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Tekken 7 Review

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What is the reason we fight, love, pride, honour? Or is it just hatred and revenge? There is no wrong answer just remember to "GET READY FOR THE NEXT BATTLE"

Tekken 7 is finally hitting our shores on June 2nd 2017 after some 5 years of waiting. It has been playable in arcades and tournaments in Japan and South Korea for the last 2 years but now punches its way onto PS4, Xbox One and PC.

Bandai Namco have been hard at work cramming in a heap of extra features to compliment the "arcade" style single player, a new 3 hour story mode introduces us to The Mishima Saga. The Mishima Saga explores those healthy father/son relationships within the Mishima Clan. You know the ones I'm talking about. Sons that will stop at nothing to murder their fathers, fathers that occasionally need to discipline their son by throwing them into an active volcano. Heihachi, his son Kazuya and his grandson Jin all control trillion dollar corporations, utilising them solely to try and take each other out.

Tekken 7 still carries the classic fighting system that has seen the Tekken series be the most successful fighting series. Each limb is mapped to a button, special moves are performed with directional input along with a button and it still satisfies. Different stances unlock different move sets and knowing exactly what you're doing is a big part of the game. Get it right and you break your opponent's defences and can unlock a devastating combo, get it wrong and you're on your back.

Yet there has been a few tweaks that me, as a terrible fighter, has been able to utalise and even feel quite powerful with. Sidestepping is slower and doesn't seem to be as largely used. Forward and backward stepping is more precise and places a bit more emphasis on getting in and going toe to toe. The biggest though is the addition of the Rage Art/Drive and Power Crush mechanics. Rage Art is a new comeback mechanic, it is available once you're at 25% or lower health. Performing a Rage Art is a simple two button command. Should the first hit land without being blocked your character performs a cinematic and highly damaging attack. The first couple had me cheering myself on and looking forward to it as I knew, likely each round I would see one. Don't forget though, your opponents have them too, but once you see them a few times they do get easier to block or even counter. Rage Drive is a little different. It uses the dynamics of Rage Art but adds in the ability to use follow up moves increasing the level of damage you do. Much harder to pull off, but very rewarding once you do.

These neat little touches open up Tekken 7 to a whole new range of players, players like me, the casual fan. But that's not to say it disappoints the long time fans or those that have sunk endless hours into learning each move. You can rest assured that pound for pound, Tekken 7 is still the most technical fighting game out there today. If you choose it to be.

Let's not forget some new characters making their debut. Lucky Chloe, Master Raven, Josie, Claudio, Gigas, Shaheen & Katarina. Each bringing with them their own fighting style that are good to experiment with.

I do have one little thing to pick on. The "VR" support. In all honesty, it's pointless. You can play around in a practice room or view character models while you mod them. While it does look fantastic, it feels tacked on.

The Verdict
Tekken 7 is one of the best fighting games I have played in a long time. Controls are tight and reasonably easy to learn but hard to master, the sound track is good and punchy (scuse the pun). Tekken 7 never takes itself too seriously and it is shown in the character customisation screens.
Keep an eye on the small details to notice just how good it really is.

Pat (Snoogs)

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