After one of the most disastrous releases on this generation of consoles, the first WWE 2K20 patch is at last upon us - offering hope to wrestling fans justifiably dismayed by the game’s myriad bugs and freezes. WWE 2K20 won’t be turned around by one update, but on the surface it sounds encouraging: developer Visual Concepts says it’s patched a number of issues such as ‘crashing and freezing’ and visual troubles related to hair physics. Has it worked? Let’s test the first WWE 2K20 patch and find out…
WWE 2K20 patch notes: graphics
First concern: the official WWE 2K20 patch notes are troublingly vague, with specifics left to the community to work out for themselves. On the cosmetics front, 2K says it has addressed “graphics and clipping” and “hair physics”. Here’s some positive news on the latter: Bianca Belair’s superhuman ponytail, which became an internet meme [see below] shortly before the game’s 22 October release, looks a tonne better. Sadly that isn’t always the case for CAWs or fan-edited outfits. I have an Alexa Bliss alternate attire whose hair resembles jagged spikes each time she walks down the aisle, an effect unchanged post-patch.
Please explain. #WWE2K20 pic.twitter.com/yT325UhEE5October 15, 2019
Frustratingly, the grain on titan trons and entrance videos remains in place: Bliss comes to the ring in front of a background which is supposed to be black-and-blue but features numerous grey spots, whereas it was crystal clear in WWE 2K19. You also still can’t pull down a wrestler's straps mid-match, as was possible with the likes of Kurt Angle in the last couple of editions. Sadly, it feels like that option is gone forever.
As for the claim of clipping issues being fixed, I’ve noticed zero improvement. I have Mark Andrews set as cruiserweight champion and Keith Lee as North American champion, and both belts clip through their entrance attires to a degree that would be comical, were this not a £50/$60 game.
WWE 2K20 patch notes: gameplay
Some big news for those of you who enjoy tag matches: the beloved option to switch to controlling your partner on the fly mid-match is back. This is especially critical because duff AI often causes him/her to stand on the ring apron dawdling while your opponent’s comrade leaps through the ropes to break up any pin attempt.
Hit detection is also much improved. Pre-patch I found the first WWE 2K20 DLC entry to be a wildly inconsistent affair, with weapon shots pointed straight at Harper or Rowan instead aimed at a pocket of air six feet either side of them. Now, for the most part, onscreen aiming is representative of your left-stick inputs. Phew.
Also fixed in this area according to 2K are “referee actions” and “characters warping or moving unnaturally around the arena”. Certainly I’ve not seen any issues in these departments since downloading the patch. Oh, and sliders feel like they’re improved too: I have most reversals set at 20/100 and am seeing noticeably fewer than before the patch.
WWE 2K20 patch notes: Universe mode
WWE Universe is my go-to mode in the WWE 2K series, but – as discussed in GR’s review – I found it unplayable upon release. Many of my issues appear to have been addressed. Saves to characters outside of the mode are now applying within it, and alternate attires for superstars can be preset rather than you having to select them each time you book a match.
The community still reports problems, however. Multiple users on the official WWE 2K forums have found a problem where any female winning a women’s title also earns them the men’s Intercontinental Championship. Gah. It’s also impossible to have more than 10 matches on any single event card, despite 2K claiming before release that 14 would be the maximum number.
WWE 2K20 patch notes: CAWs
Miracle of miracles: a major issue with created wrestlers refusing to load has been resolved. Previously, any that you downloaded from Community Creations with text anywhere on their attire would cause the game to freeze up in the match loading screen. I’ve just spent half an hour testing all such guilty parties on my 2K20 save, such as tag teams The Ascension and Powers Of Pain, and all load fine now. The option to download custom images also appears to be working as intended.
Sadly the good news ends there. Multiple users report issues with trying to edit Jeff Hardy: his face paint remains unchangeable, and fiddling with his arms continues to cause problems across the game. Face textures, photo placement and logo placement are also causing headaches across the community. It’s such a problem that Defract, one of the most reputable CAW creators around, says that at this stage he has no plans to make any wrestlers for the game.
Just an FYI I still won't be creating for #WWE2K20 way too many bugs in creation suite post patch. Sorry guys!November 1, 2019
WWE 2K20 patch notes: other ups and downs
An assortment of the good, the bad and the Fiend to finish. [Thanks to Vinnie Vegas – again, on the official 2K forums – for spotting some of these.]
- [good] Display issues with Resiliency prompt are fixed, so it now correctly shows up as requiring R2 + Triangle / RT + Y to perform.
- [good] “Commentary and sound effects” have been improved, according to Visual Concepts - although these were two areas where GR previously had the least trouble.
- [good] Tables and ladders now show up under Miscellaneous when you try to customise the in-game weapon wheel.
- [bad] Any editing of ‘The Fiend’ Bray Wyatt’s moveset is erased when you switch off the game.
- [good] An issue with Luke Harper’s theme has been fixed…
- [bad]… by removing it completely and inside giving him his old Bludgeon Brothers theme! Honestly, that is a staggeringly sly short-cut.
WWE 2K20 is out now. Still want to give it a go despite its teething troubles? Then check out our detailed breakdown of the WWE 2K20 roster.