It is no secret that The Ultimate Warrior's relationship with the WWE and Vince McMahon has been a tumultuous one over the years, but perhaps things are starting to change as it was revealed on Monday that The Ultimate Warrior will be available as a special pre-order bonus character in the upcoming WWE 2K14 video game, according to WWE.com.
The official announcement was made through a WWE Games YouTube video, which featured The Ultimate Warrior, complete with his signature face paint and jacket, cutting an old-school promo that would bring any wrestling fan back to the early-1990s.
Steve Noah of OperationSports.com tweeted a screen cap of Warrior's possible character model from the video on Twitter as well.
The man behind the Warrior character has always come off as a very existential person, so it should come as no surprise that he provided WWE.com with a noteworthy response to his WWE 2K14 inclusion.
Immortality is inspiration, pure and simple. An example to others that they, too, can do things larger than the life they are actually living, and Ultimate Warrior was the pure embodiment of this belief, in what has proven to be a very attention-getting and inspiring way, said Warrior. It was my good fortune to be his creator and performer, and I am humbled by all those fans who’ve not only kept his legacy alive, but deepened it over time. In 'WWE 2K14,' Ultimate Warrior’s creed, ‘Always Believe,’ lives on.
WWE 2K14 senior director of marketing Chris Snyder explained why the decision was made to feature The Ultimate Warrior and make him a focal point of the game.
There has never been another WWE Superstar quite like the Ultimate Warrior – his intensity and energy is unmatched, and his legacy is undeniable, said Chris Snyder, Senior Director of Marketing at 2K. Fans love him, opponents fear him and everyone can agree that he’s one of the most iconic Legends in WWE history. Pre-ordering 'WWE 2K14' is the only way we mere mortals will ever have a glimpse into the greatness that is Ultimate Warrior.
Not only is this great news for anyone who considered themselves part of "Warrior Nation" during The Ultimate Warrior's heyday, but perhaps it offers a glimpse into the theme of WWE 2K14 as well.
WWE 13 focused largely on the Attitude Era as the roster featured most of the WWE's biggest stars from the mid-to-late-1990s. Also, WWE 13 had a hugely-successful Attitude Era mode which allowed players to relive many of the greatest Attitude Era moments in video game form.
Since the Attitude Era has already been done, maybe WWE 2K14 will focus on the Golden Era of the late-1980s and early-1990s. Aside from 2009's WWE Legends of WrestleMania game, the Golden Era is largely untapped. It involved some of the greatest superstars in WWE history, though, which means the roster and potential game modes would be very enticing to wrestling fans of all ages.
It will also be interesting to see if Warrior's involvement leads to any projects with the WWE moving forward. Brock Lesnar was utilized as an unlockable character in WWE 12, and that ultimately led to his WWE return after eight years away.
That isn't to say that the 54-year-old Warrior will come back to wrestle, but even if it leads to WWE-licensed Warrior products, it would be a big win for the company, Warrior and wrestling fans everywhere.
Will Ultimate Warrior's WWE 2K14 involvement lead to more WWE projects?
After leaving the WWE in 1992, Warrior made a triumphant return in 1996. His return didn't last long, though, as McMahon grew tired of his antics. There has been a lot of vitriol spewed in both directions ever since, especially stemming from WWE's one-sided The Self Destruction of The Ultimate Warrior DVD.
If Warrior is finally back on good terms with the WWE, then maybe his appearance in WWE 2K14 is just the first step. Many fans would love to see a proper DVD and perhaps even an induction into the WWE Hall of Fame.
As of right now it's great to simply see The Ultimate Warrior in WWE's main video game franchise, but the possibility of a working relationship between Warrior and WWE moving forward is certainly fun to think about.
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