Like its well-received predecessor, Tekken 6 is an explosive, fast-paced fighter
- Fast-paced fighting that's detailed and accessible, large and diverse cast of customisable characters; sharp visual presentation
- Doesn't feel like a huge upgrade over the last game, Scenario Campaign is sort of a shallow experience
Tekken fans have reasons to rejoice now that the latest instalment of the 3D fighting franchise has arrived but gamers who haven't closely followed the series may be wondering what Tekken 6 has to offer them.
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Note: We were unable to test out Tekken 6's multiplayer modes because they were not available to us at the time of our review. We hope to fully test the online component and write about our experiences soon.
If you're already a die-hard fan of the Tekken series then you've probably made up your mind about Tekken 6 already, so I won't bother wasting my breath telling you whether or not the game is any good. Rather, I'm going to talk to the newcomers and the casual fans who might know the series but haven't memorised the move list and can recite the storyline from memory. As I played, I kept the following questions in mind: What, if anything, does the latest Tekken instalment have in store for them? And is it worth buying for fighting fans who haven't kept up with the series?
Like its well-received predecessor, Tekken 6 is an explosive, fast-paced fighter that is approachable, but rewards careful action and knowledge of your chosen character's numerous techniques. Mashing the punch and kick buttons may get you by initially, but learning the various throws and advanced manoeuvres can go a long way in a game that carefully straddles the line between accessibility and depth. Regardless of your skill level, though, you can look forward to intense battles loaded with visual flair, as the detailed fighters intertwine amidst special effects, all set upon lavish and diverse backdrops.
Much of what defines the Tekken experience comes from the expansive roster, which bulges to 40 standard characters in this iteration, including several newcomers. Whatever your preferred fighting discipline, chances are you'll find a suitable character within this colourful crew, which includes humans, robots, animals, and even a wooden dummy. And with a ranking system and new ability to customise each character's appearance, you'll be able to put your own unique stamp on each included fighter.
Besides the traditional fighting action, which is found in a variety of play modes (arcade, survival, Ghost Battle, etc.), Tekken 6 also features a Scenario Campaign, which recasts the typical Tekken combat within a 3D beat-'em-up action experience. These narrative-driven stages unravel the twisted fates of the numerous fighters, and while the Tekken fighting aesthetic doesn't transfer perfectly into this new arena, it's a fairly decent diversion that extends the experience beyond typical one-on-one matches.
Compared to something like Street Fighter IV, Tekken 6 might seem like a less consequential upgrade, as it largely seems like a refreshed and expanded update to Tekken 5. But Tekken 5 was an excellent fighter, and whether you've savored each series entry or only dabbled here or there, Tekken 6 is another great fight fest that will entertain players of all persuasions. Of course it will help if you have a working knowledge of the series and have played previous entries but it still offers enough depth to entertain even casual fans who are just looking to kick a little virtual ass. But take the time to learn the nuances and you will be suitably rewarded.
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