Wrestling fans will be disappointed to learn that 2K Games will not release a WWE 2K game this year. This was confirmed during WWE’s quarterly investor meeting on Thursday.
This disheartening development was confirmed by WWE interim chief financial officer Frank Riddick when asked about the status of WWE 2K21. Riddick said that no WWE 2K game will be released this year.
WWE 2K is a long-running wrestling simulation franchise. First released in 2000, it has so far released 21 titles. The first 14 titles were developed by THQ, but development was handed over to Take-Two Interactive when the former was dissolve in 2013.
Poor franchise performance
While generally considered as a successful franchise, recent WWE 2K iterations were panned by critics and gamers alike. The latest iteration of the series, WWE 2K20, was criticized for its subpar technical performance. The game was also riddled with lots of bugs.
The development of WWE 2K20 has been rocky from the start. Development of the game was first handed to Japanese developer Yuke’s, but later dropped the project to work on its own wrestling game. Visual Concept took over the development thereafter.
The last five WWE 2K games were also received with mixed critical reviews. A GameSpot review of the game gave it a score of 2/10. Because of these mostly negative reviews, WWE 2K’s sales numbers were greatly affected.
WWE 2K20 was the first WWE game for Visual Concepts. The studio has worked on other 2K titles as well, most notable of which is the NBA 2K series.
2K’s own wrestling project
Rumors about WWE 2K21 being cancelled has been hovering around the gaming community for quite some time now. Rumors and speculations have been discussed on several forums and blogs. However, the rumor escaped into the mainstream and gained a lot of traction following a revelation by Justin Leeper.
I’m not a fan of bringing “bad news,” but it’s post-WrestleMania & I think fans deserve to know:
I’ve heard on good authority that WWE 2K21 has been cancelled.
However, another WWE branded game will enter the ring this year…https://t.co/zRhyz18ONI pic.twitter.com/ai10YXwy3z
— Justin Leeper だよ！ (@JustinLeeper_yo) April 11, 2020
Leeper is a former writer who has worked on the WWE 2K franchise. He is one of the first few people to confirm that the WWE 2K21 project has been cancelled. He made his announcement weeks before WWE confirmed it.
Leeper also noted that 2K is working on a different WWE game. However, this game will be developed by a different studio and not Visual Concepts.
Take-Two Interactive, the owner of 2K Sports, said that it will provide additional information regarding the future of the WWE 2K franchise on Monday.
Image courtesy of Simon Q/Wikimedia Commons