Tekken Tag Tournament is an important game to me; it was my first attempt at a game review for the release of Sony’s newest console, the all-powerful PlayStation 2. Four young lads huddled in front of a just opened console surrounded by a professional camera and lighting crew from the Nickelodeon channel.
It was petrifying and the end result was abysmal as the four of us tried vain attempts to ad-lib during the extremely long and frequent loading times of the initial line up games. Whilst therapy was the only cure for this horrific experience I did take a couple of important lesson away with me, trust your instincts on a game and don’t do video interviews. You see, Tekken Tag Tournament had great reviews but none mentioned a few glaring issues and all it left on the faces of a few young reviewers was utter disappointment, more so to the chap that paid a packet for all this new hardware.
Well now 11 years later the era of the HD remix is in full effect and Tekken Tag Tournament returns for more home gaming antics. Tekken Hybrid offers fans of the series three for the price of one as with this new release you get a movie, a full game and a fully playable demo.
I recall at the time the original looked so good we could not believe it was on a home console; the pictures in the magazine press at the time just did the game no justice. However now with this Hybrid package, even with the HD touch up you can’t help but think just how bad it looks when compared to its new successor; Tekken Tag Tournament 2 Prologue, which looks mind blowing; Tekken Tag Tournament HD still looks old and dated even with a HD makeover.
The basic gameplay elements of Tekken Tag Tournament are unchanged, a one on one fighter where you can tag in another character to your advantage over some seriously slick and fast action if you can get your head around the combos. The tag option allows for plenty of tactical advantages over other fighters, with easy to pull off tagging bringing on a fresh fighter so you other can recover a little energy or even pull of special partner moves. Otherwise it’s business as usual for the Tekken series with left and right punches and kicks allowing for a selection of combos, grabs and special moves with all of your favourite classic characters including Law, Nina Williams, King, Gun Jack and Yoshimitsu.
Of course being a re-release there are some new benefits, most importantly the games are for install only (though you still need disc in the tray to play) and so it completely gets rid of any loadings times. All of the characters have had a serious HD revamp and they look OK, though nothing ground breaking. Tekken Tag Tournament HD is the full version seen way back then, with the full arcade mode and the fun to play side ten pin bowling game, Tekken Bowl. Disappointingly the endings appear to still be using the in-game graphics apart from one of characters and it’s really sad they didn’t beef up this area to make the whole experience more HD all over and more in line with modern games. Personally it’s a lot more fun to play now since the loading issues have been sorted but it just feels a little dated, especially when compared to its up and coming replacement.
Tekken Tag Tournament 2 Prologue is essentially a playable demo and shows just how far the game has come along with some stunning graphics and a control system that feels so much more responsive. This demo has been tied into the attached movie, with two female characters Alisa and Ling and two male, Devil Jin and Devil Kazuya. It’s quite short lived but really wets your appetite on what’s to come in 2012.
Finally, as mentioned there is a feature film also attached to the Blu-ray involving the characters from the demo. It’s a full computer animated movie and again looks great and with the ability to play on 3D it I’d a great showcase for your expensive hardware (fear not the film also appears on the 3DS Tekken 3D Prime Edition).
Tekken Hybrid is yet another game of old with a nice new HD dress on. Sadly it doesn’t work too well and whilst I see the reason to do Tag, surely Tekken 3 would have been a bigger draw. The game still manages to feel old and is let down by not much else being changed, however for a decent Blu-ray movie and a demo with four playable characters to use it’s definitely worth the asking price for Tekken fans.
Rating: GoodReview Policy
You can order Tekken Hybrid from ShopTo here.