|WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2007|
|Series||SmackDown vs. RAW|
|Released||NA November 14, 2006|
EU November 16, 2006
AUS November 2–10, 2006
WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2007 is a professional wrestling video game released by THQ and developed by Yuke's Future Media Creators. The game is based on the professional wrestling promotion World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). It is the eighth installment of the WWE SmackDown vs. Raw series and is the successor to 2005's WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2006 and was succeeded by WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2008. On March 31, 2006, THQ, Yuke's and WWE officially confirmed the game. The game was released in November 2006 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox 360 consoles and was released in December 2006 for the PlayStation Portable system.
The game introduced a few key new features including an analog control system, interactive hotspots, and fighting within the arena crowd. The game also included several improvements on the previous game's existing match types and modes. The Xbox 360 version was the first game in the SmackDown series to be published on a seventh generation video game console and the first SmackDown game to be released on a Microsoft console. It is also the first game to be released outside the PlayStation consoles.
THQ said they would bring a more realistic fighting experience with a new, but old analog control grappling system, enabling the player to throw their opponent anywhere they want with in reason, in contrast to previous preset animations. In the new system, grappling moves are now affected by analog control, in contrast to the button-based system from preceding games. Much like the previous game, one can also move around the ring by analog control instead of using the D-pad. An option to switch to the previous control layout is also possible. The chain reversal system has also been improved and now involves grapples as well as strikes.
The Category 1 and Category 2 movesets are determined by your weight-class now, so lighter wrestlers have access to martial arts or luchador move-sets, while heavier wrestlers have access to more power moves. In addition, a wrestler can only lift up or hurt with certain strikes, wrestlers one weight class heavier than them or less.
A lot more interactivity in the arenas is also present such as fighting within the crowd. Signs and objects from the crowd can be used to beat down the opponent. One major feature is the inclusion of environmental "hotspots" such as the ring ropes, steel steps and scaffolding which players can interact with. The PS2 version however has a restriction on crowd fighting and interaction for specific match types.
The graphics have also improved with each superstar consisting of 20,000 polygons for the Xbox 360 compared to the total of 500 from the PS2 version of the previous game. Sweat from the wrestlers has now been included in the Xbox 360 version of the game. The game's audio system has been overhauled and features new sound effects in Dolby 5.1 as well as the inclusion of new crowd chants and grunting from the wrestlers.
For the Create-A-Superstar mode, singer Lemmy's face is put in the game as a template.
The Create-A-Entrance mode has been improved with a new preview mode. As well as instantaneous previews of the entrances when the player makes a change, one can also specifically set the timing for camera angles, pyrotechnics and other effects. Despite the Xbox 360's hard drive and MP3 capabilitiy, the game is unable to recognize any music you may have saved onto your hard drive like previous WWE games for the original Xbox did for custom entrance music.
There is also a Create-A-Stable Mode which allows you to make a tag-team, alliance, or a stable with up to five members. This also allows you to come out in the same entrance as your teammates unlike many other WWE wrestling games.
Inspired by John Cena's custom spinner championship belts, the ability to create belts with spinning centerpieces in the returning Create-A-Championship mode is now possible as well as the player's ability to manually spin these belts during an entrance. The championship belts from the previous game are included in this game in addition to created belts. These include the belts used by WWE in 2006: the WWE, World Heavyweight, Intercontinental, United States, World Tag Team, WWE Tag Team, Women's and Cruiserweight championships. Stone Cold Steve Austin's "Smoking Skull" belt and the nWo's version of the WCW World Heavyweight Championship has joined Ted DiBiase's Million Dollar Championship and the WWE Hardcore Championship as classic belts that can also be won and defended in the game.
Like the previous game, the game was released on the PlayStation 2 and the PlayStation Portable. While the series has traditionally been exclusive to the PlayStation series of consoles, this game was released on Xbox 360 after a series of lackluster wrestling games THQ released on the original Xbox. This is the first time a game in the SmackDown! series is featured in two different console generations.
A PlayStation 3 version was also planned but was eventually cancelled. The developers publicly announced that they would rather concentrate their resources on other game systems. The next installment Smackdown vs. Raw 2008 was released for the PlayStation 3 and all future WWE games have since been released for the console. There was also consideration over releasing the game on the Wii as the game's developers were waiting to learn more about the system. However, during a video interview, creative manager Cory Ledesma announced there were no plans for it to be released on the Wii.
A special edition version for the Xbox 360 was sold for a limited time at EB Games and GameStop. This version featured the game in an aluminum case along with a bonus disc from The History of the WWE Championship DVD boxset and a copy of The Ultimate WWE Trivia Book.