Why isn’t there one? Seriously. Is somebody working on one? I couldn’t find one.
This seems like a natural to me. Smackdown City, or whatever you would choose to name a wrestling MMO would seem to spring naturally from work that has already been done on some non-space, non-high fantasy MMOs.
A wrestling MMO would not be equipment based, so having great character creation/customization tools is a requirement. And what company has a game with the best such tool?
Cryptic Studios, makers of City of Heroes/City of Villains.
When I played the City of Heroes trial, I spent most of my time in the character editor because it is about as feature filled as you would ever desire. And, since wrestling costumes and personas are about as many and varied as super hero costumes and personas, Cryptic looks pretty close to having that base covered.
So what do you do in a wrestling MMO?
You certainly have to have the “becoming a wrestler” story-line. Maybe you start off at the county fair or other small town venue as somebody who was on the wrestling team in high school and knows some basic moves and wants to break into the big time. You get into matches, which would presumable also be the tutorial, until you win the notice of some wrestling organization, school, agent, or whatever.
Of course, there is the bad guy version of this, where you’re in a gang or just live in a bad part of town and you want to get into wrestling. You have your own route.
This leads into missions, some in the ring, some outside. Your stature grows, you gain new moves, you have more fans, each of which can drive quest-like story lines. Those who choose the “good” path get more fancy moves, while those on the “evil” path learn how to do things like distract the ref and then whack their opponent with a metal folding chair.
Of course, the PvP system is a natural. You can have different classes, different types of matches, even competing associations.
The day to day life of a wrestler has to be ironed out. You cannot be in the ring all the time. What else do you do, how do you interact with other players, how big is the world? There would have to be other quest paths to follow, perhaps things that open up new skills, venues, or fan bases.
You can take this and go completely camp with it and build up rivalries and all sorts of out of the ring drama. You can have “good” faction wrestlers switch to the “evil” faction. You can have rivalries which make for matches that earn more for the players.
This is something where the oft-mentioned 13 year old player would actually add to the game with his trash talking and fierce competitive attitude. And wouldn’t it feel good taking him down? Of course, when it looks like you’re going to win he’ll probably smack you with that metal folding chair.
I could not see a wrestling MMO ever being huge (then again, I could never see professional wrestling being huge), but I bet it could pull in a fan base at least in the City of Heroes range.
Cryptic? Are you listening? Get on the phone with Vince McMahon.