Tekken Dark Resurrection is a game that anyone with a PSP should have.

User Rating: 9 | Tekken: Dark Resurrection PSP
The now 11 year old Tekken series has appeared on every Sony video game system since the series' debut in 1995, and the series has been a resounding success so far, so it makes sense that Namco would continue the tradition and bring out yet another Tekken game onto yet another Sony platform. This addition however is somewhat different from all of the other Tekken games, as now Tekken has gone portable. Although the series did make appear on the GBA a few years ago, this Tekken is more like the Tekken on the Sony consoles--in fact its gameplay is essentially identical to that of Tekken 5's, and anyone who played Tekken 5 will know that that is a great thing.

Tekken Dark Resurrection is a port of the arcade version, which was an updated version of the already fantastic Tekken 5. Of course, Dark Resurrection implements some new features, and expands on others. Probably the best new feature is the new "Tekken Dojo" mode, where you go through six different dojos, fighting "League Matches" and "Free Battles" (the latter of which are optional). Once you've ranked yourself high enough in the dojo, you can compete in a "Ranking Tournament". If you win the tournament, you'll gain access to the next dojo. As you progress through the mode though, you'll be participating in Survival, Time Attack and Gold Rush (which is another new mode where you basically beat gold out of your opponent) challenges, and beyond that there are even "Survival Tournaments". Beyond the new modes there is a returning character and even two completely new characters. The returning character is Armor King who's (literally) back and better than ever. The two new characters are Lili a high school student with a passion for fighting, and Dragunov-- who is a feared Russian special forces operative. Overall there is a total of 34 characters, each of which have a lengthy move list (the move lists range from about 70 -120, though a lot of the moves are variations of different combos). The new characters fit in perfectly with the already great character list. Last years game featured the ability to customize your characters looks by adding accessories, changing the colors of their costumes and things of that sort. Dark Resurrection expands on that feature, adding a good amount of new items to customize your character with, including new auras which surround your character, giving them an energy like glow.

As well as all the new features the tried and true Tekken gameplay is here in full force. All of the modes featured in other games like Survival, Time Attack and of coarse story battle (which still features the mind-blowing CG sequences). In addition, there are also two mini games--Command Attack and Tekken Bowling. Basically in Command Attack you'll just perform the moves that the game tells you to as quick as you can. Tekken Bowling is exactly what it sounds like, bowling (except of coarse you'll be using Tekken characters). However, this mini game appeared in Tekken Tag Tournament before this, however, but although its not all new, its still a lot of fun.

As with all of the other Tekken games, Dark Resurrection features a very deep fighting system. As previously mentioned, each character has a very large move list (which are furthermore expanded in Dark Resurrection). Each move list features one (or in some cases two) very powerful unblockable move, several 10 hit combos, a handful of different throws, and of coarse a ton of 2-6 hit combo's. Some characters even have different fighting stances, which as you can imagine, make things a tad more complicated (in a good way). Although there is enough depth (and then some) to appeal to hardcore fighting game fans, but rookies, or people who generally don't play fighting games will easily be able to pick up and play the game.

One of the concerns with Dark Resurrection is how it controls with the PSP D-Pad, and at first, it can feel a little uncomfortable, but that feeling goes away after about 30 minutes - an hour. Although every now and then, you may not be able to properly perform a move that requires you to press down on the D-Pad diagonally.

Dark Resurrection implements a great "ghost" AI feature, where the AI controlled characters will start to recognize how to play with each character, and they will eventually start countering and blocking your moves, and this is where a lot of the games difficulty comes from. Towards the end of Tekken Dojo I found myself getting frustrated at how tough the AI was. Additionally, you can also download extra ghosts onto your PSP, which works really well.

The moment you start up this game, you’re going to notice how amazing the graphics are. The in-game graphics are extremely impressive, coming very close to Tekken 5's graphics, which actually pretty amazing, considering how great Tekken 5 looks. The game also features those insanely awesome CG sequences found in Tekken 5, which are often quite funny, as well as looking spectacular. Of coarse though, because the PSP isn't as powerful as a PS2 or an Arcade, you do get some grungy textures and more notably, the frame rate will drop to 30 fps in the match introductions. But really, for how good the game looks (and how fast it loads), those little graphical flaws really don't matter. Make no mistake about it--Tekken Dark Resurrection has set the standard for PSP graphics.

Tekken 5 featured some really impressive audio, and of course, all of the audio (as well as some additional audio for the new stages) sound just as good, although the PSP's stock speakers don't really do the sound justice. All of the characters once again, speak their native language, and the voice overs are done quite good as well. Overall, Tekken Dark Resurrection sounds quite good.

As rare as good fighting games are these days, it’s really a mistake for anyone with a PSP to miss out on this game. Tekken 5 was a spectacular game last year and although there was very, very little room for improvement Dark Resurrection still manages to improve upon Tekken 5. Beyond that, Dark Resurrection features incredible graphics and some great audio which suitably compliments the graphics. Tekken Dark Resurrection is a game that anyone with a PSP should have, and it’s just another reason for those of you who haven't yet decided to get a PSP to do so.