The latest WWE game on mobile devices is called WWE Champions. To summarise it crudely, it is WWE does Candy Crush or Puzzle Quest. In reality, it is a deep game with many options and excellent graphics, unfortunately, like many, the freemium model stops it being a true winner.
Starting off the game feels like a high-quality production. The graphics bear more than a passing resemblance to the classic arcade WWE game WWE Allstars. The wrestlers are larger than life and hyper stylised versions of themselves. Just seeing the Allstars graphical style on modern wrestlers like Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and more make you wish for an update of that game. Until then, WWE Champions has more than a few tricks to hook you in.
The match 3 puzzle game is competent and rewarding. Moves are carried out for matching three and the usual special gems and multiple matches translate into bigger and more impressive moves on the match going on above. Unlike Candy Crush and others, you cannot set yourself up for the next move every time, as manoeuvring gems to set up for a big move can be taken by your opponent on the next go. Hit them with a big enough move and you can even try a sneaky pin, the opponent has to match the damage you dealt out to kick out. It is a well thought out and rewarding system.
For the real aficionado, the number of collectable superstars you can add to your roster is staggering. You begin with The Rock but soon you will have multiple versions of Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and older legends like Macho Man Randy Savage and Bret Hart to play with. They can be unlocked by fighting your way through a world tour mode, daily events or by striking it lucky with loot received in matches. The difficulty level is such that you feel you are always just powerful enough to beat the man in front of you if you keep spending the in-game currency to level up your stars. There is a generous healing mechanic that allows you to use a med pack to heal your wrestler after every match. They take an hour to regenerate, but in the early game at least you shouldn’t be hampered by this due to the number of wrestlers you recruit in the early game. There are also stat boost items and instant use items to be gained as well. Most importantly the in-game coins and bucks keep trickling in.
The only problems come when the game begins to hit you wth its paywall. After about two hours, the difficulty is just about right. you will have close matches and genuinely enjoyable gaming moments, unfortunately, the game decides to make you pick a certain type of wrestler, say a technician or a brawler against the next opponent. You always have one of them on your roster but they are at a lower level than the ones you prefer to use. You then have to spend the coins to get them to the correct level to advance. The only other option is to replay events you have already done which can be boring and without great reward. Here is where the game flashes up advertising asking you to part with real money. Some of the purchases are ridiculously expensive, even as much as £99.99 so be careful if your kids are playing this game.
In all, it is a very good game for its type and if the first weekend of play is anything to go by it will stay on your device for a long time. Hopefully, they can keep it fresh without forcing people to spend real life money.