With Street Fighter IV & King of Fighters XII rejuvenating the fighting genre, it was time for the Tekken series to step into the ring and show other fighting games how it’s done. With the largest character roster in Tekken history, HD graphics, and competitive online modes, is Tekken 6 the best fighting game our current generation of consoles has to offer?
When you first fire up Tekken 6, one of the first things you’ll notice is the huge list of playable characters. Unlike most fighting games, Tekken 6 wants players to get into the action as quickly and as painlessly as possible. There are no boxes with question marks in them that require players to spend hours upon hours to unlock. The complete 40 character roster is playable from the get-go.
Tekken 6 is split into 3 main game modes: Scenario, Online Modes, and Offline Modes. Online Mode allows you to play others in either Ranked or Player Match modes. Online play was surprisingly very quick, although every so often, a laggy game would pop up. Offline Mode comprises of the traditional Arcade Mode, VS Mode, Ghost Mode, and Training. Each character has their own distinct fighting style and unique moves. The action is fast and very rewarding. Tekken veterans will appreciate a deep, fighting experience, while newcomers will still be able to button-mash their way to victory (while pissing off veteran players in the process).
Scenario Mode attempts to put a story behind all of the fighting goodness that’s the main focus of Tekken, but it fails miserably. One positive from the scenario mode is the opening cinematic, which reminds us what the overall story was for the previous Tekken titles. The Tekken 6 scenario has poor voice acting, poor combat, and a hard to follow story. Also, for some reason during cut-scenes, everyone can speak in their native language and yet completely understand one another. I applaud Namco-Bandai for attempting to offer something more than just a fighting game, but I wish they would have delivered as much quality in the Scenario Mode as they did the one-on-one fighting modes.
The amount of character customization offered in Tekken 6 is incredible. Players unfortunately can’t create their own fighters, but they can customize the aesthetics of all of the characters. Items for characters are unlocked by the amount of gold players accumulate across all of the game modes in Tekken 6. My one complaint is the amount of gold each item costs. I would like to customize my characters, but in order to get a new hair-do, I need to shell out 1,000,000 gold.
Tekken 6 is a definite feast for the eyes. All of the characters animations are smooth and highly detailed. Every kick, punch, and throw has an equivalent reaction from both characters. If you thought the facial animations were good in SFIV, then you’re going to love some of the reactions from the Tekken 6 characters. Stages also offer a good amount of variety in fighting locations. Some even have destructible environments that will allow players to crash their way into another part of the level to complete the battle.
FINAL THOUGHT: Tekken 6, without a doubt, is the best Tekken game yet. It does so much right, but the Scenario Mode is one of the few wrongs on the disc. If you’ve ever enjoyed any Tekken game, then you owe it to yourself to play the best version of the series to date.