AEW: Fight Forever Reviews
AEW: Fight Forever may have the audacity to challenge the current king of wrestling games, but despite its fun-loving spirit, strong sense of style, and solid fundamentals, it fails to execute on a level that comes anywhere close to its potential.
A midcarder to the WWE 2K23 main event, AEW Fight Forever lays down some solid foundations and is fun to play, but without much depth it falls short.
An encouraging debut for the big new rival to WWE, with loads of welcome throwback nods to No Mercy and Fire Pro, and a career mode you won’t be able to resist playing through multiple times.
If nothing else, AEW: Fight Forever has potential. I’m happy to have a more arcade-style wrestling game, especially one based on a major promotion. The gameplay has a strong foundation, and when it's firing on all cylinders, the action channels the simple fun of the ‘90s and early 2000s. The rest of the package just needs to catch up. Until it does, even the most passionate AEW fans may have a hard time sticking around for this main event.
At its core, Fight Forever is a love letter to the golden generation of pro wrestling video games. It is not perfect, and on the content side, it’s slightly dated — but most of my complaints wash away every time I pick up the controller and start a new match. The nostalgia and finesse of those old glory years emanates from so many angles that it’s hard to nitpick the places that fall short. AEW: Fight Forever is at once a faithful homage, and a promising signifier of the future.
All Elite Wrestling's first match in the video game ring is a solid outing that doesn't quite live up to its real-world product.
It's hard to be anything but disappointed by AEW: Fight Forever. The AI is game-breaking, the roster is lacking, and online play is in the doldrums. If you are purchasing AEW: Fight Forever to play local with mates then it might be worth a look, as there is a lot of arcade fun and silliness to be had here, but for everyone else, this one is best avoided.
I’ll give AEW Fight Forever this: When I was playing actual matches, many of my problems faded into the background. The actual wrestling is a good time and up to four players can throw down in a massive variety of ways with a huge roster or their own created characters. It’s when I came away from the squared circle and had to look at other parts of the game that its flaws were hard to ignore. Even so, I think THQ Nordic, Yuke’s, and AEW have a good start here. They’ve made a game that is at least fun to play and feels good in the ring, which is arguably the most important part. If there’s another AEW game, I’d like to see Create-a-Wrestler, crossplay, and the overall presentation of the game rise to meet the gameplay. For now, I’ll just try not to spend too much time outside the squared circle in Fight Forever.
Matches in AEW: Fight Forever are a ton of fun to play, with a career mode that takes inspiration from Yakuza in the best kind of way.
As a huge fan of the AEW product, it’s hard for me not to be disappointed in Fight Forever. The gameplay on offer here is certainly a solid, if flawed, base to build off for future updates. There just isn’t very much to do at present. The game does succeed in capturing the overall fun-loving spirit of the promotion, and If the developers stick to their plans to add modes, wrestlers, and additional creation suite options (as well as putting time and effort in to squash the clipping and AI issues) they could have something good here in 6-8 months. As it stands now, there is no doubt that Fight Forever is fun to play but if you’re someone who favors the creative side of wrestling gaming or if you intend to spend nearly all your time playing the game on your own, you’re going to run out of things to do pretty quickly. It may be helpful in that case to wait for some future updates before jumping in.
It's clear that a lot of love has been put into making AEW: Fight Forever fun and feel good to play. It's just a shame it falls short in certain areas related to story, features and creation. Despite this, there's a lot for AEW fans to like here and we definitely recommend it, because much like All Elite Wrestling is an alternative to WWE, it's nice to have an alternative in the wrestling game space too.
Like the promotion it’s based on, AEW: Fight Forever can be a bit rough around the edges, but the game is also a welcome breath of fresh air. Fun, approachable in-ring action and an endearingly-quirky career mode largely make up for scruffy visuals and some missing content. AEW: Fight Forever won’t be for everyone, but if you’re looking for an alternative, feel free to push your chips All In.
AEW: Fight Forever is the best wrestling game since WWF No Mercy. There’s a visceral nature to every punch and slam which makes every physical match-up an absolute thrill. While the mechanics are deep and allows fans to master techniques, there’s also a pick-up-and-play ethos that is amplified through silly mini-games and over-the-top gimmick matches. The odd hit detection issue, basic creation suite and lack of community uploads are disappointing, however, they don’t take away from what is the greatest wrestling game in the past 20 years.
Other than playing as some of my favourite wrestlers, I struggled to find many redeeming qualities with AEW Fight Forever. The game is lacking in modes, match types, wrestlers, and creation suite options. Combined with a generic and alarmingly short career mode, AEW Fight Forever is far from elite.
AEW: Fight Forever nails what it's going for in evoking Nintendo 64 classics, but neglects a lot of modern features that even wrestling games in the PS2 era were nailing. If you're an AEW fan looking for an arcade-y pick up and play wrestling title to fill the void left by AKI's classics to play with some friends then you'll find what you're looking for with Fight Forever. But if you want an wrestling simulator in the vein of WWE games you'll need to wait a while longer.
No Mercy this is not. It's got good intentions and the right idea, but the game is not there just yet. I understand this is their first game, but there is just not enough meat on the bone to justify paying full price for this. The story mode is short, repetitive, and nothing you do matters. Matches are way too short, the creation modes are ridiculously limited, and we don't even have basic match options like turning on and off DQs or elimination rules in multiman matches to keep exhibition mode interesting. Maybe after a year or so of updates, this will feel more like a complete package, but I would recommend waiting for a sale or some major updates before picking this one up.
AEW: Fight Forever is an incredibly faithful tribute to 90's wrestling gaming, and it's clear that a lot of love has gone in to ensure the presentation, gameplay, and atmosphere all harken back to that time with unyielding accuracy. But the world has moved on, and more importantly, wrestling games have moved on, and the dogged determination to honour what came before has resulted in a title that will ultimately prove incredibly divisive. Most egregiously the game feels decidedly budget while demanding a decidedly not-budget price tag, and while the product may improve with updates and time, in its current state, it's hard to recommend Fight Forever to anyone but the most hardcore of AEW's fans.
Yuke’s has managed to deliver an accessible, breezy rendition of their trademark product, without sacrificing the things that make watching an AEW show unique, pulse-raising, and hard-hitting. And more than this, it feels like a foundation waiting to be built upon. This is a game designed to have a long tail, with a steady stream of DLC on the way and the in-game store already (as of pre-launch) offering a smattering of fun add-ons (ironically, Cody Rhodes, who left AEW in 2021, is a bonus character, meaning he’s in both of this year’s major AAA wrestling games). As such, Fight Forever could live up to the name, and while it may not be the place to go for strict realism, it’s still better than you, and it knows it.
Reviewing the analysis I see more positive points than negatives, and truth be told, I liked the game. I celebrate that there are more wrestling games, more arcades and more fighting titles and I think this installment of Yuke's is a good first step, it lacks several blows of oven, but I bet to see more deliveries of AEW in the future with more modes, improved graphics and this same imprint, that of fun above all, which is what the game achieves despite its technical aspect.
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