Why PC players should be excited about Tekken 7

A fan explains the console fighting phenomenon.

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Tekken 7 will be at the PC Gamer Weekender 2017 in London! Find out more here.

Yoshimitsu, King, Heihachi Mishima, Nina Williams. It’s more than likely that at least one of these names will ring a bell with even the most casual of gamers. Almost everyone has either played or heard of Tekken, the fighting game that dominated in the 90s. Debuting in 1994, Tekken was the first game to exceed one million units sold on the PlayStation 1, and was one of the first fighting games to use 3D animations. For its time, that was a big deal! After 22 years of arcade and console releases, and with over 42 million copies sold worldwide, Tekken will finally be making its long awaited PC debut early next year with Tekken 7: Fated Retribution.

Tekken has been around for the better part of two decades and it still manages to grab the attention of generations of gamers from all around the world, so it must be doing something right. So what exactly is it about Tekken that makes it so special?

For starters, Tekken has developed a generous roster with a huge variety of characters to choose from. Humans? Check. Jaguar mask-wearing wrestlers? Check. Cyborgs? Check. A sword wielding ninja who kinda looks more like an alien? Check. Akuma from Street Fighter? Check. Fish-slapping fighting bears? Check. There’s a character for almost everyone who plays the game. There’s even something for dedicated Street Fighter fans with Akuma appearing in Tekken 7. (Apparently he’s there to kill Heihachi, as ordered by Heihachi’s estranged wife Kazumi. It looks like he missed the ‘happy wife, happy life’ memo.)

Each character has their own detailed backstory and move list which consists of almost 100 basic arts, combos, and grapples. This helps Tekken remain fresh and interesting as there’s always something to learn.

Technical and fluid in-game movement, the detailed art style, the powerful soundtrack, the intricate details included in the stages and the distinctive character designs are all elements that make for a pretty special fighting game. Tekken 7 has also introduced new theatrical features such as Rage Art and Rage Drive, which help set the game aside from its previous installments. Rage Art allows players to land a significantly powerful attack on a character in a big fancy over-the-top display; think Street Fighter supers. Rage Drive on the other hand is a series of strong attacks which deal a higher amount of damage than normal. They’re fairly easy to execute and a lot of fun to use, honestly there’s nothing more satisfying than watching your opponent’s face drop when you KO them with an exaggerated Rage Art.

Tekken just wouldn’t be Tekken without its wacky and eccentric features, and despite the wide range of flashy new displays in Tekken 7, the game still stays true to the key elements that help make it great. Where else are you going to see a morbidly obese karate expert with the flexibility of an Olympic gymnast battle it out against a salmon-wielding bear?

During the course of 2016, Tekken 7 has been making quite a bit of noise in the esports scene with the game being featured at various events, including Evo 2016. It’s no secret that Tekken has always taken a backseat when it comes to esports compared to other games in the genre, however the hype which seems to be surrounding the game at the moment is suggesting that things are going to change in 2017, especially with the game launching on PC. The new features which have been introduced in Tekken 7, particularly the Rage Arts, add a whole new level of intensity and excitement to the matches for both spectators and players. When watching and playing Tekken 7 it’s clear to see that the game was developed with esports in mind: the special moves, slow mo action shots, and cinematic camera angles are factors which enable the game to appeal to a wider audience.

Harada-san has mentioned that while there has always been a demand for a PC version of the game, in the past they've backed off due to porting and technical hurdles. However, since the new title was developed using Unreal Engine 4, it was much easier for the game to be released on PC—after all, this time it was actually built on PC.

Tekken has always been an arcade and console based game, with the user base predominantly existing on PlayStation. However, the news of Tekken 7’s debut on PC has grabbed the attention of even the most dedicated of console players as this is completely unknown territory even for the most hardcore fans out there. The two main questions which seem to constantly be echoed amongst the community are, “will the game support cross-platform play” and “what specs does my PC need to run Tekken 7?”.

Although there has been no official statement from Bandai Namco, Harada-san mentioned in a tweet that cross-platform play may not be available at launch due to the potential security risks involved, as well as obstacles with the first party company policies. It is important to note that cross-platform play has not officially been ruled out, so there is still hope!  As for the specs, in a recent interview, Tekken 7 developer Michael Murray confirmed that “the specs aren’t locked down yet” but will be made public closer to launch. In the King of Iron Fist Tournament global finals earlier this month, it was confirmed that we will finally be getting a release date for the PC and console launch in January, so more details and information on the PC version will be sure to follow.

The choice to expand the user base to include PC gamers will only strengthen the Tekken and fighting game communities. Hopefully cross-platform play will be introduced into the game, as it’s something that will definitely benefit the game’s release on PC. Even so, Tekken 7’s future certainly looks strong on PC, especially when it comes to the world of esports.
 

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