Mixed or average reviews - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 24
  2. Negative: 9 out of 24
  1. But it's the wrestling side that has really been beefed up. A new control system finally makes the action flow back and forth like only wrestling can. Plus the controls are easy to learn and get you into the thick of the action fast, pulling off fancy moves.
  2. Everything positive that has been added to the game doesn't do anything to counteract the mechanical artificial intelligence and visual problems that plague much of it.
  3. 80
    Although there is still work to be done, Showdown: Legends of Wrestling’s new look and play style is a big step in the right direction. Fans looking for a walk down memory lane aren’t going to be disappointed.
  4. The pacing just drags. [Sept 2004, p.24]
  5. After two failed games it might be too much to ask for an excellent follow up, but a playable one would have been nice.
  6. A mediocre wrestling title that has a great list of wrestlers, and game modes, but doesn't have the goods to back it all up.
  7. This game could have been so much better than it is, but I didn't think it would ever turn out as distinctly average as it has.
  8. A plodding pace serves to slow down the showdown - something as simple as escaping from a steel cage is an extended, boring affair. [Sept 2004, p.81]
  9. I like having the option of pairing up thirty years of blood and sweatsocks, and there’s nothing really at fault with anything, it’s just unfortunate that their very accurate rendition of Seventies wrestling compares unfavourably with what Kurt Angle and colleagues are doing now on t.v and in the THQ games.
  10. But it's a general rule that when you knock down your opponent, you should be able to stomp on them, pin them, or something like that. Well, not here. Unless you actually knock your opponent down and stun them, you can't grab them or anything until they get back up on their own.
  11. A must-have for any old-school wrestling fan. However, if you’re a more recent fan of the WWE, or you’re just a casual fan, there isn’t enough depth to the game, nor is the gameplay solid enough to warrant a purchase.
  12. The real selling point of the latest LOW release is that it is obvious it was developed by wrestling fans for wrestling fans, Acclaim has even gone so far as to get Kevin Kelly to write commentaries for the official website.
  13. The game is ultimately let down by similar bugs that plagued the previous two games.
  14. It's a nice homage to wrestling's past, but just can't compete with the wrestling games of the present. [Aug 2004, p.96]
  15. 60
    I honestly don't remember playing a wrestling game with an engine this bad in years, and I've played quite literally every wrestling game out there.
  16. 59
    A game meant for fans of wrestling and NOT for fans of wrestling videogames. Despite what some may think, there is a difference. As fans of wrestling will no doubt enjoy the nostalgia and history of the wrestlers involved with Legends, while fans of wrestling videogames will likely find it too clunky, damaged, and dumb for any long term value.
  17. Ultimately, every other wrestling game on the market surpasses this game.
  18. The two places where this game really fails to deliver are in the pacing and the controls.
  19. 35
    It's a bad game, but it's a bad game with aspirations, and every so often it manages to entertain in spite of its gaping, hideous flaws.
  20. Matches are slower than molasses on a flat surface and play out like blooper reels, with fighters facing the wrong way, refusing to pick up tables or pull off signature strikes. [Sept 2004, p.99]
  21. It’s undeniably cool to pick your favorite wrestlers from yesteryear, but as soon as the actual gameplay kicks in, the lack of attention given to this title quickly chills all those warm fuzzies.
  22. 40
    Everything from the pointless showdown mode to the almost complete absence of anything to unlock makes the game feel raw in a negative, unfinished way. Not the hardcore, wrestling kind of fans know and love.
  23. Showdown is just as bad as its two predecessors in almost every way. [Aug 2004, p.93]
  24. The poor presentation and frustrating, buggy gameplay will turn off most of us who were looking for a way to recreate the landmark moments and atmosphere from a different era of sports entertainment.

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