WWE SmackDown! vs RAW 2009 - first look

As for the Wii, this year’s version completely capitalizes on last year’s primer performance. Now that THQ has the mechanics down, they're going to implement 30 new match types including table matches, ladder matches, hell in a cell, steel cage, ECW extreme rules matches and more.

Above: Image from the Wii version

Also new are interactive entrances and victory scenes; during your entrance, you’ll be prompted to gesture with the Wii remote and Nunchuck, enabling you to pump up the crowd and earn extra momentum going into the match. Conversely, you can decide what to do with your opponent after the match - do you want to shake his hand, hit him with a chair or just leave and celebrate? We saw John Cena extend his hand to a fallen Jeff Hardy before clocking him with a clothesline.

Finally, we'd be remiss if we didn’t mention that loading times are being cut by nearly 50 percent, a complaint from fans that has resonated for years. Another improvement is that character AI is being rebuilt from the ground up to make wrestlers smarter and tougher, while the hit detection is greatly improved as well. Think that punch you threw should have landed? They will this year.

WWE SmackDown! vs RAW 2009 hits the PS3, 360, Wii, DS, PS2, and PSP this fall. THQ was silent on all the other refinements and new gameplay modes they have planned for then,but we’ll have more on this franchise wrestler in the coming months.

Mar 28, 2007