Does the fighting game genre need a revival?
When it comes to fighting games Tekken will always be a heavyweight contender for the title of the greatest. However, it’s been five years since the last major release, and some are stating that the franchise has lost its momentum. It’s fair to say that the saga has slipped off the mainstream gaming radar, but can we really just put this down to the gap between the major releases?
The fighting game genre dominated the markets in the 90’s, and was definitely at the forefront of the gaming world, but as we’ve moved into the newer generations of console gaming, the genre began to take a back-seat. The demise of the mainstream popularity surrounding fighting games, and other genres alike, paved the way for the new golden genre: the first person shooter (FPS). Think Call of Duty, Battlefield, and Halo, these are the type of games that now dominate when it comes to mainstream media. Fighting games became less popular, the availability was not as plentiful as previous years, and multiplayer competition began to shift towards other genres. Looking at how gaming is these days, it can be hard to picture a time where fighting games reigned.
Can fighting games ever get to that position again? It seems unlikely with how gaming has evolved over the years. As well as the first person shooters, you have a huge variety of popular games such as Grand Theft Auto, The Elder Scrolls, FIFA, Destiny, Fallout, and Uncharted, to name a few. With so many genres and games out there, fighting games have fallen into their own niche.
After the PS2 era (and during, some argue) the attention surrounding Tekken began to lose its pace. Although excellent installments, Tekken 6 and Tag Tournament 2 didn’t seem to launch the franchise back into mainstream popularity, and many do simply put this down to the rapid evolution of gaming,and how other genres have taken over the limelight.
Since the announcement of the console & PC release window for Tekken 7 there has been a significant amount of hype throughout the gaming community. With a landslide of new features including innovative gameplay, exciting new additions to the roster (including Akuma of Street Fighter), and the fact that this game will see the end of the Mishima saga, it’s clear that fighting game fans and casual gamers alike are eagerly anticipating the game’s release. But is this enough to get Tekken back into the mainstream?
Do you think fighting games will ever surpass their previous success, or has their heyday been and gone?
Although the genre has edged from mainstream to niche, the community is still alive and thriving. In an ideal world the fighting games will dominate once again, but until then… Get Ready For The Next Battle!