Tekken 7 is the latest installment in the instantly and internationally recognizable Tekken series. Bandai Namco gave both a presentation, explaining changes being made in this new Tekken game as well as allowing for some playtime with the actual game.
To begin, there is a decent amount of changes in this new Tekken. Tekken 7 is going to be adding more characters into its roster, keeping up with the worldly theme the characters in Tekken are known for having these new characters all hail from different parts of the world. The roster will boast over 30 playable characters. Probably the biggest announcement for a character in the game is the addition of Akuma from the Street Fighter series. Akuma is not just thrown into the series like cameo characters in fighting games often are. Akuma is a part of the main storyline for Tekken 7, fighting against Heihachi in an interactive cut scene to introduce the game. Akuma will be able to use fireballs and Shotokan moves via consumable energy he can build up. This ability is unique to Akuma. Akuma will also be part of what is to be the last part of the Mishimi Blood Saga, the final chapter of a 20-year feud that is at its heart between father and son. Tekken 7 visually looks great, taking full advantage of the Unreal Engine 4. It has some visually beautiful backgrounds and all the characters look vibrant. The transitions from the cinematics to game play are also seamless.
A few modifications were made to the combat for Tekken 7. The changes are the edition of “Rage Drives”, “Rage Arts”, and “Power Crushes.” “Rage Arts” are essentially like supers for Tekken, slowing down time and showcasing the high power attack. “Rage Drives” are like “Rage Arts” but can be used when a player is low on health and are indicated by the character glowing red, if they hit the move they can even up the match. A “Power Crush” is sort of like an invincible move, with the exception that the player still takes damage if hit while executing the move, but mid and high attacks do not interrupt the move. If the player on the receiving end is quick enough they can cancel the “Power Crush” with a low attack.
You don’t really get a feel for a game until you play it. This is true of almost all games but it is especially true for fighting games. I used some new characters, namely: Lucky Chloe, Katarina, and of course, Akuma. Akuma plays similarly to how he does in Street Fighter and has a unique feel to him because of his Shotokan moves and ability to use projectiles. Lucky Chloe had a very fun fight style, with many of her juggle combo animations looking like b-boy moves. Katarina was pretty easy to pick up, a lot her combos were easy to learn and from what I understand she was added into the game as a “beginner friendly” character. Every character has their own distinct feel, and I think this new game in the Tekken series would be a starting point for someone who has never played Tekken. The learning curve for some of the characters is gentle. Overall the game was one of the most enjoyable experiences at E3. Playing with a total stranger was a great time, at times even getting very competitive. I can only imagine how great the experience would be with friends or family.
Tekken 7 is planned to be released early 2017 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC via Steam.