Tekken Hybrid (PlayStation 3)
Today we will be taking a look at Tekken Hybrid for the PlayStation 3. Tekken Hybrid offers a value priced remastered version of the classic Tekken Tag Tournament as well as a sneak peak at the forthcoming Tekken Tag Tournament 2 via a demo. As an added bonus the disc also features the full length computer-animated film Tekken: Blood Vengeance.
Tekken is one of those titles that defines the beat-em up genre. First released in the arcades in 1994 and then on the first generation PlayStation in 1995, Tekken was Namco's response to the emergence of 3D fighting lead by the Virtua Fighter series.
Since then Tekken has developed into an on-going storyline involving many characters with the last game in the series, Tekken 6, being release in late 2009. The exception to the on-going Tekken storyline was the Tekken Tag Tournament game, first appearing in the arcades in mid-1999, then on the PlayStation 2 in late 2000. Tekken Tag Tournament doesn't feature a storyline as such; rather it gave the fans of the series the opportunity to play as almost any of the characters seen in the Tekken series up to that point.
Tekken Tag Tournament introduced the tag system into the Tekken game series and offers us an extravagant number of characters to play as. In fact until Tekken 6 was released Tekken Tag Tournament offered the largest character roster of any of the Tekken games.
There are various modes available in the game with arcade being the main one. Arcade mode allows us to select 2 characters that we can play as and during the fights we can swap out to our other character at any time while off screen our second character slowly recuperates health. However if our on screen character is KO'd the bout is ended. Essentially the tag team concept allows us to utilise special combos and throws, or to run away and hide if our health bar is to low.
In Arcade mode we also have Team Battle mode where two players can team up as the tag team. However in this mode if one player is KO'd the battle continues with the second player fighting on their own.
Other modes offered in Tekken Tag Tournament include Time Attack, Survival and a practise mode with the first two offering a more focused battle style. It also includes the mini game Tekken Bowl, where we can take our favourite Tekken character out for a bit of ten pin bowling.
Finally, as noted above also included in the Tekken Hybrid compilation is a sneak peak at the, much anticipated, follow up Tekken Tag Tournament 2. We are able to select two of four characters for this demo and play through some of the stages that will be on offer when the full game is released early next year.
Graphics & Audio
Although the graphics in Tekken Tag Tournament have been remastered for the PlayStation 3 they are beginning to show their age. The introduction movie for instance, while good looking for its time almost ten years later it looks almost quaint.
The amount of graphical improvement that has occurred in 3D fighting games is shown very clearly when we compare the graphics of the original game versus the demo of the upcoming sequel. The in game graphics of the sequel are more detailed than any of the full motion video included in the first game which is a nice comparison to see and gives us an interesting taster for the next game.
The audio in Tekken Tag Tournament features the all classic tracks from the original game. The music tracks can be accessed via a player in the Theatre mode, should we want to hear it directly. The in game audio is appropriate, with all the expected grunts and groans as our characters hits land.
For fans of the Tekken series, Tekken Hybrid offers plenty to interest. The original Tekken Tag Tournament remastered for the PlayStation 3, plus a sneak peak at the upcoming sequel. That alone would be enough, however Namco have also thrown in the full length computer animated feature film Tekken: Blood Vengeance.
More casual fighter fans will find the original Tekken Tag Tournament game is a fun and enjoyable experience, however being ten years old, it doesn't feature a lot of the standards we've now come to expect, like destructible environments or multiple levels of platforms.
Still, the original Tekken Tag Tournament is still a hugely enjoyable game to play and getting a chance to try out the sequel it looks as though that is also going to be an outstanding game. 84%