WILW Games: Fire Pro Wrestling World

So it was a busy week for me at work. I was all set to write up my predictions for WWE Fastlane for this week when, just like Randy Orton (Outta Nowhere!), Suda51 dropped the announcement that Fire Pro Wrestling would return to the PS4 and PC through Steam with Fire Pro Wrestling World. I wasn’t planning on writing about FPW yet but Suda51 has forced my hand. As for Fastlane, Goldberg wins the belt, Undertaker costs Roman setting up their Mania match, Charlotte gets the Women’s belt back, The Club keeps theirs, and Jericho sets up his Mania match. (everything else should just be filler with the real set up coming on RAW)

Fire Pro Wrestling first released in 1989 for the PC Engine, (Turbografx-16 here in America), exclusively in Japan. In fact, most of the titles in the series have been Japan-exclusive releases. Only three games have made their way stateside. (Fire Pro Wrestling and Fire Pro Wrestling 2 for the GBA and Fire Pro Wrestling Returns for the PS2) The series became known not for its tie to a major promotion (it has none) but for its grappling system and incredibly deep customization set. Those two elements combined to make FPW legendary for wrestling junkies like myself and import gamers alike. The grappling system is unique among wrestling titles in that it is timing based. You walk towards your opponent and the grapple is initiated automatically. The timing of your button presses after the initial grapple determine the success of your move. (there are other factors, but that’s the basics) The depth of moves your character can pull off is astounding. This system forces you to work a logical match; weakening your opponent before pulling off bigger, more damaging moves.

This system is coupled with a ridiculously deep create mode in which you can make damn near anyone that ever has or ever will wrestle professionally. Every aspect of a wrestler can be changed down to the CPU logic. Check out the videos below to see this in action. Skilled creators have put in serious work to make their CAW characters behave like their real-life counter parts. My GBA games saw serious time sink over the two releases and I could not be more stoked for this new entry. For the first time in the series there will be online play, leagues, tournaments, the whole nine. (I will get my ass handed to me I’m sure but it will be damn fun along the way) While a release date isn’t firm as of this writing, it will be sometime in 2017. As someone who doesn’t love the WWE games as a whole, this news is extremely welcome. Fire Pro was a mainstay for me in my tenure as a telemarketer. I would sit in my little office, smoking cigarettes and playing FPW on my GBA. If you have ever worked telemarketing before you know the serious life suck it is. It is soul crushing work; monotonous, boring, depressing work. My GBA helped me through that job and FPW was a big part of its success. Expect this game to be a frequent topic of conversation on the Stone Age Gamer podcast, right here on geekade.com, once it releases. Follow me on twitter and instagram, @geekadedan, to share your memories of the FPW games or to link up and play the newest entry. Make sure to check back next week for another entry in the WILW series and make sure to share this article with your friends and neighbors. Until then… 

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