Let's Play: TNA: iMPACT! Wrestling For The Wii | The Best (Worst) Wrestling Game Out There…



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TNA Impact! (stylized as TNA iMPACT!) is a video game based on the professional wrestling promotion, Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA). The game was developed by Midway Studios Los Angeles and published by Midway Games. Although the game sold 1.5 million units, financial issues at Midway Games prevented the planned development and release of a sequel. The game was re-released for Nintendo DS and PlayStation Portable under the title TNA Impact!: Cross the Line which features an updated roster. It is the first, and currently the only, console game made about the TNA promotion

TNA Impact! is geared towards a quick-paced, high-impact style of play, with less emphasis on submission maneuvers. It supports up to four players at once on a console, with online support—which includes tournaments—currently standing at one-on-one. Online play is, however, limited to the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions. Scans of the actual wrestlers were used for the game in place of hand-painted textures to include small details, such as skin texture and specific scars. Finishers are accessed by building up the “Impact! meter” displayed on the screen. In the same area a color-coded damage indicator shows the condition of characters. The game also features mini-games for escaping pin attempts and submission holds.

TNA’s signature match, Ultimate X, is a playable match type, alongside the more standard Singles, Tag team and Fatal Four Way matches. Submission and Falls Count Anywhere matches are also included. Eight different venues—including TNA’s main home; Florida’s Impact! Zone, and arenas set in Japan, Mexico, England, Las Vegas, and locations designed to evoke the independent circuit feel—are available to house matches, with the Impact! Zone having an increased ringside area for play and hot spots for player interaction. Liverpool Olympia is also a playable arena in the game.

Midway has now introduced downloadable content which enables players to expand the game, making TNA Impact! the first professional wrestling video game in history to offer this service. The first downloadable content is in the form of new wrestlers players can add to the game, these being Curry Man and Petey Williams. These can be bought for 100 Microsoft points from the Xbox Live Marketplace and as an extra gift the player can download Mike Tenay free of charge. This feature is only available for Xbox 360 and started on November 6, 2008, however, the content was initially glitched and made Curry Man come out as Christopher Daniels in his entrance and Petey Williams comes out as A.J. Styles and have the model of Senshi in the ring. These glitches were later fixed.

The story mode’s main character is a wrestler named Suicide. During every iMPACT! episode after the August 14, 2008 version of iMPACT!, the words “whoissuicide.com” flashed on the screen for less than a second. On the website, it shows that Suicide is being taken from the game to real life television. At Final Resolution, Suicide entered the TNA World. At Destination X 2009, Suicide competed in his debut match in TNA, which was an Ultimate X match, and became the new X Division Champion.

After periods of negotiation with Electronic Arts and Rockstar Games, TNA signed a multi-year agreement with Midway Games on November 7, 2005. Midway announced their intentions to release Impact!, the first game in TNA’s history, for each of the seventh generation consoles on March 2, 2006.

Several TNA wrestlers were involved in the game’s production. The self described “hardcore gamers” Samoa Joe and A.J. Styles both took part in meetings with Midway staff to brainstorm gameplay ideas, and Joe, Styles, Christopher Daniels, Senshi, Sonjay Dutt, and Jeff Jarrett were all a part of the motion capture sessions. During the October 23, 2006 tapings of the weekly TNA Impact! program, members of the TNA roster were “scanned” for the game and audio samples of the Impact! Zone crowd were recorded. In 2008, TNA toured overseas and held a show at the Liverpool Olympia in Liverpool, England. Midway staff took reference photos of the arena, and used them to help create the unlock-able London venue in the game.

Reviews of TNA Impact! were generally mediocre. The game was praised for its realistic graphics and simple control scheme but criticized for its limited and repetitive movesets, poor entrances, lack of championship belts, and inconsistent AI.

On February 12, 2009, Midway Games announced TNA iMPACT! had shipped approximately 1.5 million units.

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Comments

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