One of the most famous and best selling fighting games of all time, Tekken, finally brings its great blend of pick-up-and-play fighting fun and intense combo-based fighting style which appeals to veterans of the genre to a Microsoft console. This, the sixth main instalment in the series, features over 40 characters, all new arenas, a new Scenario Campaign mode, and greater customisation options than we’ve ever seen in a Tekken game. This is the definitive Tekken experience, and will stand tall beside all other fighters for years to come.
As obvious as it is, Tekken 6 is a fighting game and lets players do just that; fight one another. In the past few years, we were delivered the great Virtua Fighter 5 and Street Fighter 4 games, and as the next biggest fighting game series, Tekken 6 is in its right place to compete with the others. As the times are getting on, one of the biggest selling points in the fighting genre is to include the most amount of fighters, and with Tekken 6, we get our hands on the most fighters the series has ever seen, which stands at over 40. Each character in the game has his or her very own and exceptionally unique fighting style and an all new set of moves and techniques to master. This is great, as it allows players to become master fighters with whichever character they choose, and gives great incentive to try out every character on the roster, which in itself can provide hours of enjoyment.
But with a bucket load of characters, they themselves, and their moves, would still need to be of top quality to compete with those seen in Street Fighter 4. Well, it’s a good thing that these 40-odd fighters we play in Tekken 6 are as fleshed out and individual as a fighting game can have. Every fighter looks and acts different from the last and with tons of combos to master for everyone, there is no end to the fun that multiplayer brings to the table. Speaking of which, if you ever are minus a friend to play with at your house, breath deep and try your hand at the online versus mode right after you play bingo at butlinsbingo. But be warned, this multiplayer is only for the best of the best, and the rest will be left beaten and bloody on the doorstep of the games single player campaign mode, aptly titled Scenario Campaign, which I’ll get too shortly. Back when Street Fighter 4 was released, its online multilayer mode was hailed as being unplayable due to its lag. This caused the game in general to be heavily criticized. But Tekken seems to have taken that as a warning to its online mode, as for a fighting game, there has never been a smoother online experience. It plays as flawlessly as if you were playing a friend on a local console, and its responsiveness it top tier. Once you complete the somewhat difficult challenge of mastering any number of the games fighters, online multiplayer is where you will lose most of your precious time.
Back to the single players Scenario Campaign mode. This is where the game makes its stand against other fighters. This mode is unlike anything you’ve ever seen in another fighter (except maybe the last few Tekken games, which have had modes slightly similar to this), and puts you into a story based adventure which has you fighting in a 3D, third person perspective through copious amounts of enemies and levels. This mode uses the same engine and fighting system as the arcade modes, but only shows you the action from behind, which makes some combos pretty difficult, as its a little harder to see what’s going on. The idea behind this is pretty neat, and it tries to give you a decent story mode to play through when you’re sick of the classic arcade fighting, but overall, it’s quite a dodgy experience that, unless you’re really not very good at the game, really bored, or just playing for some achievements, you will not likely play for more than a mission or two at the most. The cut scenes are long, arduous, and boring due to their overacting voices and overdone and exaggerated character design. The levels are just a heap of fighting, and while that’s just what type of game it is, it doesn’t go down well in this third person style. To make the mode that little bit worse, a long load time between every level is there to laugh in our face. But the bad load times aren’t just in this Scenario mode; they also riddle every mode from arcade to multiplayer, putting an unwanted cramp in our gaming enjoyment.
This time around, we also see another first for the mammoth series; destructible and interwound arenas. Like some other fighting games, such as Mortal Kombat and even Dead or Alive, through powerful fighting and big combos, walls and floors can be smashed away to make way into other areas and other arenas. This makes some of the fights you have very dramatic and cinematic, which can not only add to the fun, but also to the games length, as fights will always seem fresh and leave you wanting to come back for more and more. This isn’t the only aspect with these characteristics. With a great sense of customization, more so than any other Tekken game, you will feel like the character you play is truly yours and any connection you make with him or her really adds intensity to the fight.
To say the very least; Tekken looks great. In fact, that is an understatement. Tekken looks REALLY great. Probably the best graphics ever put into a fighting game on the 360, and most certainly the best character models the series has ever seen. The characters looks real, and every face movement and emotion is animated flawlessly, giving a greater sense of immersion, well, as much as possible for a fighting game.
And even when you are knee deep in amazing, death dealing combos of epic proportions (or if you’re anything like me, when this is happening to you over Xbox LIVE), the character animation stays flawless and at a constant stream of 60 Frames Per Second (which is high for ANY game, especially a fighter), even at full 1080p HD graphics. Its things like this that make the game great, and place Tekken 6 as the leading fighter on the market.
Another positive aspect of Tekken 6 is the sound department. It achieves this by including all the original Tekken soundtrack themes and sounds. Although some may find the original themes and sounds repetitive and perhaps even annoying, long-time Tekken fans out there will love it. The old-school sound in Tekken 6 gives the game a very classic and arcade-style feel, just the way a fighting game should. After all, there is still nothing like classic sounds and timeless themes to make a fighting game and all its many bloody battles complete.
Like most games, true value is in the multiplayer modes, as it is with Tekken 6. Playing alone and in the single player Scenario Campaign can only last for so long before becoming unbearable, so practice if you will, and take the fight online to make the most out of this game. A fighting game is only as strong as its multiplayer, so going by this, Tekken 6 is the strongest fighter around, as the multiplayer is fast, fun, looks great, plays great and will have you in the fighting spirit for hours at a time. Unless you have a LIVE subscription, or always have some mates around for a tourney or a quick fighting romp, you probably won’t get more than an hour or two of fun from this game.
We had been robbed of the greatness of old Mortal Kombat games, we had been given a lagged up and unplayable Street Fighter 4 online mode, we hadn’t had anyone to play Virtua Fighter 5 with in years, so out of the dark comes Tekken 6 to free us of our lack of fast-paced fighting action. And free us it did, with the best fighter of this style the world has ever seen. 40+ characters, each with unique moves, looks and personalities, great character models, great environments and arenas and to top it off, extremely enjoyable online fighting (for the best of us) make Tekken 6 the must-have fast-paced fighter of this generation. A bad campaign mode and some pretty horrid load times bring the game down a little, but not enough to turn heads the other way.
AAG SCORE: 8.5/10
- Loads of great characters
- Accessible to all levels of players
- Great graphics and models
- Fun and challenging multiplayer
- Bad load times
- Scenario Campaign is underworked and dull
Reviewed & Written By John Elliott