Tekken 6 Review
- Posted November 3rd, 2009 at 08:36 EDT by Michael Harradence
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While offering only incremental upgrades to the formula, Tekken 6 is a worthy successor to Dark Resurrection and ultimately one of the best entries in this venerable franchise to date.
- The superb fighting mechanics
- The heaps of game modes unlockable goodies on offer
- The sprawling and diverse character line-up
- The dodgy Scenario Campaign
- The lag during online matches
- The load times
When it comes to Tekken, there are certain aspects that will inevitably register at the very mention of Namco Bandai’s venerable beat ‘em up franchise. Juggles that don’t just bend the rules of reality but crash them under an iron fist, ten-hit combos, ridiculously muscular old blokes sporting equally ridiculous hairstyles, voluptuous babes, pugnacious Pandas, boxing Kangaroos and feuding families are just a few of the inherent oddities that’ll spring to mind.
Concurrently, the more discerning Tekkenite may also ponder over the following: What fresh moves will my character boast this time around? Will Tekken Ball ever show up again? Will Heihachi Mishima ever kick the bucket? Will lovable sumo buffoon Ganryu descend even further into the realms of toe-curling obsequiousness in an attempt to win the heart of his beloved Julia Chang? Who knows, but one thing’s for sure, it’s Tekken - and we’ll inevitably embrace it with open arms.
If there’s one aspect that’s as synonymous with the franchise besides the obvious it’s the convoluted, sprawling plotline. So it comes as little surprise that Tekken 6 continues the series’ apparently inexorable descent in to brain-numbing absurdity. This time around things center on devil child Jin Kazama, who, having battered all adversity to a pulp in the last tournament and ultimately gained control of the sprawling Mishima Zaibatsu conglomerate, has apparently succumbed to his inner demon and begins waging war and terror across the globe using his newly formed Tekken Force. Naturally, this doesn’t sit well with daddy Kazuya Mishima, who utilizes his newfound power and wealth as CEO of rival firm G Corporation to put a bounty on Jin’s head and meet his own goals of world domination. Old man Heihachi also rocks up in an attempt to regain control of his company, as well as the usual array of familiar and fresh-faced brawlers who also enter the King of Iron Fist Tournament 6 for their own lofty ambitious – and essentially, that’s all you need to know.
To be honest, you’d be forgiven for perceiving Namco’s latest effort as nothing more than a roided up Tekken 5 featuring a swanky new HD pain job and a couple of incremental upgrades strewn about here and there – since essentially, that’s all it is. However, while this may seem an overly inauspicious claim, it really isn’t; after all, Tekken 5 was a mighty impressive brawler to say the least, garnering heaps of praise from fans and critics alike. So it should come as no surprise to hear that its successor is an equally competent affair. The character roster is the most impressive to date, packing in a whopping 40+ fighters including several newcomers, such as the obese yet deceptively speedy Bob, Spanish brawler Miguel and complex, stance-based Zafina. Virtually everyone from Dark Resurrection made the cut save for big bad boss man Jinpachi Mishima, who has been replaced by a hulking, non-playable behemoth named Azazel.
Chances are a high proportion of you have dabbled in Tekken over the years, although for those of you that haven’t, now is as good of a time as any to test the waters. Newcomers certainly can’t go wrong, with Tekken 6 offering an intrinsically user-friendly control scheme, albeit still packing in an impressively comprehensive set of advanced maneuvers and tactics to sink your teeth in to once you’ve mastered the core fundamentals. Indeed, Tekken has traditionally always planted its cheeks firmly on the sofa between Soul Calibur and Virtua Fighter in terms of playing style, differing from the more stylish leniency of the former while falling short of the brutal, meticulous sensibilities of the latter. Combat is still based on the principle of assigning a fighter’s limb to each of the four buttons (namely, triangle, square, circle and cross), with each character boasting his or her own diverse range of techniques based on the style they practice, along with some basic offerings shared by all combatants. Throws, jabs, combos, power attacks and unblockables can all be performed with deadly efficiency thanks to the responsiveness and fluidity of the controls, although there’s plenty more complex maneuvers to master too, from tech rolls, counter attacks, throw escapes, wall combos and more that’ll have you spending hours trying to perfect.
When it comes to Tekken however, nothing is ... (continued on next page) ----