| The Final Say!|
Tekken 4 - reviewed by Andrew B
Review Date: 5th October 2002
Review Score 9.7/10
Distributed By: Sony
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"There's a new King in the world of fighters... Tekken is back!"
Tekken 4 is the latest fighting game from Namco and offers some amazing graphics, gameplay and one of the most intensive storylines in fighting history. Ever since Tekken 2, the series has been wandering around the console wilderness with no real direction. Tekken 3 was a great game but was basically Tekken 2 1/2 and with the disappointing release of Tekken Tag on the PlayStation 2, gamers looked elsewhere for their fighting fix. Fortunately for us, Namco have taken all the best aspects from their Tekken series and have created this highly addictive fighter.
Tekken 4 follows the storyline of the Tekken series when Heihachi tried to collect blood and tissue samples of the creature known as Ogre in order to create a new life form. His experiments failed because in order to create this new life form, he needed an additional gene called the Devil Gene. Failing to gather this new gene, Heihachi has created a new insidious plan and thus begins Tekken 4.
Tekken 4 features over 20 different characters and abilities that ensures that this title doesn't become stale. Characters such as Jin, King and Heihachi have returned but there is also a bevy of new characters such as stunningly gorgeous Christie Monteiro or the wrestler Craig Marduk. Each fighter has a different look, attitude and fighting style but after completing the game, you will definitely develop a taste for certain characters. Some characters are more powerful than others so defence and counter-moves are extremely important when you are being pummelled by your opponent.
The story battle option allows you to play eight different stages that unlocks a hidden character. Apart from the new character, you are greeted to some spectacular CGI movies that helps explain the motivations behind the characters and all the storylines eventually link up. The other gameplay modes are;
- Story Battle
- Arcade/Time Attack
- Team Battle
- Tekken Force
As you can see, the longevity of Tekken is extremely good. There is also an option menu and a theatre menu that lets you tweak the game settings and watch the various movies that you have unlocked.
The arenas where you must fight are now enclosed areas that feature a variety of objects such as cages or concrete pillars. The reason for this change of gaming environments was that you could back a character all the way to the side of the screen then rush your opponent with a super move. The beauty of the enclosed environments is that you can force an opponent into a corner of the cage then unleash a wide range of combinations on them.
Graphically Tekken 4 is probably one of the most superior fighters on the market and supports progressive scan that allows for high detailed graphics. There is also an option for high-definition televisions for graphics that rival the XBox. All the characters are extremely well detailed and feature some amazing textures. The fighters Christie and Nina wear some amazing reflective pants that can only be considered as eye candy. The characters are extremely well animated and move with fluidity and grace and the game maintains a constant 60 frames per second without any stutter. Stage 8 really showcases the power of the PlayStation 2 with some amazing lighting effects on reflective surfaces and probably features the best crowd effects I have ever seen on a game. Unlike the two-dimensional cardboard cut-outs that we are generally familiar with, all the crowd has been rendered in 3D for stunning realism. Apart from the awesome ingame graphics, Tekken 4 features some of the most amazing CGI I have ever seen that really gives you an incentive to finish the game.
All the levels have been designed to perfection with extremely high detailed. For instance, the swamp level features the most impressive water effects I have seen on any console. Unlike previous games in the Tekken series there are also some destroyable objects such as walls and glass that make for some great matches.
Musically, Tekken 4 doesn't feature any ear catching tunes but does help set the atmosphere of the game. The sound effects of Tekken 4 are quite simply extremely well done. The sound effects in the garage stage and other stages that are closed in feature some great "echo" sound effects. Apart from background ambience, Tekken 4 features all the right sounding kicks, punches, special moves and bodily contacts to get your adrenaline flowing.
In conclusion, Virtua Fighter 4 is probably more of a fighting game than Tekken 4 but I believe it has had its moment of glory. Tekken 4 is graphically superior and features a story mode that is sorely missed in Virtua Fighter 4. With great graphics, awesome gameplay, Tekken 4 is a must have for your PlayStation 2 collection. Highly Recommended!
- Andrew B
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