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10 Of The Strangest Characters Ever Included In A Wrestling Game

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  • Posted on 08th Apr, 2022 21:55 PM
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Whether tied to WWE or completely fictional, most wrestling games are willing to get weird with their rosters of wrestlers and characters.

p>Video games centered around the world of professional wrestling have exploded in popularity throughout the past two decades. As pro wrestling companies such as WCW and WWE gained a wider audience, their depiction in video games followed suit. The result has been a steady stream of wrestling-related titles, some directly connected with the mainstream promotions, while others are purely fictional.

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One of the centerpieces of any wrestling title is its roster. Fans of a particular series expect to find their familiar cast of characters included in the final product. However, there are some additions to a roster that defy explanation. Some are so strange that it begs the question: "What were they thinking?" These are some of the more choice entries.

10 The Trainer: WWF Warzone

The roster of WWF Warzone, one of the best pro wrestling games on the PS1, contains some of the most popular and hardest-hitting wrestlers of the late '90s. Any wrestling fan knows the names of Stone Cold Steve Austin, Shawn Michaels, and The Undertaker. Does anyone remember The Trainer being a member of that vaunted list?

The Trainer, one of many unlockable characters in the game, cuts a pretty unintimidating figure. Sporting a rather generic-looking attire, his purpose is to serve as a punching bag for players trying to learn the complicated control scheme. Being given the opportunity to play as him seems odd, not to mention a bit of a letdown.

9 Head: WWF Attitude

Fans of Al Snow will undoubtedly remember Head, a creepy mannequin appendage who Snow would often converse with. It became an iconic element of Al Snow's gimmick and was widely popular with fans at the time.

However, it may be a bit of a stretch to assume that players actually expected to "play" as Head in WWF Attitude. It is, after all, an inanimate object and tends to stand out among the other members of the roster. What makes the experience even creepier is its lack of a torso, being made of only a floating head, arms, and legs. An inspired addition, to be sure.

8 Dr. Frank: WCW/NWO Revenge

Not to be outdone by its rival, WCW also rolled out its own series of video games to compete with the WWF. One such entry was WCW/NWO Revenge, a game that would prove to ramp up the silliness that was already evident in the WWF games.

Entirely fictional characters were added to the cast, thereby contributing a dash of humor to the arcade-style action. One of the more unusual additions is Dr. Frank, an obvious allusion to Frankenstein's monster from literature and classic film. Playing as an actual monster amidst men who sometimes look like monsters is an interesting idea.

7 Unknown: WWF Smackdown 2!: Know Your Role

The limitations of the PS1 hardware made roster space a finite commodity in WWF Smackdown 2!: Know Your Role. A workaround was established whereby the player is able to unlock certain "parts" throughout the course of season mode. These unlockable items, when combined with each other in the creation suite, made brand-new wrestlers that were often based on real people.

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The manner in which the items were unlocked, however, was a little odd. The player character would usually be ambushed by another wrestler called Unknown, who wore a hodgepodge of locked attire items. If the player defeated Unknown in a match the items became unlocked for later use in the creation suite.

6 Howard Finkel: WWF No Mercy

Howard Finkel was a legendary ring announcer for the WWE for decades. His more notable performances typically revolved around pay-per-views, such as the Royal Rumble and WrestleMania. Finkel was also known to be involved in storylines with a humorous twist to them and was often a source of comic relief.

Perhaps it was his use as a funnyman that led to his inclusion in WWF No Mercy. The addition of playable announcers in a game is often treated as a comedic exercise seeing as how they are not trained performers. Having Howard Finkel square off against Jim Ross in a video game is something that is done purely for the laughs. It certainly doesn't make much logical sense.

5 Lady X: Rumble Roses

Realism wasn't exactly at the top of the priority list when Rumble Roses was released in 2004. Featuring a diverse cast of scantily-clad women, the purpose of the game is to titillate rather than deliver a grounded pro wrestling experience, despite the fact that it uses the same enjoyable game engine as Smackdown! Here Comes the Pain.

The silliness is taken to a new level when one considers Lady X. As opposed to the majority of her opponents, who are made of flesh-and-blood, Lady X is a robotic cyborg with no emotions whatsoever. And just in case someone were to take this game too seriously, Lady X also has the capability to fire rockets and spin her torso around like a helicopter while she chaotically flails her arms.

4 The Terminator: WWE 2K16

The preoccupation with cyborgs must be a strong one for wrestling games. WWE 2K16 decided to give it a try, this time taking inspiration from The Terminator franchise. Fans of the WWE series may have raised their eyebrows when they saw Arnold Schwarzenegger saunter down to the ring in his iconic duds from the first movie.

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The Terminator's arsenal consists of a smorgasbord of bone-crunching offensive maneuvers that make him just as dangerous as he looks. Arnold certainly looks cool, but wrestling purists were left scratching their heads trying to figure out why exactly he was included in the first place. When push comes to shove, which WWE superstar is able to compete with the T-800?

3 The Enforcer: WWE 2K16

If one were to squint, the casual observer may still not be able to guess that this is supposed to be Mike Tyson. WWE fans will remember that Mike Tyson served as a guest enforcer in the main event at WrestleMania XIV between Shawn Michaels and Stone Cold Steve Austin.

WWE 2K16 recreates this landmark event in the aptly titled Austin 3:16 mode. It's a relatively faithful retelling of Austin's first WWE championship win, except for one glaring omission. WWE was unable to secure the rights to Iron Mike's likeness. The result was a generic-looking replacement that looked nothing like the heavyweight titan. It's so jarring to see that it begs the question of why the knockoff Mike Tyson was included in the first place.

2 Colonel Sanders: WWE 2K18

Yet another idea that was thrown against the wall and somehow made it past the final cut. In a promotional deal between KFC and WWE, the latter agreed to include the ubiquitous Colonel Sanders as a playable character. His template is available in WWE 2K18's creation suite.

It just might be possible that fans had been itching to play as Colonel Sanders for years. Finally, their ship had come in. But once again, for wrestling purists who enjoy a more down-to-earth simulation, this was a laughable addition to the otherwise fearsome roster.

1 Fred Durst: WWF Smackdown!: Just Bring It

Longtime fans of The Undertaker will remember that in the early 2000s the Dead Man changed his gimmick from a supernatural phenom to a motorcycle-riding tough guy. Often sporting denim vests and jeans he would cruise down to the ring on a number of different Harley-Davidsons.

Along with the change to his physical appearance, The Undertaker's entrance music received an upgrade as well. Fred Durst of Limp Bizkit provided one of his songs, titled "Rollin'," for use as The Undertaker's new theme. Durst's collaboration with the pro wrestling company must have been a happy one because in WWF Smackdown!: Just Bring It, he serves as an unlockable character. Players could even put Durst and The Undertaker as a tag team, the results of which are a bit surreal when all is said and done.

NEXT: Everything We Know About WWE 2K22 So Far

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