Developed by NetherRealm Studios (Mortal Kombat X, Injustice: Gods Among Us) in conjunction with Phosphor Games (The Dark Meadow) and published by Warner Bros, WWE Immortals is a fighting game for phones and tablets that takes the wrestling personas you see on TV and turns them into fleshed out characters with their own moves and finishers.
WWE Immortals is essentially a re-skin of the Injustice: Gods Among Us mobile game, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. The controls are very solid, if not a little repetitive, with light and heavy attacks depending on if you tap or swipe on the screen respectively, as well as a two finger touch to block system. An adrenaline metre fills when a character attacks or gets attacked which gives players access to signature moves and finishers.
There are some interesting in-game features at work here too. Some attacks have a secondary effect such as getting poisoned by "The Viper" Randy Orton or burned by "The Demon" Kane. I also find the minimal commentary a blessing in disguise compared to other WWE titles. It's just a shame about the very limited amount of character animations, but as a mobile game designed to be played in small chunks at a time this is to be expected.
The free-to-play aspect of the game is handled much better than most other 'free' games, with a stamina system and free stamina refills for individual characters. At first the game seems a little easy and somewhat sluggish as there are only three of four characters to access in the early stages, but after progressing further into the game and gaining more characters, the stamina-juggling meta game becomes much easier and gives players the ability to essentially play as long as they like. It is around this time the difficulty curve also ramps up to be more in line with where your characters are.
Regular updates and the addition of extra content have been important features for WWE Immortals. As well as a cycling variety of challenge modes and monthly in-game gear promotions to promote WWE's pay-per-views since Wrestlemania, the roster has been updated with new WWE superstars, including:
- Randy Orton
- Macho Man Randy Savage
- Stone Cold Steve Austin
- Stephanie McMahon
- Big E
- Dean Ambrose
- Hulk Hogan
- Bray Wyatt
- John Cena
- Ultimate Warrior
Bug fixes have also been of importance in each update the game has received, and the result is evidence of that. In my experience I didn't run into any problems outside of the occasional finisher move animation where the characters didn't quite line up with each other. Players exploiting the system through cheating or other means has also been an issue for some people, although again this isn't something I experienced in my time with WWE Immortals.
Overall the game has been well supported to date and will continue to be updated as the rest of the roster is rolled out. NetherRealms Studios' track record speaks for itself as you only have to look at the aforementioned Injustice: Gods Among Us mobile game to see that WWE Immortals will be well supported for months and years to come.
With over 180,000 daily active users and an estimated $14,500 in revenue generated each day on iPhones in the US alone as of the date this review was posted, WWE Immortals still has a very bright future ahead of it and is well worth investing your time in if you don't mind a little grinding.
Metacritic review score at launch: 72.
iTunes review score after six months: 4.5 stars from 1,450 ratings.