Game Machina – Tekken Tag Tournament 2: Part 1 Introduction
Tekken Tag Tournament 2
So I wanted to start this new blog with the latest (sort of) version of my favourite fighting game series Tekken Tag Tournament 2.
Ever since the first Tekken Tag I along with so many other players dreamt of a sequel to the game I invested a lot of time and money into, thinking of the dream match ups and the ways the older characters would be updated to the newer setting.
A rare move for me but I preordered the game and waited for the local EB Games to open on the day I was there a good half hour early eagerly waiting for the game, the only one waiting in this town but somewhat predictable for me since for a long time Tekken was the first thing people would think of when mentioning me “the guy who plays Teeken” of course I would be there.
For me Tekken Tag 2 definitely lived up to the idea in my head of the game and in some ways exceeded it.
I was one of the many people who had tweeted to Harada begging to bring back the characters I had fallen in love with in the last game.
To their credit the Tekken team obliged us, whiny and demanding fans going so far as to even release characters I didn’t fully expect like Violet and Miharu.
I requested the return of one of my long time favourites Kunimitsu and I may have actually squeed when she was announced and I saw the first footage along side Angel and Michelle.
I can’t remember if I took the time to thank Harada and the team for this but I am very appreciative and my request wasn’t an idle one, although she turned out a bit differently than I thought she would I think her new style is very cool and very unique and she’s by a good majority my most played character.
But I think that’s enough about my Tekken story, for now at least.
Now onto the point of these blogs-
I love Tekken Tag 2 but I have notes.
Instead of just musing on a forum somewhere or just tweeting and trying to compress my thoughts down to 140ish characters I’m going to take the time to properly write out my thoughts and try and sort them into categories.
The point of all this is to give some reflective feedback on my experience of Tekken Tag 2 and some suggestions for it’s future.
Index (I’ll update this as I go)
Since it came out I’ve always viewed Tekken Tag as a different sort of Tekken one that’s different enough to keep it fun along side the main series.
I was playing Tekken Tag along side Tekken 4,5 and even through Tekken 6.
The game had a large balanced roster and good core mechanics that made the game one that had a lot of longevity so much so that I’ve worn through multiple copies of the game (I’m not good with disc upkeep) including the HD version I’ve got 6 copies of the game.
Tekken Tag 2 has the same potential but unlike the original Tag this one has online play and customisation 2 big factors I think in the longevity of the title.
The third factor I think is it’s silliness Tekken Tag 2 was like if you took everything crazy and over the top that you love about Tekken and threw it all together and to it’s credit it works.
But it’s not all good news unfortunately.
The series as a whole seems to be suffering from a bit of an identity crisis trying to appeal to 2 different markets at the same time.
The important casual market that helps drive sales and keeps the series alive and the hardcore market that forms the backbone.
Go too far to please one market and you risk alienating the other.
Tekken Revolution is an attempt to appeal to the more main stream crowd as a sort of Tekken lite.
Tekken has a very steep learning curve, I’d argue one of the steepest of almost any game and in some ways I feel it’s become more steeper than even Virtua Fighter.
So it seems like that there’ll be some big game play changes for the upcoming Tekken 7, maybe the removal of bounds or rage, a simplification of the game and a reduction of character base all this remains to be seen.
This is where I think Tekken Tag 2 has something unique to offer.
A sort of Tekken for the hardcore set, the over the top juggles, complex gameplay and large roster may drive away potential players but it might be a way of appealing to 2 different crowds to some extent.
While I’m not advocating that Tekken 7 be made solely for the casual market it can be more focused on that side than Tekken Tag 2, leaving Tekken Tag 2 to be more of a niche title.
With the suggestions I’ll be laying out in the next couple parts I hope to make a case for continuing support for Tekken Tag 2 as well as ways to keep it going.