This past weekend WWE unveiled the trailer for their upcoming video game WWE 2K22, developed by 2K Sports. It would take only a day for the good news to be overshadowed by news that things aren’t all copacetic between the wrestling giant and the video game publisher.
According to video game website Sports Gamer Online, 2K Sports and WWE 2K22 developer Visual Concepts have been butting heads with WWE over several factors in the games development, straining the relationship. The main cause for the tension appears to be over the release date of WWE 2K22. The report claims that WWE pushed for the game to be released in the Fall of 2021, as previous games had been, while 2K and Visual Concepts pushed for the delay into the spring, which they ultimately received.
Sports Game Online further reported that the main reason 2K and Visual Concepts sought the delay was to work around WWE’s numerous roster cuts. The promotion has released at least 46 wrestlers in 2021, several of them scheduled to be in WWE 2K22. Sources told Sports Game Online that the game was shaping up to be “the most outdated roster a game has seen”, though the delay will now allow 2K and Visual Concepts to adjust accordingly.
Other issues have revolved around WWE being more hands on following the dismal performance of WWE 2K20. The latest release of WWE’s yearly series, 2K20 was critically and commercially unsuccessful, noted for numerous technical issues and bugs. The failure of 2K20 prompting both parties to skip over WWE 2K21 in favor of this game, with WWE putting a lot of pressure forward for a better game with WWE 2K22.
Sources also told Sports Game Online that WWE had openly floated the idea of working with other developers and publishers going forward, which many at 2K and Visual Concepts viewed as a threat. Combined with everything else, it has led to many at Visual Concepts expressing frustration, with one source saying it was not a fun place to be, filled with second guessing and desperation.
WWE 2K22 is scheduled to be released in March of 2022.