Review by 9Tale
What does it fight for?
Tekken 6 has been released carrying the name of one of the best classic fighting-genre games in video gaming history. For all of what it boasts to be though, it can't decide what it actually is.
Graphics - 7/10
The graphics tend to look okay at times, and not so good in others. The pre-rendered cutscenes look just about as they should most of the times, and comparing the in-game graphics to the previous Tekken releases, it looks amazing. It looks much more current-gen than, let's say, WotS3.
Sound - 10/10
The sound in this game is top notch. The characters speak different languages to reflect their nationality/species (?), but it's kind of funny that they can all understand each other. From the grunts to the hit sounds to the stellar voice acting, this game sounds great.
Music - 2/10
The soundtrack in this game had a big job to do and just fell short. In the Scenario campaign, the music just seems to be glossed over, it takes the big cutscenes and tacks on one of the same 3 pieces to make them stand out. I can't even remember any of the other tracks, it's a shame when you only feel yourself getting pumped during cutscenes and not gameplay. One absolutely great thing they did was enable Custom Soundtracks, so you can just put on your own tunes to fight with, and hear the same 3 tracks during the cutscenes.
Content - 5/10
N-B has stuffed this game with alot of "new" content. From Scenario Campaign, to Character customization, everything is "new". "New" as in "This wasn't in Tekken 5", the entire Campaign mode has been done before, twice, and the customization was already in 5, but now they've added powerups to make you feel inadequate. It's no longer about being legitimately adept at the game, but about wearing funky outfits that make you a Witch/Hooker/Chinese Warrior/Dancer/Secretary Hybrid to help keep you up to par as the game progresses. Other games have done this RPG micromanaging concept much better, this could have been great if N-B had spent alot more time on this. They did such a great job with SCIV, why couldn't they work out something at least playable here? The bright side is that they kept in all of the old modes that worked, albeit in a completely separate menu and with none of the rewards.
Gameplay - 2/10
Okay, this is where it gets a bit trippy. On one hand, there is the actual fighting game hidden beneath the BS, but on the other there is the Scenario Campaign. Now, the thing about the fighting is that they haven't changed much at all. There are a few new characters with some interesting new moves, and they provided some cosmetic tweaks that other games have implemented like stage breaks, but everything else was warped straight from Tekken 5. That however that's not necessarily a bad thing, the fighting has always been the soul of the Tekken franchise, it wasn't broken so nobody can complain that they didn't fix it. The Scenario Campaign, however, is terrible. There's about ~15 different enemy costumes besides unique characters, the camera is the absolute worst I've ever seen, and the controls are just bad. The hit detection doesn't stick like it should in a mode like that, some places are mildly frustrating with the flying off of the stage/ getting ringed out by Alisa, and various other huge problems. The biggest problem is that nagging feeling of "I'm not having fun", even though your mind tells you that this is a Tekken game. I've heard the online has a few big problems as well, but I won't hold that against the game until I play it firsthand.
Story - 8/10
Now, I'm one of the few that plays Tekken mainly for the story. In one aspect, Tekken 6 once again delivers a suitable story via Lars and his 5 games worth of backstory in SC. There are few shocks or twists, and it's hard to feel any attachment for a brand new character as much as those we are familiar with, but they manage to give us an acceptable story that weaves in most of the older characters. In another aspect, as a sequel, the game picks up right where it left off. Jin and his associates have risen to power since he won the Tournament at the end of 5, and does cool and mysterious things at various intervals, and all important characters' stories are weaved into the current one. A major disappointment is the removal of a good Arcade mode, and the intro of the Arena. The Arena is similar to the classic Arcade in that there's a prologue, some fights, and an ending video. What's different is that the Prologue is generally 2 pictures with 15 lines of text, there's only 4 battles, the fated battle is still in but there's almost no character interaction as in past games, and in Tekken style, the common final boss is broken. Those that aren't really involved so much in the SC kinda get shafted in the standalone story department, but even so those with a history reach some satisfying and emotional conclusions.
Overall - 5.6/10
This games takes everything that made the Tekken franchise good, bundles it together, and shoves it to the side. It focuses so much on the bad parts of the game that even the most diehard fans can't turn a blind eye to it. I find myself trying so hard to like this game, and I really do want to like it, but it's like N-B decided to cut out all of the meat first, and give me all the fat as an appetizer. I won't say that this is the worst in the series, but it is by far the biggest disappointment.
Rating: 2.5 - Playable
Product Release: Tekken 6 (US, 10/27/09)
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