You could say that the WWE 2K games have been going through somewhat of a rough patch. After skipping 2020 following the disastrous release of WWE 2K20 in 2019, Visual Concepts went ahead and announced WWE 2K22 at WrestleMania 37 back in April.
A few months later during SummerSlam 2021, the new release date for WWE 2K22 was announced. Now, instead of the usual October launch window for WWE 2K games, the upcoming WWE 2K installment will launch in March 2022 instead.
While fans were more than glad to know that a new WWE 2K game was going to arrive (eventually), there are also reports that the WWE itself isn't happy with the delay.
Why is WWE not happy with the WWE 2K22 delay?
At the time of WWE 2K20's release, there was talks about a split between 2K Sports and WWE. 2K has served as the sole publisher of WWE video games after THQ closed down back in 2013. Although 2K Sports and Visual Concepts previously worked with Yukes in making WWE 2K games, WWE 2K20 represented Visual Concepts' first try as the sole developers.
After the disaster that was WWE 2K20, WWE has made it known that it wants a better game for the next installment.
Now, reports are coming in that WWE is putting a ton of pressure on Visual Concepts after them having asked for a delay. A source suggests that WWE is desperate "to get things right", which has resulted in a lot of second-guessing and that Visual Concepts "just hasn't been a fun place to be."
You can't exactly blame the WWE for wanting to get things right this time around. At the same time, it's not like Visual Concepts nor 2K Sports are small companies that the WWE can just push around. It'll be interesting to see if the partnership holds up if WWE 2K22 doesn't meet WWE's expectations once it releases later in 2022.
When is the WWE 2K22 release date?
WWE 2K22 will be Visual Concepts' second try at making its own WWE game. So far, things are looking up for the development team. We've heard positive things about WWE 2K22 since, and some are even going as far as to describe it as a "wrestling fan's game", which is high praise. However, Visual Concepts will need to deliver a complete and polished game if it is to justify the year-long absence and the delay.
WWE 2K22 will be the first WWE 2K game to not launch in October. We understand that the delay was inevitable. Multiple key names departed the WWE during the game's development. Visual Concepts willalso need time to update the roster following the changes. At the same time, Visual Concepts doesn't exactly have a good history to fall back on, whereas Yuke's does.
At the moment, Yuke's is working with the AEW on its own wrestling game. If WWE 2K22 releases too late or is bad at launch - or worse, both - fans will have even more of a reason to flock to Yuke's untitled AEW game.