AEW have confirmed via their newest social media account that the long-awaited AEW video game is on its way towards being announced. The inaugural game’s first details will hit the internet next Tuesday, where we should hopefully learn a few features, an idea of the release date and what development team is rallying behind the hottest wrestling brand on the planet.
With all this very exciting news to look forward to, we start by predicting who might be the one to grace the game’s cover, an appointment that has become more and more prestigious over the years. For almost a decade, WWE 2K games have held down the market for wrestling simulators, but since the debacle that was WWE 2K20, there’s plenty of room for a new franchise to usurp the mainstream attraction and make a name for themselves as they continue to expand into new media.
This could very well be history in the making, with AEW announcing their first video game to coincide with the passing of the torch between two console generations. Who could be the first major wrestling star to hit the shelves on the cover of a PS5/Xbox Series X game? Let’s run down some options.
1. Kenny Omega
An easy choice for the cover star position, the recently redubbed ‘Cleaner’ of AEW, Kenny Omega. Omega is not only a massive star in the world of pro wrestling but also in the world of gaming, having participated at several FGC events, whether that be as a competitor or commentator. Alongside Xavier Woods, Omega has worn down the barriers between the two industries and solidified his stardom in both.
Since AEW’s inception, Kenny Omega has been one of the leading stars that has steadily rose through the ranks after a dream feud with Jon Moxley and an incredible AEW Tag Team Championship reign. With Omega now in reach of the AEW Championship, this could be the perfect chance for him to be utilised as a cover star for the AEW game.
Kenny has long-stood to be the face of the alternative in wrestling, having founded a movement in NJPW and taking that across the world to form AEW. If anyone deserves to be the one to stick it to WWE 2K, it’s him.
2. Jon Moxley
Current AEW Champion Jon Moxley has been one of the founding fathers of the AEW roster, having made the jump across from WWE during the brand’s first pay-per-view, Double or Nothing. Moxley has truly shifted the tide from the mainstream to the niche, bringing with him legions of die-hard fans and fresh eyes to the AEW product. Moxley’s feuds have been some of the most impressive work in AEW, making him the perfect candidate to finally become a cover star.
Moxley’s character stands for rebellion and anarchy, which is precisely the vibe that AEW is subtly going for in their crusade against the status quo. AEW’s first video game could not only benefit from having a huge, marquee star like Moxley on the cover, but also to show the world that they’re not pulling any punches when challenging the long-standing champion of wrestling games.
Prepare for another paradigm shift.
3. The Young Bucks
Perhaps one of the lesser attractions of the AEW roster is the greatest Tag team in the world today, The Young Bucks. Prior to AEW’s first show, I suspected that there’d be a lot of the Elite putting themselves over in a big way, fortunately it hasn’t quite gone down that way and the majority of the show’s founders have kept themselves relatively absent from the title scene. Yet, the Bucks have done insurmountable good for Tag wrestling as a whole, do they deserve the chance to be on the cover of a video game? Of course they do.
The Bucks are breaking a lot of ground this year, not only in the squared circle but also in the book market as well, soon to be releasing their very first autobiography, Killing the Business. Another massive accomplishment in the latter half of their career would be to become the first Tag team to be cover stars of a video game, a nod to their star power and workload from years gone by.
4. Chris Jericho
I’m sure not a single wrestling fan would argue the impact that Chris Jericho had on the wrestling world when he brought his services to AEW. Jericho’s plight outside of WWE has shifted the momentum in their favour, bringing hordes of ratings and new fans to Tony Khan’s wrestling promotion. Not only was Jericho the very first AEW Champion, but he could also become the very first AEW cover star, something that has never come to be in his 30 years of service.
Some fans have debated that AEW have focused a little too much on former WWE superstars, but I couldn’t think of a more recognisable name than Jericho to help build AEW over the past year. This isn’t Y2J, the guy that defeated The Rock and Steve Austin in the same night, this is ‘Le Champion’, the wrestler looking to go out on a high while building a whole new layer to his legacy.
The AEW video game could be a great place to commemorate his work in AEW.
There’s no taking away the huge effect Cody has had on the wrestling world when he put together AEW with The Elite. From his humble beginnings in WWE (if you can take that phrase seriously) to now building an empire that is challenging its rivals for the top spot on Wednesday nights, is simply astounding. Cody might not be putting himself at the fore-front of every pay-per-view, but everyone can respect that he’s a massive star of the show and deserves every bit of credit given to him.
With Cody now appearing a little more frequently as the TNT Champion, there might be no better time for him to be put on the cover of the first AEW game, almost a certificate of what he’s built over the past year. Whether it be on his own or surrounded by the rest of the AEW roster, I would not object to seeing Cody’s mug on the cover of the millions of copies the first-ever AEW game is going to sell.
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