BY LEAH WILLIAMS Earlier this week, the most up-to-date cowl megastar of 2K’s WWE 2K19 turned into revealed as AJ Styles, the contemporary WWE Champion, and arguably one of the first-class present-day wrestlers alive. Styles has loved a brilliant run in WWE because debuting on the Royal Rumble in 2016, sharing first-rate suits with the likes of John Cena, Roman Reigns, Shinsuke Nakamura and Finn Balor. Through this series of stellar feuds, Styles has received the respect of WWE audiences, becoming a respected member of an increasingly more talented roster.

While there’s no argument that Styles doesn’t deserve the quilt of WWE 2K19, having achieved close to greatness for the duration of his modern WWE run, it’s arguable that there were not superstars that deserved the quilt extra.

In a year complete of ‘firsts’ for WWE, having a woman celeb cover the sport could have furnished each mainstream publicity and legitimacy for WWE’s women’s division and women’s wrestling as an entire. In a yr of damaged limitations, women’s tournaments, and enhancing display time for WWE’s female superstars, this cowl feels like a prime missed possibility for 2K’s enduring franchise.

The WWE2K series has long been followed by way of loud and sundry court cases about girls’ representation across diverse recreation modes, and it’s a trouble it is dogged the franchise for years. While the tremendous majority of the girls’ roster is probably to make an appearance in this yr’s release, alongside a ramification of legends and cutting-edge NXT stars, their use may additionally nonetheless be fairly confined.

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In 12 months full of ‘firsts’ for WWE, having a female celeb cowl the game could have supplied each mainstream exposure and legitimacy for WWE’s women’s department.

As of ultimate 12 months, ladies did now not have an equal MyCareer mode alternative and were consequently unable to participate in the principal storyline of the sport. In addition to this, ladies were unable to enter sure suit kinds, including the Royal Rumble. Whether this could be rectified for WWE 2K19 is up to now uncertain, however, providing a lady on the quilt would have long gone a few manners to highlighting lots wished change inside the collection.

WWE’s girls’ division has leaped to the vanguard of WWE’s programming given that dropping the unlucky ‘divas’ moniker in 2016, and currently capabilities various gifted faces which includes Sasha Banks, Charlotte, Ember Moon, and Asuka amongst what has ended up WWE’s most powerful roster of girls in years.

In the period between 2016 and 2018, WWE’s women celebrated an expansion of ‘firsts’, along with the primary ever girls’s Hell in a Cell fit and a Women’s Royal Rumble, as well as more than one major event spots and the inaugural Mae Young Classic tournament, celebrating ladies’s wrestling around the sector. These achievements proved how far WWE’s ladies’ roster had come and highlighted why 2018 become the perfect year to exhibit them across 2K’s WWE franchise.

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WWE has a long, deserving list of girls’ cover stars, all of which have contributed to breaking down boundaries for mainstream girls’ wrestling. Both Charlotte and Asuka come to mind as ideal contenders to have featured on the quilt of WWE 2K19, at the side of less probable superstars like Carmella, Sasha Banks, and Alexa Bliss.

As of remaining 12 months, girls did no longer have an equivalent MyCareer mode alternative and have been as a consequence unable to participate in the essential storyline of the game.Image result for why wwe 2k19 should have featured a female superstar on the cover

Charlotte specifically has had a first-rate previous couple of years with WWE, becoming the ultimate ever Diva’s Champion, and the primary Women’s Champion of the present day technology, in addition to main the price for ladies through wrestling within the aforementioned ladies’ Hell in a Cell suit in 2016. In addition to this, Charlotte completed alongside Sasha Banks in the first girls’ major event on Raw due to the fact 2004, adding a fireplace to their already heated contention. Charlotte has long gone on to become a 4-time Women’s Champion and stays a pillar of the SmackDown girls’ division.

Sasha Banks might have made a worth cover big name for comparable motives, having shared lots of her accomplishments on the stage with Charlotte – together with starring in the first women’s contention to receive Pro Wrestling Illustrated’s ‘Feud of the Year’ award.

Another choice could have been Carmella, and while she would possibly appear like an out of doors desire, ‘Mella is money, and what better manner to show off her brash, obnoxious man or woman than having her steal the spotlight on the duvet of the game? Carmella spent tons of 2017 as the first Ms. Money within the Bank, after triumphing the women’s Money within the Bank suit in controversial fashion.

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With chinless surprise James Ellsworth by way of her aspect, Carmella established herself firmly as a grating, smug heel, in the end profiting from Charlotte to grow to be SmackDown Women’s Champion. She’s due to the fact that retained the identity in a bout against the unstoppable Asuka, thanks to interference from returning beau Ellsworth, in addition incensing WWE fanatics anywhere. Featuring Carmella on the quilt might have been the closing, infuriating accomplishment to cap off Carmella’s excellent final year.

WWE has a long, deserving listing of girls’ cover stars, all of that has contributed to breaking down barriers for mainstream girls’ wrestling.

The very last, and arguably most deserving contender is Asuka, who, up till WrestleMania 34, turned into playing the longest ever unbeaten streak in WWE (a name formerly held by means of WWE 2K17’s featured visitor, Goldberg) clocking in at 914 days. Before even attaining the main roster, Asuka has become the longest reigning WWE champion of the present day technology, holding the NXT Women’s Championship for 523 days. Asuka became also the winner of the primary ever girls Royal Rumble, taking place to stand Charlotte at WrestleMania 34 in what become arguably one of the display’s pleasant bouts.

Coming off an E3 wherein girls have risen to dominate online game charts, starring in several outstanding AAA titles, along with the upcoming The Last of Us: Part II, Beyond Good & Evil 2 and Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey, in addition to being featured on the duvet of big franchises like Battlefield, 2018 felt like the precise typhoon of circumstances for a woman for canopy 2K’s WWE collection. Alongside a today’s MyCareer overhaul, and get entry to previously unavailable matches which include the Royal Rumble, an equality-centric WWE name feels both important and past due. While we will constantly sit up for next 12 months’ offering, it’s a shame that this year appears to be a case of records repeating.

Geneva A. Crawford

View all contributions by Geneva A. Crawford

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