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Legends of Wrestling returns

Say hello to the Ultimate Warrior.

If there's one thing you can say for Acclaim, it's that they never seem to give up. Despite a critical mauling for both previous Legends of Wrestling titles, the publisher hasn't thrown in the towel and has instead this week announced plans for its resurrection next year in the hands of a new developer, and with a new figurehead, the erstwhile WWE world-title holder, the Ultimate Warrior.

Legends of Wrestling: Showdown is due out in April 2004 on all "next" (current) generation consoles, features more than seventy classic wrestlers and represents a significant step forward for the series according to Acclaim brand director David Knies. "To demonstrate our commitment to this game, we enlisted a new development team, secured a dream roster of wrestlers, developed new gameplay features and incorporated a realistic art style," he said in a statement.

According to the LOW Showdown website, next year's version will boast a new "era-based, feud-driven career mode," which sounds like a nod to WWE Smackdown's celebrated equivalent, featuring various licensed arenas from the past, two-man commentary, signatures entrances and taunts for everyone, and of course Table, First Blood, Ladder, Cage, Battle Royal, Six/Eight Man Elimination, Handicap and Three/Four Way Dance match types. Very little of which means anything to us. We can also expect to see a proper wrestling tutorial from the "excellence of execution" Brett Hart (we do remember him, actually - he wore pink) and the return of the Create-A-Legend mode.

As for the Ultimate Warrior's involvement after seven years in the cold, he was characteristically bold about it all. "Hello Warriors," he said yesterday. "I have been waiting for the perfect time to make my return to professional wrestling. Amidst the rumours and mistruths spread by others, my time to return is now and it's with Acclaim," before adding that he "will take this opportunity to settle all unfinished business in the ring. Always Believe!"

You can see how Legends of Wrestling: Showdown is shaping up in these screenshots or thanks to the website at www.legendsshowdown.com.