- Developer: Bandai Namco
- Publisher: Bandai Namco
- Genre: Action, Fighting, Sports
- Release Date: 1 June 2017
- Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows, Arcade Game
- Supplied By: Microsoft
Here ye! Here ye! To all you fighting game fanatics I have news! Tekken is back! Jin, Kazuya and Heihachi are all back causing more mayhem than you can shake a pair of Marshall Laws nun chucks at! But wait, don’t get your hopes up yet Tekken fans, because I hate to say it, but 6 was better. Now, hold your mouse! Don’t go clicking on that close button yet, hear me out okay? Pinky swear you’ll read to the end of the article? No? Well it was worth a shot.
Tekken 7 has been a highly anticipated game within the franchise, with the story gathering some serious momentum and the graphics getting better and better by the game it’s been amazing to see our childhood fighting game grow up with the times. But I must say that as much as I love the franchise, Tekken 7 has fallen over and focused on the wrong things within this game.
When I first booted up the game it came alongside the typical Tekken opening scene which lasted over 3 and a half minutes. I was so eager to get into the fighting that I had completely forgotten about the long-standing feud within the Mishima family. The father and son relationship which is basically a who can kill who first championship. Once the opening scene was over (which you can skip if you want, I just like watching these things) a menu popped up with the most awesome artworks I have seen of Heihachi Mishima in a long time. It exuded darkness and grittiness which I think is what the game is moving more towards. Bandai Namco is trying to move away from the typical fighting game genre and into a darker story based game with fighting tournament multiplayer online capabilities.
Once starting the story mode, I was immediately thrust into the ending of Tekken 6 which I won’t spoil for you lovely readers out there. But I will say that if you haven’t played Tekken 6, don’t worry! The people at Bandai Namco have given us the opportunity to view all stories all the way back from Tekken 1! This helped me lot because I’ve moved to a new house twice since playing Tekken 6 and my memory is a bit hazy. I would like to say that the story mode is good, but I can’t, I’m sorry! I’ve loved Tekken since I first played it as a child but I can’t lie to you! It’s like watching a movie where you get to beat people up every other 10 minutes. For people like me, who love playing out a story in a game, this was not what I was hoping for. I had hoped for a story mode along the same lines as Tekken 6 where you are running down hallways fighting your way through guard after guard to get to an end of level boss. But Tekken 7’s story mode just feels too rushed. I could play through the story mode in about 2-3 hours easily, and I’m not what you would call a hard-core gamer!
The graphics have kept to the good old Tekken style with gravity defying hair and jiggling…. nun chucks. They have improved on Tekken 6, but not obviously in a way that makes the player wow. It can run at a steady 60 frames per second, which is good for a fighting game that moves as fast as Tekken does!
The sound design is as manic as ever, with music playing over narrative and heavy bass beats in the background with hayahs in the foreground. One thing I have always loved about Tekken is that each character speaks their own language. Heihachi speaks Japanese, Nina speaks English and Eddy speaks Portuguese. All the narrative is in whatever language you choose to speak yourself, but all the spoken word stays the same. As a gamer, I’m so used to all the characters speaking English when I select English, but Tekken has always stuck by each player speaking in their native dialect, which I love.
The controls are as they have always been, if you’re a pro, you select a predetermined combination of buttons and execute the perfect combo, if you’re anything but a pro, you mash your hand into the buttons in the hope that a combo will magically appear in front of your eyes, and when it does totally pass it off as something you had planned all along. The character selection is limited at best. With Tekken 6 having an unreal selection of 47 different characters and Tekken Tag Tournament 2 having a whopping 54 characters you would expect the next in the line to have a decent selection for you to try your hand at. No. Granted it still boasts an impressive 29 characters to choose from, but it’s missing some classic familiar faces! Where’s Lei? Where’s Roger? Where’s Alex? This game has focused on the story so much that we have lost some rather iconic characters.
The multiplayer and online fighting has stayed the same to a point. Simply you log on and play. However, one feature I loved in Tekken 6 was the ability to have team matches where you could locally play a team of 8 against another team of 8 and it was an elimination style playoff. This was great for if you had a few people round who all wanted a go, you could easily swap and change controllers easily. But now, it’s simply 1 v 1 in local and online matches, which is a norm within the fighting game genre, but it’s all over too quickly.
I have played the Tekken games since I was very young, it’s one of the first games I ever remember playing on my PlayStation 1 back in my childhood bedroom. I love this franchise and wish it all the best in its future endeavours. But with its lack of characters and 3-hour story mode, Tekken 7 just doesn’t swing my nun chucks.