WWE 2K22 is still several months away from being released, but the latest leak regarding development isn't one many fans will appreciate.
It looks like WWE 2K22 is taking a page from NBA 2K22 this year, and microtransactions are likely to become a central game mechanic according to one report.
WWE 2K22 reportedly to use microtransactions for the first time
WWE 2K22 isn't due to arrive at its delayed release date until March 2022, but we're slowly getting bits and pieces as development continues.
Unfortunately, the latest news is bad for both the game as a whole and the wallets of plenty of WWE 2K fans.
The news comes via a report by VikingSizeGamer, who is also a designer for indie title The Wrestling Code, and came after data dug into a publicly accessible WWE 2K CDN.
While digging, he discovered a folder marked "2K22/Store" with fully rendered images featuring WWE-marked Virtual Currency.
Perhaps most concerning is the largest one, seen visualized as a literal barrel above, which could represent the roughly $100 counterpart of 450,000 VC currently available to purchase for NBA 2K22.
We'll have to wait to find out exactly how much 2K Games decides to sell VC for in WWE 2K22, or if this becomes another piece of development that's abandoned ahead of launch, but right now it looks like they're taking the money-grubbing route.
WWE games have had microtransactions before, but this is different
Microtransactions have become such an integral part of the gaming ecosystem today that it's not really surprising on the surface that they've found their way to the WWE 2K franchise.
It's that last part which could be changing here, because even the few examples of microtransactions in WWE games before now weren't quite as targeted.
WWE 2K20 and WWE 2K19, the last releases in this gaming franchise, both had DLC options for an Accelerator or MyPLAYER Kick Start that would offer bonus VC, make attribute growth easier, or make other characters easier to unlock.
While similar, these were one-time purchases that couldn't be used again and were often included in Deluxe or Limited Edition versions of the game.
While microtransactions are standard for mobile titles, and WWE has used that plenty, the first console title to use true microtransactions was WWE 2K Battlegrounds when released in September of 2020.
For that game, they were dubbed Golden Bucks and only used to more quickly unlock extra characters, but these leaked images could be a sign that WWE 2K22 will tie the mechanic to online competition much now NBA 2K22 has already.