WWE 13: Release Date, Roster, Features and Preview

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WWE 13: Release Date, Roster, Features and Preview
image from WWE 13 from THQ

It's almost time to play the GAME!!!

Sorry, I couldn't help myself. The excitement for the soon-to-be-released WWE 13 has me doing my best Motorhead impersonation.

The hype has been building for months, and with every tidbit of information, the anticipation has grown. With so little time between now and when I actually play the game, I'm in my living room doing multiple Trouble In Paradises.

While I ice my knees, here's what you should know about the big release:

 

Release Date: Oct. 30

Platforms: Xbox 360, PS3, Nintendo Wii

Publisher: THQ

Developer: Yukes Yokohama

 

What's New

The Theme

image from WWE 13 from THQ

This year, the Attitude Era takes center stage. It's prevalent in all of the marketing, and there's a heavy presence of the WWE's glory period in the game itself. There's an Attitude Era mode as well as several Superstars and Divas to represent that time in the WWE.

 

The Roster and their Ratings

image from WWE 13 from THQ

The total amount of WWE Superstars and Divas has grown to 105 from the 78 that were available in WWE 12. Even if you deduct slots for the Superstars that appear with their Attitude Era likenesses and their current-day personas, the number is still 90 totally unique Superstars and Divas.

The roster was slowly unveiled during the buildup, as were the entrance and finisher videos for every Superstar and Diva. Here's an example:

 

The ratings for each member of the roster was released as well. Predictably, John Cena received the highest rating with a 96. I had someone on Twitter make this point about the ratings philosophy:

 

I can't say I totally agree with that sentiment, but I can partially see the logic behind it. Yes, the game is centered around the Attitude Era, but it's being released in 2012. There has to be a balance between the old and the new.

Making an Attitude Era Superstar the top-rated wrestler simply because he's from that era wouldn't be right. That said, Bret "The Hitman" Hart is the man, in my opinion.

Here are the ratings and some screenshots of the Superstars and Divas included:

 

Per THQ

AJ Lee - 77

Alberto Del Rio - 89

Alicia Fox - 76

Animal - 87

Antonio Cesaro - 84

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Big Boss Man - 86

Big Show - 92

Beth Phoenix - 78

Billy Gunn - 87

Booker T - 88

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Bradshaw - 87

Bret "The Hit Man" Hart - 94

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Brian Pillman - 87

Brie Bella - 76

British Bulldog - 88

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Brock Lesnar - 92

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Brodus Clay - 87

Cactus Jack - 90

Chainsaw Charlie - 86

Chris Jericho - 90

image from WWE 13 and THQ

"Attitude Era" Chris Jericho - 89

Christian - 88

"Attitude Era" Christian - 87

CM Punk - 95

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Cody Rhodes - 88

Damien Sandow - 84

Daniel Bryan - 91

David Otunga - 84

DDP - 89

Dolph Ziggler - 89

Drew McIntyre - 84

Dude Love - 90

Eddie Guerrero - 92

"Attitude Era" Edge - 88

Edge - 91

Epico - 81

Eve - 77

Faarooq - 87

Gangrel - 85

Godfather - 86

Goldust - 85

Grand Master Sexay - 84

The Great Khali - 84

Hawk - 87

Heath Slater - 82

Hunico - 81

Hunter Hearst Helmsley - 88

Jack Swagger - 87

JBL - 89

Jey Uso - 81

Jimmy Uso - 81

Jinder Mahal - 83

John Cena - 96

John Cena '04 - 91

image from WWE 13 and THQ

John Laurinaitis - 75

Justin Gabriel - 83

Kane - 89

"Attitude Era" Kane - 91

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Kelly Kelly - 77

Ken Shamrock - 88

Kevin Nash - 89

Kharma - 79

Kofi Kingston - 87

Layla - 78

Lita - 78

"Attitude Era" Lita - 79

Mankind - 91

Mark Henry - 89

"Attitude Era" Mark Henry - 87

Mike Tyson - 89

The Miz - 88

Mr. McMahon - 81

Natalya - 77

Nikki Bella - 76

Paul Wight - 92

Primo - 81

Randy Orton - 92

Rey Mysterio - 90

Rikishi - 87

Road Dogg - 87

The Rock - 93

image from WWE 13 and THQ

"Attitude Era" The Rock - 94

R-Truth - 87

Ryback - 87

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Santino Marella - 86

Scotty Too Hotty - 83

Shane McMahon - 82

Shawn Michaels - 95

Sheamus - 90

Sin Cara - 87

Stephanie McMahon - 74

Stone Cold Steve Austin - 95

Ted DiBiase - 82

Tensai - 87

Triple H - 93

"Attitude Era" Triple H - 92

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Trish Stratus - 80

Undertaker - 93

"Attitude Era" Undertaker - 95

image from WWE 13 and THQ

Vader - 87

Val Venis - 85

Wade Barrett - 87

X-Pac - 87

Yoshi Tatsu - 81

Zack Ryder - 85

 

Attitude Era

The game pays some serious homage to the era of the WWE that featured the edgiest, yet most compelling storylines in the history of the company. There are multiple options in the Attitude Era mode.

You can play as several of the key Superstars from era, such as the Rock, the Brothers of Destruction (Kane and Undertaker), Mankind, and Degeneration-X. The mode features many of the best storylines and actual WWE footage from the era.

It appears to be a fairly immersive replacement for Road to WrestleMania. Here's a trailer for the Attitude Era mode:

 

WWE Live

Along with the media used from the Attitude Era, the entire game has undergone an audio transformation. The trailer for the new sound direction entitled WWE Live (which can be seen below) demonstrates the major difference between WWE 12's audio quality and WWE 13.

Things are louder and come off with more clarity. It remains to be seen whether the commentating is vastly improved, as that was an area in need of improvement in WWE 12.

 

Predator Technology 2.0

The gameplay enhancements on the franchise are in their second phase with WWE 13. Predator 2.0 is aimed to provide better animations and more fluid action in the ring—and outside of it. 

WWE Games creative director Cory Ledesma talked to me about smarter A.I. and hit detection in an interview in August. We all love options, rosters and other supporting content, but gameplay is the meat and potatoes of any game.

 

WWE Universe 3.0

This is the first feature that really knocked my socks off during the pre-release hype. The options presented are awesome.

This year, the Universe mode allows you to not only play through the entire WWE calendar with your own storylines, it also allows you new functionality like the ability to create your own weekly shows and pay-per-views.

WWE gamers haven't seen this much flexibility since Owner mode was a part of WWE games. This mode will likely carry the most replay value of any mode on the game.

Check out the trailer:

 

Creation Options

I mentioned the details about Universe 3.0 being the first feature to blow me away—well, the creation options were the second. 

Yes, you can create shows and pay-per-views, but it doesn't end there. You can also create an arena with more options than before. The video below shows off some of the cool choices you'll have at your disposal.

The video discusses the creation options with move-sets as well. Gamers can now use created moves as signature moves as well as finishers. It may seem like a small detail, but to gamers that love to create wrestlers, it's a big deal.

 

DLC and Pre-Order Bonuses

 

DLC

THQ will release three waves of DLC content. On launch day, Val Venis, Too Cool, Rikishi and Gangrel will be available for $0.99 apiece on Playstation Network or 80 Microsoft points on Xbox Live, and the accelerator boost will go for $1.99 on PSN or 160 Microsoft points.

The accelerator allows you to customize Superstar attributes and access to all in-game content.

In December, the Undertaker's "Ministry of Darkness" costume will be available for free.

Tensai, Ryback, Drew McIntyre, Yoshi Tatsu, AJ Lee and Natalya will be available for $0.99 on PSN, or 80 Microsoft Points apiece.

Retro championship belts will also become available for download at that time. A solid collection of WWE, WCW, ECW, and AWA belts will sell for $1.99 on PSN, or 160 Microsoft Points.

In January 2013, THQ will offer WWE Diva Layla for free.

Damien Sandow, Antonio Cesaro, The Usos and "Attitude Era" Superstars Brian Pillman and Chainsaw Charlie will be available for $0.99 on PSN, or 80 Microsoft Points each.

The Moves Pack will also be available at that time. It will include 20 new wrestling moves such as Brock Lesnar's kimura for $1.99 on PSN, or 160 Microsoft Points.

In case you don't want to pay for all this content separately, THQ offers the Fan Axxess deal. For $19.99 on PSN or 1600 Microsoft Points, you get all the above-mentioned extras—plus Diamond Dallas Page, Goldust and an online badge.

Overall, that isn't a bad deal.

Check out the trailer that formerly announced the DLC offers:

 

Pre-Order Bonuses

image from WWE 13 and THQ

In case you haven't pre-ordered the game yet, you still have some time. The availability for some of the offers may already be sold out, but here's a snapshot of what the offers are in the United States:

 

Gamestop/North America, Best Buy and Walmart:

  • Mike Tyson Playable Superstar: Pre-order now, and for the first time ever in a WWE ring, play as "Iron" Mike Tyson!

 

Exclusively at Gamestop

  • CM Punk Ice Cream T-Shirt!
  • Play as CM Punk in his alternate attire Ice Cream Bar T-shirt! Available only when you pre-order WWE '13 at GameStop or GameStop.com


Stone Cold Collector's Edition is Sold Out, per THQ.

Here's what the contents are for those that got in while supplies lasted, per WWE.com:

  • Exclusive foil packaging featuring embossed "Stone Cold" Steve Austin skull
  • Exclusive collectible art card personally autographed by "Stone Cold" Steve Austin
  • Exclusive "Stone Cold" Steve Austin in-game attire: red skull T-shirt (circa 2001)
  • Exclusive "Stone Cold" Steve Austin in-game ATV ring entrance
  • "'Stone Cold' Steve Austin: The Bottom Line on the Most Popular Superstar of All Time" (DVD/Blu-Ray)
  • Disc No. 3 in series (exclusive to PlayStation 3 system customers in North America)
  • Disc No. 4 in series (available to Xbox 360 customers in North America, as well as PlayStation 3 system and Xbox 360 customers throughout Europe and Australia)
  • Copy of "WWE '13" video game
  • Access to WWE Hall of Famer and "WWE '13" global pre-order offer Mike Tyson playable character

 

Conclusion

That just about does it.

If you haven't already pre-ordered, and/or this content didn't entice you to, chances are, you're not interested.

I'll chime back in with a full review on Oct. 30.

 

Follow Brian Mazique and Franchiseplay on YouTube and Twitter for reactions, analysis and news from the world of sports and sports video games

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