Every gamer has a "dream game." Yet few gamers possess the knowledge, persistence, time and funding to actually code those ideas into a complete, working video game. Dave Wishnowski, lead designer and producer of Pro Wrestling X, has built his dream game. But he still needs your help to get it released.
With a Kickstarter campaign just hours away from ending and a STEAM Greenlight project stuck in limbo, Pro Wrestling X has its mask on and its tights all laced up, but it still doesn't know if it will be offered a spot on the evening's card.
Operation Sports has been granted backstage access to speak with Dave Wishnowski about his wrestling game's pending debut on the PC platform.
Pro Wrestling X was created out of an "I'd like to see you do better" argument on the Wrestlemania X8 GameFAQs message board. When you first began the project, how knowledgeable and experienced were you with creating video games?
Dave: I had absolutely zero experience. None. It's been a fun ride and I've learned a ton!
Tons of man-hours have gone into Pro Wrestling X since the first public announcement back in 2003. How many former partners have "tapped out" on the project and what is the current size of the development team?
Dave: Plenty people have come and gone. A few dozen at least. Currently we have a core team of three with a couple of awesome people in supporting roles.
Was any thought given to starting out as a simpler 2D game ala Fire Pro Wrestling, or was the plan to go fully 3D from the beginning?
Dave: 3D was the plan from the beginning. 2D is awesome but since Fire Pro was still going strong when I started this there didn't seem to be much of a reason to jump into that pool.
You've confirmed that chairs are already in the game. What about tables and ladders? Historically, wrestling video games have struggled to get the "T" and the "L" parts of TLC matches working properly.
Dave: Tables and ladders will have to wait until the core game mechanics are much more solid. We'd love to add them right now but we're being patient about making sure the foundation is solid first.
Will the training gymnasium that's featured in most of the preview videos be the only playable ring in Pro Wrestling X? I've seen still screenshots of other arenas but could not find any actual gameplay footage for others.
Dave: Our first game, Pro Wrestling X Uprising, contains only the training facility. More venues are scheduled to appear in future games for sure.
Some of the promotional footage shows wrestlers climbing up onto a wooden balcony and leaping down into the ring. Are there also plans to add a floor-level crowd that's free to move through, ala ECW?
Dave: We're going to experiment with that. Again, things like a crowd will have to wait until the core game is much tighter.
Wrestlers often slice open their own foreheads to make matches look more gruesome. Will blood be featured in Pro Wrestling X?
Dave: In an upcoming update, yes!
What is the current status of the STEAM Greenlight version called Pro Wrestling X Uprising? Will it suffer any collateral damage if the Kickstarter campaign doesn't meet its $75,000 funding goal?
Dave: Our Greenlight campaign needs to get more exposure. We just need to get more people to notice it. We were doing really well when the service first launched but it's slowed a bit. The Kickstarter campaign gave us a bit of a bump on Greenlight actually and helped.
Lance Storm of ECW/WCW/WWE fame has signed on to do an animation capture session at his Storm Academy in Calgary, Alberta, Canada if the Kickstarter succeeds. If not Lance, who would be your all-time favorite Canadian-born wrestler?
Dave: Lance has been fantastic! He's been so helpful and one of my favorite wrestlers. Favorite all-time would be Bret Hart.
Thanks for taking the time to speak with us, Dave. The last word is all yours!
Dave: I just want to thank all of the wonderful people who have supported us not only throughout the Kickstarter campaign but since we first conceived of Pro Wrestling X. We can't do it without them and our success is their success. THANK YOU!