Tekken Tag Tournament 2: A Review
TTT2 Cover for the PS3
Introduction to TTT2 (PS3 Version)
So I recently purchased Tekken Tag Tournament 2 for the PS3 to add to my growing collection of the series, plus I wanted to catch up with what I missed since its release. Tekken is my favorite game in the Namco-Bandai franchise and it has come a long way since the game's inception back in the 1990s. As technology improved, so did the game itself and the end result of those improvements are nothing short of beautiful. Of course, with every pro, there is a con and we will get into that pretty quick here.
Let's start off with the pros, shall we? I must say that with each proceeding game, the graphics became better and better. With my two purchases of Tekken 6 and Tekken Tag Tournament 2, I must say I'm pretty happy with them, although I will admit that wasn't the case when I first purchased my latest Tekken game but we will come to that in the cons section.
- Game Play
- No lag
Let's start with navigation. For me, the menu is very straightforward. You have online mode, offline mode, etc., clearly labelled for each category (and subcategory) and, therefore, shouldn't present a problem to anyone. It's very much like Tekken 6 as far as the menu presentation and navigation goes (I say Tekken 6 because that's the last Tekken game I recently played).
I haven't played online mode yet so I'll update this hub should I get the chance to play online mode. After much frustration and aggravation (you will definitely hear more of this when I get to the cons), I finally completed my very first play through of arcade mode. With the plethora of characters I played with--with me finally switching back to Jun Kazama, whom I also started the play through with--I haven't seen any evidence of lagging. In Tekken 6, there had been one or two instances of lagging in scenario mode (offline no less) but not in my play through of TTT2 (so far). I'm pretty pleased with that aspect.
As for game play, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Again, there was no lag to be had. Mind you, this is only offline. I have not played online mode as of this review due to poor internet connectivity. I think everything went fast and smoothly as it should have. The fights were very entertaining and I loved the after-fight scenes (such as Heihachi reaching to push a button that's conveniently nearby to take the player by surprise after you beat him and Jinpachi). Nice touch but maybe a bit goofy at times.
I don't really have much to say about the music, except that the techno is awesome and I'm glad that they kept that. I do enjoy that the music changes with each stage (granted they have done so with each game) as so to match the atmosphere of said stage. Continuity-wise, the music has gone over pretty good I would say.
As far as graphics are concerned, I thought they were great. In the battle with Unknown, if you fall down into that dark, oily liquid, you will get dirty. That was a very nice touch on Namco's part. When you crash through a wall or a ceiling, you have debris falling all around the players. Kudos to Namco on that. Designs and architecture of buildings within the game are beautifully done.
For a game that's not canon, continuity is pretty good. The majority of characters speak in their native language, save one: Christie. Christie is the only one who doesn't speak English like in the previous games. I will admit, though, I do like that she does speak in her native language so that's a plus, continuity aside. Again, the techno music has stayed and move sets for most characters have remained the same as well. That can be seen as a good thing or a bad thing. If you want something new as far as moves go, then it's bad. Or if you're catching up on the series, like me, then having the same move sets from previous games is a good thing.
Well, here we are. I must admit that I've been wanting to write out what the cons are since purchasing this game. Let me tell you, in the first two hours of owning the game, I've never had such a desire to return a $20 game. The first con on my list should tell you why. I will also confess to the fact that I swore and dropped the f-bomb on more than one occasion.
- Final boss
- Same character models
- Alex and Roger Jr.
Oh...my...god. Okay, on my very first encounter with the final boss (Unknown), I didn't do too bad all things considering and on Medium no less. Sure, the final boss is ALWAYS going to be difficult, hands down, but does it have to be so hard that you can't even win on easy mode? I eventually had to go down to easy to see if I could do somewhat better but nope. No dice. Oi! If I really wanted that scenario, I should have gone and played the early versions of Mortal Kombat! My word, I remember those days and the characters in that particular series were major cheaters! You'd have to pull off a combo as soon as the fight begins. Tekken 6 had the same problem with the final boss being rather difficult even on easy mode. I read another review in which the writer mentions that the control schemes are not watered down for the casual players. I will admit that his reasoning makes sense but why throw in control schemes in the first place if fighting the final boss is going to be a pain in the butt anyway?
UPDATE: Even though I had the difficulty mode down, it has occurred to me that the reason why I had a problem with the last two fights is because of the player match-ups. For example, I had been 1st Kyu against a Conqueror on my first play through of the game. I had thought that by merely just dropping the difficulty would make things somewhat easier. In most cases, that would be so but not in TTT2. You'd have to either restart the game or lose to get the difficulty down (poor match-ups can also contribute). Of course, the author of this review freely admits that she could have just dropped the difficulty in the first place before going on with her first play through. Lesson learned.
Alex and Roger Jr.:
As much as I enjoy having goofy characters to bring comic relief in a game, Roger Jr. and Alex don't really belong in Tekken. It's odd I should be saying this considering there's also a bear and a panda (respectively, Kuma and Panda) in the game. I suppose I don't mind those two because of their connection to their respective owners, Heihachi and Xiaoyu. I know the kangaroo has been in the games as well, to be fair, but he's sticks out like a sore thumb and that kind of bothers me when you have a character like that in a well-grounded game. Then comes the question: where the hell did Alex come from? He has not been in any of the previous games until TTT2 and now, all of a sudden, there's a dinosaur in the roster.
Same Character Models:
This, in my opinion, is relatively minor. You can only do so much with a character before having to reuse another model. I really don't have much to say on the subject except to say that I noticed this during my play through.
I think that if you're a true, hardcore gamer, this game is totally meant for you. It's worth the $20 that I got it for. It's not really made for the casual gamer but it can be fun once you get past all of the frustrating aspects of the game (i.e. mechanics, final boss...). All in all, despite my frustration with the game and getting used to it and figuring out what I need to do to stand a ghost of a chance, I like it. I like it better than Tekken 6 (that review will be finished eventually). My personal rating is a 3.5 out of 5 stars.