Review by Larcen Tyler
"The way to do an arcade-to-console port!"
Finally, after all this waiting and hoping I would get my hands on an extremely wanted PlayStation 2, I was able to get my hands on one, as well as a copy of, according to what I had heard through the grapevine, one of the best fighting games for the system. OK, so I'd played it in the arcades a few times, and it seemed good enough. Then I picked it up and discovered that Namco definitely has a way of giving new systems the jump-start they need, and this is no exception!
The first Tekken games ran off of PlayStation hardware, so porting them was a cinch. So now we have Tekken Tag Tournament which runs off of PlayStation 2 hardware, right? Should be a cinch here too, right? Well either way, you won't notice much difference between the arcade and the PS2, aside from the extra graphical details! You'll see things like fighters' mouths moving, eyes blinking, etc. You'll even get a variety of costumes you can use for each character, some new & some original. To top that off, all of the sparks flashing and things to that effect are always reflecting perfectly, just like the original arcade game itself were in your own home!
All of the original high intensity music from the arcade version returns in it's full high intensity glory! Wait, I don't think that's even proper grammar there! OK, you get the point, right? The announcer calls every fighter by name, and each fighter has his or her own voice for when they perform their moves or get knocked out. Too bad there's no spoken dialogue during the ending sequences. Other than that, it's still a very good game in the sound department!
For those who are new to the Tekken series, you have four buttons. Two for your punches and two for your kicks. The thing is, each button controls an individual limb, so you can have left punch and right punch as well as left kick and right kick. For veterans this should be second hand news. The only new addition is the tag button which allows you to switch between fighters during a match. Some moves, if linked properly, will allow you to switch fighters and double the damage!
Unlike other tag team fighters, namely Capcom's vs. series, this plays in a true 'tag team' fashion. Only one person needs to be knocked out to win the fight, whereas in the Capcom vs. series, both fighters have to be knocked out for the other team to win. This adds a new strategic twist to the gameplay, making things a lot more tricky!
If you're wondering, the Dual Shock 2 controller handles the game fine, and with vibration turned on, you can feel each and every blow as it connects in full glory! You can even connect an original PlayStation controller if you are short on Dual Shock 2 controllers so a friend can play without having to shell out the extra money for a second controller!
You can play tag team against the computer or up to four friends, where each player actually controls his or her own fighter, making it a true tag team fight! You can also go for standard one-on-one gameplay. There are even some hidden features to be unlocked! Also, there's a total of 34 characters to be found within this game, meaning that you'll be spending a lot of time with this baby!
If you have a PlayStation 2, but you don't have this game, then what on earth are you waiting for? If Namco can jumpstart PlayStation 2, then why haven't you jump started yours? Join the tournament and tag into the fray!
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 05/05/01, Updated 07/16/01
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