WWE 2K24 Review (PS5) | Push Square


As the calendar rapidly approaches WrestleMania 40, the eyes of the world are once again trained on WWE’s big house of muscular lads and lasses. With The Rock’s involvement in this year’s shindig raising the event’s profile to even loftier heights, WWE and 2K have pulled out all the stops to try and ensure the latest entry in their ongoing grappling simulator cuts the mustard. But have they stuck the landing, or will WWE 2K24 go down as a misfire on the road to wrestling’s most prestigious show?

If you’re familiar with the last two WWE games, you’ll be right at home with WWE 2K24. Controls and gameplay are practically unchanged from WWE 2K23, with a simple combo system allowing for button mashing enthusiasts to get in on the fun, and more complex controls on offer for those who want to have a more direct influence on the course of a match. Making its debut this year, however, are the three banked finishers — requiring Super Finisher, and the ability to Trade Blows. Here, once per match, a performer can throw a punch that’ll trigger this back-and-forth minigame, with the player who comes up short ending up Staggered for a time.

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Additionally, 2K’s spectacular lighting engine continues to make the enormous roster of WWE 2K24 look fantastic… for the most part. While arenas and costumes shine brightly, and there isn’t a hair out of place on most megastars, not all performers are created equally. We were honestly a little surprised by a number of visual inconsistencies in character models, with a few members of the roster either a sickly shade of beige, or in possession of weirdly smooth skin, looking instead more action figure-like than lifelike. We suppose that’s the price you pay for such a huge number of playable Superstars, but still, odd.

Thankfully, mode-wise, the title once again practically groans under the weight of the deep and diverse content on offer, with the showrunning MyGM, card-based MyFaction, and wrestling sandbox Universe modes each making a return with added bells and whistles.

MyGM continues to grow year-on-year, with this entry being no exception. Choose your desired show, draft a roster of Superstars, and compete against up to three friends or CPU opponents to stay under budget and win the ratings war. Aspiring General Managers must carefully set up each week’s show to ensure compatible performers — be they Cruiserweights or Fighters — put on the most exciting event possible to get bums in seats. Beyond the booking of matches and selection of venues, players can send out talent scouts to find rising stars to add to their rosters, complete optional objectives to earn rewards, and play Power Cards to impact their foes and boost their own chances of coming out on top. The sheer number of menus and stats is a tad overwhelming, but MyGM has serious depth if you’re willing to dedicate the time.

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Equally, MyFACTION, the Ultimate Team-inspired card mode that 2K would really like you to spend all your money in (please), features a similar onslaught of menus and options. From daily matches, to Towers, challenges, and more, MyFACTION has absolutely tonnes of content for eager card-collectors to battle through. With its service nature, it shouldn’t get stale either, assuming you’re interested in the trappings of such a mode. The addition of a card marketplace for the purchase of individual performers means that players aren’t reliant on dumping all their points into mystery packs, and with some cards unlocking cosmetic changes for that Superstar across all game modes, there are even more reasons to stick with it than ever before.

This year’s MyRISE career mode story paths are titled Unleashed and Undisputed for the female and male protagonists respectively. In the women’s campaign, the player is positioned as the fiercely proud and accomplished champion of an independent wrestling promotion who, despite being approached several times, has had no interest in signing with WWE until now. The male story, on the other hand, follows the sudden upward trajectory of a middling WWE roster member who’s thrust into the main event scene following Roman Reigns’ surprise vacation of the WWE Universal Heavyweight Championship.

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MyRISE plays as it has in previous years, with protagonists initially brought to life in the exceptional Creation Suite, and sat in hubs between cutscenes and matches where they can engage in side stories, challenges, or continue the main narrative. XP and unlockable cosmetics and wrestlers are your reward for each engagement, and we were pleasantly surprised by both the inclusion of more real WWE personnel — rather than the menagerie of made-up 2K originals that have littered the mode in the past — as well as the portrayal of both male and female characters as confident and self-assured. There are, after all, only so many times MyRISE can position you as a plucky underdog newcomer.

That’s not to say it’s perfect, however. Tonally, the mode can’t get away from feeling like a full blown comedy at times, which only serves to undermine the story’s more serious moments. Plus, awkward backstage conversations have characters look more like animatronics than people, and we’re not huge fans of the social media feed as a means of sourcing matches and stories, and would prefer a more natural way for this optional content to fit into the main plot. We did, however, really enjoy the increased focus on the branching narratives, with the game going as far as to increase the save slots for this mode to accommodate for future playthroughs.

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Returning in WWE 2K24 is another series mainstay in the playable documentary mode, Showcase. This year focussing on 40 years of WrestleMania, it exposes players to several iconic matchups from across The Grandest Stage of Them All’s illustrious history. While not every year is represented, those that have been selected are preceded by an in-depth recap of the story that led to the match, with commentary and talking heads from some of the wrestlers involved giving a real insight into the history of these bouts.

Playing as the ultimate victor in each fight, you’re tasked with obeying the objectives displayed on screen, which can range from a request to deal enough damage, to a requirement of performing a move in a specific location. Detailed instructions are thankfully available in the pause menu for more advanced manoeuvres, with the gameplay transitioning into cutscenes and real footage of the matches themselves. Unfortunately, however, we found this year’s Showcase to be rather lacking.

While the premise itself is interesting, and it’s once again very well presented, the gameplay to cutscene/footage ratio is surprisingly unbalanced. There are numerous matches where we found ourselves performing a single move and were then subjected to several minutes of video before we regained control. While we fully appreciate the tense, narrative intricacies of Hulk Hogan powering out of The Ultimate Warrior’s devastating bear hug submission, asking players to sit and watch grainy, early ‘90s footage of an oily man shake his head in sweaty resistance for 2 and a half minutes without touching their controller, is beyond the pale.

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Outside of the marquee modes, WWE 2K24 has thrown a few significant additions into the mix. Chaotic Backstage Brawls now support up to four players, and Casket, Ambulance, and Gauntlet matches provide fun new ways to cause grievous bodily harm to friends, family, and any CPUs daft enough to cross you. You can even create an original referee to join the debuting roster of real WWE refs, or simply cosplay as one while playing as a Special Guest Referee.


Far removed from the haunted carnival ride that was WWE 2K20, 2K and Visual Concepts have settled into an extremely reliable groove. The amount of content on offer is absolutely staggering, with grapple fans certain to delight in at least one of the many available modes and 200+ available Superstars. Some visual inconsistencies and a somewhat lacklustre WrestleMania Showcase let the side down, but beyond that, WWE 2K24 is another strong, if safe, entry in the 2K-driven WWE series.

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