Tekken (Series)

This article is about the video game series. For the first game in the series, see Tekken (video game). For other uses, see Tekken (disambiguation).

Tekken
Genres Fighting
Developers Namco
Publishers Namco (Namco Bandai)
Platforms Arcade, PlayStation, Wonder Swan, PlayStation 2, Game Boy Advance, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Network, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PlayStation Vita, Windows, Nintendo 3DS, Wii U, iOS
Platform of origin Arcade (PlayStation)
First release Tekken
December 9, 1994
Latest release Tekken Revolution
June 11, 2013
Spin-offs Live-action and animated films, comics
Official website www.tekken.com

Tekken (Japanese: 鉄拳?, "Iron Fist") is a fighting game franchise created, developed and published by Namco (later Namco Bandai Games). Beginning with the original Tekken in 1994, the series has received several sequels as well as updates and spin-off titles, as well as three films and other media. The series' official English name is always written in all-capital letters (TEKKEN, abbreviated to TK).

The story in each game in the main series documents the events of the King of Iron Fist Tournament, hosted by the Mishima Zaibatsu corporation. The prize is typically control of the company, which then allows the winner to host the following tournament.

Games

The arcade-game versions have traditionally used PlayStation-based hardware to run the games. Namco has eventually made each installment available for its respective PlayStation console.

The first game in the series, Tekken, was released in 1994, first in arcades and then as a port for the PlayStation.[1][2] Two sequels, Tekken 2 and Tekken 3, were released in the same fashion in 1996 and 1998.[3][4][5][6] Tekken 3 was also ported to the Game Boy Advance as Tekken Advance in 2001.[7][8]

The next two sequels, Tekken 4 and Tekken 5, were ported to the PlayStation 2 in 2002 and 2004, respectively, following their release in arcades.[9][10][11][12] A PlayStation Portable and PlayStation 3 version of Tekken 5, retitled Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection, was released in 2006.[13][14] An online version of Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection was also released in 2007 for the PlayStation Network.

Tekken 6 was originally released for arcades in 2007, followed by an updated version, Tekken 6: Bloodline Rebellion, in 2008.[15] In 2009, the update was released for the PS3, PSP and Xbox 360 as Tekken 6.[16][17] Tekken 6-based Tekken 3D: Prime Edition was released for the Nintendo 3DS in 2012.

Spin-off and crossover games

A spin-off title under the name of Tekken Tag Tournament was released in 1999. In contrast to previous titles, Tekken Tag Tournament features tag battles and in 2000 was the first Tekken game ported to the PS2.[18][19] A remastered version of the game, Tekken Tag Tournament HD, was included in the 2011 collection Tekken Hybrid,[20] packed with a playable demo of Tekken Tag Tournament 2 and the film Tekken: Blood Vengeance.[21] Tekken Tag Tournament 2 was released in Japanese arcades in 2011.[17] Released in 2012, its console version is based on the updated Arcade version that contained new features.[22] A free to play version of Tekken was released in 2013 for PSN as Tekken Revolution.

Tekken Card Challenge was released on the Japan-only handheld WonderSwan in 1999. [18][19] A spin-off action adventure game featuring series' character Nina Williams as the protagonist, Death by Degrees, released for the PS2 in 2005.[23][24] Two more Tekken spin-off games have also been released in 2011, a 2D fighting game Tekken Resolute(which was the first game not to include Heihachi Mishima) for mobile phones[25] and Tekken Bowl (the bowling mini-game from Tekken Tag Tournament and the first game not to include Yoshimitsu, Nina Williams, Paul Phoenix, or King) for the iOS operating system.[26] In 2013, Tekken Card Tournament was officially released by Namco Bandai to the App Store for iOS and Google Play Store on Android, making it the 3rd available mobile-phone Tekken game.[27][28] It is currently in public beta status, featuring virtual cards, an in-game store to buy booster packs, and online tournaments; Namco Bandai also plans to release real world cards that have QR codes to upgrade the virtual cards and unlock new characters.

Namco and Capcom agreed to create crossover games of the Tekken and Street Fighter franchises, Street Fighter X Tekken (released in 2012) and Tekken X Street Fighter (in development as of 2013).[29][30] The former game was developed by Capcom and includes 2D gameplay mechanics as seen in Street Fighter IV, whereas the latter game will be developed by Namco and will include the gameplay mechanics from Tekken Tag Tournament 2.[31]

Gameplay

As with many fighting games, players choose a character from a lineup and engage in hand-to-hand combat with an opponent. Traditional fighting games are usually played with buttons which correspond to the strength of the attack, such as strong punch or weak kick. Tekken, however, dedicates a button to each limb of the fighter.[32] The series uses separate buttons for right and left arms and legs, resulting in four buttons. Tekken uses no block button; starting with Tekken 2, characters automatically block while not moving forward or performing actions, a feature called "neutral guard." Standing or retreating characters will block high and middle attacks with no input from the player, while crouching characters will duck high attacks and block low ones. Normal middle attacks will hit crouching players, but some special mid-attacks can be blocked by both stand and crouching neutral guards. In the Tekken games, pressing backwards will give you an "active guard" that can withstand certain combo attacks that would normally penetrate the neutral guard. The gameplay system also includes throws, escapes, and ground fighting. Some characters are equipped with parries and reversals which act like traditional "press button to block" systems.

Tekken 3 introduced several gameplay possibilities that were retained in later games, including the ability to sidestep into the foreground or background.[33] Tekken 3 and later games also reduced recovery time after being knocked down and gave characters rolls to recover instantly after hitting the ground, allowing the player to get back into the fight more quickly at the risk of being hit while rolling. Tekken 4 gave characters even greater mobility by adding true 3D movement inside geometrically complex arenas with uneven ground, obstacles, and walls. The 3D gameplay allows damaging side and back throws as a reward for outmaneuvering the opponent, as well as evasive attacks that develop directly from a sidestep.

Tekken 5 saw a combination of walled and infinite arenas, while discarding uneven ground. Tekken 6 retains much of the design from Tekken 5 but also includes "Rage" mode (when a character is near the end of his vitality bar, he earns a damage multiplier) and "Bound" hits (which when they connected with an airborne opponent, will place him in an unescapable grounded state, allowing combo extensions). Tekken 6 also has destructible floors that allow the fighters to fall through to new fighting areas when broken.

Characters

Players can choose from a diverse cast that hails from a variety of ethnic backgrounds and fighting styles. A few characters have supernatural origin, such as Devil, Mokujin and Ogre, while animal characters like Kuma, Panda,The Roger Family,and Alex provide comic relief.[34] In the story mode of the game, each character generally has their own personal reasons for entering the tournament and competing for the prize.

So far, only four characters have appeared in all eight Tekken installments: Heihachi Mishima, Paul Phoenix, Nina Williams, and Yoshimitsu. The Jack cyborgs, Anna Williams, Kazuya Mishima (though he did make a cameo in the third game), Lee Chaolan and Lei Wulong also come close, having appeared in seven installments. Other Recurring characters despite not being playable in almost every game includes Dr. Bosconovitch, Marshall Law, King, and Armor King.

Characters with background connections in the story typically have styles or moves in common. For example, the three playable generations of the "orthodox" Mishima family (Heihachi, Kazuya, and Jin) have handed down many family techniques, such as their signature "crouch-dash" and the moves that chain from it. Jin Kazama is more divergent, because his mother Jun Kazama was also a playable character, and he inherited some of her moves along with Kazuya's. There are other story relationships that affect gameplay, such as Wang Jinrei and his granddaughter/student Ling Xiaoyu, or Baek Doo San and his student Hwoarang. Some, like Anna Williams, started as an "alternate costume" for an existing character before branching out and getting some unique moves in later installments.[35][36]

Some Tekken characters have been featured as guest characters in other video games, such as Anna Kournikova's Smash Court Tennis, Digimon World Re:Digitize, Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 2, Pac-Man Fever, Smash Court Tennis Pro Tournament 2, Soulcalibur II, PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, Ridge Racer 6 and Urban Reign, as well as in some crossover role-playing video games, including Cross Edge, Namco × Capcom and Project X Zone.

Adaptations

Animated films

Tekken: The Motion Picture, a two-part OVA anime series, was released in Japan in 1998. It was developed by Studio Deen and directed by Kunihisa Sugishima. Its story follows Kazuya Mishima's revenge against his father Heihachi in the King of Iron Fist Tournament.[37]

Tekken: Blood Vengeance, a full-length CGI-animated anime film in Digital 3D, directed by Youichi Mouri, premiered in the United States in 2011 and was released in Japan two months later that same year. Digital Frontier developed and Bandai Entertainment distributed the film.[38] Unlike previous films, Blood Vengeance is set within the official Tekken storyline and is set between the events of Tekken 5 and Tekken 6.[39] It was released in Japan in December 2011 as a part of the collection Tekken Hybrid.[21]

Live-action films

Tekken, a live-action film directed by Dwight H. Little and starring John Foo, Ian Anthony Dale and Kelly Overton, was released in Japan on March 20, 2010 through Warner Bros. Pictures. The film focuses on Jin Kazama who enters into the King of Iron Fist Tournament after his mother's death.[40] Katsuhiro Harada, director of the Tekken video game series, has panned the film.[41]

A prequel to the 2010 film, titled Tekken: Rise of the Tournament, is currently in development, to be directed by Prachya Pinkaew.[42]

Other media

There has also been two printed adaptations of the games. Tekken Forever, a comic book by Dave Chi and illustrated by Paco Diaz and published by Image Comics in December 2001, features a story that focused on the Kazama family and also the Unknown character from Tekken Tag Tournament.[43] Tekken: Tatakai no Kanatani (鉄拳:戦いの彼方に?, lit. "Tekken: The Other Side of Battle") is a manga written by Keiichi Suzuki and published by Shogakukan, which was collected in two tankōbon volumes with the first one on December 5, 2000 and the second one on April 5, 2001.[44][45]

Characters and settings from the series also appear in the collectible card game Universal Fighting System by Fantasy Flight Games and in Epic Battles by Score Entertainment.

Reception

Aggregate review scores
As of September 25, 2012.
Game GameRankings Metacritic
Tekken (PS) 75.00%[46] -
Tekken 2 (PS) 92.50%[47] (PS) 89[48]
Tekken 3 (PS) 95.80%[49] (PS) 96[50]
Tekken 4 (PS2) 81.35%[51] (PS2) 79[52]
Tekken 5 (PS2) 89.20%[53] (PS2) 88[54]
Tekken 6 (PSP) 82.60%[55]
(X360) 81.09%[56]
(PS3) 79.74%[57]
(PSP) 82[58]
(X360) 80[59]
(PS3) 79[60]

As of August 2010, the Tekken franchise has sold 41 million units of games.[61] Critical reception to the games has been positive with Tekken 3 receiving an average of 96% at Metacritic and GameRankings.[49][50]

Developers of non-Tekken games have commented on the series in various ways. Ed Boon, the co-creator of Mortal Kombat, revealed in one of his interviews with GamePro that his favorite fighting game out of his competitors is Tekken.[62] Both Sega and Namco have shown interest in a possible crossover between Virtua Fighter and Tekken.[63] The series often been labelled as a "rival" to Virtua Fighter as the two became the most famous 3D fighting game series.[64] On the other hand, Tomonobu Itagaki, designer of the Dead or Alive series expressed dislike for the Tekken franchise to the point of placing it as one of his most hated games.[65]

In 2012, Complex ranked Tekken at number 11 on the list of the best video game franchises, commenting: "Just when we thought that the Street Fighter franchise was going to be the epitome of fighting games, Tekken came to make it share its portion of the knuckle-busting pie. Tekken has cult-like fans who live and breathe the moves and storylines."[66]

Tekken Museum

In May 2012, Namco Bandai opened Tekken Museum in Osaka, Japan.[67][68] The museum showcases goods, action figures, artworks, life-size statues of Tekken characters, and various merchandise. The items on display will be rotated regularly so that the museum is worth multiple visits,[69] but the admission is free. Namco held a grand opening on May 26, 2012 which featured a tournament for visitors.

References

External links

  • (European)
  • (Japanese)
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