Just now Victor Franco told me about the new sequel to Tekken Tag a game that was released in the gap between Tekken 3 and 4 and I watched the trailer too. Of course it looks fun and flashy and that’s what I really see this as…fun and uninspiring. Tag was a fun instalment but it was non-canon and just a fanboy money maker. After a decade a sequel is being made and along with other games like Street Fighter X Tekken, and Mortal Kombat vs DC it seems like fighting games are trying to stay alive desperately. Out of all the genres I’ve seen in gaming it seems like many PS1 and Dreamcast titles that seperated from 2D fighting standards have stalled.
There is no where left for them to. The fundamental health gauge, and combos system, and super meters have just created an endless recycling of fighters that they are nearly like constant installments of Madden, FIFA, and MLB Pro. All that changes are bigger rosters and better video graphics and sound. Tekken 4 didn’t have those and the title flopped with Tekken fans.
The entire system behind these games is archaic and nearly relatively the same since the 1990’s. Why do all the characters have equal health guages and unlimited stamina? Gamers are given an equal playing field in which their mental reactions are key to winning but then character choice really has more to do with aestheics and combos than tactical desires. If game sprites had differing health meters, stamina amounts, speed, power, defense, blocking, all in variation depending on the sprite then players would have to make deeper deicisions about their choices. Do you want a character that had more health but less offensive damage, or more speed but weaker blocking. Soul Calibar to its credit has done this to a degree but even their standards have gone stale.
Now I’m not a UFC guy but I have played the games based on the spectacle and I don’t find them fun or exciting. But there is no health meter and stamina and accuracy is what matters in the game. Becasue the game has more physical restrictions it is more challenging and intense. Instead most fighters have to use the same bravado of speed and color that has more to do with Sonic the Hedgehog than actual combat.
On Extra Credits thay discussed games beside WOW diving into the MMORPG’s. Meaning sports, figthers, and shooters should be the focus instead of creating virtual lives. Players are going online and challenging each other but their actual stats are pretty much the same. People have speaciliteis and weaknesses and that should be apparent in combat games. Instead game characters are like cartoons, they never get tired, always get up fast, and have unlimited energy. Maybe Fight Night and DBZ games should be getting more coverage at EVOlution.