These days I find the world of wrestling to be utterly ridiculous, but back in 2000 when I was 7, I loved it. The Rock, Triple H, The Undertaker, Kane. For me it was somewhat of a golden age and I used to look forward to the weekends so me and my brother could get up early in the morning and watch it. Why does all this matter? It matters because today I'm going to become a seven year old again and review Wrestlemania 2000 for the N64.
You may have noticed I'm really into the N64 lately.
The first thing that struck me about the game was the sheer amount of content. Game mode wise there is Exhibition, in which you can play single matches, tag teams, 3 ways or cage fights. Then there's Road to Wrestlemania, Pay Per View, King of the Ring and Royal Rumble. There are also dozens of characters and, technically speaking, you'd have to finish all of the modes as all of the fighters to claim that you have completed the game. That's a lot of content.
The fights themselves are awesome. As you use normal moves, grapples and some famous ones like the Rock's People's Elbow, you fill an Attitude meter which allows you to go into special mode. You can also accept weapons from the crowd, allow for other wrestlers to interfere in the match and, of course, fight in or out of the ring. The fights are utter, brutal chaos, the controls are responsive and the combos not too complicated (though some require awkward hand positions) and everything plays amazingly. The only real issue with the gameplay is that there is no in game moves list and since my copy has no manual, going online and studying some combos was essential. A simple in game moves list that was accessible mid fight would have been far better.
Graphics wise its actually pretty impressive. Each fighter looks distinctive, the moves are animated smoothly and even with four wrestlers going at it the framerate holds. The only real problem here is that the crowd literally only has two frames of animation. Oh and the wrestlers faces look hilarious, I would definitely recommend Googling that. Sound wise the game isn't that great. The midi sounds used bastardise the title screens' Pantera song (Psycho Holiday if I'm not mistaken) and the in fight song is quite repetitive. Also the intro reel for the characters is crippled to fit it on the cartridge and there is no commentary at all during the fights. It's all a sign of the times really but its disappointing nonetheless.
There really isn't much more to say about this game. It's a simple game with a simple goal and all things considered it achieves that goal rather comfortably. I would highly recommend it to any N64, wrestling or fighting game fan. And these days it's pretty cheap so go for it.