Tekken 6: The Under-appreciated Classic

Posted in Fan Service, Fighting Games, Gaming, My Stuff, PC Gaming, PS4, Tekken, Tekken 6, Tekken 7, Tekken 7 Fated Retribution, Xbox One on May 18th, 2017 by thelonegamer

Ah, the Tekken 6 Intro. Still pretty and epic even today.

It seems that when you ask Tekken fans, or fighting game fans in general, about which Tekken they like best, the answer is usually Tekken 3 (“Still the best ever! The highest-selling!) or Tekken 5 (“That was the last one I got into…”). I seldom hear praise for Tekken 6- the last canon Tekken game prior to the upcoming and long-awaited 7th installment in the King of Iron Fist Tournament. Much of what Tekken 7 is, owes a lot of Tekken 6- most of the animations, the general gameplay style, the story setup. Yet Tekken 6 is rarely talked about.

I’ll say it with pride- Tekken 6 is my favorite Tekken. It was the Tekken that I got into arcades for, bought a whole bunch of those cards for, and enjoyed hours playing on in my fave arcade up until they closed down the mall for the day. The visual style of Tekken 6 was a big leap from Tekken 5; characters suddenly looked more defined, with much more detailed and human character models. Animations went through a major overhaul, and the gameplay was forever changed with the addition of Bound combo extenders. Really, the first time I saw Tekken 6 in the arcade- after having to elbow my way past crowds of gamers waiting in line or just spectating- my mind was blown. It looked AWESOME. And it played even better. And man, the Customization. Best Character Customization in the series, ever, period. Tekken Tag 2′s customization was garbage, and sadly the Tekken Devs haven’t seemed to recover from that fully up to now. But I spent real money and lots of effort to customize my fighters as I wanted, and it was bliss.

Then came the home version- so chock-full of stuff, it was crazy. And really, though many despise it, I LOVED the Scenario Campaign story mode and the Streets of Rage-style beat ‘em up sections. Where else could you fight as your favorite Tekken fighter, along with a buddy, against throngs of mobs? It was cool as hell, though admittedly the controls left a bit to be desired. Still, it was well-meant as a mode, and I appreciated it.

The Characters added into Tekken 6 mostly persist to today- Bob, Leo and Miguel are back in the Tekken 7 roster and haven’t much changed, though Leo seems to have had more testosterone injections to make her (yes, Leo is supposedly a SHE) more male-looking. For some reason, Zafina, the Middle Eastern femme fatale, is so far missing… sadly she may have been replaced by the Arabic fighter Shaheen in Tekken 7, which I really hope isn’t the case. Her fighting style was very interesting, and I loved her look. Story-wise though, she seemed to be very much connected to Tekken 6′s boss, Azazel, so with his defeat she may have lost her relevance as well.

Tekken 6 is still a favorite of mine, and as long as my PS3 still works, it always will. Of course, once Tekken 7 arrives I’ll be hard-pressed to go back to the old game, more so as the sequel is looking amazing in so many ways. That said, I still think Tekken 6 deserves respect and recognition. At the very least, if you want to get ready for the Next Battle, I suggest you dust off your old Tekken 6 disc and start practicing.

Tekken 7 releases on June 2 for PS4, XBox One and PC (Steam).

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Tekken Tweetbits! Clues to the Next Tekken Games?

Posted in Arcade, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, Tekken, Tekken 6, Tekken X Streetfighter, Xbox360 on January 28th, 2012 by thelonegamer

Katsuhiro Harada, head of the Tekken Project, let out some intriguing little tidbits for fans on Twitter today. They may be just little farts of info, but they may also be something to think about going into the next couple of Tekken titles. The first bit regards Tekken X Streetfighter- supposedly Harada is considering that the Streetfighter characters will play with their usual 6-button configuration, while the Tekken fighters retain the Iron-fisted 4-button layout. Will TxSF be literally a game that clashes two totally different play systems?

The other little bit may potentially be something that affects perhaps Tekken 7- or whatever the next canon Tekken chapter will be called. As one gamer asked Harada who won Tekken 6, the replay that came was a simple ‘Not Jin’.

That sadly only opens this subject up to a lot more questions. Were the events in Scenario Campaign canon? Was the winner Lars? Or perhaps Kazuya and his ending showing him carrying a defeated Devil Jin? Intriguing and maddening but sadly, we won’t probably learn the true answer for a good long while. This year will see the development of Tekken X Streetfighter and the eventual release of the console version of Tekken Tag Tournament 2. Tekken 7 is still at least a couple of years away. I’ll probably still be a gamer and Tekken fan then, so no skin off my teeth. But will you? Stay tuned then, gamers! We’ll get there together… someday!

BLOODY! The Lone Gamer’s Tekken: Blood Vengeance Movie Review

Posted in Action Adventure, Anime, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game to Movies, Game-related Events, Gaming, My Stuff, PS3, Tekken, Tekken 6, Tekken Blood Vengeance, Tekken Hybrid on December 2nd, 2011 by thelonegamer

About a year or so ago, I reviewed the live-action Tekken movie, and it was, pretty much, what it was… a pretty straightforward martial arts revenge-action flick with elements of Tekken. As expected, it took many liberties with the beloved franchise, and things didn’t quite appear or turn out as fans wanted, thus provoking the usual storm of reactions, from outright hatred to measured satisfaction.
In the end though, the Hollywood Tekken was given the ultimate facepalm- rejection and disownment by the actual makers of the Tekken games themselves.

As if to make up for that debacle, Namco-Bandai announced a new and more authentic Tekken movie in production: an all-CG full-length feature, directed by the same director of Tekken’s lush cinematic cutscenes. There was no question that Tekken: Blood Vengeance was the REAL deal- this was truly a film adaptation true to the source material, done for the fans at the behest of the Tekken Project. But in this day and age when videogame movies have a questionable level of quality, how does this ‘true’ Tekken movie fare as a narrative experience?

Gorgeous visuals are on offer in Tekken: Blood Vengeance.

It’s already been demonstrated that even CG movies pretty much lifted directly from the actual game source don’t always guarantee an awesome flick- take Resident Evil Degeneration, which starred fan favorites Leon S. Kennedy and Claire Redfield. RED garnered lackluster reviews, and I myself found it dragging and less than spectacular. So how does this CG Tekken flick stand (given that it was also produced by the same production house as Degeneration..?). Let’s see.

Warning: Mild Spoilers may lie ahead.

Basically, TBV retains the general storyline of the series, and is set between Tekken 5 and 6. Resident emo-boy and anti-hero Jin Kazama is now head of the Mishima Zaibatsu with Nina Williams as his right hand woman. His old man, Kazuya Mishima is his mirror over at G-Corporation, being serviced by Anna Williams. Meanwhile, former Zaibatsu boss Heihachi Mishima is as yet MIA and presumed dead.

Both of these sides are now deep into the search for something or someone, which eventually has them each recruiting an unlikely catspaw to act as their investigator. Thus kung-fu kitten Ling Xiaoyu and adorable android Alisa Bosconovitch (talk about Random Select!) are thrown into each other’s path at some Japanese high school, each looking for a student named Shin Kamiya. As the two reluctant heroines meet and sometimes clash, they find friendship along the way- perhaps the only thing that can save them in the inevitable crossfire between the Mishima Bloodline that inevitably explodes by the end.

Finally, this is an Authentic Tekken Movie. Like it or not, kids, THIS is it. You can’t get any more real, official or Tekken-ish than this. The characters look, act and feel for the most part like they do in the games. In fact, they look better, as if the movie took and animated the models used in the game’s gorgeous portrait artworks.
That said, this is a movie made for Tekken fans, and Tekken fans ONLY… just the same caveat as it was with Final Fantasy VII Advent Children. Only those well-versed in Tekken lore, and updated Tekken lore at that, will fully understand what’s going on. Everyone not knowing who these characters are will probably be watching only for the pretty, shiny CG, and just letting things run along whatever happens.

That said, there are still odd inconsistencies that will leave even Tekken fans (like me) bewildered- like WHY Lee Chaolan, a dubious, double-playing combatant in the series’ central conspiracies and secret wars, is being portrayed as a seemingly benign Daddy Warbucks-esque professor? Why isn’t he recognized by Anna? Why do Kazuya and Jin suddenly have Stage 2 Devil Transformations? Whe did that happen? The series’ weirdness apparently wasn’t enough for scriptwriter Dai Sato, so he had to make up his own oddness to add to the kit and caboodle.

Kinky or cute? You decide.

And what an IFFY script it is. No, that would be kinda kind. I have to say Tekken: Blood Vengeance has a pretty bad script running through it, surprising from a writer with such credentials like Sato.

For starters, the storyline- that of the Tekken Powers-That-Be (Jin and Kazuya) searching for a student named Shin Kamiya- is ridiculously over-complicated. Why was there ever any need to recruit Ling and Alisa to infiltrate a school, when the resident hatchet women, Nina and Anna are ready, willing and able to storm in and just grab the pipsqueak? There’s no law enforcement to speak of, there’s no question where Shin is- it’s as if the reluctant heroines were thrown in just for the hell of it- just because the writer said so. If you think about it, the majority of the film is just about Xiao and Alisa running around in circles, ecchi fan service-esque views and some quasi-funny or kinda-touching moments. In most anime, seeing two cute babes’ antics would be entertaining but here, it seems off. The humor just isn’t as funny, the dialogue not that snappy, the heartwarming moments not that touching. There’s a lot of lines about being human and being a robot and being a robot yet being more than human thrown around, but it just comes off as random. Furthermore, the pivotal moment where Xiaoyu sides with Alisa is jarring and awkwardly done- I don’t know if it’s a bad translation or just something the script just glosses over intentionally.

All this combines with the sad fact that the film often drags. After the promising start with a Nina/Anna fight scene, the movie loses momentum and stays there until the next fight scene, between Xiaoyu and Alisa. THEN there’s that long nothing stretch before the finale, with the final extended fight scene/battles. So many seconds wasted with little action or pay-off. A rematch between the Williams could have been squeezed in, but the script deemed it better to be left offscreen. Like, WHAT? Also, while Ling and Alisa are the main characters for the better part of the movie, once the finale kicks in they’re demoted to the scenery for the most part as the Big Mishima Boys duke it out.
Oh, and Shin Kamiya? Was he ever necessary? Not really. Did he matter? Nope. Will we miss him? Not at all.

That all said, Tekken: Blood Vengeance does have good points. It looks gorgeous, as I’ve probably mentioned earlier. The music is pretty good, particularly the first song, ‘Highway Battle’. The fight scenes and action are pretty amazing- I really wish there was more action with the ladies though- the girlfights are beautiful and graceful to watch, while the Mishima 3-way bout, while epic, is just a bit too over-the-top for me.

And, eh, what the hell, it’s a TEKKEN movie. It’s great to just see the characters we know and love, outside the arena and just doing stuff. It’s all still quite entertaining, despite the silliness and the iffy script. It still charms the the hell out of me and is a grand, if a bit messy, spectacle to watch, particularly in 3D on my big screen Plasma. Blissful, that’s what it is.

So even if I have many gripes, I can’t dislike Blood Vengeance. It’s a gift for the fans, and certainly that’s never a bad thing. Who knows- maybe they’ll learn from this and make another one, hopefully starring more characters, having a much better script and more of the awesome action and visuals we know and love. No, this isn’t a great movie- but it IS a Tekken movie, and heck, I guess that’s enough for now. Now, how ’bout a sequel starring Asuka and Lili, Harada-san?

Tekken 3D Prime Edition Update

Posted in 3DS, Fighting Games, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Mobile Games, Tekken, Tekken 3D Prime Edition, Tekken 6, Tekken Blood Vengeance on November 17th, 2011 by thelonegamer

The gang’s all here…
The 3DS Iron Fist game, Tekken 3D Prime Edition, is still slated for release this coming February. The game features the return of the roster from Tekken 6, with the only real ‘new’ addition being TTT2′s Young Heihachi. Other than that though, the only other new feature in the game so far are original stages (whoopie). No news if the game has any kind of customization, but at the very least has the old P1 alt outfits, which is more than I can say for Tekken Tag 2. Oh, and yeah, you are of course getting a 3D portable version of Tekken Blood Vengeance, although you’d already have this if you bought Tekken Hybrid.

To sweeten the deal, apparently there’s a launch promotion for Prime that will give those who purchase the 3DS game a bonus of 10,000 in-game money for the arcade version of Tekken Tag 2, plus some special items (just for names/rankings, not actual in-game items though). Obviously, this is only for Japan.
Yeah, I’m still probably getting this just to get one more title on my 3DS, but my enthusiasm for this has dropped quite a bit. Having a Tekken 6 version on 3DS is nice I guess, but it seems that the usual going-the-extra-mile of the Tekken team isn’t too much in effect here. But we’ll see in the final release… maybe we’ll be surprised. The game is out in Japan this coming Feb. 16, 2012.

A Peek at the Japanese Tekken Hybrid Package

Posted in Anime, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Movies, PS3, Tekken, Tekken 6, Tekken Blood Vengeance on October 4th, 2011 by thelonegamer

Japan gamers get a more anime flavored Hybrid in December.

Tekken boss Katsuhiro Harada just posted the pic above, showing off a look at the upcoming Tekken Hybrid package for Japan, which features a case with nice artwork by artist Shunya Yamashita. I guess given how a lot of the comments about Tekken: Blood Vengeance were about it being more like an anime girl buddy movie than a straightforward Tekken movie, this look is probably a lot more fitting. Regardless, I really can’t wait to see the film for myself for all the action and CG eye candy, at the very least. The US gets its hybrid fix a bit earlier in late November. Still no word on the dates for EU or Asian releases (announcements will be made by Sony Entertainment), so maybe we’ll just have to spring for a US copy. We’ll see- stay tuned, then!

The Fighting Game Story Mode: Past, Present and Future

Posted in Action Adventure, Dead or Alive, Dead or Alive: Dimensions, Fan Service, Fantasy, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, King of Fighters, King of Fighters XIII, Mortal Kombat, My Stuff, PS2, PS3, PSOne, Retro-gaming, Soul Calibur, Soulcalibur 5, Soulcalibur IV, Streetfighter, Streetfighter X Tekken, Tekken, Tekken 6, Tekken Blood Vengeance, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Virtua Fighter, Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown, Xbox360 on September 22nd, 2011 by thelonegamer

Fast Tube by Casper

Soul Edge’s PS Intro: Always start a story with a rousing opening!

Ah, the Fighting Game genre. It’s certainly my most favorite of all videogame categories- my most beloved guilty pleasure in gaming. I’ve been playing fighters since I got into this hobby, from Streetfighter II on the Super NES to today’s Tekken 6 and Mortal Kombat remake. Many get into these games for the simple pleasure of owning someone else- the unabashed satisfaction of proving your dominance in the most blatant and base way possible- by sheer physicality or superior skill. Really, in the end, fighting games do of course boil down to a simple equation most eloquently shouted out by bloodthirsty masses in Mad Max 3: Beyond Thunderdome- Two men enter, one man leaves. Well, sometimes Two women, or two THINGS. You get the picture, right?

Anyway, I think it’s a mark of a fan of these games themselves and not the sheer act of fighting that despite it being sheer gravy, that I put great importance on an aspect of these games that most often is glossed over- The Story.

Fast Tube by Casper

The Fight- and The Story- is All.

Why is all this fighting going on, anyway? Who’s the ‘good’ guy? Who’s the ‘bad’ buy? What’s at stake? Should we care? In all seriousness, it does add to the enjoyment of a story that we know the backgrounds of each and every single character in a fighting game’s often voluminous roster of Playables, and to follow their blood-slogging climb to the top of the tournament ladder. Drama, comedy, horror, evil, good, jealousy, courage… all encapsulated in what basically is about two guys hitting each other until one goes down and stays down.
Hell, if man going mano-y-mano with one’s fellow man didn’t make for good drama, then Homer’s Iliad wouldn’t have been certified a classic since the freakin’ Ancient Greeks. But hey, wouldn’t the Iliad make for a damn awesome fighter?

Fast Tube by Casper

MK didn’t always have great production values for it’s cutscenes…

This is probably something that fighting games spearheaded apart from other games- no longer did players fight to reach the end just to see a high score- they wanted to see an ENDING- something that couldn’t be quantified into any single number- but the satisfaction of reuniting your electronic avatar with his family, missing sibling or long-sought-after prize of revenge. Or a meeting with his country’s premier!

Fast Tube by Casper

Congratulations, comrade!

Anyway, relating a Fighting Game story has been done in various ways since the beginning. For the most part, the easiest and most expected way is the simple End Cutscene. Streetfighter II did it back in the day, rewarding the player’s victory over M. Bison with a bunch of screens with minimal animation and text. So effective was this that every game afterwards seemed to follow that same template- the ending was the reward, the narrative carrot dangled before the combatant. From SNK’s many brawlers like King of Fighters to Samurai Shodown to the original Mortal Kombat to every 90′s wannabee Streetfighter, it was all there in varying degrees of campiness.

Fast Tube by Casper

Your usual, run-of-the-mill Story Mode ending.

Of course there are a few games that didn’t bother to tell their story- the most significant being Sega’s Virtua Fighter series. All semblance of narrative was placed firmly outside the games, in arcane literature or dictated by actual game tournaments. In many ways, I think, that’s why VF has never found a certain closeness to gamers, with the most hardcore fans of this particular brawler more invested in game mechanics, frame counts and simple gameplay.

Fast Tube by Casper

Virtua Fighter’s Intro hints at a deeper story behind the fighters.

A benefit or detriment? Well, let’s just say that the fan support for VF, while rabid, is perhaps the smallest of all the big fighting game franchises. That’s not to say that the Virtua Fighters don’t have a story- it’s there, certainly, but just not being told as much. Perhaps when we are given a trail to follow and care for, perhaps that’s when VF will bloom to the emotional masses.

Fast Tube by Casper

A Tekken CG Ending waaaay back in the PSOne days.

As game technology and CG animation got better, ending cinematics became slicker and more elaborate. Perhaps the series that most surely chronicles not only it’s characters’ personal sagas but also visualizes the gradual leap of graphical and animation quality is Namco-Bandai’s Tekken series- from the very basic and simple end cutscenes of the first Tekken on the original Playstation, the cinematic cutscenes have raised the bar with every installment afterwards.

Fast Tube by Casper

Despite being an unpopular chapter, Tekken 4 placed more emphasis on story than most other installments in the franchise.

The series has now the reputation for these eye-catching cinematics, with perhaps the culmination of that reputation being the somewhat controversial Tekken: Blood Vengeance movie- perhaps the most complex cutscene yet for a fighting game.

Fast Tube by Casper

Tekken 6 endings are gorgeously animated, but the stories told range from the cool to the downright silly.

Ironically, Tekken 6′s Scenario Campaign is actually a very different way of telling the game’s story, albeit the mode proved unpopular with some players. I actually found this a very engaging and enjoyable mode, though perhaps it could do with some improvements.

Fast Tube by Casper

Mortal Kombat’s Story Mode is Epic in so many ways.

But CG visual quality isn’t the end-all and be-all of Fighting Game storytelling- Mortal Kombat proved this with it’s 2011 remake’s quite revolutionary Story Mode. It may have been a bit of a gamble on paper- a long and involved story told in real-time, in-engine graphics, visualizing the whole MK saga from the beginning to the future and back to the present, running many, many hours long and throwing the player into the boots of various warriors. But ultimately, it WORKED. Gamers got into the story, they loved it and acclaim for this way of doing the till-then tired Story Mode was pretty much universal. The one best thing about MK’s Story Mode? It showed one thing that other games always get wrong- The Ending is NOT the Story.
Mortal Kombat showed us that it was all about seeing the fighters’ tales unfold, seeing plots twist and turn and end up in outcomes we didn’t see coming and snowball to something we fear/await/dread was entertaining and kept us going hour after hour, through every fight till the very end.

Of course, MK isn’t the only fighter to have a long and involved Story Mode- just the most visible and perhaps the one boasting the highest production values. Truth be told though, 2D fighter Blazblue has a very involved and complex Story Mode as well, though told mostly in text or voice-driven static cutscenes but boasting multiple endings and paths, sometimes dictated by your victories or defeats.

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Blazblue’s anime-style storytelling makes for many hours of battle, voice-acting and battling voice-acting.

Dead or Alive Dimensions on the 3DS was able to summarize it’s entire enigmatic decades-long saga with it’s rather long but entertaining main Story mode (. The upcoming King of Fighters XIII will also boast a Story mode bursting with replay value for multiple playthroughs when it arrives later this year on consoles.

Fast Tube by Casper

The Soul Calibur series often featured interactive endings, where a button press could change the outcome.

Going back a bit, Namco-Bandai’s almost ill-fated Soul Calibur series has had a past filled with exceptional story modes. The original Soul Blade on PSOne had interactive endings where you could change the outcome of your fighter’s fate with a fast button press. Soul Calibur III had a Tales of Souls mode which boasted multiple paths and alternate endings- it encouraged multiple playthroughs so you could see all the possible endings and cutscenes, or unlock a very challenging boss encounter.

Sadly, SoulCalibur IV dropped many things from the previous installments, many of them conceivably fan favorite aspects that were sorely missed. Gone were the multi-aspect Story Mode and explorative minigames, in their place a generic Story Mode with a repetitive and generic cutscene and rather enigmatic endings. The Tower of Lost Souls, a challenging ladder game, proved to be more frustrating to many players than anything else. Perhaps the result? SoulCalibur IV was almost the last game in this long-running series, apparently only saved from the brink of oblivion by fan requests and support.

And so, what have we learned from all this? One important thing.

The Best Story Modes should be about The Journey, NOT the Ending. It’s about a story that’s compelling throughout, not just a prize waiting after all that’s said and done.

But would other fighters learn from this example? Only future fighters will tell. Or, perhaps, the next wave of fighters will.

Fast Tube by Casper

Soul Calibur IV’s Endings looked great, but the overall storytelling left much to be desired.

Soul Calibur V, set for release in First Quarter 2012, looks to have a Story Mode that hopefully has been influenced by recent games. Though we’ve yet to get any solid information on the gameplay, we’ve seen screens showing a map screen, which should bode well for the chance that this won’t simply be a series of fights leading to one ending. At the very least, cutscenes and a pathways chosen by the player may be included, and hopefully challenges and encounters that add and encourage replay- something the series is not a stranger to, as we’ve seen.

With the future of this fan-supported fighter perhaps lying in SCV’s performance, I’m hoping they make the story something that really gets players involved and wanting more of this Tale of Souls and Swords for years to come.

Fast Tube by Casper

Soul Calibur V, set 17 years after the last game, looks to have a story more dramatic than ever before.

With the current resurgence of Fighting Games as a popular genre in gaming, there will surely be more emphasis on the Story Mode. Thanks to Mortal Kombat’s high-profile success, we may expect even more epic storytelling to come from beat ‘em ups in the years to come. Hopefully we’ll see the Fighting Game story evolve into something truly enjoyable and interactive for gamers, so that our favorite fighters continue on and have their Tales Eternally Retold.

Tekken 3D: Prime Edition Gameplay @ TGS2011

Posted in 3DS, Fighting Games, Game-related Events, Gaming, Mobile Games, Tekken, Tekken 3D Prime Edition, Tekken 6 on September 19th, 2011 by thelonegamer

Fast Tube by Casper

Looking over the shoulder at Tekken 3DS at TGS.

Okay so far we’ve seen Katsuhiro Harada doing his best Neo impression and as evil and corporate Yoshinori Ono in the advertising for the 3DS’s Tekken. But here’s finally quite a bit of actual gameplay from what appears to be a playable build of Tekken 3D: Prime Edition from the recently-concluded Tokyo Game Show.

From the 4+ minute of actual demo play above we can easily get several things. Graphically, the game looks pretty good, and I guess while in screenshots or 2D video it may not impress, in 3D this portable fighter may look quite impressive. Also, the game moves quite smoothly, supporting the devs’ claim of 60FPS constant even with 3D On (even if the 3D doesn’t seem to be on at this time). The gameplay seems pretty much taken from Tekken 6, which leaves me wondering at what possible additions or features will set this apart as a distinct version.

Well, since it’s been forever since the last Tekken on a Nintendo system, I guess just having a decent if not reasonably spot-on port of Tekken 6 would be pretty cool. Still, I think we can expect a bit more gravy- perhaps Character Customization, hopefully improved over that in the last portable Tekken, the PSP Tekken 6? Perhaps some kind of special mode to take the place of Scenario Campaign mode? A new Story mode with new endings (can’t see them rehashing the Tekken 6 endings again after all this time)? Obviously there will be online and multiplayer features to take advantage of the 3DS’s Streetpass features.

Control-wise, we can see that the game will allow players to use the bottom touchscreen to assign moves for easy access, ala DOA Dimensions. Aside from that though, the 4-button layout of the 3DS is perfect for a Tekken game.

With a full roster and solid gameplay and controls, this may be something else- hopefully though it will have the right stuff to make it a replacement for Tekken 6 PSP, which is still the best thing to have for Iron Fist action on-the-go. The game has been given a February 2012 release, but let’s cross our fingers for it to come sooner rather than later.

Tekken @ Gamescom 2011: Harada Outs Leo!

Posted in Arcade, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, PSP, Tekken, Tekken 3D Prime Edition, Tekken 6, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Xbox360 on August 24th, 2011 by thelonegamer

Fast Tube by Casper

So, what’s the good word, Doc Harada?

Yes, it’s true- well, as true as this video can be. At the recent Gamescom 2011 in Germany, Tekken Producer Katsuhiro Harada finally settled the long-standing dilemma of the true gender of Tekken character Leo. During a talk right before the screening of Tekken: Blood Vengeance, Harada (and Michael Murray) revealed that the German Baji Quan fighter was not simply of indeterminate gender, but that the mystery was forced upon the character due to the public confusion at Leo’s appearance. But after all that has been said and done since, it remains that the character was first, foremost and IS… FEMALE. Leo is short for Eleanor Kliesen, quite a lady-like name if I do say so myself.

That said, I doubt that this will have much impact on the character- I will be quite surprised if the devs add in any feminine-looking costumes or customizations for HER, but I’ll welcome any such additions. We’ll just have to wait and see what the repercussions are here on in. More Tekken news should be coming up at TGS 2010, next month.

Tekken Tag 2, Soul Calibur V @ EVO 2011

Posted in Arcade, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, PS3, Soulcalibur 5, Tekken, Tekken 6, Tekken Hybrid, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Tekken Tag Tournament 2 Prologue, Xbox360 on August 1st, 2011 by thelonegamer

Fast Tube by Casper

Gamespot has posted the whole Namco-Bandai fighting game panel in several parts, so check that out.

I stayed up into the wee hours of the morning yesterday as I watched the events of EVO 2011 stream before me. After what seemed to be hours of Bob and Law battles in the Tekken 6 finals, the Tekken devs showed off the latest build of Tekken Tag Tournament 2, which featured a new element called Tag Crash, where your partner dives in from above when you make a tag. The new TTT2 build was showcased in a special 5-on-5 Tournament Battle with EVO’s best Tekken players.
On other things, Harada reiterated that the Tekken Hybrid package is a PS3 exclusive. They also encouraged the crowd to show support via cheering (which they recorded) for a late 2011 release of Hybrid instead of an early 2012 release (I wonder if that really works). Hoping indeed we get our special PS3 Blu-ray sooner rather than later.

Fast Tube by Casper

A New Generation of Souls Begin Their Saga!

As for Soul Calibur V, director Daishi Odashima was present and showed off the latest version of his WIP Slash ‘Em Up, featuring in-game footage aplenty of the various fighters, including new combatants Z.W.E.I., Natsu and Ivy.
Zwei is shown to have an unconventional fighting stance (reminds me of Miguel in Tekken) but buffs up his offense by summoning his pet wolf-headed spirit, Ein. ivy seemed her usual self, but was reportedly much easier to use. Finally, Natsu the new ninja girl seemed to be even more adept at teleports, at one point blinking in and out above an opponent with nimble kicks- pretty cool.

Two generations of kick-ass swordplay- Xianghua and her daugher (and new SCV entrant) Leihua.

One big reveal for SCV was that there would be a new character- Leihua- who is the 15-year old daughter of Soul Calibur veteran Xianghua. Sad news for ‘X’ fans, the spritely sword-dancer has apparently retired from fighting. Of course, the big question on most fans’ minds was- who’s the daddy? The devs weren’t talking of course- teases!

From here on, I’m hoping for smooth sailing for these games’ development. I think the devs are headed home for now to take a short break, but hopefully not too long as we want these games yesterday! More as we get it then!

Tekken Tag 2 and Tekken 6 Facial Face-Off

Posted in Arcade, Fan Service, Fighting Games, Game Advertising, Gaming, Tekken, Tekken 6, Tekken Tag Tournament 2 on June 15th, 2011 by thelonegamer

Character models are definitely looking good in Tekken Tag 2.

I remember when I first saw Tekken 6 in the arcade, I was blown away by the graphics- a HUGE leap then from Tekken 5 Dark Resurrection. In-game character models got a nice boost in detail and lifelike, realistic quality, further strengthening Tekken’s semi-photorealistic visual style more so than ever before. Fighters now finally looked like real people and individuals.
Well, that was about three or four years ago- the upcoming Tekken Tag Tournament 2 will up the ante in terms of graphics and character models (among other things). Indeed, improved facial animations are a touted feature. While it’s still a WIP, at this point we can perhaps take a look at TTT2′s mugs (from the females, of course- since who cares about the freakin’ guys) and how they stack up to the previous face models in Tekken 6. Have the changes made since been for the better?

First off, for Asuka Kazama. Of all the Tekken ladies, Asuka got the best makeover IMO from Tekken 5 to Tekken 6, turning from an anime-ish big-eyed cartoon to more like an actual (and quite attractive and buff) young Japanese woman. I really liked her look in Tekken 6, and thankfully she looks just as good, if not better, in TTT2. Her new model seems to have more ‘makeup’ on, and the improved facial animations just add more to her appeal (such as how she pouts after she gets snubbed by Jin in their unique Victory animation). I want to see more of her in-game model though, but so far closeup looks of her are rare in the existing TTT2 footage. Still, I’m satisfied with how she looks.

She’s got a bombastic figure and the outfits to show it off, but Christie Monteiro was a bit lacking in the face department in Tekken 6. I’ve always thought her T6 face wasn’t the best it could be- her mouth was a bit too cartoony and wide, and overall she looked kinda plain. I think her TTT2 face is a definite improvement; a lot more realistic, detailed and has a pleasing, sultry appeal.

I know quite a few fans of Lili Rochefort aren’t too hot with her TTT2 face (and her strangely lower-res hair), most citing her nose as being too big in some early footage. Looking at some more recent videos, I think it’s not THAT bad- it may be just a matter of some weird effect of the lighting, but certainly Lili’s looking quite cute in the pic above. Her Tekken 6 model was excellent, but I think in TTT2 she gets a bit more emotion which is always good. Just a bit more tweaking should quiet any more complaints.

Nina Williams was sizzling in Tekken 6- in fact, I think she was a perfect rendering of the cold, ruthless beauty that she should be. Her TTT2 face seems slightly wider, but easily has the hardness down- perhaps a bit too hard. While for the most part she’s still the looker, she has some angles where she’s a bit mannish, but that should only be apparent if you actually nitpick her frame by frame. Hmm.

Ling Xiaoyu in Tekken 6 wasn’t all that for me- I think her face lacked character and that distinct ‘oomph’. It certainly didn’t capture how cute the kung-fu kitten was in her character art. I think her new and much-improved TTT2 face gives her a lot more personality and ramps up the cuteness fitting for this longtime Tekken mainstay. Which is good since as one of the main protagonists in Tekken: Blood Vengeance, she’s gonna be in the limelight a lot more.

Sorry about the other babes- I think Anna’s already had her time in the spotlight- her Tekken 6 look was also excellent, and thankfully her initially iffy TTT2 face has recently been fixed up. Alisa seems hardly changed, while Julia got a Character Transformation. As for Leo- well, I think that one’s TTT2 model reinforces the character being a male more than ever before.
Anyway, at this point I think Tekken Tag 2′s look is still being tweaked, like a lot of things in this current Work-in-progress. There are tons of finishing touches and details still to be added in, but I think even this early this game is gonna blow us all away once it arrives in arcades in late 2011 or early 2012. The next milestone for updates on this and other Tekken games looks to be this coming Comicon in July, so sit tight. More as we get it then!