I've been slooooowly working my way through the fighting game canon, and I was long overdue for a bout with the original Tekken by Namco for PlayStation. Apparently the series is one of the best-selling fighting game series, according to Wikipedia anyway.

I like the Street Fighter games in general, but I had really disliked the Virtua Fighter game I'd played a while back. For me Tekken fell somewhere in the middle. I like that there are only four buttons (plus movement), and in the first entry at least there doesn't seem to be an overwhelming number of moves. Like other games of the genre Tekken relies a lot on blocking and looking for openings, which I came to like in general, and there's also a lot of variety in throws. I also liked how the stages scroll infinitely left or right, which means that you don't have easy wins from ring outs like in Virtua Fighter or the SoulCalibur games. (Although the game does include the follow-up attacks when the other fighter is down which I still think is pretty pointless.)

I mostly played as King, a wrestler who wears a jaguar mask, and I learned enough of his moves to know which ones to spam at the right time, haha. The story is about as nonsensical as you'd expect, but the game seems to fall in the middle of the spectrum in terms of realism in general. There are a lot of flashy moves, but for the most part nothing as crazy as in the Street Fighter games. As a result there feels like less variety in the moves and the characters, although I'm sure if you played the game a lot the differences would become more obvious.

All in all this was a game that I didn't mind playing, although I don't see myself becoming an uber fan. I've already tried out its sequel, Tekken 2, but I'll probably just dip into that a bit more and some of the other entries in the series before finally getting to play the Pokken Tournament, the surprise Pokemon spin-off.

Wrestle through these Tekken links:
- Entry at tekken.wikia.com. Includes moves lists, such as this one for King.
- FAQs at GameFAQs
- Entry on Wikipedia