New wrestling game WWE 2K22 unveiled at Wrestlemania 37 – but can it drop-kick the 2K20 curse?

Ed Nightingale
·2-min read

WWE 2K22 has been officially announced with a brand new teaser trailer.

The announcement came on the first day of Wrestlemania 37 (10 April), WWE’s flagship event.

This will be the first game in the series in two years since 2019’s WWE 2K20. The series, previously known as WWF Smackdown, has had regular annual releases but 2020 was the first year in two decades to not have a new title.

That was due to the response to WWE 2K20 which was heavily criticised for its bugs and issues with poor performance. WWE 2K21 was cancelled last April as a result and the publisher released arcade brawler WWE 2K Battlegrounds instead.

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The tagline for the new game WWE 2K22 is “it hits different”, clearly aiming to refresh the series.

“That [mantra] doesn’t just apply to the game itself but the way we market it and communicate with the press, content creators, and our community,” said 2K global communications manager Al Stavola to Games Radar. “We want to try out new ideas and bring everyone along for the journey.

“You’re going to see things earlier than you have before, with more behind-the-scenes [content] than we’ve shown in the past. Transparency is really important. This is a different and huge step in the right direction.”

The new trailer features Mexican wrestler Rey Mysterio in his luchador mask against Swiss wrestler Cesaro, who receives quite the pounding in the ring.

It’s a mixture of real-life promotional material and in-game footage, though you’d be hard-pressed to tell the difference.

The game will be released on PlayStation 5 (PS5) and Xbox Series X/S. Judging by the teaser trailer, the lifelike graphics will ensure this is the best looking WWE game yet.

No further details have been revealed and there’s no official release date yet, but you can expect 2K to drop WWE 2K22 this winter.