Tekken Revolution: An FAQ and Thoughts So Far Guide... Thingy
Free to play and fighting games. Up until about a week ago, those were two words that would never been seen together before. Well, many people have toss the idea around as a solution to costly update versions and DLC, but not many companies even expressed interest in the idea. Well, until last week when Koei Temco announced Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate would ship with a retail and free to play version for the PS3. Then, as if on cue, Namco Bandai announced Tekken Revolution on this last Saturday, a free to play exclusive for the PS3, and released it this week. Considering how quickly it was released and how little fanfare it was given from Namco, I'm sure there are plenty of people who have questions about it. After a few days of playing the game, I can safely say...I still do as well. However, I think I can answer most of the important stuff which is why I'm writing this FAQ. Sure there are other great FAQs about the game you can look at as well, such as Event Hubs. However, this one is different: it has humor in it! Bad humor! See? Different! Heh heh...moving along.
What Is Tekken Revolution?
The short answer to this is Tekken Revolution is a modified version of Tekken Tag Tournament 2 featuring 1 vs. 1 fights instead of Tag. It's free to download from the PSN store and most of the modes are free to play (We'll get back to that in a few). Its PS3 exclusive with no plans for the 360.
So its a Free Version of Tekken Tag 2?
Not quite. A lot has changed from Tag 2. The cast is much smaller. You start with 6 characters and unlock more as you progress in the game. I've seen about 7 other characters you can unlock now and more are coming in future downloads. To my knowledge, no one of the characters will be paid DLC. The game play has changed significantly as well. Bound, the ground bounce added in Tekken 6, has been most notably turned down. Now most characters can't do long combos as seen in Tekken Tag 2. However it still can be done from a select set of moves and from falling from a different floor in multiple floored arenas. The game is more like Tekken 5 in a sense of that juggle combos deal more damage and are key. However, the move lists are the same from Tag 2 and rage (the boost in strength you get when you life hits a certain point) is still here. Revolution also adds the new feature of critical arts and special arts.
Critical Arts and Special Arts?
Critical arts and special arts are new move properties given to existing moves (No new moves were added or removed to Revolution) and also have a very distinct visual effect to them. Critical arts are special moves are completely invincible at the start of the move..
These Critical Arts Sound A Bit Broken...
And they sort of are. Most of these moves come out really fast meaning they can beat out pretty much every move sans counters and are a very simple input to perform them. However they can be blocked and leave the opponent pretty vulnerable after you block them. Also you have only one critical art per character. However there another way the game sort of evens them out. More on that one in a bit.
And The Special Arts?
Special arts are moves that give a higher chance of a critical hit which can dish out some serious damage. Unlike critical arts, they are not invincible and can be knocked out with an attack. Although, there are more for the characters to use, four to be exact.
Anything else new?
You can now build stats with your characters via fight money you get from arcade mode, ranked battle, or player matches. You can improve power (strength), endurance (health), and vigor (chances of a critical hit or getting into rage earlier). You have an allocated amount of points to use based on your player level and how much money you have. Your stats for each character can be used in any of modes in Revolution. So in a way could have super buff character on the offensive, a defensive character with a lot of health as a deterrent from critical arts, one that can capitalize on critical hits and rage, or a mix of all of them. Other than that, you also have gift points based on your performance which help unlock new characters. I don't know how much equal a new character though. For example, I'm at level 12 with 7300 gift points and I just unlocked Alisa.
Any Atheistic Changes?
The game seems to have a cell-shaded look or least a cell-shaded outline thanks to the stages. Speaking of stages, most are exactly the same with a new orange color tint to them. Some of stages look OK with it it, others are completely ruined with it. The High School stage is completely terrible with it. Most of the characters look the same with three notable exceptions. For some odd reason, both Lili and Asuka were given new faces. They look less realistic and more anime-ish. I think it looks creepy. Also Ogre, who makes an appearance in arcade mode, looks notably smaller. He's now about the size of Jack 6.
Top: Tekken Revolution (2013) Bottom: Tekken Tag Tournament 2 (2012)
What Modes Does Revolution Have?
Just three excluding character enhancement: Ranked match, player match and arcade. Ranked is self explanatory. You fight ranked matches and rank up. Just like Tag 2, you can practice on a training dummy while you wait for an opponent. Unlike Tag 2, your dummy has some basic AI programming and will attack you (which kind of defeats the whole purpose of that if you ask me). The net code is the same as Tag 2 which was awesome minus any connections under a 3. Player matches just like how they were in Tag 2 without the quick battle option. You still set up rooms for up to six people, invite friends, and chat both with voice and text. Arcade mode is just like Tag 2 too with some very strange quirks. You still battle about seven opponents before reaching a boss. However its really easy and really quick. I'm terrible at Tekken and I can go through the arcade mode without losing once before I run out of arcade coins.
Yeah... this is where things get a bit hairy. You see, you can't play Revolution indefinitely. Every mode has a set times it can be used determined by coins for each mode. Arcade mode can only be played twice because it has two arcade coins. Player and Ranked Match use battle coins which you can only have five at a given time. Once you have neither coins for any modes you can't play them. Before you freak out, both arcade and battle coins refill over time. You get one arcade coin back after one hour and you get another battle coin back every thirty minutes.
But What if I have Neither Arcade or Battle Coins and Want to Keep Playing?
Well, you have two options. Option one is using a premium ticket. These tickets can be used in both modes. You can have up to 999 tickets. Despite the name, you don't buy them but get them as gifts or rewards for achieving goals. Even more interesting is what happens when you use them in a ranked or player battle. Winning using a ticket in player or ranked matches wins you another ticket. Losing using a ticket in either modes nets you more experience points. But if you run out of tickets, there is option B....
Option B Isn't Going to be Good, Isn't it?
Premium coins. Just like premium tickets, they can be used in all of the modes and you can hold a lot of them. However, you have to buy them.
And the prices aren't that great either: 4 coins/ $0.99, 10 coins/ $1.99, and 30 coins/ $4.99.
This is completely optional though. If you run out coins, you can always quit the game and return in about an hour or so and everything will be refilled for free. In a way, its set up kind of like an arcade would work. Besides, that's not the worst part of Revolution.
Well, than what is?
You have to be online all of the time. If the servers went down, you couldn't play the game. Not even Arcade mode.
I get why, sort of. How can you track arcade coins and such without its still a bit of a shock to see it.
Almost as shocking as no offline versus or training mode in the game.
I'm just as befuddled with this choice as you might be. What's worst about the always online is that it can drain good matches. I have had matches with good connections that slowed to a crawl or in two cases just dropped out. While I didn't get the match counted as a rage quit, it did cost me a battle coin. Consider people who don't have quality connections or face off against bad connections frequently and you can see the possible problems.
Anything Else We Should Know?
Well, Revolution will be updated with more characters and even customization too. Whether customization will be paid DLC is unknown. In fact, there's not much known about possible DLC other than there will be some. That also worry some. Think about it: would you invest time into playing a game that just was announced, released, but it future is left largely unknown?
What was the point of Revolution Anyway?
And that's the million dollar question. On one hand its certainly geared toward new and casual players with its down to basics Tekken approach. The other hand its still very advance and deep which veteran players will get adapt to quickly. Thus, the main problem with Tekken, its lack of accessibility, is still present. Heck, you can even argue that the new moves like the critical arts and special arts actually widen that gap. This all could have been avoided if Revolution came with a tutorial explaining the ins and outs of Tekken, like Combot training in Tag 2. Combot training wasn't perfect but it definitely could have worked for the casual setting Revolution was going for. So essentially, Revolution's ideal audiences are either Tekken vets or people who have some idea about the game. New players or casual players will run into the same problems of accessibility Tekken games have always had. That's a shame and a real missed opportunity.
Despite the complaints towards the end, Tekken Revolution is not a bad game. For being basically free, its pretty deep and can be rewarding if you stick to it. Although, that kind of comes naturally to me since I've been trying to learn Tekken for awhile. I'm not very good at all (read: I suck) in Tag 2 but this game is definitely at my pace. Though that still doesn't discount the fact that I'm used to Tekken and fighting games tactics in general. If I was someone who wasn't in the know about Tekken, I'd probably be lost. I'm also equally disappointed with the lack of offline modes especially no training. Seriously, how is anyone going to get better at Revolution if there isn't a place to train? I know Revolution wasn't suppose to be super competitive but that's no excuse for people who still want to get better.
I also have to admit that I'm being a bit hard on one of the first Free to play fighters and more over one that hasn't been out fully for a week. Still, I have to wonder whether or not Namco kind of rushed this one out just so it could be first. When I think about all of the stuff that DOA 5 Ultimate will have in its free to play version, its almost no contest at what is a better game feature-wise (All modes except story, 4 characters but all of their costumes can be unlocked, practice mode, and even free weekly trials for other characters. And there's no time limit/number of times you can play it). Even so, Revolution promises to grow and so to does hope that it will get better. But I have to really wonder if Tekken Revolution ushered in the revolution too soon.
So that's it. Please feel free to leave questions, comments and critiques if you got them down bellow. Thanks.