WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010
|WWE Smackdown vs. Raw 2010|
NTSC cover art featuring Edge, The Undertaker, John Cena, Randy Orton and Rey Mysterio
TOSE (Nintendo DS)
|Series||SmackDown vs. RAW|
|Release date(s)||JP January 28, 2010
Wii Optical Disc
WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 (also shortened to WWE SvR 2010), is a professional wrestling video game developed by Yuke's, and published by THQ for the PlayStation 2 (PS2), PlayStation 3 (PS3), PlayStation Portable (PSP), Wii, Nintendo DS, and Xbox 360 systems. It is the eleventh video game in the WWE SmackDown vs. Raw (later renamed to simply WWE) series, and is the sequel to its predecessor WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2009, and was succeeded by WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2011. It was released on October 20, 2009 in North America, October 22, 2009 in Australia and October 23, 2009 in Europe. TOSE oversaw the development for the Nintendo DS version, which was the final game of the series to be released for the handheld.
The game is based on the professional wrestling promotion World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), and is named after the promotion's two brands: SmackDown and Raw. It also features the promotion's former third brand ECW. It is also the last game to feature ECW in its title. Similar to previous games in the series, WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 involves players competing in various professional wrestling matches, either as one of the in-game characters based on WWE's roster or as a character created in the Create-a-Superstar mode. WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 adds several new features with the main theme based around customization, such as a Story Designer allowing players to create their own playable WWE storylines, an expansion on the Create-a-Finisher mode to include aerial techniques and for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions, the customization of attire colors in a mode called Superstar Threads, a revamped Create-a-Superstar mode and a Paint Tool for creating logos to use on their created characters.
The game features revamped create modes, which have received a complete overhaul compared to past years' editions. In addition to the original create-a-superstar and create-an-entrance modes, the game introduces the WWE Story Designer mode, where the player can now design storylines featuring WWE's weekly shows (Raw, SmackDown, or ECW) and pay-per-views with storylines, scenarios, and matches of their creations using a variety of preset options, with over 100 different animations and 25 different locations to design each scene. Subtitles can be written in through a controller or through a USB keyboard. Similar to previous editions in the series, the player can create storylines; however, the player can now control how long the storylines goes on, how many superstars or Divas are involved, and what takes place in the storylines. The match-making feature allows the player to set a match type, set a stipulation, and set any winning conditions. In addition to using created superstars, the player may also integrate actual WWE superstars and Divas into their created storylines, scenarios, or matches. On the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions, each storyline can feature up to 500 segments including 450 matches and 50 scenarios, while the Wii, PlayStation 2 and PlayStation Portable versions have a limit of 55 segments. Created wrestlers are limited in the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions to ten appearances in the mode.
The create-a-superstar feature has also been retooled since WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2009 in the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions. The game now features three-dimensional apparel, unlike in previous games where it appeared as "painted on". The apparel moves realistically; for example, a robe moves with each of the superstar's movements. Another improvement to the create-a-superstar mode is the shortened loading time of the menus in comparison to previous iterations. A new point system has been implemented into the create-a-superstar mode where each item is given a point value and the player is able to attach up to 48 points of items. For each created wrestler, the player can create up to three alternate attires for them. The mode also features an additional Paint Tool in which players can create their own design that they can use as to use as a logo or a tattoo for their created wrestler. In addition to the create-a-superstar mode, the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 versions of WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 introduces a new mode called Superstar Threads, in which the player can create three alternate attires for existing wrestlers in the game by customizing the colors of their attire. This mode however is not available for the Wii version of the game. However, the PlayStation 2 version has undergone only a few minor changes from the previous game. A few additional attire items are added, but almost everything else is as it was before.
Unlocking abilities for a created superstar has been made easier, as players no longer have to assign points or take the created superstar into a career mode specifically to improve their attributes. Instead, attributes can be increased in all modes of the game, including regular exhibition matches as well as the create-a-superstar story in the Road to Wrestlemania mode. The maximum threshold is extended by 5 points in one or two categories, depending on how the player performed in the match. And available attribute points are determined by what happens in each match. There are 21 unlockable abilities, which are easier to unlock that in previous years. This time, players are required to build up certain attributes to unlock the option of certain skills. They can be assigned in Create-A-Moveset mode. They include new ones such as Fired Up, Pull Back Attacks, Exploder Turnbuckle Attack, and others.
The create-a-finisher option has also been reworked, with the addition of 30 percent more content. Introduced in the previous game, the player was able to create a finisher in the front grapple position. In WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010, the mode has been expanded to include aerial techniques. The player is also able to adjust the jumping trajectory and speed of the maneuver.
Along with these new customization features, players for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions are able to share their created wrestlers, moves and shows online with other players. The player can also rate other creations online in terms of quality. Evolving from the previous year's Highlight Reel mode, a compilation of the match's highlights will be listed after each match. The player can subsequently choose to watch or save any of these highlights. Players are also able to convert their created Highlight Reels into entrance movies for their created wrestlers. Players of the PlayStation 3 version are able to upload their highlight reel videos directly onto YouTube.
A new addition to the game this year is the WWE Rivals feature. This option allows the player to set superstars' allies and enemies which can be used to their advantage or disadvantage in exhibition matches with the interference option on. If a superstar is set as an enemy, then that enemy may appear during the peak of a match. The enemy has a number of choices including standing by the ring and breaking up pinfalls, using his or her finisher, or coming in with a weapon. Allies work in a similar fashion. The intensity of the rivalry or alliance can be changed by changing the position of where the certain superstars are slotted.
WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 also features new additions to match gameplay. A new feature that has been added is the THQ Training Facility, a tutorial option for players who may be unaware of the gameplay of the series. The player is able to choose a superstar, their non-player character opponent (or they may choose to play with another player), the match type, and the game or match settings. During the match, various pop-ups will appear with different instructions on how to perform actions, such as the grapples or maneuvers available to be performed. There are over 100 training tips available to the player.
For the first time since WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2007, the game features four strong grapples, with players now also able to switch between each grapples. Other new move positions include moves involving superstars standing on the ring's apron and a change in ground grapples with side grapple moves and separate moves for opponents depending whether they are on their stomach or back.
The game also features a revamped HUD, cutting down on the on-screen information seen in the previous year. The momentum meter now appears as a small halo underneath each superstar, while HUD icons and information relevant to the match are displayed around the superstar. On-screen body damage meters are now replaced by visual cues from superstars indicating where they are damaged. The game also adopts the "pinfall kickout mechanism" used in the THQ video game WWE Legends of WrestleMania, in which the player can either hold a face button or button mash to fill up a meter for kicking out of a pinfall attempt. A new reversal system replaces the old two-button system from previous games. The new single-button reversal system is based around timing, with the player given only one chance to press the reversal key when the icon appears.
This year's game features several new match stipulations. One of these is the Championship Scramble match that was introduced at WWE's Unforgiven 2008 event. Another new match featured is the mixed tag team match. The DS version also includes for the first time an Ambulance match. The Royal Rumble match has been revamped. As well as eliminating opponents off the apron like in the previous games, the player can now eliminate other wrestlers in the match by using the ring ropes and the turnbuckles. Eliminations in the match are done either by mini-games in these areas or by the player using finishing moves to eliminate other wrestlers. Finishing moves can also save wrestlers from elimination. On the home consoles version, the number of different backstage areas in the Backstage Brawl match has been increased from two to five areas. The match also makes its debut on the DS version, where it has 14 backstage areas instead. With the exception of the First Blood match, the Hell in a Cell match, the Elimination Chamber match and the Royal Rumble match, Divas are now able to participate in all of the match types However, apart from the mixed tag team match, intergender match-ups are no longer allowed.
The Wii version of the game has also been reworked, primarily the motion gameplay and control scheme having been modified similar to that of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions. With these improvements, the player now has more control options, including the use of the GameCube controller, Wii Remote, and the Wii Classic Controller. The Wii version features many of the features found on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions, allowing it to be comparable to the other versions. While the Wii version features the create-a-finisher mode for the first time, it will not feature online support like the previous year's edition.
TOSE developed the Nintendo DS version of WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010. The gameplay can now be seen from an elevated camera, in addition, the maneuvers are now also controlled by using the device's buttons instead of touch screen. Unlike past games, the DS version of this game features an increase in speed. A new feature to the DS version is a collectible card system. The player is able to collect cards that feature power-ups that may be activated in the ring such as calling in a wrestler to interfere in the match, or that feature unlockables such as create-a-superstar parts and match types.
The Road to WrestleMania mode returns from WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2009 with six new stories based on various WWE wrestlers. Unlike the previous year, WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 features a Diva-based story involving Mickie James and a story specifically for one of the player's created wrestlers. This year's co-operative storyline, titled "Brand Warfare", is based around Triple H and John Cena. The remaining three stories involve Edge, Shawn Michaels, and Randy Orton respectively. This year's Road to WrestleMania mode also includes storylines that branch out through interactive cutscenes.
The DS version also features a revamped story mode in which the player will participate in various storylines. Along the way, the player has to compete in matches, in addition to being able to improve a created wrestler's statistics, nursing the wounds suffered by the player's wrestler, or visiting WWE Chairman Vince McMahon's office.
WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 features 67 in-game superstars and divas on each console with the exceptions of the Nintendo DS version which features 30 superstars, and the Mobile version which features 11 superstars. The majority of the roster was revealed on September 16 during a live webcast hosted by GameSpot, featuring The Miz, Eve Torres and Howard Finkel as guests. The roster in the 2010 edition is split into six classifications: Raw, SmackDown, ECW, WCW, legends and free agents. Like the previous game, players can choose to change the character's classification in a roster editor called Superstar Management. This is also the last game featuring Umaga due to his death. SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 marked the debut of the Bella Twins, Dolph Ziggler, Eve Torres, Ezekiel Jackson, Gail Kim, Jack Swagger, Maryse, Mike Knox, Natalya, Primo, R-Truth, and Vladimir Kozlov. Evan Bourne and Ted DiBiase, Jr. made their first appearance as regular characters after appearing as DLC in the previous game. It also marked Christian's first appearance since WWE SmackDown! vs. Raw 2006 and Goldust's first appearance since WWE SmackDown! Here Comes the Pain. This was the first and so far only game to feature the red and green superstar models from the create-a-moveset mode as playable characters.
An extra character, Stone Cold Steve Austin, was also featured as downloadable content on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions. The character could be downloaded by a code obtained when purchased at GameStop, EB Games or Game. Each unlock code purchased could only be used to download the character once. He may also be obtained as downloadable content for PlayStation Store for $0.99, and for Xbox Live Marketplace for 80 Microsoft Points. This is the last game featuring Jeff Hardy, Mr Kennedy, Umaga, Tommy Dreamer, Carlito, Maria and Jesse as playable characters. JBL did not appear in the following games due to his real life retirement, although he would be included in later games as he returned to the company in a non-wrestling compacity (Although he retired well before the game was released, it was too far in development to remove him).
The first announcement for the game was made in May 2009, when during an earnings call with investors, THQ declared their intent to release the next installment in the series later in the year. The game's development was officially announced at E3 on June 1, 2009 by WWE, Yuke's, and THQ.
For the first time in the series, WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 implements the Havok game engine. The software was used in the game to improve collision detection. In a podcast with IGN, THQ game designer Bryan Williams said Havok was slowly implementated into the series with this year's game only focusing on small areas such as collisions between wrestlers and the ring ropes as well as collisions between themselves, with later installments incorporating Havok more. Consideration for the use of Havok in the series was previously announced by THQ in March 2009 during Havok's presentation at the 2009 Game Developers Conference in Austin, Texas.
The game also saw some graphical improvements within the series, with blood from the cuts on wrestlers' heads now smearing on any wrestlers that contact the wound. Wrestler's chests will also turn red after taking numerous chops.
|Lynyrd Skynyrd||"Still Unbroken"|
|The Parlor Mob||"Hard Times"|
|Sick Puppies||"You're Going Down"|
|Trivium||"Down From The Sky"|
Marketing and release
The game was mainly promoted under the tagline "It's Your World Now", referring to the new customization features available to the player. The first video of gameplay footage was revealed on the August 11 edition of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon during an interview with wrestler Triple H, showing a match between Triple H and a created Jimmy Fallon.
A trailer announcing and promoting the game's new customization features was released on August 20 at GameSpot. This was a change from the previous years of the WWE SmackDown series in which features were announced earlier in a month like April. The reasoning for this was to build up anticipation and excitement in a shorter period with more information about the game, as well as preventing any overlap with the promotion over WWE Legends of WrestleMania, a video game also produced by THQ and Yuke's. A commercial for the game was later released in October, starring Kelly Kelly, Kofi Kingston and John Cena and featuring the song "Step Up (I'm On It)" by Maylene & The Sons of Disaster.
Certain stores also featured special bonuses bundled with the game when pre-ordered. GameStop, EB Games and Game gave away codes that would enable the player to download a Stone Cold Steve Austin character for free. Other stores gave away cheat codes to unlock certain superstars and arenas such as The Rock when purchased at Play.com, and two backstage areas, Vince McMahon's office and the Dirt Sheet studio, if the game was preordered at Amazon.co.uk. If the game was preordered at HMV, players got a free Hulk Hogan DVD.
Originally, the game was announced in June 2009 to have an American release date of November 10, 2009. However, the release date was subsequently moved forward to October 20, 2009. A playable demo for the game was made available for attendees of WWE's SummerSlam Axxess fan convention on August 22 and August 23. However, unlike previous years, there was not a wide release of the demo.
WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 has received generally favorable reviews from numerous video game publications. The PlayStation 3 version received average scores of 81.59% and 83 out of 100 from review aggregators Game Rankings and Metacritic respectively. Meanwhile, the Xbox 360 version received average scores of 82.59% and 80 out of 100 from Game Rankings and Metacritic respectively.
The majority of reviews were for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions. GamesMaster magazine rated the Xbox 360 version with 90%, giving it the publication's GamesMaster Gold Award, calling it a "true return to form for the evergreen series". Oliver Hurley from the PlayStation Official Magazine rated the PS3 version an 8 out of 10, mentioning that while gameplay was "much the same as ever" and that it lacked the "punching power" seen in UFC 2009 Undisputed (also produced by THQ and Yuke's), the game's create modes "makes this the deepest, most playable WWE game yet." IGN reviewer Greg Miller rated both the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions an 8.5 out of 10, mentioning that while the game "still stumbles" in areas and that it "might not be the greatest wrestling game of all time", the improvement in gameplay, presentation and create modes makes this wrestling game "the best the world's seen in years." Both 1Up.com and VideoGamer.com declared WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 the best game in the series to date, with the former calling it "ultimate wrestling gamer's sandbox".
The game has also received some criticism. Game Revolution's Nick Tan questioned the game's tagline with restrictions in the Story Designer and create-a-superstar modes, and instead declared it as "Your World Now. Some Restrictions Apply." The UK version of Official Xbox Magazine was heavily critical of the game, rating it 6 out of 10 and criticizing the lack of any progress made towards the game's engine as well as the loading times.
As well as the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions, IGN also reviewed the PS2, PSP, Wii and Nintendo DS versions. Greg Miller gave the PS2 and Wii versions an 8.0 out 10, praising the gameplay and additional content featured in the PS2 version as well as calling the Wii version the best game of the series on that console. However, Miller criticized the lack of online support on the Wii and commented that the tweaks to the game didn't "play as well on the PSP as they played on the PS3" and that the "whole experience still feels stiff". Reviewer Mark Bozon also commented on the Wii version, calling the switch to buttons a "win/lose situation", with the sacrifice of the Wii-exclusive features in the previous two games has helped the core game get stronger, of which he approved. On the Nintendo DS version, Bozon mentioned that while the game was sluggish in gameplay and that superstars movesets were lacking in areas, the switch to button controls "paid off" and it was "closer to the No Mercy system than ever before".
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