Tekken 8 Release April 2024 Bandai Namco
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All Tekken Games Ranked From Worst to Best (Including Tekken 8)

With Tekken 8 finally out, we’re taking a look back at one of the longest-running fighting game franchises in the industry. The history of Tekken dates all the way back to the early 90s, first exploding in arcades before becoming a household name on home consoles. With eight mainline titles released and a few key spin-offs to consider, here are all the Tekken games ranked from worst to best including Tekken 8.

Before we start, we’re making one exception: we’re excluding re-releases and updated versions (i.e. Tekken: Dark Resurrection) since it’s technically still built on the foundations of Tekken 5. However, we will include notable spin-offs like the Tekken Tag Tournament titles and Advance, but exclude Death by Degrees since it’s not a traditional fighting game in the series.

12. Tekken Revolution

You’d be forgiven for forgetting that Tekken Revolution even existed in the first place. Initially released as a free-to-play PS3 game, it failed to deliver anything remotely exciting that wasn’t already done in previous games. To make matters worse, the online play was terrible and it tacked on some egregious pay-to-win mechanics that sucked the balance out of everything. In the end, Revolution was just a less interesting Tag Tournament 2 and completely pointless. The game ceased to exist in 2017 before the release of Tekken 7.

11. Tekken Advance

It’s a miracle that Bandai Namco managed to get Tekken working on the Game Boy Advance. However, that doesn’t change the fact that Tekken Advance is simply a watered down Tekken with a very simple button layout and ridiculously unbalanced combat. To its credit, for a Game Boy Advance game, it actually looks fantastic. Beyond that, there’s very little content here to enjoy apart from Arcade and Practice, making for a pretty bare bones portable experience.

10. Tekken

The first Tekken game released in 1994 laid the foundation for the rest of the series, though age hasn’t been kind to it. Next to Virtua Fighter, it was among the first of its kind to boast 3D character models as opposed to pixel sprites that other fighting games were still using at the time. The controls were simple and rather clunky too. Thankfully, later installments would build on the original Tekken but when taken on its own, it’s not really an entry worth going back to.

9. Tekken 4

Now we’re getting into the “good” territory of Tekken games. Tekken 4 was a big departure from its predecessors in more ways than just mechanically. The combat this time felt slower and more delibrate and characters could freely move around (and up/down) stages. The tone of the game was also quite different to past titles – some love it, others hate it, but you have to give credit to Namco for taking a risky creative swing here and mostly sticking the landing. Mostly.

8. Tekken Tag Tournament

Following up Tekken 3 was never going to be easy but Tekken Tag Tournament introduced just enough fresh and inventive ideas to stand out, even if it felt more like a detour than an exciting new entry. For the first time in the series, you could switch between two characters in one battle (up to four players could even take control of four different characters), allowing for a variety of unique tag combinations. It was a game-changer for Tekken and the side adventure it needed to make the smooth transition into the PS2 era. It’s not one that we’d wholly recommend today, though.

7. Tekken 6

Tekken is known for many things including its ongoing central story about the Mishima family’s conflict. Tekken 6‘s story really missed the mark. It made Jin Kazama a villain who started World War 3 (yeah, what the hell?) and took the focus away from the Mishima family in exchange for a Tekken Force-esque campaign with abysmal controls and less interesting characters in Lars and Alisa. That said, the gameplay is exceptional and for its time, it was the best that Tekken had ever felt to play. It’s a good, borderline great game brought down by a frustrating story.

6. Tekken 2

Tekken 2 took a few big leaps over its predecessor that cemented it next to Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter as a terrific new fighting game IP. While it’s still a bit dated and rough around the edges today, Namco made the effort to introduce various gameplay tweaks and modes that would become staples in future Tekken games. Tekken 2 also told a great story that officially started the Mishima feud – a rivalry that, up until Tekken 8, is still ongoing. Talk about consistency.

5. Tekken 7

We can admire Tekken 7 today for being a content-rich AAA fighting game experience with fantastic combat, though it didn’t launch in the best of states back in 2017, from a lack of content to numerous refinements that Bandai Namco had to spend years working on. Fortunately, the foundations were strong enough. Weird Akuma cameo/forced plot point aside, Tekken 7 is a blast and, thanks to all those improvements, one of the best in the franchise today.

4. Tekken Tag Tournament 2

Take out Tekken 6‘s horrible story, refine the fighting, introduce triple the amount of characters, bring back the tag feature and you have Tekken Tag Tournament 2. Bandai Namco went out of its way to make the second Tag Tournament game a massively improved experience over the original. Despite its weaker sales numbers compared to the rest of the series, it still holds a special place in the hearts of many Tekken players. Plus it’s just the most fun you can have with friends.

3. Tekken 3

For most veterans, Tekken 3 is the peak of the franchise and it’s easy to see why. It brought so many great innovations to the series on top of introducing over a dozen new characters. The story, following the sudden appearance of a being called Ogre, was very compelling. Jin Kazama would also become Tekken‘s new poster protagonist with Tekken 3 (until Namco flushed him down the toilet in Tekken 6). It’s a classic that, unlike the first two Tekken games, holds up remarkably well today.

2. Tekken 8

You might be surprised to see Tekken 8 so high on the list already since it just launched but all things considered, it does a LOT right. Unlike Tekken 7, there’s a wealth of content available in the base game along with refined-to-perfection gameplay, exciting new Heat mechanics and incredible visuals that are better than a large majority of current-gen games. We can’t wait to see Tekken 8 grow and evolve. Maybe in a couple of years, Tekken 8 might be bumped up a spot but the current reigning king of Iron Fist belongs to…

1. Tekken 5

Tekken 5 is the pinnacle of Tekken and a landmark release in gaming history. The gameplay is faster and better paced, the content is stacked with plenty of fun modes and the soundtrack is undefeated. The story might not be as ambitious as Tekken 3 but it’s still a captivating plot. After Tekken 4 divided the community, Tekken 5 did the unthinkable and united them while catapulting the series into legendary status. Add the outstanding Dark Resurrection PSP re-release and it’s a no-brainer why Tekken 5 deserves the top spot.

Editor-in-Chief of Nexus Hub, writer at GLITCHED. Former writer at The Gaming Report and All Otaku Online. RPG addict that has wonderful nightmares of Bloodborne 2.

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