What is WWE 13?
WWE 13 is the latest instalment in the popular wrestling franchise, letting your children step into the ring for themselves, and take control of their favourite wrestlers. With a roster nearly 100 superstars strong, there's certainly plenty to choose from here - and for the first time, a number of older wrestlers have been included, too.
How do you play WWE 13?
With a story mode based around a period known as the "Attitude Era", a large focus of WWE 13 is on events from the past. With over 30 old wrestlers joining the modern-day stars, the game's story mode is this year replaced with a mode that takes a more retrospective look, and asks you to take part in a series of 65 matches from years gone by.
Outside of the Attitude Era mode, there's the usual suite of modes and match ups - there's a create-a-wrestler mode, a local multiplayer mode that lets up four people play together on the same console, a huge variety of match ups including Hell in a Cell, Cage and Ladder matches, and support for online multiplayer, if you feel like taking on randomers from around the world. There's also the WWE Universe mode, which lets you play through an unlimited selection of matches, as the game dynamically creates a never-ending supply of match-ups and feuds, while the creation modes are every bit as strong as ever.
Letting your child create their own wrestler, arena, championship belt, entrance, entrance video, and highlight reel of their finest moments, WWE 13 really encourages you to be creative - making this a great game for those with a big imagination.
How easy is WWE 13 to pick up and play?
In terms of accessibility, WWE 13 isn't too bad - the controls are easy enough to pick up, with attacks being handled with the face buttons, while reversals are on the right trigger (a handy icon pops up to tell you when to press). With a range of difficulty settings, you can set how good a computer opponent you want to face - and, brilliantly, under "balancing" in the options menu, you can even tweak specific AI attributes to give you an advantage. Letting you turn the computer player's reversal rate right down, and increase the damage you do, this lets you really fine tune the experience - and makes it accessible to novices.
While the Attitude Era mode may be a little bit lost on the younger players, as while there are fancy videos punctuating some of the matches, they never really go into enough detail to explain what's going on - meaning your young John Cena fan may be left wondering what's going on when Bret Hart starts spelling out W-C-W in the air - this is certainly a game they'll be able to pick up and play.
Based on the family-friendly TV show, WWE 13 can actually get a little bit more violent than things you see on TV at times - although the action looks nowhere near as realistic. Letting you hit each other with tables, chairs, dustbins and sledgehammers (admittedly, they more poke-with-a-hand-over-the-end than hit each other), the game does also feature bleeding, although it's disabled by default (and we've left it as such). Of more concern is the inferno match, which sees the ring surrounded by flames, with the objective being to push your opponent out, through the fire. Luckily, no-one catches fire, and there's no sign of the flames actually hurting them, either, making this surprisingly tame. Thankfully, any swearing beyond "ass" is bleeped out, too. As a wrestling game, though, there's scantily clad men and women all around, with a few suggestive taunts - bum waggling and crotch-chopping to name a few.
Format Reviewed: Nintendo Wii