Dark or Light

Review: WrestleQuest Comes Off The Top Rope With A Solid Debut Effort

Jason Fanelli Posted:
Reviews The RPG Files 0

Now let me tell ya something brother, this here WrestleQuest is one happening game, dude! It’s got some of the most famous faces to step into a square circle, even some the younger MMOamaniacs might not even remember, jack! The turn-based battle system turns a match into a RPG battle in a really cool way, even in the later stages of the game, chief. Whatcha gonna do when WrestleQuest-a-mania runs wild on you?!?!


WrestleQuest’s follows the story of Randy “Muchacho Man” Santos, whose love of pro wrestling is second to none. He lives, eats, and breathes the graps, to the point where he…might not realize its true nature. His journey to the top to be the cream of the crop is what serves as the backbone of this turn-based tussle.

The world of WrestleQuest leans into the farcical elements of pro wrestling, as every character in the game is a toy rather than a living human being. Some of them aren’t even wrestling figures; they’re stuffed animals or Barbie-esque dolls. Instead of going for cutting-edge realism, Mega Cat decided we were kids playing pretend, and the whimsical nature of that choice is a huge boon. I never knew what was going to come next, simply because I didn’t know what part of my nostalgic past Mega Cat was going to pull from next. 

On that front, the game is absolutely stuffed with references of and cameos from real-world pro wrestling. One of the first scenes in the game is a podcast studio with Conrad Thompson, host of multiple successful wrestling shows. Names like Diamond Dallas Page, Junkyard Dog, and “The Macho Man” Randy Savage also appear, which warms my lifelong wrestling fan heart.

However, I do feel some of those cameos might be lost on folks who are here for the RPG and not the wrestling. I know who Brian Zane is and what his YouTube channel is called — Wrestling With Wregret, by the way, big fan — but when he shows up in the game, non-wrestling fans might think nothing of it. I’m all about insider references for wrestling degenerates like me, but they may fly over the heads of those not in the know. 

Speaking of the RPG part of WrestleQuest, what Mega Cat was able to do in bringing a pro wrestling match to a turn-based system is wonderful stuff. Normal attacks are common strikes, special moves are high-impact slams and throws that require ability points. Different team-ups can produce different synergies thanks to the tag-team and triple-team attacks. Even the “pin” mini game needed to defeat certain opponents adds a little extra edge. It’s a system that continually shocked me with how well two things I’ve been a fan of for the majority of my life — wrestling and RPGs — fit together. 

Customization plays a role in WrestleQuest as well, thanks to both a gear system and the “gimmick” system. Gear is pretty standard fare — I find or buy new gear, I equip it, and my team is stronger. There is a crafting mechanic as well, but it’s not as robust as I’d hoped. I can find blueprints in the world and then make those items, sure, but I was never compelled to put much focus on it. The items were “nice to haves,” not “essential to victory,” which made the whole mechanic seem like an add-on rather than an essential element.

Gimmicks, however, are another brilliant adaptation of wrestling into a RPG setting. I can set a “gimmick” for each of my characters, which gives thems certain buffs or nerfs in particular stats. These follow those found in real-world wrestling, from a pure technician with enhanced special move power to a bruiser who focuses on strikes. This creates a psuedo-class system where I can experiment with team make-ups even further than the tag-team mechanics, until my team is the ultimate stable. 


Gimmicks actually highlight my favorite thing about WrestleQuest: It explains both the art of pro wrestling and the beauty of an RPG in such a clean and clear way, a non-wrestling fan could easily use what they’ve learned to watch a match or two, or a non-RPG fan can take what they learned here and give a retro Final Fantasy a go. Gimmicks are RPG classes, storylines play out in a way that fits the RPG genre, main event matches are boss fights, the list goes on. If this game generates more wrestling or RPG fans from previously separate fan bases, Mega Cat has done something extraordinary. 

However, this doesn’t mean every element of the game is a master class. As I mentioned previously, the gear crafting element feels tacked on, but dungeons are also a major point of contention for me. It’s not the initial battle through them that irks me; it’s the process of leaving them. It takes too damn long to get back out of a completed dungeon, as I have to backtrack through most of them to get where I need to go. 

There’s no fast travel, no “escape rope” style item to go back to the entrance, nothing of the sort. Any momentum I feel after beating a huge boss is waylaid by my having to trudge back to the beginning of the level slowly. Thankfully, the story is good enough that the backtracking is worth it, but it’s still a big annoyance. 

Despite this, with WrestleQuest, developer Mega Cat Studios shows that not only does it definitely understand what pro wrestling is — unlike its hero character — but the team also understands what makes a good RPG, and the alchemy the team has used to fuse the two together here in WrestleQuest is impressive. The battles between gladiators that I’ve watched since I was a boy are impressively adapted to the turn-based RPG styles I’ve played since then. This game is not going to top of the RPG giants, it still has some work to do to earn that title match, but WrestleQuest is definitely a scrappy up-and-comer with plenty to be excited about. 


8.0 Great
  • A hybrid of pro wrestling, RPG, and childhood nostalgia that works so well.
  • Does enough to bring non-wrestling fans in for the RPG elements.
  • The incorporation of a wrestling match into a RPG battle system is impressive.
  • Crafting elements are there, but they feel extraneous rather than essential
  • Dungeon crawling sometimes slows the game to an actual crawl, particularly when they’re completed
  • Some of the wrestlers and references are a bit too insider


Jason Fanelli

Jason Fanelli is a tried-and-true Philadelphian, having lived in Delaware County for his entire life. He’s a veteran of the games industry, covering it for over a decade with bylines on The Hollywood Reporter, Variety, IGN, and more. He currently hosts the Cheesesteaks and Controllers podcast on iHeartRadio for Fox Sports Radio in Philadelphia.