Video Game Review: Tekken 7
The Tekken franchise has been around since 1994; a fighting game which has won numerous awards. Now we’re back in 2017, with a brand new Tekken game that was released just last week. The reviews have been pouring in with praise galore and we’re not one to shy from what people have been saying. From the new musical direction, to art and the story mode, we’re here to review everything about Tekken 7, as let’s be honest – What’s the point of a review if we don’t critique the whole thing. Before we get into the review however, it’s worth noting that I had the game pre-ordered as a present, so I also get the bonus Eliza DLC. Here we go with our full review!
|Developer||Bandai Namco Studios|
|Platforms||PC (Windows), PlayStation 4, XBox One|
|Windows Release||June 2017|
|Price on Steam||£39.99 (£19.99 for an additional Season Pass)|
With Jin Kazama in charge of the Mishima Zaibatsu, the world has been plunged into war and chaos. A reporter had everything taken away from him by this war, a man who was originally happy with his life has lost it all. He wants to see an end to this war, but to do so, as a journalist he knows he has to uncover the truth behind the Mishima Zaibatsu and the G-Corporation war. The story all leads back to a certain event between Heihachi Mishima, a lady called Kazumi, who is Heihachi’s deceased wife and Kazuya, the leader of G-Corporation, as well as the son of Heihachi. With the Devil Gene running in Kazuya, this is a story of a rivalry between humanity and devils.
Unlike previous games, the story mode has been divided into two main sections, which has brought up a lot of criticism. Some people say they’re not happy with this change, as they feel it sort of devalues the characters who aren’t in the main story; although it’s fair to note that each of these characters instead has a story chapter, which is a new feature. You get a bit of backstory relating to the character, fight the rival and get the end cutscene.
Tekken is a fighting game, which means you can expect combos, juggles, pokes, blocks and more. For the uninitiated to fighting games, there are some core mechanics to get into your mind. Tekken 7 blends the traditional fighting game mechanics, with ideas from other fighting games and then much more. We won’t go into too much detail about how all of these mechanics work, however it’s worth noting that there’s a feature taken from Street Fighter, but in this it’s called Rage Art. This is effectively a finishing move – in this, so long as the first hit connects with the opponent and isn’t blocked, you are able to do a massive amount of damage. This is a great way to turn the tide of a fight – But in case you’re interested, here’s a video of all of the current Rage Art’s. There’s a lot of customisation, there’s a lot of characters to choose from and there’s also a main story to play through. There are a few different types of game mode, which we’ll get into, as well as the differences between Tekken 7 and Tekken 5 – Because although Tekken 6 was great, Tekken 5 was, at least to me, phenomenal.
Beginning with the story, as I mentioned in the Story section of the article, there are two portions to the story. In the main storyline, you play through as various characters who are involved with the ongoing war between the Mishima Zaibatsu and the G-Corporation. Characters include Heihachi, Kazuya, Jin (to a lesser degree), Lee (who plays a surprisingly big role), Akuma and more. It’s an interesting story mode, which fills you in on all of those loose ends that the titles have left over the years. We finally come to understand what Heihachi’s moves and drives are, along with what Kazuya and the others in control of their prospective organisations are all trying to achieve. What’s nice is the fact the game brings in a few of the new characters as part of the main story, including Akuma who has a pretty major role. This was a strange twist, all things considered, as Akuma is a Street Fighter character.
As well as the main story, in story mode there are “character chapters”, which are effectively the games answer to story mode for all characters. People say it’s not as in depth as say Tekken 5’s story mode, however I’m inclined to disagree. With the exception that these chapters are literally just a one off fight, each character has a small story which is told, a rival fight and an ending sequence. Some of them look great, but most are only unlocked once the main story is completed. The only real difference is that there’s just one fight instead of what was typically 8 AI fights. Now, these character chapters were easy, they weren’t as detailed, but the actual story behind them sort of remains the same – It just feels like less time was focused on this. I didn’t find this a bad thing, even though some of my mains were effectively put to the back burner… But they aren’t pivotal to the overall story of Tekken as a whole.
Next up, let’s quickly talk about the different online modes. You have a quick match feature, as well as being able to search through a lobby of games, should you wish to. As well as this, you can press the Quick Match button to just have a normal online match with someone. If you win, or if they win, you have 10 seconds to decide if you’ll accept or request a rematch. Some people don’t continue with this, but this is an entirely optional feature, allowing one rematch only, before letting you go get requeued. The queue times are quick and the lobby itself is a pleasant and easy experience. However, Quick Match isn’t the only online battle type – You also have a ranked mode, allowing you to go ahead and up in the games ranking system. Finally, you have a tournament mode, which will allow you to play through a bracketed tournament system. This was great fun, adding a huge dynamic and big winnings.
Speaking of winnings, let’s now go and talk about customisation and extras. You earn Fight Money throughout the game, which can be unlocked by battle online, or offline. You can win money through Treasure Mode, which is a special mode design to unlock the customisable items, as well as winning money by winning tournaments and even the story mode. This is all so you can spend your money on making your character look as
ridiculous cool as you want. The customisation is fantastic, with hundreds of items to offer, also with a lot of the items being colour customisable. Above you’ll see a picture of my JACK-7, who looks exactly as JACK-7 should look. As Vanguard, a previous guest contributor, described my JACK-7: “It’s a pride parade rock ’em, sock ’em robot.” That is the best description possible. As well as this however, your money can be spent on title plates, health gauges and even unlocking artwork and videos from previous games as well as from Tekken 7.
Visually, this is the best fighting game I’ve ever seen. It’s simply beautiful and all things considered, to keep a fighting game smooth, typically the graphics would be scaled back somewhat… However, with the rise of titles such as Mortal Kombat X, it feels as if the Tekken team knew they had to pull something spectacular out of the bag, which they have done. The customisation of characters is a welcome addition; although this isn’t the first Tekken game to do this. As well as customising characters though, you can customise your title plates and your life gauge. This just adds a touch of colour to an already explosive title. As always though, you’re here to see what it looks like, so without any further delay, here is our Tekken 7 gallery:
Some people have critiqued the game down because of the soundtrack, citing that it’s gone too far down electronic and dubstep sounds. Whilst the game is heavily electronic in its music, I think it fits the game perfectly; plus if anything, it makes the game extra Tekken. This is a series that’s nearly always featured some form of electronic sound to it, as the game is very much based in a tech oriented world. As such, the sounds of machines whirring and, yes, dubstep like music is pretty appropriate. Some of the music is really good, but some of it is a little bit samey. Mind you, overall, I’ve highly enjoyed the audio of Tekken 7. Let’s just say, this might be amongst the best fighting game OSTs of all time – But the only criticism I have of it, is a little bit more variety wouldn’t have gone amiss.
From all of the fighting games I’ve ever played, this one might be the best. I understand the complaints people have raised, at least with respect to the story mode, however the overall fighting game mechanics are seemingly fine tuned and are impressive. Graphically, the game is beautiful and is incredibly smooth, although you will need a pretty hench computer to run this. Alternatively, there is the PS4 and the Xbox One which runs Tekken 7 as well. The story has finally come to an end and even though it was a little bit of a shocking end, it was probably the correct outcome, which did enough to open up to another instalment. I’m excited to see what sorts of downloadable content we get and furthermore, I’m really excited to see all of the upcoming guest characters that will become part of the game.
This was the first game of the Tekken main series which had Akuma in, who made his presence felt in the story wonderfully. I’m impressed with how they handled the mechanics of having a Street Fighter character into a Tekken game, as it feels like he literally has been ripped from Street Fighter. Further to this, we have characters such as Eliza who have the blend of games perfectly down. I hope we see more and I hope to get much better at this game as well. Although I’d consider myself a good enough player, I’d love to play a great player. But in the mean time, why don’t you let us know what you think of Tekken 7? Is this a title you’d add to your games list, or is this a miss for you? What do you like most about the fighting game genre? As always, share your opinions in the comments below, or over on Facebook, Twitter or Reddit.