Monday, 14 January 2013

Tekken Tag Tournament 2

The Tekken series’ first foray into tag-based fighting came out at the beginning of the PlayStation 2 cycle, and marked a fun new direction for the series to go into. After almost a decade, the franchise ventures back into familiar territory with the release of Tekken Tag Tournament 2.

Boasting the entire roster of the Tekken franchise up until now, Tekken Tag 2 features a staggering number of new characters and moves to familiarise yourself with, in order to stay in the game. While fighting games have come a long way since the early days, Tekken’s traditional approach hasn’t really changed much; aside from a few bells and whistles being added.

Tekken Tag Tournament 2 is filled with a full roster of characters from Tekken’s history with over 50+ characters to choose from. Most of the roster are carried over from Tekken 6 and is padded by additional characters from past Tekken games. Kunimitsu, Jun, Forest Law, P-Jack and a few others return. While some of these revival characters were blatant clones, the subtle differences that separate their clones are significant enough to allow them to stand on their own. Forest Law and Marshall Law, for example, have different move sets that will require ample practice time to understand the two. 


Tekken Tag Tournament 2 is a 3D 2-on-2 tag-team fighting game developed and released by Namco Bandai for Japanese arcades in 2011. The eighth main installment of the Tekken franchise, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, is the successor to 1999's Tekken Tag Tournament, which pits most characters from the series' history (at that point in the series) in non-canonical 2-on-2 tag team battles.

The original arcade game received a revision (titled Tekken Tag Tournament 2 Unlimited) on March 27, 2012, featuring the option to choose one character instead of two (in which the character is granted both higher vitality and the "Rage" system from Tekken 6) and a new Pair Play mode (in which four players fight simultaenously in 2-on-2 battle royales, similar to Scramble Mode in Street Fighter X Tekken). This version would later be used in the worldwide console release for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 on September 11, 2012. This release features new characters (both inclusive and DLC), character customization, an enhanced Practice Mode (in which players unlock new moves for a customizable training robot), and the option to use custom soundtracks. The Wii U will also receive its own console version sometime in 2012 with additional Nintendo-themed content, including costumes based on popular Nintendo franchises. 


Tekken Tag Tournament 2 is a combination of Tekken 6's mechanics and the previous Tekken TAG's 2-on-2 system. This section will exclusively cover the game's tag mechanics.

In TTT2, matches still consist of best-of-3 or best-of-5 sets. (Local matches default to best-of-3, while ranked online matches are best-of-5.) A round ends when one character is knocked out, regardless of the health of their partner.

Tagging is accomplished with a fifth "tag" button. Inactive partners slowly recover any "red" health that they may have received from taking damage while active. Unlike most tag-based fighting games, red health is not lost whenever a character is tagged in normally.

Netsu Power is a comeback mechanic state that is enabled for the inactive character once the point character has received a certain amount of damage. When enough damage is taken, the partner's life-bar will flash, and tagging them in will allow them to deal more damage for a short while. The damage required to activate Netsu Power is partially dependent on in-story character relationships: for example, Heihachi will receive Netsu Power faster than normal if Kuma is the active character, but will receive it much later than normal if his partner is Jin or Kazuya. Solo characters do not use Netsu Power, but instead retain the Rage system from Tekken 6.

By pressing the Tag button while performing a launcher, the player will perform a Tag Combo. The player's inactive character runs in, and the resulting combo will eliminate part of the opponent's red health. Pressing Right Punch and Tag together performs a Tag Throw, which switches characters while eating the opponent's red health. Some pairings have special Tag Throws; their method of activation varies per team.

By pressing Tag during a Bound move (or both Punch buttons and Tag to create a generic bound), the player will perform a Tag Assault. The partner will jump in, losing all of their red health in the process, and the player can perform one attack string before control is passed back to the original point character. However, Tag Assault doesn't eliminate red health, and will always give the opponent's partner Netsu Power. 

The Tag Crash system gives players a way to tag in safely while under pressure. It requires the active character to be grounded and the inactive character to have Netsu Power available. By pressing both Punch buttons and Tag simultaneously, the partner character will dive in from the air. Performing Tag Crash surrenders both Netsu Power and the exiting partner's red health.


Like the previous Tag Tournament, Tekken Tag Tournament 2 will feature an extensive roster of characters from the Tekken series fighting in a tournament that exists outside of the series canon storyline.

With more than 50 playable characters, it can be a bit overwhelming to pick two characters. While the game does offer you the choice of going solo and having your damage/health increased to compensate, you lose out on the added benefits of having a second buddy to tag along with you. But take note that a solo character can demolish a tag-team piloted by a player who isn’t careful, maybe to the point where it can be considered a little cheap. Considering the rage/netsu system from Tekken 6 and original Tag has returned and is retooled so that it occurs more often, a solo enraged character can quickly dispatch a tag-team. Your game plan will change against a solo opponent, and it tends to not be a game plan that’s fun or lends itself to tag mechanics.

The engine has been reworked to allow up to four characters to duke it out on-screen at the same time, and doesn’t buckle in the least bit. Aside from the main arcade mode, online play is highly satisfying with a robust netcode and matchmaking options available.

The new Fight Lab serves as a tutorial/mini-game of sorts with the character Combot, whom you can assign special moves and customise to a fairly large degree. Speaking of which, character customisation is through the roof with this new title, and the fight money you earn will be well-spent on items and accessories.

In summary, Tekken Tag Tournament 2 is a stellar new entry into the series that brings back all the characters you have ever known from the series, and provides hours of fun gameplay with great new mechanics and plenty to learn. Whether you’re a button-smasher or a hardcore technical player, consider putting this game on your list of titles to share with friends and fellow gamers.

1 comment:

  1. According to media review aggregator Metacritic, the game Tekken 3 received a score of 96 out of 100 points indicating universal excellent reception !
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