I finally played the WWE '13 Best Buy copy. I only played for an hour and 20 minutes, so I looked up what I could but it was very brief.
NOTE: Since i'm essentially mostly talking about the little details that I went to check out, and not looking at the overall package (Which I KNOW is good and i'm going to enjoy), I might be entering my... "Nitpicking Mode" when I give my thoughts. Bear with me, as i'm still excited for the game, and can't wait to play it, but here's me being hyper-crtitical.
Create-An-Entrance-Video is exactly the same as last time, with no new Titantron themes, no new music choices (Movie Star, Dark Super Hero, Hell's Demon, all those. No new ones.)
There aren't a lot of additions to CAW mode, except there are new kickpads selectable independent of the boot, maybe about 4 new hair styles, some new clothes things here and there, a new mask, the ability to set the hit points for head, legs, body, and arms on a slider. I scrolled through things quite fast, though.
The sound options are exactly like last time, with the sliders meaning that if you remove menu music, it removes all entrance music, too, ect.
Create-An-Arena Stages are WAY more limited than I thought as far as paint tools, with only 2 Custom Logos of a large size usable, and 4 small Custom Logos usable. I don't know if iit's for just stages or EVERYTHING, including rings but I have a feeling it might be. So you will have to be VERY stingy with created designs.
Most of the options of created stages come with turning off or on certain special stage items, like trons, walls, and extra designs like the fist. You can add designs a lot of things, though. Just.. like I said, if you want to use paint tools, you're extremely limited with how many different ones you can have.
Created Story has lots and lots of new cutscenes. You can also unlock all the ones in Universe. There's an APA office scene that showed Santino asking Farrooq and Bradshaw for protection. EVERY SINGLE ENTRANCE move in the game is a selectable story scene. Even the "Diva, Legend, and Superstar" presets!
The beginning of Attitude Era mode does begin with a slightly re-edited version of the 1997 Raw Is War opening song with "Thorn in Your Eye" but this is the only time in the game where the song appears. Eh. Better than nothing I guess.
All AE arenas are locked at the start. Most of the Attitude wrestlers are also locked. This also means that creation elements related to their likenesses (like render images and logos) are also locked at the start. Better play and complete Attitude Era mode and unlock everything first, before you start creating stuff.
When you first start the game, it jumps right into the title screen. There's no "Intro Video" to WWE '13 like 12 had with the song and the yellow
effects and all that stuff. It just throws you right to the menu after "Press Start To Begin". In fact I noticed that some of the extraneous bells and whistles like this that were in 12 aren't in this game. I barely notice they're gone and they don't impact anything, but it does make the game feel leaner and menu's much quicker. Maybe it's just how the game is streamlined, but menus load and scroll through fast.
Titantrons look pretty crummy, I gotta say. They have so many this year, I think they cut them all down to 30 seconds, compressed the hell out of them, and like i've been saying for a while, the aspect ratios on a lot of them are ill-fitting and horrendous. In Attitude era mode, it just reminds you you're playing a video game, not actually re-living the 100% accurate thing.
There are no "Fireworks" scenes when you start a show, it jumps right to the first match. A lot of the loading times between scenes in this mode are gone. Same with AE mode. And same with story designer. They really did something cool here to cut down on how much the game loads, because a lot of cutscenes just come up instantaneously, or at least after a 1 second fade-out.
You can select WCW Nitro as a logo for your brand, but there are NO "WCW Nitro" name plates, graphics, or anything like that in the game. Aside from a ring apron logo, and a brand logo, everything WCW related is pretty much removed from all creation options, outright. Man, they really did not want WCW elements in this game to make stuff out of.
Creating a show is exactly like the previous game, just with the new option of being able to put whatever you want on any day you want. And to set PPV's the "emulate" a real PPV like Money In The Bank, Royal Rumble or Wrestlemania. (Sundays are only for PPV's though and you can only have 2 a month. Fair enough, why would you ever use Sunday's for anything different or have more than 2 PPV's? ...why would you really want 2, even? But you can have 2.
I played an I Quit match. I... love... the I quit match. It's actually hard to friggin' win. It takes a lot of effort. You can't just slap two finishers on and then make them give up. I mean, you really gotta keep trying and trying and trying. It goes back and forth, too. The computer AI also tried to make me quit, a few times, too. It's easy to stop the meter in the red, the first 2 times, but after that, the red in the meter shrinks a bit. Conversely, even if you shrink the bar down to being small against the AI, they'll often still find a way to kick out, but it takes them longer. It's a war of attrition and I thought it was really fun.
Speaking of general gameplay, I played a few 1-on-1 matches. The animation is really smooth, and much more manageablei in almost every situation. Referee's are smarter. The AI does act similar to last year, but it's not 100% the same. They don't do as many robotic, stupid things as last time. Top rope jumping moves always home in on opponents.
The game pace feels slower. Opponents do stay down longer. Reversals have a lot of new timing. Some of the timings are the same but sometimes they are trickier. Normal Matches feel a bit harder than WWE '12. I didn't try quick or epic matches, but I have a feeling that they are exactly what they say they are, if Normal is what it is. (You can select "Match Experience" at the match-up decision screen.) VERY fun to play.
Don't like the style of menu music this year. But you already heard me gripe about this.
The default Paint Tool is Daniel Bryan's "YES".
Menu's are so streamlined this year, at first you might think the game is a little bare, compared to last time. They just streamlined more options together, so it FEELS like there's less in this game, but trust me, there's just as much if not more. Replay value up the ass, still. yay. That's why I buy these.
This whole "WWE Live" thing with the "Dynamic Match Sound" and all that stuff... It's hardly even noticeable and it's barely even a thing that was worth hyping up, really. The crowd is slightly louder in comparison to everything else. That's about it. Crowd volume got turned up by 1 or 2 notches. Whee. You won't notice ANY difference, probably, in the sound design.
I picked a 16 man King Of The Ring just to see what the bracket would look like. Seeing all those character slots, made my head spin. Let me remind you, it's 16 participants. Each who have multiple matches against consecutive bracket parings. A 16 man KOTR looks like it'll take a HELLAWHILE to play.
You can save and resume your KOTR later from the middle of it, though. Thank god. haha.
Mankind's Alt attire (Brown Sack attire) comes with a different entrance, and entrance music (like the 2 Cody Rhodes's last year). He's also the first thing you'll unlock as the very first match in AE mode will unlock him.
Evolution's tron and music are in the game. So are Legacy's. And the Nexus. Although, stupidly, (I think someone at THQ goofed), the "Nexus Theme" incorrectly plays Otunga's Theme instead. (Power), and not "We Are One". Custom hard Drive music, ahoy!!!!
There was 1 CAW someone created when I checked. It was a caw... a surprinsgly good one, too... that a Best Buy employee made of themselves with a blue Best Buy shirt, and a Best Buy custom paint tool design on their upper chest. I'll admit. I chuckled.
I took a few pictures, but my camera's battery died after only a few, because I forgot to put new ones in before I left. I'll still show some of those in a minute or two.