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 Smackdown Vs RAW goes Next Gen
It's the news wrestling and gaming fans have long awaited: The Smackdown franchise is going multi platform and multi generation. Smackdown vs RAW 2007 will be available in Q4 2006 on PS2, PS3, PSP and Xbox 360.

In addition to confirmation that the game is coming to stores later this year, the most interesting piece of information actually relates to the systems on which the game is coming out -- which embrace PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions besides the expected PS2 and PSP SKUs.

This move not only marks the first time in the franchise's history that a SmackDown title will appear on two system generations at once, but also, the first time that the game will be headed to a platform other than one created by Sony.

"We are pleased to bring our highly successful WWE SmackDown vs. RAW franchise to next generation consoles," said Kelly Flock, executive vice president, THQ worldwide publishing. "As the publisher of the number one wrestling videogame brand in the world, we are eager to take this franchise to new heights by offering the game to current-generation, next-generation and handheld gamers."

"We are excited about the next groundbreaking release in the multimillion dollar SmackDown vs. RAW franchise," said Nelo Lucich, vice president of interactive, JAKKS Pacific. "WWE SmackDown vs. RAW 2007 combines ambitious, exciting features, such as the interactive fighting area within the crowd and a brand new analog control grappling system, which enhance the WWE videogame experience. We are confident this debut will offer a compelling sports entertainment experience for the next generation of gamers."

So what's this about a new analog control system and interactive crowd fighting? Specific details about those features are still a little vague, but we do know that gamers will be able to take their brawls into the audience just like on WWE programming, while also experiencing what THQ is calling "more realistic fighting" and "more intuitive movement." As stated earlier, though, what that means exactly we don't know.

What we do know, however, is that a number of improvements in other areas will certainly make the cut. Season Mode, for example, is said to feature "an unprecedented level of player choice" compared to previous games, while in-ring and outside-the-ring hotspots (which can be used to inflict bodily damage in special ways) have also been included. Moreover, arenas in SVR2K7 will be fully interactive to the point of supporting unspecified environmental damage and players will have the ability to take signs and other objects from fans and use them as weapons.

Speaking of weapons, there will be plenty of those too (more than in the last game) and brand new "High Impact Combination Moves" that round out each superstar's arsenal. Further enhancements, like an expanded General Manager mode, online play with voice chat support (finally!), high-definition displays for PS3 and 360, and updated rosters will also be included. Multiplayer fans should also be happy to note that up to six players will be able to wrestle each other at once for all three console iterations. Version details for the PSP, however, disc are still a mystery.

Credit: IGN

Buy Smackdown Vs RAW goes Next Gen now at Play.com
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