This installment of the Smackdown series continues the Smackdown vs. Raw era, which now uses a yearly date in the title, similarly to other sports titles.
The game includes an updated roster of wrestlers, as well as many classic superstars like Bret Hart or British Bulldog. It also includes many new arenas from recent Pay-Per-Views, as well as a classic arena from Wrestlemania 9. A new recorded dialogue for many of the wrestlers is featured in the storyline, as the player goes through many different plots in the Season Mode, chasing the championship belts.
Gameplay has been slightly enhanced, with a larger list of moves available to each wrestler, and pre-match mini-games to start your fight off with and determine who has the upper hand.
Another addition is the General Manager Mode, where the player takes the role of a GM trying to book a weekly show. Taking into account costs to contract wrestlers, keeping a chosen wrestler happy and healthy, and putting on matches and setting up feuds to keep the ratings for the show high are the objectives of this mode.
It is also possible to earn Smackdown Dollars in the game, which the player can use to buy new moves, new create-a-wrestler items, Legends wrestlers, and even furniture to customize a locker room. The player can also earn trophies for his trophy case by completing challenges and beating the GM Mode.