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Smackdown Vs Raw 2006


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Oh, I can't wait to get my hands on this game it's already being called one of the greatest wrestling games of all time and the best since No Mercy, and from all I've seen I can't blame them. The Season Mode has been enhanced from last year's sub par offering, improved graphics and new gameplay features that make wrestling more realistic and their's some real nice extra features(The Million Dollar belt is playable, among many others)


But what has me drooling is... GM MODE


Finally, you are in charge of the show and it's your job to book show's and build new stars, I really can't wait to try this out and I can finally build the show as I see fit. That means Paul London is getting a monster push and Triple H is going to the midcard :p


Here's more from IGN on it...


You've heard the rumors, seen the Australian box scans, and asked the editors at IGN Live, but the subject has always been the same: General Manager Mode: is it real or is it not? As we're sure you've guessed by now, the franchise-inspired feature in indeed a real addition to WWE SmackDown vs. RAW 2006 -- the final piece of a grand scheme that THQ hopes will show gamers that this was the year the team pulled out all the stops.




"Going into this, we wanted to make sure we listened to the fans who enjoyed creating and simulating their own weeks through Fantasy Football-type leagues," commented producer Devin Knudsen, one of the primary masterminds of the GM Mode. "We think that this is a great way for guys who like power booking to get even more out of their game than what was originally thought."



The draft screen.


The feature itself is pretty straightforward. Available in the same menu as Season Mode and Create-A-PPV, the GM option allows users to assume the role of head of either SmackDown or RAW with the ultimate goal of earning the highest ratings. When starting off, gamers can use SVR's default roster set or draft their own from scratch and gain up to 20 superstars for their roster at a time. The trick here is to work within your budget to assemble the best possible lineup -- while also keeping in mind that first pick is entirely random (which can affect the order and which guys you go after).


After players have picked their lineup, it's off to assign their champions. Luckily, you don't have to assign champs if you don't want and can set it up so that they can wrestle for the title later on in the season. Any champion can end up on any show through trades and releases too (with the exception of Cruiserweight for SmackDown and Women for RAW), but to start all the proper belts begin with the appropriate program.



Vince says hi.


Once titles have (or haven't) been taken care of, Vince McMahon welcomes you to the family and charges you with the goal of getting the highest ratings possible from now until WrestleMania. Whichever GM gets the highest score by then, wins the season and wins the mode (along with a few unlockables and trophies).


Internally, this feature is being referred to by THQ as "Year One GM Mode." The producers have acknowledged that there's still a lot they could add and tweak if it's to be perfect somewhere down the line, but they're going to use fan reactions and suggestions from this year to figure out where to take the mode for next year's version. But this forward thinking doesn't mean that Year One GM Mode isn't capable, it does offer some cool little things to toy around with To start, GM Mode can be played by one or two players simultaneously. That means that one guy can head up SmackDown while the other heads up RAW, and they can compete head-to-head in the aftermath. This kind of multiplayer element was frequently requested for Season Mode of course, but because of the specificities of the storyline, wasn't too plausible. Now with GM Mode where storylines are a non-issue, multiplayer is a reality.




Anyhow, the GM Desk itself allows for some pretty flexible decision making. Broken into Schedule, E-Mail, Rosters, Reports, Financials, and News, the desk area gives users all the information necessary for a successful year. The schedule, for instance, gives you an easy to read calendar that highlights when your shows will be along with PPVs. Strangely, Velocity and HEAT aren't on the schedule, but considering the new roles that both of those shows have on recent programming, it's no big loss.


E-Mail is a very important section that serves as your primary lines of communication. If Jim Ross wants to send you helpful tutorial info, then this is how he does it. If one of your wrestlers is unhappy with his current situation and wants to demand a pay raise or trade, this too is where he'll do so. The Roster option is equally important because it's used for trading, releasing, and hiring new superstars to fill the lineup. Created wrestlers can appear in the Free Agent pool (along with unselected and released WWE Superstars) and you can add whomever you wish from there as long you have room for them and can afford it. Luckily, you can make trades for up to three wrestlers at once, so making room shouldn't bee too much of an issue.



Check your email often.


The Reports tabs offers graphs that show off what kind of fan reaction you're getting. PPV, SmackDown, and RAW ratings results are housed in this screen via helpful graphs and the Fan Support meter shows the ups and downs over the year across the board. J.R's Report Card is also part of the Report category and allows you to check out his view on the overall picture, injuries, locker room morale, and more. Financials work in a similar way, with the exception that it deals with how you spend and make money as opposed to ratings.


To make your numbers work, players can do a number of different things in a given week. During any card, for instance, you can book up to six different matches and cut two promos to help create excitement around you lineup. The key here is successfully build rivalries and popularity through wins and effective marketing. Sadly, promos aren't illustrated in any way and are text only, but at least you'll have the ability to come in and participate (or simulate) any match you want. You could simulate and not play the entire season if you want, or play out every individual match -- the choice is yours.


There are a number of other factors that contribute to how popular your show is as well (so if a hometown hero wins in his breeding grounds, then that will boost his popularity rating). Match type, title defenses, and rivalry intensity affects the popularity of your wrestlers, and if you don't push a wrestler enough, hard enough he can get pissed off and leave you. You can invade competing shows and try to injure competing superstars too, and winning cross-brand PPVs gives you special bonuses later on.


At the end of the year, the WrestleMania main event and GM closer is decided by which show got the highest ratings. Following WrestleMania, three guys randomly switch sides and the season mode starts all over again. As an added bonus, if you were good enough to win the ratings war, you'll win the GM of the Year award which enables you the ability to pick one superstar from the competitor's roster. It also unlocks a few special costumes and some extra cash, so being the best certainly has its rewards.


Of course, there are a few other cool little things associated with GM Mode that are best left for you to discover in a couple of weeks when SmackDown 2006 finally comes out. We'll be back with our final analysis of this mode and several others in our full review scheduled for next week. See you then.



I simply can't wait to get my hands on this game, it's going to be epic



Ign's main page: http://ps2.ign.com/objects/717/717798.html

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I still think Wrestlemania 2000 was a better game than No Mercy but you are right that every game gets compared to NM.


The exhaustion systems looks real good and from what I've read it's going to really add to the game, now that you have to successfully balance the stamina and momentum meters.

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