WWE SmackDown! Vs. RAW 2006 Reader Review
Since the days playstation, Smackdown games have been one of the best sports games on Sony's consoles. The Smackdown series is a yearly tradition and every year the games have gotten better. But in my opinion, the first Smackdown Vs Raw was a bit of a disappointment. Now THQ and Yukes try to impress with...SMACKDOWN VS RAW 2006. This game is a improvement over the previous game and is the best WWE game ever. It features Superb graphics, A perfect roster and lots of modes.
The roster is massive, with new favourites like John Cena and Batista, Classics like Triple H and Kane and Legends like Andre The Giant and Hulk Hogan. You are more than likely to find your favourite wrestler.
The graphics are the best you'll find on the PS2. The game has a very steady frame rate and the game is very smooth looking. The wrestlers look fantastic and very realistic. the arenas look fantastic as well, with the arenas from Summerslam 2005 to Wrestlemainia 21. You can battle backstage in Drinking Bars, Parking Lots and Backstage. All the create-a-character models look great and you can really customize with the parts.
The sound is just as good as the graphics. It features all the wrestlers entrance music videos and that's fantastic. It gives the game a realistic feel. All the wrestlers did a voiceover for the career mode and that makes the sound even better. The in-game music is ok, but not that good. It has songs that aren't really special, nor are very fitting to the game. I only enjoyed about one song off the game so that isn't very good. The commentary is very good. They will always say something about the wrestlers careers and history and it's quite funny listening to J.R. and The King going on about Puppies and listening to Tazz and Cole arguing.
There are lots of new additions, including A GM mode, improved season mode and improved Create-a-wrestler mode. The season mode is fantastic. Like I said before, the wrestlers have an official voice-over and unlike the previous WWE Smackdown game, you can listen to your wrestler actually speak and not have to read text. Even the create-a-wrestlers have a voice, which you can choose. You play through a year like previous games and you pick a wrestler. You can pick a wrestler from both shows (Smackdown and Raw) and both stories will be different. What I mean is that if you pick a wrestler from Raw you'll get a story but if you pick a wrestler from Smackdown then you would get a completely different story. That means the story has an open-ended feel and that means more replay value. And the story is so cool and gripping that you'll want to play it again and again.
The Create-a-PPV mode is quite simple. You pick an arena, pick your commentators, pick which show you want your wrestlers from and then you make matches. This mode feels much more improved than the previous game as you can now use the proper WWE belts rather than your create-a-belts. Another Create-a-mode is the Create-a-belt-mode. I found it quite hard to create a belt on the previous game because it cost so much to make one, but now it's cheaper to create belts, meaning that you can customize even more. You can pick what the belt is made from, including Gold, Plastic and Silver. You can also add on diamonds like Emerald, Diamond and Ruby. A key component to the Smackdown series, the create-a-wrestler mode is better than ever. With more options, easier layout and better customization this is Smackdowns best Create-a-wrestler ever. And now for the big new mode...GM MODE...except it's not that good. It's feels like a new coat of paint on the create-a-ppv mode. You basically pick which show you want from Smackdown or Raw, then you can either draft your roster or pick a sample roster. The reason this mode feels wasted is because it just isn't very interesting to play. There's no cutscenes in between fights or to show a big PPV or nothing. It does have multiplayer but it's still boring. It just feels like a snazzier create-a-ppv mode and you'll probably play for only one in-game week. There is also challenge mode. This is also improved as in the previous game, as a few of the missions didn't really work. Like the previous, you have to basically go on a difficulty and complete the mission in exhibition. Once you've complete all the mission you get a reward.
The wrestling system is similar to the previous game. You have the same grapple system from Smackdown Vs Raw and Here Comes The Pain. You hit the Circle button with a direction button, then hit the circle button and direction button again. The counter and irish whip systems have been changed. Now to do a irish whip you have to press the triangle button and you have to press the R2 and L2 buttons to counter. Some of the mini games from the previous game are cut out from this game, which is a disappointment, but doesn't destroy the game.
You'll probably play this for months, thanks to the open-ended design of the season mode, the amount of customization and the amount of modes. If you have pre-ordered Smackdown Vs Raw 2007 then you don't need to buy this but if you are a fan of WWE, fans of wrestling games and fans of action then you should buy this as if you buy this, you wouldn't regret it.
9 / 10