While the Kickstarter campaign might not be over just yet, it's fair to say that Hyperfocus Games' fundraising for Ultra Pro Wrestling has got off to a great start. With 22 days left to donate, the team has surpassed its target goal of £17,000 and (at the time of writing) is now sitting on over £25,000.
The game is still in its early stages of development, but Hyperfocus has confirmed a release for Nintendo Switch nonetheless and is even offering a physical copy for the console as one of its backing rewards (thanks, Nintendo Everything).
As you may be able to tell by watching the above trailer, Ultra Pro Wrestling is inspired by the N64 wrestling games of the late 1990s — the likes of WWF No Mercy, WCW vs NWO Revenge and Virtual Pro Wrestling 2 are all specifically referenced in the developer's rundown. This is all about a return to simplicity in the control schemes, reduced cinematics and a focus on bringing the wrestling back into wrestling games.
For a taste of some of the game's features, check out the following:
- The basic control system is relatively simple and doesn't require the player to memorise a series of button/d-pad combinations in order to perform moves.
- While it is intuitive and easy to pick up for new players UPW is also a game that rewards skillful play. No amount of "button bashing" or "move spamming" will save you from an opponent with better timed reversals and more varied attacks.
- In order to perform a sequence of moves, you will be responsible for the execution of each move. In other words, there are no in-match cinematic's where the game takes over. We feel these automated sequences take the player out of the experience.
- When you are pinned or in a submission you must repeatedly press the kickout button(s), which represents a wrestlers actual struggle to wake up/escape - as opposed to timing based mini-games.
The Kickstarter page goes into great detail about what we can expect to see from the game and we recommend going through it in full to find out all of the developer's plans. The next stages in the fundraising process hope to add in increased character customisation, an online mode and even the chance to get a career mode in there too.
There are a series of rewards available for those who choose to donate, each of which are expected to deliver in August 2024. This means that we still have a fair amount of time to wait before we get news on the game's release, but things certainly look like they are moving in the right direction.