than enough for enough action on screen.
The story mode tried to improve upon the one in the first game. You can still work your way up to the title, but randomly you will be greeted with a cut-scene of some description where an event will happen. This time you can only challenge for belts in story mode, you can't do it in free mode for a quick title change. So now if you want to get a title you have to work for it in story mode. While this is good in a way for realism purposes, it does prevent lazyness and a cheap title victory. I didn't like this because it was fun having a woman win the WWF title in a quick match. It's one of those cases where realism goes a bit too far and it takes away from some of the fun of the game.
My favourite mode in this game is Time Limit Title in Hardcore mode. This is where someone has the Hardcore belt and you have to pin them, and only them, to get the title. Once you've got it you then need to survive and not be pinned or submit until the time is up. You can have 4 players in this mode. It's fun because the match carries on until time is up no matter how many pins are made and because it's a Hardcore match weapons and things can be used.
You can also create "stables" in this game. There are alliances between wrestlers. Some are already pre-set like the Dudleyz and the Hardy Boys. But you can break up these alliances and form your own in the options menu. You can even have ridiculous alliances between hated rivals if you so desire.
There was an amusing glitch in this game. If you rolled off the ramp into the area below, you would actually roll across and float in the air. When you went to climb back onto the ramp you did go up a level. By doing this repeatedly you can effectively climb up into the air. This is an excellent way to retain the Hardcore belt in Time Limit matches. If you go up too high you will crash the game though.
Overall this game was very well done. It was even better than the first one. It retained all the things that made the first game good, but improved the graphics, put in more characters, moves and matches. The only downside was that you could still only have one finishing move per character but some Wrestlers have 2 or even 3 moves that they use to finish opponents off. Apart from that this game was probably the best Wrestling game on console gaming at that time.
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