Review by renaclaudeshaus
"The King is back, adorned with lesser jewels."
The Tekken series has been one of the best fighters out there. Most fighting games can never really compare to its outstanding roster and deep gameplay. People will find it easy to pick up. Mastering it, however, is a different question. In this review, we will go in-depth with every criterion. To find out how Tekken 6 compares with the previous installments, continue the read.
The heart and soul of Tekken is its wonderful fighting originality. The four face buttons are your main four limbs. You have the left and right punches , and left and right kicks. By combining these buttons you will have the opportunity to unleash powerful combos. Air juggles, stuns, counter hits, reversals are still present. A new system called Bound', which will give you an extra window for an additional set of attacks, is a fresh and welcome addition. On paper, all of them sound all too complicated. In practice, they are what define Tekken 6. You will find that mastering all 40 characters will take time; a lot of time. In Tekken 6 and in previous installments, however, it's up to the player whether to master all of them or just focus on a handful of the series' roster. This so called freedom is one of Tekken 6's strongest assets.
The character customization this time around has a robust selection of shirts, pants, shoes, and colors. This is a great treat for completionists since a character can have more than a hundred of available customization items. Playing through the game in almost every mode will reward you fight money that which can be used to buy the things to tailor your fighter with. This, along with the natural addicting effect of Tekken 6 will make you play it for multiple hours.
The online portion of the game is a sophomore to the series. The previous online feature of Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection is very similar to Tekken 6's. Unfortunately, online in Tekken 6 is still not lag-free. Even with a good connection between you and an opponent, you will notice a split-second lag in between button inputs. However, it's still as enjoyable as T5:DR's online whenever everything works well. This and the Scenario Campaign can make the game leave a bitter taste in your mouth.
The Scenario Campaign to some may be the newest innovation Tekken 6 has to offer. To others, it is the Tekken Force Mode they enjoyed in Tekken 3 and Tekken 4. It was showcased to have an online co-op feature, but it's been missing day one. Fight money (refer to character customization) is abundant in this mode. If you want to rack up the money to fund your fashion whims, you need to get lots of it here. Sadly, the execution of this game mode is clunky at the least. The camera can become the biggest threat here since most enemies can come from anywhere. The target system seems a second-thought as well. If you can get past these issues, you will surely be rewarded with items, both common and rare, as they are also present in this mode aside from money drops.
I want to make this short and straight to the point. The character models in this game are a notch higher compared with the previous game. Unfortunately, that's just it - only a notch. One thing you'll notice right away is the jaggies. Character models and environments both suffer with this. Luckily, you can turn off a feature called motion blur' to reduce these jaggies significantly. Stage environments mostly look outdated. You will notice that most textures are flat, especially ground textures. Those expecting jaw-dropping graphics should lower their expectations lest they get somewhat disappointed. It's a shame since each Tekken installment showcased a form of strong graphical presentation. Not this time, I guess.
The appeal of sound in this game is hard to categorize. The voice work, from grunts to dialogues, is good. Sound effects are solid, too. Punches, kicks, and throws are nicely coupled with nice sounds. The same cannot be said for background music. Most of them are forgettable. In my personal opinion, the random sheep stage has the best background music in the entire game. The game's volume is also noticeably very low. You need to crank up your TV's speaker volume to flesh out the game's sound. The inclusion of in-game custom soundtrack is a good addition, however. So if ever you get tired of bland background music offered by the game, access your hard drive and play your own set of tracks.
Long load times mar this game of greatness. Virtually in between matches, both in offline and online play, the game would have you wait for 7 to 10 seconds. That is the case provided you install the game on your hard drive. Not installing the game will cause longer load times. In some cases, after playing a rank match online, should you wish to go back to the main online screen, the game will automatically upload your overall stats, replay, and ghost data. This tiny black upload/saving screen really make the game slow and tedious.
Lasting Appeal and Fun Factor 9/10
Perhaps Tekken 6's addicting gameplay is what can make this game worth your while. With tons to collect, and a robust amount of characters to customize and master, it will surely make you come back for more.
Closing comments: Sadly, glaring issues like unpolished graphical details, a forgettable soundtrack, and long load times keep Tekken 6 from besting its predecessors.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 11/03/09, Updated 11/04/09
Game Release: Tekken 6 (JP, 10/29/09)
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