Pro wrestling video games date all the way to the year 1983. The very first pro wrestling game was made for the arcade and was called "The Big Pro Wrestling!" The game was eventually ported over to the Nintendo Entertainment System and was renamed "Tag Team Wrestling." The game wasn't very good and only had four unique characters in it. The very first actual licensed professional wrestling game, based on an actual promotion, was WWF WrestleMania on the NES. The game only featured six playable wrestlers due to the small size of the NES cartridges.
As the years went on and consoles became more powerful, game companies were able to put in more playable characters. We went from having six wrestlers in a game in 1986 to over 120 to choose from in 2016. Back when game companies were only able to fit six wrestlers into their game, only the the top wrestlers were included. In more modern wrestling games, almost every wrestler on the roster was included. A lot of the times, characters are included, who are not even actual wrestlers. These characters include anywhere from managers and commentators to rock stars and even the head of a mannequin.
Even though almost every wrestler a fan could want are included to today's wrestling games, the inclusion of these stupid playable characters still feels like a big waste. It's seems highly unlikely that any wrestling fan was salivating at the mouth when they found out the people on this list were going to be playable characters. They would have been better off had they not included these characters in the first place.
Without further ado, here are the top 15 stupid playable characters in wrestling video games.
16 Jim Ross
Playable in: WWF Wrestlemania 2000, WWF No Mercy, WWE '12
For someone who is supposed to be an announcer, Jim Ross sure has gotten the crap beat out of him through the years. He's suffered a Stone Cold Stunner, had a cinder block smashed on his face, and he's even been lit on fire, just to name a few things. Jim Ross has been a playable character in three different games, so if you wanted to put "Good ol' JR" through more pain in the virtual form, you were free to do so.
15 Michael Cole
Playable in: WWF No Mercy, WWF SmackDown! 2: Know Your Role, WWE '12
Michael Cole is one of the few people on this list who has actually competed in a wrestling match. The commentator's most notable match is when he took on Jerry Lawler at WrestleMania XXVII. The match is considered one of the worst in WrestleMania history and if you wanted to relive the terribleness, you were able to in WWE '12. The worst part is that you actually had to spend more of your hard earned money, if you wanted to play as Michael Cole, since he was a DLC.
14 Mike Tyson
Playable in: WWE '13
The story mode in WWE '13 was based on The Attitude Era. A man who had a short, but significant role during that era was "Iron" Mike Tyson. He was the special guest enforcer in the match between Shawn Michaels and "Stone Cold" Steve Austin at WrestleMania XIV. Besides throwing a couple punches, Tyson played mostly a non physical role during his time in the WWE, which is why it is bit a bizarre decision to have him as a playable character in WWE '13. Also, including a guy who has an extensive criminal background in today's PG WWE seems like a bad business decision.
13 Paul Heyman
Playable in: ECW Anarchy Rulz
When you think of Paul Heyman today, you think of Brock Lesnar's mouth piece. He's portrayed as somewhat of a coward when Lesnar is not by his side. There was a point in time where Heyman traded in his suit for a leather jacket and a baseball cap. As the owner of ECW, Heyman had a ruthless atttitude and was someone you didn't want to piss off. Still, Heyman was not the most imposing figure and probably couldn't pull off a drop kick if his life depended on it. If you owned a copy of ECW Anarchy Rulz on PlayStation, you could perform as many drop kicks with Paul Heyman as you wanted.
12 John Laurinaitis
Playable in: WWE '13
John Laurinaitis made a name for himself in Japan, where he wrestled in All Japan Pro Wrestling for over a decade. WWE fans of today know him as the former heel Raw General Manager. During his time as GM, he had notable feuds with both CM Punk and John Cena. He even had a couple of forgettable in ring matches with Cena. Laurinaitis was included as a playable character in WWE '13, which isn't a completely stupid choice considering he was an actual wrestler at one point. What makes he inclusion stupid was that fact that the game developers were too lazy to give him an attire other than a business suit.
11 Vince Russo
Playable in: WCW Backstage Assault
Vince Russo is known as one of the main reasons why WCW went out of business. He came up with some terrible storylines, as well as some abysmal gimmick matches like the Judy Bagwell on a Pole match. So, it is only fitting that Russo was included in the terrible WCW Backstage Assault. The only positive thing about Russo’s inclusion is that it gave WCW fans that chance to beat the living hell out him for taking the company down, even if it was just in the virtual form.
10 Tony Schiavone
Playable in: WCW Nitro, WCW/nWo Thunder
Tony Schiavone was the voice of WCW during the Monday Night War. Prior to this, Schiavone worked for a little while in WWE. During his long announcing career, Schiavone never got involved in any storylines that involved him actually getting into the ring. However, he was included as playable character in two WCW games. Fellow announce Mike Tenay was also included in WCW/nWo Thunder, so if for some reason you wanted to battle it out to see who was the toughest announcer, you could do so.
9 "Mean" Gene Okerlund
Playable in: WCW Nitro, WCW/nWo Thunder, WCW Mayhem
"Mean" Gene Okerlund is arguably the greatest interviewer in the history of professional wrestling and he has been in the professional wrestling business for over forty years. Despite all those years in wrestling, "Mean" Gene has never actually took a bump inside a wrestling ring. However, if for some strange reason your fantasy was to see him get in the ring and start throwing some punches, you could live that fantasy out in three different WCW games.
Playable in: WWF Raw (Sega 32X)
WWF Raw on the Sega 32X had a roster of 13 playable wrestlers and the ever so popular Kwang was one of them as a hidden character. Kwang is better known in the WWE for his later run as Savio Vega. The Kwang character was supposed to be some sort of ninja and he ended up having little success in the WWE before he was quickly scrapped not too long after his debut. It was weird why the WWE wanted him in the game, especially since Superstars like Randy Savage and Crush were left out.
7 Doug Dellinger
Playable in: WCW Mayhem , WCW Backstage Assault
Doug Dellinger was the head of security in WCW during the 1990s. He didn't look like the most imposing man, as he was a bit heavy set and had to be at least in his 50s. It’s hard to believe that WCW fans were clamouring to be able to play as Dellinger in a video game, but that is exactly what we got when he was made playable in two games. Dellinger was featured as an unlockable character in WCW Mayhem and as well as in one of the worst wrestling games ever created in WCW Backstage Assault.
Playable in: WWF No Mercy
The Godfather was a popular Superstar in the WWE during The Attitude Era. His character was that of a pimp, who would bring "hoes" down to the ring with him. In WWF No Mercy, you were given a chance to play as one of these "hoes." The unlockable character was simply named "Ho" and cost an absurd $500,000 of in-game currency. To put that in perspective, you could buy Earl Hebner, Ken Shamrock, Cactus Jack, and Shawn Michaels for a combined $160,000.
5 Arnold Schwarzenegger
Playable in: WWE 2K16
The most recent entry on this list is the ability to play as the Terminator T1 and T2, if you pre-ordered WWE 2K16. The inclusion of Arnold Schwarzenegger is bit out of place, considering that 2K16 was trying to be more of a true wrestling simulation than ever before. The reason why he was included probably had to do with Paramount trying to get more money out of the Terminator Genisys film. Arnold Schwarzenegger had been portrayed in many video games throughout the years, but you can say for certain that he has never looked better than he does in WWE 2K16.
Playable in: WWF Warzone
WWF Warzone was the first ever 3D game to feature the WWE liscense. It was made by the now defunct Acclaim and was released in 1998 for the PlayStation and Nintendo 64. The game had a decent sized roster for the time and, if you had a Gameshark, you were able to unlock Turok from Acclaim’s Turok: The Dinosaur Hunter. Sadly he did not come with any of his weapons and had the exact same moveset as The Rock.
3 Fred Durst
Playable in: WWF SmackDown! Just Bring It, WWE Raw
Fred Dust is best known for being the lead singer of the band Limp Bizkit, who achieved mainstream success in the late 1990s and early 2000s. His only real contribution to professional wrestling was providing the theme song "Rollin" for The Undertaker. The WWE to decided to do a nice gesture for Durst and included him as a playable character in two different games. The only person happy that Fred Durst was included in the games was probably Durst himself.
Playable in: WWF Attitude
Al Snow first starting carrying the head of a mannequin to the ring in ECW, he then took “Head” with him when he returned to the WWE in 1998. The character of “Head” really got over with fans, so much so that it was an unlockable character in WWF Attitude. The character really looked out of place in the game, as it had no body, just hands and feet. “Head” was the only character ever to featured in a wrestling video game that wasn't even a living thing.