Total Extreme Wrestling 2010 - PC - Review

Simulation games belong to a certain niche of gamers. They are fascinated with being behind the scenes, tinkering with different options and seeing the outcomes, rather than being the main attraction. Total Extreme Wrestling 2010 is a game that satisfies this. Rather than fulfilling players needs to bash someone's head in with a chair, it instead provides a plethora of options, and lets the player be the man behind the scenes, calling the shots, and ultimately being the top manager.

Fans of the previous Total Extreme games will be familiar with the setup. You start off by making your avatar, or in this case picking a face, and distributing 20 skill points across 4 categories, which are negotiating, motivating, leadership and creativity. These stat points determine how you are able to progress through the game, whether you have an easier time negotiating a contract, or build up morale for a particular wrestler in your roster. Then you move onto the menus that let you decide how to proceed from there. You can book other wrestlers, scout the other companies, check out pay per view showings and set the actual matches and see how they play out. Everything is text based of course, so you won't see any actual piledrivers happening. After you set the match and let it play through, you get an overall rating of your show, what the fans thought, what should have been improved, what was good etc. This way you build your popularity and in turn can hire more wrestlers and book more expensive venues.

There is truly a vast number of options right from the get go. There is a huge list of characters that you can hire, and then decide their fate. Aside from the Companies tab, and Dojo tab letting you get an overview of the different companies and their standings, the Control Room tab is where most of the options can be set. There are four subcategories in the Control Room tab. The Creative section, lets you look at the roster, talk to staff, check the chemistry between wrestlers, and set announcers. The Assistant section includes emails, a diary, decisions waiting response and more importantly the Extreme Eye, which shows unfinished tasks that need to be done in order to progress. The other two sections, Corporate and Personal let you look at medical history and even give drug tests, check the schedule, prepare advanced booking, and check coverage. It's these options that simulator enthusiasts can get completely engrossed in.

Total Extreme Wrestling 2010 also provides a lot of improvements and some new additions over its previous releases. Some user friendly additions such as drag and drop booking was added to enable a more straightforward way of picking a character and dropping him to the desired position. Another feature is a chance to provide a narrative for a character, letting you essentially write their own storyline by setting up predetermined events to happen, which then will appear on the in-game website as a news story. A new feature introduced this year is the Dirt Sheet. The Dirt Sheet is extremely handy when you want to find out exactly why you received a particular grade for a performance. The Dirt Sheet opens up a window during the matches, and in real time will show individual factors and their positive and negative ratings, which then let you know what needs to be improved, and what was done great. The most interesting addition is Random Death. Aside from the two ways a wrestler can already die in game, which is either drug or old age related, wrestlers can now die from practically anything, and it can happen at any time. Thankfully, players who feel a little bit intimidated by this option, can lower the frequency of this event happening, or turn it off altogether.

With 40 achievements to acquire, this wrestling simulator is a game that can soak up a ton of time for people who are ready to invest it.

Review Scoring Details for Total Extreme Wrestling 2010

Gameplay: 7
With an impressive amount of options, this is one extremely detailed wrestling simulator.

Graphics: 5
The game takes place entirely on menus with static pictures and text.

Sound: NA
No sound at all

Difficulty: Hard

Concept: 8
This game, or more appropriately text based simulator, really lets the player decide on virtually anything and everything. I would have liked a tutorial though.

Overall: 7
Like I stated, players who are willing to invest the time, have massive amounts of options to go through. Without a tutorial, anyone thinking about trying this game out will most likely find themselves lost, but sim veterans will be right at home.

Good

Charmander
Mike Splechta GameZone's Editor-in-Chief, retro game enthusiast, savior of kittens. Follow me @Michael_GZ
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