WWE 2K21 Isn’t Happening, but WWE 2K Battlegrounds Is

There's no wrestling sim this year, but how about throwing your opponent into the mouth of an alligator?

The WWE 2K series is in a weird spot after the cancellation of WWE 2K21, and 2K took to its official website to address concerns about the state of the wrestling game franchise.

In a post from the team, the company says that it will be taking an extra year to take in both feedback and the learning experience of launching the, we’ll call it messyWWE 2K20 to come back stronger next year.

“We hear you and we know you want more from the franchise, so here’s what we’re going to do: we are applying what we’ve learned to the next WWE 2K simulation game with a renewed focus on quality and fun,” the statement reads. “As part of that commitment, we are extending the production timeline and will not be releasing a WWE 2K simulation game in 2020 (T2 fiscal year 2021). We want to ensure the development team at Visual Concepts can create a great game that will entertain grizzled WWE 2K veterans, as well as newcomers who want to climb through the ropes and step into the ring for the very first time.”

Outside of the next mainline WWE 2K game, 2K says it will be maintaining the servers for WWE 2K19 and 2K20, one presumably because it was the last fully functional game in the series and the other because it’s just a wild thing to experience and should be preserved.

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While that might be the status of things for the simulation games in the franchise, 2K also announced that it’s bringing a more arcade-y spin on wrestling out this year with WWE 2K Battlegrounds. The game is set to launch this fall and brings some over the top nonsense to a sport already rife with that when it’s grounded in the real world, including throwing your opponent into the mouth of a crocodile and duking it out with fists of fire. Check out the trailer below:

Battlegrounds is in development over at Saber Interactive, the studio behind NBA 2K Playgrounds, another arcade-y take on a sport, but for basketball. Beyond that, the studio is known for its port work, including the Switch versions of games like The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt and Vampyr.

While the lack of a simulation wrestler this year means our coverage of that is going to be scarce, you can also check out Fanbyte’s wrestling section Fanfyte for extensive coverage of the real life sport that hypothetical WWE 2K20 would have emulated. We’ve got recaps, retrospectives on various aspects and moments of wrestling history, written pleas to include rap rock band Limp Bizkit in the WWE Hall of Fame, and even a dedicated podcast series that already has ten episodes ready for your listening pleasure. For all of this and more, head on over the Fanfyte homepage and start scrolling.