Dave Bautista announced his retirement from professional wrestling in April following a loss to longtime friend Triple H at WrestleMania 35, but his Batista persona will live on as a playable character in the latest Gears of War video game, Gears 5.
Game developer The Coalition confirmed the inclusion of the WWE legend Tuesday:
"Dave has long been passionate about joining the Gears franchise, and we're thrilled to be working in partnership with him to bring his signature WWE style to the game. The iconic attitude of WWE's Batista will be incorporated into 'Gears 5' as a multiplayer skin, allowing both Gears and wrestling fans alike to jump into the action as Batista across all multiplayer modes including Horde, Versus and Escape."
Rod Fergusson, Studio Head at The Coalition, also discussed the partnership:
“It’s been a long time coming, but I couldn’t be happier that we’re finally making Dave’s dream to be in Gears of War a reality in ‘Gears 5.’ The iconic, larger-than-life persona of Batista fits perfectly in the Gears of War Universe, and the entire team at The Coalition can’t wait to see him take on the Swarm and all other challengers in multiplayer. Dave and the WWE have been a pleasure to work with, and I’m hopeful this is just the beginning of our partnership.”
Bautista, who rose to Hollywood stardom as Drax the Destroyer in the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise, still made sporadic appearances in WWE over the years despite his emergence as a highly paid actor.
His list of accomplishments includes being a four-time world heavyweight champion, two-time WWE champion and a two-time Royal Rumble winner. He also held Tag Team championships on four occasions and was named the 2005 Wrestler of the Year by Pro Wrestling Illustrated.
It made Batista one of the era's most decorated wrestlers and put him in rare air alongside Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson as WWE Superstars who went on to find consistent success in the acting world.
His inclusion in Gears 5 likely stems from comments he made to GameSpot Universe in June 2018 about wanting to play Gears of War protagonist Marcus Fenix in a movie version of the video game franchise:
Gears 5, a third-person shooter, is the sixth installment in the smash-hit series and will once again feature both single-player and multiplayer game modes.
The Microsoft exclusive franchise will be available on PC and Xbox One with the Ultimate Edition launching on Sept. 6 (also available on Xbox Game Pass) and the Standard Edition on Sept. 10.