WWE Day of Reckoning

by THQ (for GameCube)

Description: I, as with Wrestlemania x9, eagerly awaited the release of THQ's next grappling installment, as I've always felt that the gameplay (which is certainly important) in the Wrestlemania series is far superior to that of the Playstation and Playstation 2's Smackdown! games. Here I will explain different aspects of the game and what I think of them before giving my overall opinion on the game....


The only 'new' development here is the addition of the 'Bra and Panties' match, which has already been done in the Smackdown! series. To be honest, even though I am a male, and a fan of most of the 'Divas' included in the game (which isn't very much) this match bores me to death. But hey, they've done it in the WWE, so why not include it? I'll leave you to make up your own minds about that. All the favourites are here such as TLC Matches, Hell In A Cells or if you fancy a good ol' beatdown there's always the infinetely fun Hardcore Match.

Story Mode is probably the most excitable aspect of Day Of Reckoning. I'm sure many of you think it's great because it's never been done like this before, right? Well, I'm afraid you'd be wrong! Perhaps the most irritating part of Story Mode is that you HAVE to create a superstar using the 'Create-A-Superstar' tool to use in Career. You can't use an existing wrestler such as Triple H or The Undertaker which really cheesed me off. I hate to keep comparing this to one of the Smackdown! games, but once again they come out on top once again with their Career modes.

Back onto Day Of Reckoning : You and your created superstar start off in the WWE Developmental department where you must obliterate some of the jobbers there that THQ thought up of. Highly amusing to see their terrible names and attire. Anyway, after you impress the right people with your progress you are promoted onto Heat for a couple of dark matches before wrestling for the first time on TV. When you've had a good enough run there you are given a chance to wrestle on either RAW or Smackdown! where you wrestle your backside off until you are given a chance at the big time : A title shot at Wrestlemania! You earn money with the matches that you win which you can use in Shopzone on various items. It is great fun. That is, until you go onto RAW and have a tedious storyline with Evolution.

To sum it up, this is a vast, VAST improvement on the utterly useless 'Revenge Mode' of X9 and offers some good entertainment.


As per usual, the in-game action, graphics and gameplay have improved greatly. And as per usual there is something copied straight from WWF No Mercy. Now you need to work down your opponent's spirit if you want to nail a successful Strong grapple move. There is now much more timing needed to reverse attacks, which can become annoying (unless you play on Very Easy). The move animations are superb (although they still haven't fixed the slightly sketchy Vertical Suplex animation) and are quite possibly the best THQ have done since WWF Wrestlemania 2000. One thing to note about attacking with weapons is that now all the weapons eventually brake or are thrown away so over the course of the match you can pull out as many weapons as you wish, (obviously there are still limits as to how much at a time you can use) which also means that you have a chance at pulling out a glorious wooden table, unlike on X9 where it was a rarity. I'm sorry to say that in the TLC Matches you can still only break the two pre-set tables and then you must scavenge for more under the ring.

CHARACTERS & ROSTER: Here is the full character list for the game...

SMACKDOWN! TALENT: - Kurt Angle - The Undertaker - John Cena - Rey Mysterio - Eddie Guerrero - Big Show - Charlie Haas - Chavo Guerrero - Hardcore Holly - Rhyno - Doug Basham - Danny Basham - Booker T - RVD - Mark Jindrak

RAW TALENT: - The Rock - Triple H - Chris Jericho - Kane - Randy Orton - Shawn Michaels - Christian - Val Venis - Garrison Cade - Batista - Matt Hardy - Ric Flair - Chris Benoit - Lance Storm - Shelton Benjamin - Edge

DIVAS: - Molly Holly - Victoria - Trish Stratus - Stacy Keibler

There you have it. I must point out that The Undertaker looks better than he ever has done in this game. His character mug-shot alone will blow you away.


Just like any new THQ installment, the Create-A-Wrestler feature has been improved. There are much more items than X9, also there are much more pre-set logos to choose from including the A.P.A.'s Tanktop designs. This time around you can finally change the colour of any Gear you give your Superstar. I must also point out that the fantastic custom Entrance tool is featured here again, as is the Paint Tool. There are a couple of new moves too. Perhaps the most notable new feature to the C.A.S. is the tool in the Profile section which allows you to take a photo of your character to use as a Mugshot. You can even use lighting to make your character more menacing and change their expression from Normal to a smile or make them look pissed. Far removed from the idiotic spikey haired blue chap Smackdown! uses.


WWE Day Of Reckoning is undeniably a fine grappler. But there are too little new developments to make it a truly special affair. Every new WWE game the roster is updated, the Story Mode is changed, a few more items added in Create-A-Superstar and sometimes there's a new match or two. Not much more. The Smackdown! series is progressing much faster and much more efficiently than the Gamecube games, but I still think that the Wrestlemania series is better, specifically for the gameplay and animations. To be totally honest, I wouldn't really recommend it to general video game fans. For the diehard WWE game fans, this would be a decent purchase.

(out of 5)

OVERALL Rating: ***

Reviewed by Lil' Theater on February 11.

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