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GAME REVIEW: Tekken 7(PS4) — ‘Get Ready for The Next Battle’

 
 
Overview
 

Published by: Bandai Namco Entertainment
 
Developed by: Bandai Namco Studios
 
Platform(s): Arcade, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One.
 
Genre(s): Fighting
 
Mode(s): Single-player, multiplayer
 
Game Type: , , , , ,
 
FG RATING
90%
90/ 100


User Rating
1 total rating

 

Raves


Complex Combat System. Accessible. Lots of Unlockable Content. Large Roster. Rage Art System Works.

Rants


Dull Voice-acting. Some Fan-favorite Characters Didn't Make The Cut.


0
Posted June 7, 2017 by

The Tekken series has long been revered for being able to balance complexity and accessibility, a feat not many in the same field can claim. After two years of being exclusive to Japanese arcade platforms, Tekken 7 finally brings The King of Iron First Tournament to home consoles. Sit back, relax, and get ready for the next battle.

S T O R Y — Fighting is about who’s left standing

Tekken 7‘s Story Mode takes on an Injustice: Gods Among Us approach, providing a more story driven experience in an attempt to straighten the series’ convoluted story focusing primarily at the long-standing feud between veteran Tekken baddie Heihachi Mishima and his demon blooded son, Kazuya.

Despite being somewhat cliché, there’s a lot of substance in the story between Kazuya and Heihachi. And in case you didn’t already know, Tekken 7 also features Akuma, Street Fighter’s own resident bad guy as a playable character who, oddly enough, plays a hefty role in the main story.

Jin Kazama takes a back seat from the story this time.

The campaign is roughly three hours long, but when it isn’t focused on Heihachi, Kazuya, or Akuma, the story can get pretty snoozy. Much of the subplot is narrated by an unnamed journalist who’s investigating the war between the Mishima Zaibatsu and G Corporation in hopes of avenging his family, killed in the ensuing war. The story throws a couple gimmicks here and there to try to keep you interested, but the poorly written dialog and dull narration made it hard for me to care for the subplot.

Much like in Injustice’s story mode, Tekken 7 forces you to play different characters throughout the campaign. Fortunately, with Tekken’s ‘story assist’ feature, you can perform any character’s moves and combos using simplified button presses, eliminating the need to learn each character to get through the campaign.

Akuma is somewhat central to the story.

The Iron Fist Tournament never actually happens in Tekken 7, and as a result, non-essential characters in the story are either completely omitted or is left with a sub-chapter that consist of a single match followed by a short pre-rendered cutscene that doesn’t move any of the characters forward in the series in any meaningfully way.

G A M E P L A Y — The Art of Rage

It’s incredible how the series continues to provide some of the deepest combat mechanics in any fighting game whilst staying fully accessible to any skill level. There’s a hefty number of fighters available sporting an abundant variety of fighting styles.

Alisa taking on a platoon of Tekken Force soldiers

Though many of them are easy to pick up and play, the solid practice mode provides a fun and easy way to improve your mastery of any fighter. However, character picking is hardly where the strategy ends. For instance, stage selection is more than just a visual element. Each stage has varying layouts, measurements and stage transitions that seasoned fighters might want to take into account when choosing their fighters. Character’s that focus on wall juggles might find a smaller stage advantageous, while fighters that require a lot of airtime for their juggles might prefer a bigger one. Apart from that, dropping your health on the red activates the rage meter, passively increasing the damage you deal as well as enabling you to use a Rage Art, a move similar to Ultra Combos in Street Fighter V. Alternatively, you can perform a Rage Drive, which allows you to perform an enhanced version of one of your attacks, acting more as a utility that can be cleverly used in a number of ways.

Air juggle damage has been reduced, increasing the diminishing returns of long juggles against airborne opponents. Air juggling is still one hundred percent essential to securing victory, but now, you can’t just count on landing a single air juggle to win, you’ll have to make use of all the available resources at your disposal. The strategic depth is endless all the while managing to stay fun regardless of how deep you want to delve into it.

Tekken 7's multiplayer is where the real challenge is.

If you do, however, decide to take your game further, the game offers a robust online multiplayer experience that hurls players into intense and highly competitive matches. It’s important to note that, like most fighting games, online multiplayer enforces strict connection requirements to ensure stable matches. Tekken 7‘s ranking system and character customization are incredible incentives to keep fighting. By simply playing any of the available online and offline modes, you can earn chests that contain random goods and gold used to purchase cosmetic items. These items can range from hairstyles, outfits, accessories, hit effects and character auras.

V I S U A L S  &  P E R F O R M A N C E — The graphics has me ‘Tekken’ aback

The home edition of Tekken 7 is a solid port from the Japanese arcade build, including everything from the Fated Retribution version and a handful of new exclusive features. Visually, it isn’t much different from its arcade counterpart, which frankly isn’t a bad thing considering Tekken 7 is still a visually stunning fighting game.

There’s a lot of variety in all the available stages, boasting different visual elements that are aesthetically pleasing. The fighters themselves show a staggering amount of detail, down to each piece of cosmetic item.

Some stages really take advantage of Tekken 7's vibrant lighting.

In Story Mode, the more important scenes are rendered in beautifully pre-rendered CGI while the rest is either in-engine or in 2D art. Though the in-engine scenes show the fighters in as much detail as in their gameplay counterpart, the same can’t be said for the surroundings. Some of the in-engine environments and effects look a tad under detailed, an issue made obvious by the disparity between them and the fully-detailed characters rendered alongside.

V E R D I C T — You Win

Tekken 7 is a phenomenal fighting game, possessing a combat system with incredible depth that manages to stay accessible to players of any skill level. There’s a hefty amount of content to unlock, and though the story is riddled with poor dialog and sub-par voice acting, it serves as an entertaining conclusion to the story between two of its most iconic characters.

I can’t help but recommend Tekken 7, not just to series enthusiasts, but to anybody who enjoys a good fighting game. This is certainly a bold claim, but Tekken 7 is the definitive fighting game of choice for any platform in 2017.

[This review is based on a retail build of the game provided by the publisher.]


Dian Raval

 
Dian is a writer for Flipgeeks who, in his spare time, stares at a wall in his basement. If you'd like to discuss music, video games, or the infinite wisdom of concrete, follow him on twitter @iburnandfume or subscribe to his YouTube channel @iburnandfume. He's pretty much iburnandfume in everything. Apparently he... burns and fumes.


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