Wrestling Federation Manager (December 1999)
This is where the road to Promotion Wars first began. Way back in December 1999, when my only experience of a wrestling sim was Wrestling 2000 (see Download.com). I debated making a game like Championship Manager, only where you control WWF or WCW instead of football clubs. I decided against it in the end, thinking that people would not be interested in merely taking over the duties at an already established promotion. I couldn't have been more wrong. Anyway, I chose instead to base the game on starting up your own promotion, and running it against the big two. You chose the name of the promotion, and even designed the logo (by simply choosing a font and a colour). You started with a roster full of indy guys who I took from magazines, none of whom I had seen wrestling. One of them happened to be a certain Elix Skipper, who I got totally wrong when creating a description for. The wrestlers all had their Draw and Entertainment values, just as in PW, and the rosters worked as in PW - clicking on their name brought up their profile. You created primary and secondary singles titles, and a tag team title. You chose a venue from which to permanently have your shows (like how ECW had the ECW Arena), and chose either singles or tag team matches. Only the main event could be given a stipulation, and as there was no commentary, there were several gimmicks to choose from, each having a varying degree on your attendence. Once the matches were chosen, you were taken to a screen showing a poster of your show, advertising your main event match. Then you were simply taken to the results screen, where you were told who beat who, and titles changed hands. You could also sign talent from WWF, WCW, ECW or Other, as in PW. Because of the small bank balance you begin with, it is very difficult to afford anyone to start with. There was also a training camp, as in PW, where you could choose how much money was put into it, and that reflected the talent you got out of it. Once your promotion got popular enough, you were given a TV deal, and got to see your ratings compared to the WWF and WCW. Ratings were shown only as a percentage, however. Another nice feature in WFM was buying a ring - you had a selection of different qualities, at varying prices. You could also see what it looked like, complete with your designed logo on the side, and you could choose the colour of the apron.
I made this game during my early days of programming, and learned the harsh lesson a lot of people end up discovering. I thought I knew enough to make a game of that scale, but later discovered there are a lot easier ways to do things than how I was doing them. I ended up using 50 forms for the Visual Basic project (PW uses less than half that). The game had serious memory issues, and thus was never really completed as such, although it is 99% done.
Wrestling Federation Manager 2 (January 2000)
After learning a lesson while making WFM, I set out to avoid all the mistakes I had made, and remake the game as a sequel. I didn't get very far into this before I found Extreme Warfare 9000. This got me thinking about how I could adapt WFM to have the WWF and WCW instead of creating a new promotion. Work on WFM2 was scrapped, and I began work on a game called Promotion Wars...
Promotion Wars 1.0 (October 7th 2000)
Started in January 2000, Promotion Wars was uploaded to the internet on October 7th 2000, and announced on the Extreme Warfare discussion board. It caused a wave of interest on the EW Board, who believed they had seen the last of EW, and had been given nothing but empty promises by other programmers. Promotion Wars 1.0 was never destined for the internet, and it wasn't until about 70% into the game that I started considering the possibility. Then came the problem of getting it onto the internet, which was solved after several different attempts.
PW 1.0 looked different to all the other PW's. It had a white background, and looked pretty ugly. The font which I had used was not on a lot of people's computers, so their computer was replacing it with a bigger one, thus hiding some of the text and increasing the ugliness. But the features were a big step up from WFM. The matches now had commentary, using a mix of Championship Manager and Extreme Warfare influences. There were now a selection of venues to choose from, which was an idea taken from EW. TV ratings were now the actual numbers instead of a percentage. In general, the game was written specifically around WWF and WCW. The signing of wrestlers, and the training camp, were carried across and modified slightly from WFM. Commentaters were dropped from PW1.0 after repeated 'Out of Memory' messages.
Promotion Wars 1.1 (October 14th 2000)
After a week on the net, the first refinement to Promotion Wars was uploaded. The major change here was the look of the game. The whole thing was redesigned. The white background replaced by a dark blue background (an idea I had when reading about LMA Manager in a magazine), and the font which nobody had was replaced by Verdana. Also added was the ability to see your champions highlighted in gold on the roster.
Promotion Wars 1.2 (October 21st 2000)
A week after 1.1 came another refinement. PW 1.2 allowed the player to rebook a match if they made a mistake, and had the sortable rosters feature added. Some of the bugs were also fixed for this version.
Promotion Wars 1.2a (October 25th 2000)
It was a mere 4 days before another new version arrived. This merely mixed a mistake or 2.
Promotion Wars 1.2b (January 1st 2001)
It wasn't until the new year rolled in that another new version of PW arrived. This version was meant as a final polishing of PW1.2 before the big 1.3 arrived.
Promotion Wars 1.2c (June 2nd 2001)
In June, 1.2b was polished a little bit more. More bugs were fixed, the general difficulty of the game was improved, and a much requested back button on the roster was added.
Promotion Wars 1.2d (July 30th 2001)
For the first time in Promotion Wars' history, almost all information within the game could be changed by the player. 1.2d also makes the player buy out the contract of a wrestler if he wants to release him against the wrestler's will. The game starts by default with the starting promotions being the WWF and the WCW/ECW Alliance.
Promotion Wars 1.2e (December 31st 2001)
1.2e dropped the save slots and gave the player unlimited saves. It also introduced Challenges, where the player had to complete certain targets by a certain time, or the game ends. The expected draw value for world champions, the expected ratings for the main show and PPV, the expected bank balance and the minimum draw value for a top liner could all be edited. Weekly rating was affected a lot more if the player is in debt, and shows cost a lot more money to put on. The bug where the weekly rating could show as more than 100% was fixed. Hell in a Cell and Triple Cage can now be used for any promotion. The files were now no longer kept in folders, which allowed me to just use Winzip, and not a setup program. This brought the download to less than 1 MB, when it had been over 3MB.
Promotion Wars 1.2e Small Update (January 6th 2002)
The money problem was fixed, and a choice of the classic blue background or the new black background was added.
Promotion Wars 1.3 - Beta Test Demo (August 16th 2004)
The first new Promotion Wars release for 2 and a half years, version 1.3 was the 1.2e code re-written. The several changes included the possibility of up to 11 playable promotions including the option of starting a brand new indy promotion, editable match endings, interviews and venues, more shows, more titles, customisable match stipulations, new wrestler stats and more.
Promotion Wars 1.3 (October 7th 2004)
After the public testing, version 1.3 was officially released as a complete game on the 4th anniversary of the first ever Promotion Wars release.
Original Site Closure (September 1st 2007)
The original post about the closure reads as follows:
The webspace which hosts the PW Forums and this site will expire within the next 2 weeks. When it does, the forums and this site will disappear and be gone. All posts on the forums will be lost forever.
However, you will still be able to access the website hosted on Geocities at www.geocities.co.uk/promwars. I'll transfer the pages of this site onto there for those that still want to access any of the info here.
The community from the PW Forums has moved to a new forum, which is a general forum and not centred on Promotion Wars. The address for that forum is http://resurgence.myfastforum.org/index.php.
This isn't the death of Promotion Wars. It's just been a long time since the last version, and there isn't a new version in the works. It doesn't make sense to pay for 2 more years of webspace when the scene is so quiet, so I'm just letting it expire until there is a reason to have webspace and forums again.
Enjoy the break, and hopefully I will have a reason to kick start everything again in the future. If all else fails, I'm sure I'll pop back for the 10th anniversary, so put 7th October 2010 in your diaries...!
The New Promwars.co.uk Arrives (December 13th 2020)
After a long long time away, we have finally reopened the website!
The First In A While! (December 23rd 2020)
After a long time without any updates in any form, the first stat update pack in close to 15 years was released - albeit with only one promotion, but the work continues!
Real World 2021 Drops... along with a new build?! (January 1st 2021)
As promised by Valo (formerly known in the PW circle as CorZ) and Jay-C, the first update pack in 15 years landed at exactly midnight UK time on January 1st 2021. But that is not all... not only did the first data update drop - but the first new build of Promotion Wars since November 2005!
Feeling the hype and the excitement around the Real World update, Adam Jennings dusted off his keyboard one more time and added in some small quality of life changes, along with a slight visual overhaul on the main entry screen. With the new-old build of Promotion Wars - now version 1.31 - and the Real World 2021 data - a rekindled spark had seemingly reignited the Wars... Here is the official Change Log that Adam sent Valo on release day:
"Promotion Wars 1.31 - Dec 31st 2020
UPDATED - The start-up text, replacing the old website with social media links
UPDATED - The title screen - removed the old website and old e-mail, small changes to layout
UPDATED - The website address shown for a new indy (was the old website address)
UPDATED - A couple of small visual improvements to the main menu - border around the 'next show' information, colour change for the 'View Dates' text to make it stand out more, bank balance now shows formatted with commas
FIXED - Prevented promotion descriptions from turning '&' into a keyboard shortcut
FIXED - Prevented player from buying out the contract of a wrestler from another promotion, if the player's bank balance is less than zero
FIXED - Prevented player from offering a free agent a contract, if the player's bank balance is less than zero
FIXED - Prented player from renewing their own wrestler's contracts if the player's bank balance is less than zero
FIXED - An error that prevented the game working properly when certain shows took place on the start day of the game
FIXED - The game wouldn't calculate the PPV buys if the promotion size was 'indy' - now changed so that it does
FIXED - When viewing profiles from the 'New Signing' screen, sometimes the 'status' didn't update (e.g. Free Agent) - corrected
FIXED - Venues or wrestlers that started with a number aligned differently to ones that start with a letter - forced them all to align the same way
ADDED - A little special touch which will only occur if a new game is started in January 2021 (real-time not game-time)."
Do you want to play some of these classic Promotion Wars games? Head over to the Downloads page and grab them now!