Final Fantasy XV’s Prince Noctis Joins Tekken 7 In Spring 2018

Final Fantasy XV Preview: I Question My Allegiance

In keeping with the latest trend of fighting games featuring characters from other popular franchises, Bandai Namco has announced their latest partnership with Square Enix in order to bring Final Fantasy XV protagonist Prince Noctis Lucis Caelum to Tekken 7.

Noctis will be joining the likes of legendary fighters such as Yoshimitsu, Devin Jin, Jack 7 and other renowned Tekken warriors.

Prince Noctis will bring with him his iconic Engine Blade, giving him the ability to dish out heavy, hard-hitting blows. In addition to Noctis, it looks like a stage inspired by the Coernix Gas Station from Final Fantasy XV will be making an appearance as a playable stage.

No definitive release date has been announced for the Final Fantasy cross-over DLC—however, Bandai Namco said it should arrive sometime in Spring of 2018.

Tekken 7 initially released back in 2015 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows and Arcades. The game was generally well received from both fans of the series and the press alike.

 


Liked this article and want to read more like it? Check out  Elias Blondeau’s review of Tekken 7 and see how the series holds up on mobile

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Bandai Namco Brings Tekken On Mobile, Available Now in Canada.

Bandai Namco Brings Tekken On Mobile, Available Now in Canada.

Bandai Namco just announced that their long running fighting game franchise, Tekken is now available on mobile devices.

Simply titled Tekken, the game is now available exclusively in Canada on both the Apple iOS app store and the Google Play Store.

Tekken on mobile will be available in other regions at a later date, however, those in Canada may download the game for free, right now. The just released fighting game is free to download, with the option of in-app purchases, which is becoming the norm with many popular mobile experiences and adaptations.

Those willing to shell out a few dollars can speed the up process of unlocking characters. Like many popular mobile and recent online games, Tekken on mobile features loot boxes that contain characters and other goodies inside.

Players interested in the title who happen to live in other parts of the world are encouraged to visit the games official website, where players can sign up to be notified for when Tekken on mobile launches in their respected region.

Unlike many other mobile renditions of already existing properties, Tekken on mobile is a fully featured title that does not skimp on the user experience. The game includes over 100 playable characters, all with unique fighting styles and abilities, 20 unlockable and upgradeable special moves for characters, and several different modes of play which include, Story Mode, Dojo Challenge, Versus Battle, and Live Event Challenges.

In Story Mode, players engage in a console quality campaign, which features a map based story, with unique encounters and super powerful bosses. Those who invest time in the story mode will be awarded special gear and the opportunity to take on unique challenges only found in this mode Mode.

In the Versus Challenge Dojo, players can fight against one another in online bouts. Additionally, in this mode, Tekken on mobile will also allow players to build up their teams and take on compelling monthly seasons, which reward fighters with unique loot.  The mobile fighting game also features ranked battles, giving those who are serious about Tekken or are just in competitive games, an incentive to jump in.

Tekken on mobile also features a unique Live Events option. This mode grants players with daily, weekly and even monthly special events, which help spice up the regular modes. Players can compete in battles that reward them with special, timed and exclusive gear. Rare and special event items will also play a part of the Live Events feature within Tekken on mobile.

No release date has been announced for regions other than Canada at this time.

Hadouken: A History of Street Fighter

Hadouken: A History of Street Fighter

Fighting games have been a mainstay for decades now. The concept of dishing out cool combos and controlling powerful and eccentric characters has been around since the 1980s. Gathering around arcades with a pocket full of change and trying to go unbeaten and take down the kid who’s undefeated was normal practice. Capcom’s beloved and revered Street Fighter franchise played a vital role in that.

Sure, we now have several different fighting game series like Mortal Kombat, The King of Fighters, Killer Instinct, and Dead or Alive, but Street Fighter was really the first to popularize this genre, much like Final Fantasy VII made JRPGs some of the most commercially successful games for years.

Hadouken: A History of Street Fighter 3The first entry came out in 1987. It is designed and directed by Takashi Nishiyama and Hiroshi Matsumoto, who both previously worked on the beat ‘em up Avengers game. The concept of the game is simple: the player takes control of Japanese martial arts fighter Ryu as he competes in a worldwide fighting tournament spanning five countries and 10 opponents. You can only control Ryu as he goes up against fighters like his American rival Ken. You can perform various different kicks and punches, and three special moves: Hadouken, Shoryuken, and Tatsumaki Senpukyaku.

The game was generally well received, but it didn’t necessarily set the world on fire. Most of the franchise’s more popular and loved characters aren’t present in the first game, like Blanka, Chun Li, and Guile. Plus, you can only play as Ryu. The direct sequel four years later, Street Fighter II: The World Warrior, was the game that both popularized Street Fighter and the fighting game genre. It was the first title that let players choose from a variety of different fighters to play as, all with their own fighting styles and special moves.

There are a total of eight playable characters, and four CPU-exclusive characters. Ryu, E. Honda, Blanka, Guile, Ken, Chun-Li, Zangief, and Dhalsim fall into the former category. Balrog, Vega, Sagat, and M. Bison are the non-playable fighters. Balrog was originally supposed to be called M. Bison. He closely resembled MIke Tyson, but in order to help avoid lawsuits Capcom rotated the names Vega, M, Bison, and Balrog.

Hadouken: A History of Street Fighter 4By 1993, sales of Street Fighter II exceeded $1.5 billion in revenue. The video game console ports of the game, which were the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Sega Mega Drive, and Genesis, sold more than 14 million copies. Street Fighter quickly became a worldwide phenomenon. Street Fighter II received a slew of updated versions, including Street Fighter II: Champion Edition, which allowed players to control the four Grand Masters, and Street Fighter: Turbo, which increased the gameplay speed and introduced power-up special moves.

In 1995 Capcom released Street Fighter Alpha, a pseudo spin-off sub-series. The Alpha games, of which there are three, employ similar art styles to Darkstalkers and Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie. The main gameplay difference here is the revamped Super Combo system introduced in Super Street Fighter II Turbo. It has a three-level Super Combo gauge in which players can fill up by inflicting and taking damage.

The direct sequel to Street Fighter II was only released six years later, Titled Street Fighter III: A New Generation, and it initially replaced every single character except Ryu and Ken. The new roster is led by Alex, and sees antagonist Gill replace M. Bison with the role. Some of the new abilities and mechanics introduced in this third main installment are the ability to quickly dash and/or retreat, perform high jumps, and do a quick standing after falling from an attack. You can also parry/block attacks for the first time in the series as well. The game received two follow-ups: Street Fighter III: 2nd Impact, which featured the return of Akuma as a playable character, and Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike, which brings back Chun-Li alongside four new characters.

Hadouken: A History of Street Fighter 5Then the series took a long break from 1999 to 2008. During that decade, the only way you could play as Street Fighter characters in new fighting games were in the crossovers that Capcom was churning out during the time. Marvel vs. Capcom 2 and Capcom vs. SNK 2 are great examples. The reasons behind Street Fighter’s long hiatus aren’t well known. Perhaps the series was starting to lose a bit of steam after the deluge of new entries it was receiving for several years. The overall reception from both critics and fans for Street Fighter III was nowhere near as great as Street Fighter II’s. Plus, Capcom was moving in a different direction in the late 90s and early 2000s.

Resident Evil became a huge hit, and Keiji Inafune’s Onimusha was really the first excellent series on the PlayStation 2. There really was no commercial incentive for Capcom to pour its resources into a making a brand new Street Fighter game. The fighting genre in general was in decline for most of the early 2000s as well. It’s difficult to imagine this now, what with the incredible resurgence Tekken, Mortal Kombat, and Street Fighter have recently made, but all three franchises lost their way for a bit.

Producer Yoshinori Ono was desperate get a new numbered Street Fighter entry greenlit. However, both Capcom and Inafune resisted the idea as they felt the series’ long absence was huge point of concern. Capcom eventually caved in, and granted Ono’s wishes. Finally, in 2008 Street Fighter IV released on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, and like Street Fighter II before it, it took the world by storm. It made fighting games relevant again—the game has sold over 3.5 million copies, and was universally acclaimed.

The game features 19 playable characters, including several new ones like the Mexican luchador El Fuerte and female American Spy Crimson Viper. It plays most similar to Street Fighter II, and features a new system called Focus Attacks and as well as Ultra Moves. Street Fighter IV received three follow-ups: Super Street Fighter IV, Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition, and Ultra Street Fighter IV. This really is the only major criticism people about the game, as Capcom’s decision to constantly release new editions of the game forces people to continually purchase the game over and over again.

It seems Capcom has taken this criticism to heart, and is handling the add-on content completely differently with 2016’s Street Fighter V. It promises fans that all new future content will be downloadable, and there’ll be no need to purchase an entirely different version of the game. It will be eight years between Street Fighter IV and V, and we’ll soon know if this fifth entry will leave the same impact that both Street Fighter II and IV did.

KO: The History of Fighting Games

KO: The History of Fighting Games

The fighting game genre has been a mainstay in the games industry for a plethora of decades. It has spawned, arguably, eternal franchises such as Mortal Kombat, Tekken, and Street Fighter that are well-known around the world. It installed the first, real sense of competitiveness, popularized arcades, and spawned tournaments with money prizes worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. Infamously, the genre was also the reason why games have ESRB ratings in the first place, as Mortal Kombat caused a prodigious upheaval upon its release in the 1990s.

Sega is credited with releasing the first video game to feature hand-to-hand fighting in 1976, called Heavyweight Champ. It featured black-and-white graphics with monochrome sprite visuals, gameplay from a side-view perspective, and employed two boxing glove controllers for two players. The game received a remake a little over a decade later, in 1987, with the most prominent addition being the change of perspective to behind the boxer, similar to Mike Tyson’s Punch Out games.

Heavyweight Champ
Heavyweight Champ

Though Heavyweight Champ was the first game to introduce the concept of fist fighting, and one-on-one combat, it wasn’t until the now defunct Technōs Japan Corporation’s 1984 title Karate Champ, and Konami’s 1985 title Yie Ar Kung-Fu that the fighting game genre was popularized, and the basis for modern fighting games was introduced. Karate Champ contained a best-of-three matches format that’s common in fighting games today, and was the first title to contain training bonus stages. Yie Ar Kung-Fu expanded upon Karate Champ, with characters to choose from with distinct personalities, and fighting styles.

In 1987, Capcom released its first competitive fighting game, and the inaugural game in one of its biggest franchises, Street Fighter. Though the original entry did not receive the same type of commercial, and critical acclaim that its sequel would be showered with, it established what the franchise would be all about – balanced gameplay, unique and eccentric characters, six button controls, and command-based special techniques.

Four years later Street Fighter II was released, and was quickly met with humongous success. It improved upon almost every single mechanic from the first game, including the command-based special moves. Players could choose from a panoply of playable characters, including Chun Li, Blanka, and Zangief. Capcom was initially reluctant to begin work on a sequel to Street Fighter, due to the game’s poor sales. But after Capcom’s other side scrolling brawling game, Final Fight, found success in the United States in 1989 the Japanese behemoth greenlit the sequel’s development.

Street Fighter II set off a renaissance for both fighting games, and arcades worldwide in the early 1990s – it’s credited with starting the fighting game boom. It was then, after being released to arcades, ported over to the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, where it sold 6.3 million units. The various multiplatform console ports sold over 14 million copies, and by 1994 it was played by over 25 million Americans in homes and arcades.

Mortal Kombat
Mortal Kombat

Then, in 1992, came Street Fighter’s fiercest competitor, and arguably the most controversial game ever released – Mortal Kombat. Instead of trying to copy everything Street Fighter was doing right, including its visually pleasing aesthetic and art style, developer Midway and creators Ed Boon, and John Tobias opted for a more photorealistic, bloody, darker tone and style. Both Boon and Tobias originally had the idea of creating a fighting game starring action star Jean-Claude Van Damme. But, as the concept expectedly fell through the idea of a science-fantasy themed fighting game called Mortal Kombat came to fruition.

The characters of the original three games were created by rotoscoping; digital sprites based on filmed actors – a contrast with Street Fighter’s drawn graphics. Mortal Kombat’s “fatalities,” however, were the most controversial, and unexpected mechanic introduced to fighting games. Each character had his/her own unique moves, ranging from ripping a character’s spine out, to cutting them in half. These moves are solely responsible for the game ratings we have today, which were introduced a year later after the second game in the series, in 1994. There were several court cases involved, and birthed the first debate about whether or not video games should be banned, and if they influence poor behavior in children.
fightinghistoryinsert5By 2012, the franchise had managed to sell over 30 million copies worldwide, and was still going strong decades later with Mortal Kombat X’s impending arrival. The initial 1992 title spawned a smorgasbord of sequels, movies, books, and imitators. It, alongside Street Fighter are the two most highly successful fighting game franchises.

By the late 1990s, the fighting game genre began to wane significantly despite the releases of excellent games such as both Tekken 2 and 3, which 3D fighting games where the player can move 360 degrees around the stage alongside Sega’s Virtua Fighter, weapon-based fighting game Soul Calibur, and a deluge of crossover fighting games. No other release, despite Nintendo’s Super Smash Bros. on the Nintendo 64 and GameCube, reached the same gargantuan heights as Street Fighter II, and Mortal Kombat I and II.

Super Smash Bros. was released worldwide after selling a staggering million copies in Japan. It only featured 12 characters from the start. The game’s sequel, Melee, was released in 2001 and was met with greater praise, acclaim, and commercial success. It had a bigger budget than its predecessor, and laid the blueprint for the future of the franchise. It sold seven million copies, and featured 26 playable characters.

Other crossover fighting games include the popular Marvel vs. Capcom, SNK vs. Capcom, Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe, and Tatsunoko vs. Capcom. In the early 2000s, international fighting game tournaments saw a rise in popularity, with Tougeki – Super Battle Opera, and Evolution Championship Series being the two most popular. A plethora of fighting game players have been able to create careers out of playing competitively for prize money. Daigo Umehara, PR Balrog, Justin Wong, and Luffy are just some of the most popular names out there.

By 2009, after a quite few years, the next main entry in the Street Fighter series was finally released. Street Fighter IV had arguably the same type of impact on fighting games as Street Fighter II had. The game received several iterations, which all managed to sell over a million copies, adding up to over eight million copies sold. In 2011, NetherRealm Studios, (largely made up of former Midway developers including Ed Boon), released Mortal Kombat, or “Mortal Kombat 9” – the entry that returned the series to relevancy after a few years of mediocrity.

This genre is here to stay. The excitement surrounding both Mortal Kombat X and Street Fighter V is considerable. Nintendo’s Super Smash Bros. Wii U and 3DS released last year to immense critical reception and sales as well. Though the genre did hit a lull for much of the 2000s, a strong resurgence inevitably arrived by the end of the decade. People just love to beat each other up with a controller in hand, and this competitive nature will always be here to stay.

Xbox One Won’t Be The Last Microsoft Console

Xbox One Won't Be The Last Microsoft Console

Despite the fact it’s been only a few months since its debut, Microsoft Studios head Phil Spencer headed to Twitter yesterday to respond to a few fan questions. When asked if Xbox One would be the last Microsoft console ‘as we know it’, Spencer says “I don’t. I think local compute will be important for a long time.”

So rest easy, hardware fans, as it seems Microsoft still plans to release actual local hardware for their next console generation.

Many rumours came out about what the next-gen consoles will look like, or if there will even be a box. Tekken producer Katsuhiro Harada spoke last year about how the PlayStation 5 may end up being just a controller and service. But for now, we have our Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Stay tuned to CGM for more details on what the future of gaming holds.

The Demise Of Rentals Is Killing Gaming

The Demise Of Rentals Is Killing Gaming

Yesterday, Blockbuster announced it would be closing all its remaining stores by January, ending the era of a video chain that couldn’t cut it in this new digital era. And with it, an old entertainment culture is lost: the renting of media.

As a child, renting games was a cherished past-time for me and my friends. Whenever a sleepover would occur, we would all go out to the local Blockbuster, and pick out a few multiplayer titles to challenge. Games like Medal of Honor: Rising Sun and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles In Time would grace our consoles, providing hours of endless enjoyment.

Conversations would flourish on whether or not an individual should purchase or rent a title. Games were affordable for kids who didn’t have much money. It also pushed developers to make longer, more memorable games so that consumers would buy rather than rent.

Yet this rent before you buy idea has faded away. While this sort of service is available online today, it isn’t as publicized or as universal as it was during the PS2 and Nintendo 64 era. As well, many modern games are shorter than older eras.

Not to mention, even though places like Gamefly provide an online rental service, its a monthly fee rather than per game, making it awkward for players who just want one or two games. Surprisingly though, Gamefly makes an annual revenue of 101.5 million, showing that there still is some interest in this kind of purchase.

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There is also this idea of a physical effort, when it is much more convenient to just buy the game digitally off the PSN or Xbox Live. Face it; we are living in an era of digital convenience. By 2012, most of the titles I purchased were from a digital outlet, rather than Best Buy or FutureShop. But with this, comes the problem of laziness. Games hold your hands now, they are in many respects, much shorter. And even more than that, many of them are less memorable. Hell, the new Battlefield 4 campaign is only 4 hours long.

Is this is the way games should be going, as a digital-only front? Tekken producer Katsuhiro Harada said the PS5 will be just a controller, with the rest being an online service. Should Friday Blockbuster night be left in the dust? As much as online makes things convenient, it takes away many of the rituals and traditions that made up game culture. So as we now say a final goodbye to an important aspect of growing up as a gamer, what was your most memorable rented game?

Tekken Producer Says PlayStation 5 Will Not Be A Console

Tekken Producer Says PlayStation 5 Will Not Be A Console

While the PlayStation 4 releases this November, Tekken producer Katsuhiro Harada is already talking about the future.

In an interview with Famitsu, Harada declared “I think in the future, it’ll will be a contest of services instead of hardware…When there’s the PS5, it will probably be just a controller and a monitor.”

While there is no indication of this as the future of console gaming, devices like the PS Vita TV are pushing this idea forward. Time will only tell whether or not the future of PlayStation and Xbox will see the loss of a box, replaced by a service.

Who knows, maybe Roku or Apple TV will be picking up PlayStation?

The PlayStation 4 releases on November 15th for $399.