WWE 2K24 Review: The Undisputed Champion Is Here!

There is hardly a genre video games haven’t tapped into. Fortunately for a lot of us action freaks, wrestling is one of them. While WWE games started as an arcade experience, modern titles have sadly turned into simulations. Or at least that was the case until 2K22 entered the ring. After two years of going through upgrades and feedback, 2K has finally released WWE 2K24. As a veteran of WWE games who recently completed all the best WWE games, I could not wait to enter the ring in the latest iteration to finish my story.

Thanks to a copy of WWE 2K24 provided by 2K, I have been going up and down the wrestling ring and creating my own path. After spending a couple of days and sleepless nights in the game, here’s what I think of 2K’s honest attempt at the yearly WWE franchise.

Visuals, Experience & Music: Get a Look at Greatness

Whenever I load up a game on my system, I first take notice of the visuals and music. Things like these help me get invested in the experience. Upon booting up WWE, the first thing that struck me was the UI and how amazing it looked. While not on the same level as SVR 2011, the 2K24 menu is by far the cleanest in the 2K era.

The Superstars look good on buttons and the colors pop out just right. We also get to hear multiple narrations from WWE favorites, which adds to the beauty and immersion. Shows like The Bump, which are included in the game, also add to the experience factor of WWE.

WWE 2K24 Rhea Ripley
Image Courtesy: 2K

The game’s AI works amazingly, and the animations match it perfectly. Whether it is interactions, weapon mechanics, or the audience fervently chanting ‘L, A, Knight, Yeah!!!’, it matches a perfect WWE arena vibe.

Sadly, the background tracks sound a bit lackluster. The song selection here is decent at best, and I found myself tuning down the music and enjoying the classic theme songs. It was disappointing, as we have always witnessed some amazing tracks within WWE.

I had slightly better expectations, knowing that Post Malone is the executive soundtrack producer. But well, we take what we get right.

Gameplay: Float like a Butterfly, Sting like a Bee

In early 2K WWE games, I felt the gameplay was a bit slow, and there were lots of pro-wrestling maneuvers that were missing. Thankfully, in 2K24, the gameplay feels crisp and without a hint of choppiness. The selling got a notable improvement, as Superstars sell their moves naturally after taking a bump. This helps add a touch of show business feel to the game, which I really appreciate.

WWE 2K24 - Stone Cold vs Kevin Owens
Image Courtesy: 2K

The game also brings a whole new level of excitement to the ring with a ton of gameplay upgrades to the decent 2K23. The first notable upgrade is the inclusion of Super Finishers, which lets you finish a story the way you want. They add an extra flavor to the already good-looking Signatures and Finisher sequences.

However, the Super Finishers are not available for all the Superstars in the game. 2K24 also adds a new Trading Blows mini-game and the ability to take out multiple opponents outside the ring with a top rope dive.

WWE 2K24 Roman Reigns
Image Courtesy: 2K

To add variety to the gameplay, you can now do Double-title matches and use new Paybacks. Furthermore, the weapon system has been upgraded significantly. We now get a bunch of new toys like trash cans, guitars, and microphones to cause some damage. What’s more, you can even throw them at your opponents for more intensity.

To top it all off, seven real WWE referees have been included to make the whole experience feel even more authentic.

New Game Modes: Evolution Is Your Solution

Speaking of referees, how can we forget that we finally got Special Guest referees in the game? After almost a decade of asking for the feature, 2K listened, and oh, they delivered. The new Special Guest referee mode not only allows you to play as one but also assign one for your match. You will notice them interfering in the match, making it more WWE-like.

  • WWE 2K24 Undertaker vs Bret Special Guest Referee
  • WWE 2K24 Undertaker vs HBK Casket
  • WWE 2K24 Ambulance Match

Along with the Guest referee mode, I also tried the Casket and Ambulance modes. Now, from a game perspective, both of them will look like a simple submission button smash galore. However, for longtime WWE fans like me, these game modes ended up adding more flavor to my experience. Thanks to the new gameplay changes, you can now set up your dream matches and also get a ton of unique finishes.

2K has also added a new Gauntlet mode with up to 30 participants. These game modes add to the already stacked WarGames, Extreme Rules, TLC, Submission, Hell in a Cell, and many iconic match types. I would love it if 2K added more ways to close the Casket or Ambulance door. Maybe smash through the Ambulance roof?

WWE 2K24 Hulk Hogan vs Andre
Image Courtesy: 2K

However, the one game mode 2K did smash through is the Forty Years of WrestleMania Edition. If you are a fan of WWE and its greatest spectacle, WrestleMania, then this showcase mode is for you. Folks who haven’t experienced the old WrestleMania before get to experience the immortal matches, live through the rivalries, and revisit the immense story of WWE.

2K uses a slingshot technique to take you directly from the video footage to the match, making your experience seamless. The best part for me, however, is how Corey Graves narrates and shares behind the scenes of these greatest WrestleMania matches in amazing video packages. This showcase is my personal favorite of all the 2K showcases in the previous years.

Revamped Old Game Modes: Old Things New Flavors

Let’s now move on to the old 2K special game modes, which have been improved and feel more enjoyable. The career mode, MyRISE Undisputed, and Unleashed are a lot of fun. Some amazing Superstars, like Roman Reigns and Cody Rhodes, have given their voices to the characters.

The stories feel refreshing but I did encounter some unnecessary prompts. I especially appreciated William Regal’s unexpected but crucial role in both stories. Make sure you complete them to unlock some cool rewards, including goofy moves for your set.

MyRISE menu page in 2K24
Image Courtesy: 2K

For the MyGM game mode lovers, the bookfest has now improved significantly. Not only more brands enter the scene, but you will also witness new General Managers with a lot of unique perks. Take your time booking more match types, scouting talents, and trading superstars between brands.

You can also manage Superstar contracts or help them earn XP to climb the ladder to be your best Superstar in business. MyFACTION introduces four different currencies: MyFACTION points, MyFACTION tokens, Virtual currency, and Store tokens. The card-building game has now been improved and contains online matchmaking with a seasonal leaderboard.

Faction wars are revamped with more real-world 4v4 factions and a reward shop, which I like.

Universe and Creation: Create Your Story

The Universe mode in WWE 2K24 retains its ability to manage the entire WWE landscape or zoom in on individual wrestlers’ journeys. This year’s iteration largely feels the same as the previous one. Having said that, there are some new features like loser-leaves-town matches and run-ins to add a touch of variety.

Although the existing framework was already solid, the lack of features like in-game promos between rivals leaves room for improvement. I still feel 2K needs to work on the Universe mode, as it is undoubtedly a fan-favorite sandbox experience for all WWE fans. Who does not want to create their own story, right?

WWE 2K24 Dude Love
Image Courtesy: 2K

But on that note, allow me to move on to the community. The 2K creation suit has always been a key part of the WWE games community. Community creations always make the game more enjoyable by creating new Superstars, arenas, GMs, championship belts, entrances, moves, and more.

This year, Create-A-Referee and Create-A-Sign make their way into the creation suit. Additionally, more animations and new parts have been added to create more memorable content for the community. However, some transitions in the entrance creation seem slightly out of sync.

Roster & Ratings: The Greatest Era of WWE

Now, before I jump to the verdict, I think we must acknowledge the roster efforts by 2K. Yes, certain in-game characters receive a blurry face, but that can happen due to contracts or other disputes. However, if you ask me, the whole roster is pretty stacked.

With an already fierce roster of the current generation, 2K has added all the legends from the WrestleMania showcases. Additionally, most of the Superstars also got multiple editions. My favorite is the Stardust version of Cody Rhodes. So, it is exciting to see how 2K always delivers with their roster.

WWE 2K24 Cody Rhodes
Image Courtesy: 2K

However, I do have a problem with some of the ratings. Superstars like Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods are on below-average ratings, which does not make any sense. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean that 2K thinks those Superstars are bad. With real-world developments, 2K can easily crank up the numbers through patch updates any day.

WWE 2K24: Graphics and Performance

It is about time I mentioned the in-game performance. As someone who played WWE games on different consoles and custom PC models, this is the first game where I did not tweak a single setting in the game.

2K made sure no matter which device you are using, the gameplay is optimized. I felt little to no stutter, even at the highest settings. As for my testbench, I played WWE 2K24 on a machine with these specs:

Test Setup: CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600
GPU: NVIDIA GTX 1650 Super
RAM: 8×2 DDR4 RAM @ 3600MHz
SSD: Adata XPG m.2 512GB
Monitor: 1080p

When I loaded the game for the first time, the CPU’s max temperature reached 60 degrees. This did not change until I entered an online match, but the temperature stayed below 65 degrees. These numbers show how optimized 2K24 is for the current system.

In comparison, 2K22 used to take my CPU to 75-80C degrees in an idle state. My GPU stayed at a max of 70 degrees for the whole experience. Going through all the motions of various matches, the game delivered a solid experience of 56-60 FPS.

Combined with no drop in graphics and performance, this amazing optimization makes WWE 2K24 a solid game for any device.

Verdict: Is WWE 2K24 the King of the Ring?

Ever since 2K22 arrived on the scene, the WWE games have slowly picked up pace. Fortunately, the company realized the importance of quality over quantity, and the developers took their time and actually listened to the community.

While I still think the music, ratings, and the Universe mode could have been better, these pale in comparison to everything else that impresses me.

WWE Wrestlemania Showcase cover
Image Courtesy: 2K

However, I must tell you that this is still a yearly iteration. So, if you’re expecting to get a completely new game, you’ll be disappointed. However, 2K24 packs a solid host of features and much-needed improvements.

As someone who has followed this legacy for quite a while, I do believe that WWE 2K24 is 2K’s best work yet. So, if you ask me for my experience, WWE 2K24 is the best WWE game I have ever played in a simulation setup.

However, I suggest getting the WrestleMania Edition, as you do not want to miss out on the experience of old classics. Nonetheless, even if you go for the standard, wrestling buffs will find WWE 2K24 worth getting in the ring.

Pros and Cons
The Pros
Great Gameplay, Weapons, and AI
Wrestlemania Showcase is a spectacle to live through
New Game modes feels fresh and exciting
Amazing optimization even for old PCs
The Cons
Game music and Universe mode could be better
Final Verdict
WWE 2K24
WWE 2K24 places a big focus on finishing the story this year. From new 40 years of WrestleMania showcase mode to two great MyRISE stories, the experience is thrilling. The visuals, gameplay, and AI gets a huge bump. Game modes like the Special Guest Referee, Casket mode, Gauntlet match and Ambulance match make an unforgettable impact. The only things I feel that miss the mark are the Music and Universe mode. Nonetheless, WWE 2K24 is a solid and compelling game that does justice to its legacy.
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