Tekken 8’s Opening Signals the Grand Return of Video Games
By now, you’ve likely heard numerous voices, including mine, praising the gaming landscape of 2023. Yet, in a peculiar way, wasn’t it almost too good? I’m not complaining, but with the rise of Palworld and the embrace of intentionally flawed, artistically unconventional game design closely following the critical acclaim of 2023, it seems like a subtle reminder that we, as gamers, appreciate a touch of imperfection. Despite the multitude of successes in 2023, my initial impression of playing Tekken 8 was a resounding declaration, ‘video games are back, baby!’
This isn’t to suggest that Tekken 8 is subpar. You can delve into our comprehensive four and a half-star review for more details, and I largely concur with its points and overall rating. There’s just an undeniably quirky essence to Tekken and its charms that encapsulates the true spirit of video games in a way no other medium quite achieves. While the narratives of Baldur’s Gate 3 moved me, the technical prowess of Tears of the Kingdom impressed me, and the layered themes of Alan Wake 2 captivated me, Tekken 8 made me smile in a distinct way. It exudes a quality that feels like “Video Games,” with the proper noun and all.
Tekken 8’s story mode kicks off with a fight, expectedly so for a fighting game. It doesn’t veer far from the established Tekken formula, maintaining one-on-one bouts instead of experimenting like its predecessors. Yet, it excels at weaving cinematics into the fights, capturing my attention from the start. These cinematics showcase Jin and Kazuya engaged in a fierce battle amid a smoldering city, crashing through concrete foundations and brick walls, intensifying the destruction.
Tekken 8 elevates the violence without resorting to gore as seen in Mortal Kombat, opting for explosive moments and crumbling structures that transform the entire experience into a grand spectacle. Combine this with both characters harnessing their devil gene to summon demonic wings and laser eyes, and Tekken 8 initiates 2024 with a vibrant, bombastic display, delivering the quintessential essence of video games. Baby, we’re back!
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