Review by Jonny2284

Reviewed: 04/03/03 | Updated: 04/03/03

The first PC Wrestling game for years but is it good......

Finally wrestling games have come back to the PC. Finally got it working, Nice to see a month and a half after it's PC release THQ technical support has absolutely nothing on this game, a quick Google search showed that the problem I had was a common one. Yet there is no FAQ available or solution to fix it anywhere in the read me. But that's more a fault of THQ's tech support and not the Game itself so I digress

So WWE RAW, the first wrestling game for the PC since WCW Nitro (which understandably is repressed by most fans, ditto goes for the 2 Mortal Kombat using WWF wrestlers games from 95 and 96, leaving the PC fans without a good wrestling game since European rampage (not excellent but without that we'd be going back to Micro league wrestling from the mid 80's). So to start with, it's a conversion of the X-Box version, a direct conversion, the developers have not changed a thing despite the time elapsed between the 2 games. There are people in this game who were released from their WWE contracts 7 months before the PC version was released yet are still in this game.

Another thing that stands out is how it is Still WWF RAW despite the World Wildlife Federation's lawsuit that decreed all references must be WWE (the Federations new name), yet somehow this manages to remain as WWF.

So not an ideal start for the game, it's a year out of date on it's release, but to be fair I'll carry on:

GraphicsInitially they look alright, but as soon as they start moving you see why it doesn't work. Every connecting move or blow is accompanied by a blur effect, the same kind as Grand Theft Auto 3 uses, which looks very nice on a TV connected to a console, but on a monitor it does nothing except annoy you and give you a headache. Naturally there is no option to turn this off.

Most of the wrestlers look like who their supposed to be with the exception of Triple H and a couple of others who's visages were presumably made off older footage, the animation is good for the most part, with the exception of the walking animation, everyone in the game walks like their a puppet being controls by strings, but that trailing blur effect really does make the game very annoying to play.

Sound: Is a different story altogether, the sound in the game is excellent, from the ring announcer right down to the good quality entrance music’s.

Plus in a very nice feature they keep the game's audio file as WAV so it's possible to put your own entrance music in for your CAW, or to update the music (The Entrance music’s are as out of date as the roster itself).

Game play: Now despite what I've said so far, I would still think highly of the game if the game play was good, unfortunately it isn't, just frustrating. It takes a stance halfway between the Smackdown ''All arcade'' and the No Mercy style ''Realistic'' and it gets caught smack in the centre and crushed when they collide because the it makes for a very frustrating experience.

Grapples are needlessly hard, even hitting the right buttons with the right timing, it's more often that not pure luck weather Kane will execute the Suplex on a beaten down Spike Dudley or weather LSD will take 300 pounds of Big Red Machine to the mat.

Unfortunately grapples are not the only thing that drags this down, the inevitable comparison with the Consoles wrestling games leaves it looking terrible, when it gets compared to them faults such as this become quite clear:

Can't climb ladders,
No season mode bar a monotonous series of 1 on 1 matches with no drive in between them
No gimmick matches, they’re a staple of WWE Television and their missing here
Bad CAW mode

It really does come out looking weak, unfortunately it is the only Wrestling game we do have for the PC and that means despite faults it is our only option, although we shouldn't have to put up with bad conversion, sub par technical support and outdated rosters. If for example Championship manager 00/01 was ported to X-Box now people would slap it down for being out of date, why not do the same for this.

Overall rating 4/10 - It does have some saving graces, but their not enough to save it, hopefully a PC conversion of RAW 2 with a little more effort will fix this.

Rating:   2.0 - Poor

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