Tekken 6 Q&A: Development, Online, and the Fighting Revival

Tekken 6 executive producer Katsuhiro Harada fills us in on the latest news on this highly anticipated fighting game.

By the time Tekken 6 is released, it will have been more than four years since the last "numbered" game in the long-running Tekken series. From our previous previews of the game, we know that Tekken 6 is going to be jam-packed with 40 characters to choose from, new fighting tweaks like the so-called "bound combo system" that will let you string aerial and ground combos together, and online features that are sure to add legs to the game. We recently spoke with the game's executive producer, Katsuhiro Harada, about the development of this much-anticipated fighter, online plans for Tekken 6, and Harada's thoughts on the recent fighting-game revival.

GameSpot: How is the development process going?

Katsuhiro Harada: It's going smoothly so far. When we developed the latest arcade installment, we added post-processing effects and animation blur while maintaining 60 frames, which really sets it apart from other games. As such, we've managed to harness most of the machine power. Of course, the same high quality will be maintained when the game makes its way to consoles. We have a lot more content planned this time than past console iterations, so that is one thing that is difficult about the console version.

With Tekken 6 due out this fall, 2009 is looking like a strong year for fighting games.

GS: How has the reaction been since the multiplatform announcement?

KH: We had a lot of inquiries after we announced this. Even personally, I received a lot of mail regarding the multiplatform announcement. I received varying responses from people in the industry, ranging from "Wow, finally!" and "It makes sense from a software development viewpoint" to "Europe and North America are the main market for Tekken so I suppose you can't ignore the Xbox 360." People in the industry are mostly aware that 90 percent of Tekken sales are generated outside of Japan, so we want to ensure that the game is available to all of our fans.

GS: Have there been any fan messages that have surprised you?

KH: There were, actually. Some feedback was in favor of taking the franchise multiplatform, and some were against it. The feedback we received the most was "I don't care which platform. Just release the game as soon as possible!" Outside of Japan, there aren't as many arcades, so most players haven't been able to get their hands on the game since Tekken 5 or Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection for the PS3. Those fans are really vocal about this request.

In Japan and Asia, we can't release a console version too soon after the arcade release or the arcade market will suffer. We started work on Tekken 6: Bloodline Rebellion--in which we revamped the graphic engine--right after completing Tekken 6, so there was no time to start the console version just yet. So taking the game multiplatform had nothing to do with the schedule. We just finished the overseas arcade version and were finally able to concentrate on the console version. We hope everyone can hang on a little longer.

GS: What have the biggest challenges been in bringing Tekken 6 to multiple platforms?

KH: The biggest challenge will be providing the exact same experience on both platforms. Both platforms have similar overall capabilities, but there are also many differences, such as the difference between DVD and Blu-ray.

GS: Can you fill us in on any of the additional content and features we can expect in the home version?

KH: Tekken has always had a variety of minigames and modes for the console versions. Building on that experience, we plan to have a major console mode. In addition to this main mode, other modes that are a staple of the series will be back, along with new and exciting features. In any case, Tekken 6 is not about just the game's versus mode. There is a lot of console-specific content to enjoy.

GS: How much does user feedback affect the extra features you include?

KH: It affects development quite a lot. However, with Tekken, the opinions differ greatly among users in Europe, North America, Asia, and Japan. Sometimes the opinions are completely contradictory between different regions, making it quite difficult to disseminate the suggestions. Analyzing the feedback and incorporating it into the new elements in the game is a huge challenge, and it is one thing we continually focus on.

Developers are working on a new online mode, but aren't ready to spill the beans just yet.

GS: What are your plans for online besides multiplayer? Should we expect any DLC?

KH: We're currently developing an online feature other than online versus [mode]--something that we haven't done before. It's going smoothly so far, but I can't go into any details at this moment.

GS: Considering the upcoming/recent releases of Street Fighter IV and Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe, what are your thoughts on the current fighting-game revival?

KH: I think it's great! For over 10 years, Tekken has been a popular fighting game franchise that sells 4 to 5 million copies with each installment, making it the top in its category.

In the past few years, we were quite disappointed to see the majority of arcades disappear in the US and Europe. Not only abroad, but in Japan as well, many arcade fighting games have disappeared. We were quite concerned that the genre itself might disappear, so we are extremely pleased to see a lot of the titles we respect regaining popularity. It really is great. Just as the first-person shooter genre has many established franchises, I would like to see the versus fighting genre continue to have its own established franchises. I believe it is then that the genre has real potential to grow and evolve.

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178 comments
woofie13
woofie13

Tekken 6 on 360? The D-pad is garbage, unless MS gets a new controller, I can't see how this is gonna be good.

serial2
serial2

MS is so ridiculous... they only made the xbox to earn maney, not for the passion of gaming. They think that they can buy everything... and, agreed! namco bandai = sellouts, bunch of ****

BLuFAlc0n
BLuFAlc0n

Tekken has died..... This won't sell on the 360... Like come on, if you own a PS3 and a 360, which version will you get it on?

peteypeeps
peteypeeps

Namco Bandai = Sellouts! ... Its because of SONY that tekken is Famous! and its being released on 360 .... Amazing, Your Greed has NO BOUNDS namco ... This should be ps3 exclusive ... Shameful

zest12
zest12

im happy tekken is coming the xbox 360 so i dont have to buy the ps3 now

thekey
thekey

Hopefully it will be better than arcade perfect. No shortcuts please!

harrnatorz
harrnatorz

WAT THE HELL !!! i was proud of the fact tht tekken was exclusive to sony till now ... its obvioulsy better for all the gamers world wide ... but ... *sob sob* ..... I WAN IT TO BE AN EXCLUSIVE !!! .... waaaaaaahh .... sob

koori-7854
koori-7854

I'm in love and I wish it would come to pc

rmoorevtps3
rmoorevtps3

GS: What have the biggest challenges been in bringing Tekken 6 to multiple platforms? KH: The biggest challenge will be providing the exact same experience on both platforms. Both platforms have similar overall capabilities, but there are also many differences, such as the difference between DVD and Blu-ray.

Qv9
Qv9

I love Tekken but i miss tag-team battles like in Tekken-Tag. Tagging was the most fun you could ever have. Hope they bring it back

halo_wars86
halo_wars86

@ fady117 2010 my @$$ this game has been out in arcades on 2006. releasing it late 2009 is still not acceptable how long must they make us wait. seriously release the damn game already

Fady117
Fady117

The longer we wait, the more exciting it gets. Besides, they're working on a hugely difficult development so it's logical that they need some time to finish it. i'll even wait till 2010 to grab Tekken if they ever needed more time. :D

bloodnumber
bloodnumber

. street fighter 4 will put this game in bargain bins around the world. I cant wait!

ninjasung
ninjasung

The bad thing about Tekken 6 is that we have to wait until end of 2009 to play it at home. Because of the recession we have to spend our time on other games such as SF4 and KOF 98. The good thing until then time flies.

brummydude
brummydude

Cant wait for this baby. king of fighting games by far

Evil_penguin21
Evil_penguin21

dude, i frekin hate Street fighter 4. Now everyone is all saying "Oh my god, this game is awesome, gonna be so much better than Tekken, i can't wait" Street Fighter is just something people are going to play until Tekken 6 comes out. After that...no one will be even thinking about Street Fighter. People just want to play this game because there has not been many fighting games over the last five years, (The main ones being Tekken 5, Soulcalibur 4, and Mortal Kombat). People who are big fans of the fighting genre are only gonna buy street fighter to play a fighting game. A stupid way to spend money is to buy street fighter. they should just wait until Tekken 6 comes out. Or go to a arcade. In with the new, out with the old.

wingsredemption
wingsredemption

This is the first Tekken I have never played in the arcade. Its quite sad. This is also the first Tekken to come out for the 360. Very very sad times indeed. But nevertheless, I cant wait.

Cbot
Cbot

JUST RELEASE THE DAMN GAME ALREADY!! =D

Compilation
Compilation

A prompt purchase. I can't wait - argh, but those times at screaming at the T.V. are Tekken's best. Lag K.O. is just not acceptable. :)

gucake916
gucake916

King and Armor King are the best and have the coolest moves in the game , and you know it !!!

gucake916
gucake916

King and Armor King is the best and have the coolest moves , and you know it !!!

RyD3n
RyD3n

@freek33 "How can an article on T6 spark Killzone vs Halo 3 vs blah blah blah chat??? You people!" Good question. I guess it's cause fanboys are all idiots and will use any excuse to argue about their superiority. Anyway, on the topic at hand. Can't wait for this game, Tekken being my favourite series of fighting games. Serioulsy chuffed about the Xbox version, don't have a PS3 yet, so this will suit me just fine...

brendanhunt1
brendanhunt1

I think the ps3 version might still be better, the controller is more suited however xbox does have a better online

brendanhunt1
brendanhunt1

the Xbox controller just isn't best at fighting games

jets78
jets78

this game looks so outdated i,m disapointed i,ll just have to stick with mk vs dc. and street fighter 4 , and kill zone 2 those should hold me over for the rest of the year.

Xzakuter
Xzakuter

You have to get this one. This is a definite nominee for GoTY. I like both Xbox360 and PS3 and I don't take sides. But for those Sony fans, I know you're mad at the idea of multiplatform for Tekken but we have to just go with the flow. No one can change that but Namco Bandai. Plus multiplatforms means more money, which means a longer Tekken franchise right? CANT WAIT!!

MRxSKINGLE
MRxSKINGLE

although it is multiplatform, i just get a feeling the 360 version won't feel right compared to the ps3 version.

etramleinad12
etramleinad12

Hopefully they will have an improved jiggle system.

Raven87
Raven87

I've got a Q. Why are you taking so long to make a game you have already developed once. Give me Hwarang and Baek on my xbox now dam it. My PS2 broke and I'm getting withdrawl.

Darkreaper_1
Darkreaper_1

This is one of the very few PS3 games i'm going to pre-order this year

AsianXPride
AsianXPride

AWESOME! I loved Tekken 5 on PSP. Hwoarang is tank.

rachkovsky
rachkovsky

I haven't played any Tekken games, but I think I might try this one out eventually.

TheGunKnight
TheGunKnight

As a long-time Tekken fan, I'm eagerly expecting this game. This is one of the games I plan on buying when I get a PS3. On a side note: I wish I could play on the arcade as well as I do on the console.

jgirl20
jgirl20

T___T This game is going to be AMAZING! I wish I owned a next-gen console...

volcanicmax_009
volcanicmax_009

@Infamous_27 I like DBZ but r u nuts!!! And this game is gonna be so EPIC!!!!!!!!!!!!

MrFinalFantasy
MrFinalFantasy

Okay. here comes the people who are Hard-Core Brand Loyal People. this is just my thought on Fanboy-ism. and well. i'll be taking some doctors view on Fanboy issues. but this is all my words. This is just Between Sony and Microsoft. and the people in Between have to be irritated each time this happens. Its a Cold War. here. 1st up. the Issues on Fanboy-ism is basically just Loyalty to a Brand. and that they will not accept any bad-names on their given support of brands and they'd rather fight it out then let others voice out BIASED criticism towards the other. and well fighting it out is good. and simply because these people read tabloids and news about weaknesses. they lash it out like a barbarian in order to make themselves feel MORE important and have that pleasure of success. and also Fanboy-ism are basically just WEAK people who would Lash it out on the internet then to go out and have a Fistfight. as for myself who's writing this comment here. its to show you fanboys that you all could start a Forum dealing with PLAYSTATION3 VS XBOX360. and so on and so forth. but even with the irritance of Fanboys. i cannot laugh and how stupid it is. i mean. its good that there are 2 consoles out there. why? JOBS. either way. the love for a brand will be gone once you've found something to dedicate your whole life to. like? a Women. i figured you're all guys. so go out. get some fresh air. =)

infamous_27
infamous_27

Tekken sucks, I'd rather play Dragonball z...

freek33
freek33

How can an article on T6 spark Killzone vs Halo 3 vs blah blah blah chat??? You people!

hot_shot_9
hot_shot_9

WTF is mairina on about.... Killzone 2 isnt even out yet... So dont mock it... Bet itll be better than halo 3 for sure and probably kan kompete with gears of war.......

nobie05
nobie05

I can't wait to see this game online. i been cravin it, wantin to see if anyones as good as me

mairina
mairina

Framerates are very important, since they affect both graphics and gameplay. One of the reasons why I really love Gears of War 2, Halo 3, Call of Duty 4 is because those games run at 60 frames per second. The game reacts the instant you do something, and it plays great, even in high-speed situations and scenes with lots of action. Killzone 2 was very disappointing for me, because it runs at only 30 frames per second. OMG r u really that stupid??? gears of war 2 has 24fps I love the game but framerate sucks d..k multiplayer is terrible coz of that. dont talk sh.t pls

hiway2hell
hiway2hell

I think this is the best fighting game ever. I even enjoy the story to it and I am one of those people that don't care for it

SalarianChemist
SalarianChemist

Framerates are very important, since they affect both graphics and gameplay. One of the reasons why I really love Gears of War 2, Halo 3, Call of Duty 4 is because those games run at 60 frames per second. The game reacts the instant you do something, and it plays great, even in high-speed situations and scenes with lots of action. Killzone 2 was very disappointing for me, because it runs at only 30 frames per second.