Sixth King of Iron Fist Tournament
The King of Iron Fist Tournament reaches its sixth installment. Once again, the presidency of the Mishima Zaibatsu, the world’s biggest conglomerate, is put at stake, with the winner gaining complete ownership of the company. Fighters from all over the world take part in this tournament, each with his or her own purposes. Which one will raise to the top and rule them all?
I’m absolutely amazed at the graphics. The characters look almost real, and the battle stages get very dynamic. For example, the Rustic Asia stage, where the roaming pigs scream and move out of the way when a character comes close to them, or in Noh Theatre, where you can see and almost hear the waves splashing towards the theatre. Plus, in stages where there are crowds, you can see them actively moving, somewhat resonating with the ongoing battle.
Who needs music in a battle stage? I prefer to hear the noise of the fight itself. The character grunts, the revamped hit sounds, special noises like the squishing noise when a character falls to the ground in the stage Fiesta del Tomate… Even then, I’ve went through the background music and it’s spectacular. The traditional yodeling in Hidden Retreat or the festival music heard in High Roller’s Club are the best examples. Still, I can’t rate sound a 10 because background music is just out of place in my opinion.
Like if you can get tired of playing any Tekken game. You have a ton of characters to master and clear Arcade mode with, you can use them all to get to the highest possible rank in Ranked Match, and you can even customize them if there’s something you want to change about them. Hundreds of hours of playing lie ahead, and also hundreds of hours until the battery of the PSP charges up again so you can keep playing.
After taking over the Mishima Zaibatsu, Jin Kazama uses his position to throw the world into chaos. Wars ensue everywhere as the Zaibatsu slowly starts to take control of the world’s resources.
Kazuya Mishima, now CEO of G Corporation, main rival of the Zaibatsu, puts a bounty on Jin’s head in an attempt to both stop the gruesome wars and reclaim Zaibatsu for himself. Upon learning this, Jin announces the sixth King of Iron Fist Tournament. Fighters from all over the world gather in this tournament, each with its own motives: revenge (Miguel, for Jin’s army had killed her sister the day of her wedding), lust for power (Heihachi Mishima), business (Raven, Dragunov)…
This is the background of the game. However, since it lacks a proper Story mode, or what was labelled Scenario Campaign in the rest of consoles, that’s as far as it goes. If some Tekken fans are reading this, rest assured: Jin isn’t a villain, his methods may be ruthless but his actions are benevolent.
Here the game starts its downfall. The lack of a Story mode leaves a void not easy to fill. Arcade mode is nowhere close filling it. Ranked Matches may be a solution, since you need several hundreds of matches to get to the highest rank possible, and the huge character roster makes it very hard to achieve such ranks with all fighters. There’s also the customization thing, which costs a lot of gold, and earning it isn’t an easy task. The best thing about customization is Item Moves, and getting all of them is a hard way. However, I’m not a fan of using all characters, probably 50-60%, and I bet there’s more people like me that prefer to focus in some characters and forget about the others, so if you have to only focus in Arcade mode to obtain all character endings, some characters fall in disgrace very early into the game.
The Arcade mode isn’t any difficult at all. True, the last boss is painful as hell to beat, but that’s because, as all NPC bosses, it’s overly overpowered, although not invincible, at least after enough tries. Ranked Match isn’t that difficult either, it all depends on which fighter you choose and which opponent you face, since you can have an easier time dealing with a character you know than another you’re not familiar with. Not much more to say about this matter, as these are the only modes in which difficulty does play a role.
Tekken is still Tekken, and as such it offers above average quality. Of course, due to system specs, it couldn’t be a clone of the home version, but still the result is more than acceptable.
-Character roster. The fact that this game hasn’t ditched out any character of the home version is worth of mention. This means 40 characters, plus one palette swap, if I’ve done well the math. It’s actually bigger than the roster of some posterior fighting games released for home consoles, and that means a lot.
-Revamped sounds. The old sounds used since the first Tekken have been taken out, introducing a wider variety of sounds, as well as more definitive of the power and characteristics of each move. The whip and the shot sounds played alongside the regular sounds also gives a special atmosphere in the battle.
-Item moves. Available through customization, even though not all items have been ported from the home versions. Still, there’s a wide variety of nice attacks and effects. Asuka Kazama and her giant paper fan, Baek Doo San and his beret which allows him to have a drink and restore health, Kazuya Mishima and his neo sunglasses… The list is wide, but their effects are more comical than useful, Tekken isn’t the kind of game which allows you time for a break in the midst of battle.
-Damage dealt. In comparison to Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection, most attacks now deal a ton more damage. Not only do unblockable attacks deal a decent amount of damage now, normal attacks and combos can easily deplete nearly half of the opponent’s health.
-Lack of Scenario Campaign. This leaves the game without a story to tell. Even then, the character endings are still used when finishing Arcade mode, however Alisa and Lars, since their main endings revolve around the events of the Scenario Campaign, are given different endings, which are actually clips from said mode. It wouldn’t have been the first game where a character has no ending, so in my opinion they could have left both of them without one.
-Unlockable characters. Since there’s no actual Story Mode, all characters are available from the get go. This really hampers the depth of the game, and technically you shouldn’t need a Story Mode to unlock them. Tekken 3, for example, unlocked all but one characters by playing arcade mode, leaving the Story Mode (Tekken Force) practically untouched. Why didn’t they come with something similar now?
-Changes in character movesets. We have seen some characters change their styles, either to differentiate them from other characters (Jack, Ganryu and Kuma/Panda all had a similar moveset back in the PSX) or as per the plot’s story (Jin Kazama wanted to distance from his Mishima relation long ago), however in here we’ve seen a ton of minor changes in all characters. Traditional combos are no more, attacks have been relocated to another button input… When playing it for the first time, it’s not like you can try to sweep everyone in Arcade mode, you need to see the changes and additions and get used to them so you don’t input by default the traditional combos you knew up until now.