'WWE 2K22' Confirmed With First Look Trailer at 'WrestleMania 37'

After a year off, 2K Games is ready to bring back the WWE 2K franchise in 2021.

The annual wrestling simulator will return with the release of WWE 2K22 as confirmed by 2K Games and shown during the first night of WrestleMania 37 on Saturday. The first look of the game, which represents gameplay still in progress, shows Rey Mysterio as he performs his signature move, the 619, against fellow WWE Superstar Cesaro.

Take a look at the WWE 2K22 announcement trailer below.

WWE 2K22's tagline is "It hits different," a popular colloquialism that is supposed to describe how a particular experience before doesn't feel the same when you experience it again. In terms of WWE 2K, that's apropos considering the last title in the series, WWE 2K20, was a critical and audience flop.

wwe 2k22 rey mysterio teaser trailer
'WWE 2K22' promises to "hit different" when it releases. 2K Games

WWE 2K20 released in October 2019 and was immediately bashed by critics. Currently, the game has a score of 44 and a user score of 1.6 out of 10 on Metacritic, a site which compiles reviews from the internet.

Numerous bugs and crashes were documented when the game first came out, and while updates were constantly added to fix them the title couldn't rebound from its less-than-stellar launch.

During its quarterly fiscal report in April 2020, WWE revealed that there wouldn't be a WWE 2K title that year. 2K Games confirmed this news in a blog post on its site stating, "We are applying what we've learned to the next WWE 2K simulation game with a renewed focus on quality and fun. 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."

2K also announced Patrick Gilmore as the new executive producer for the WWE 2K games who will oversee the title's development. Gilmore's resume includes the Aladdin game for the Sega Genesis, Killer Instinct, Medal of Honor and, most recently, Amazon's New World.

Instead of a new WWE 2K game, 2K released WWE Battlegrounds, an arcade-style wrestling game in September 2020.

Are you excited for the return of WWE 2K? What do you hope to see in this year's title? Let us know in the comments.