Tekken Producer Wants Better Ghost Battles, Designed Revolution To Be RPG-Like

By Spencer . August 5, 2013 . 6:04pm


The Tekken series evolved over the years adding a second character for Tekken Tag Tournament, then walls for Tekken 4, and Tekken Revolution change’s the game’s business model. Siliconera talked to producer Katsuhiro Harada about Tekken Revolution’s stat up system and we asked him what he wants to do to evolve the fighting game genre for next generation consoles.


The concept of Tekken Revolution kind of reminded me of an arcade game, but can you tell us how the idea for Tekken Revolution and a free-to-play Tekken game come about?


Katsuhiro Harada, Producer: Something I’ve always wanted to do is create a virtual arcade so users can have the same experience, but online. I’ve wanted to do that with several titles. That was one thing we were able to try out for Tekken Revolution.


Also, when you’re looking at games in retail, the prices aren’t cheap. If you’re on the fence about purchasing it or not often you’ll put the game down, because of the price tag. But, if it’s free you eliminate that barrier and it’s much easier to get people to check out the game. We wanted to do that first for a fighting game.


That’s interesting because Team Ninja thought of the same idea in parallel with Dead or Alive 5 Core Fighters.


I guess it seems like it’s around the same time. They announced their game earlier, but we were out first. That’s because we planned for quite some time now to try out this business model. They aren’t able to keep up, I guess.




One thing I felt when I was playing Tekken Revolution is that you can become a more competitive fighter through sheer perseverance. Unlike Tekken Tag Tournament 2 where you have to learn bounds, just be sticking with Revolution your character gains stat points and becomes more powerful, which gives players that put more time in the game an edge even if they haven’t mastered things like just frames.


To start off, it’s not all Tekkens are going to be like this. This was just a challenge we wanted to try to take on for [Tekken Revolution]. It’s what we expected when we were designing it. Tekken Revolution is geared towards people who have never tried Tekken before or people who are returning after a long time playing.


We wanted to show players, kind of like a RPG, that the time you put into the character is reflected into that character so you become attached to them. For fighting games, the only thing that builds up is your skill as a player. However, when someone better than you fights against you that means nothing during that bout. We wanted to adapt the game so the time they put into the game is reflected as their character becomes stronger.


How has Tekken Revolution performed compared to your sales expectations?


It’s kind of hard to tell at this point. We were trying to focus on getting as many people to check it out as possible. Customization and other features that we’re implementing now and in the future weren’t available at launch. We should know pretty soon.




What do you want to do with Tekken as a series and the fighting game genre when moving to the next generation? What barriers or limitations will be easier to overcome and what challenges do you want to tackle?


Hmm… this is unique to fighting games, perhaps, but when it comes to limitations since you have an opponent you’re playing against. Say you’re in Japan and they’ are in Brazil. That’s something nobody, not just Tekken but other fighting games, is able to do well at the moment because of lag. That’s not something that will necessarily improve because of next generation hardware because there are a lot of outside factors that implement that.


The main goal we have for fighting games is outside the hardware leap. It’s how we tailor the game systems so you don’t feel the effects of that as much. It’s the main thing we’re focusing on at the moment and have to solve that problem.


I think Tekken tried to do that earlier with the Ghost Battle system. Do you think you can make larger ghost player data so the opponents feel lifelike?


You brought up a good point that not many people have noticed. The Ghost system is a way to get around that and it is something people are quite interested in. There are several projects within our company that deal with that gameplay mechanic, such as our racing games. Fighting games require a much more advanced type of that because it’s not a line around the track. Emulating a human is quite difficult, so we take all kinds of data into consideration. For example, what kind of action they take when the round starts. Their air combos, including how often they mess up. There are other things we are doing now, but we would like to implement even more to make it feel more human-like. There is room for improvement and we want to try to do that.

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  • This Tekken model would be nice for… Soul Calibur. I’d love the option to start with a few characters and buy people like.. Zasalamel, Talim, Yun Seong, Seung Mina, Amy… Any other character that was cut. >_>

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  • $7573679

    I love Fighters that combine RPG elements into it. I remember SC III Chronicles of the Sword. Just imagine something like that online!

  • Lynx

    Can I just get a Tekken RPG spinoff please? I would play the daylights out of it, even if it’s not what it normally is.

    Just give it something like Dissidia’s RPG mode on a normal game in addition to a normal game and I could deal with that alone.

    • leingod

      that’d be awesome.

      • Lynx

        Honestly, as is, Tekken screams RPG.

        I mean, we’ve got everything. A playable Kangaroo? Demons? Robots? Essentially, super powers?

        It’s got everything that could possibly be used in an RPG.

        • “Role Playing Games” can mean anything. The word you are looking for is “Fantasy” or “Sci-Fi”, which can be associated the RPG genre. But yeah, although, while Kangaroos and Raptors are super rare in RPGs, angels, demons and robots kind of became synonymous in JRPGs.

        • Bunzi

          I’d be down with this if all the cast was playable. In different cast “herds” so to speak (Jin would have his party, Kazuya his, and so on.)

    • ShawnOtakuSomething

      action RPG with who as the MC? you? and it will have a dating element in it too ? That would be epic

      • leingod

        an original or created character, or maybe Jin… since he’s usually seen as the MC in the main series. It’d be nice to explore the plot in more detail, since in the fighting games it’s convoluted, at best.

        • ShawnOtakuSomething

          man that would be a great idea for a Spin-off for Tekken

        • I would prefer to see it as an OC with the moves of another. But then, that would basically be another Soul Calibur Campaign Mode.

      • Lynx

        -action RPG with who as the MC? you?


        Or Jin.

        • A Kuma-centric game is overdue. Maybe with Mokujin and Roger Sr. as Party Members?

        • ShawnOtakuSomething

          Kuma…..I would die in happiness

    • $7573679

      They kinda did that with Lars in Tekken 6 though.

      • SunOatBoatMatadorQuattro

        Lars would make a great RPG MC. I mean he is the leader of a group and he could recruit fighters.

      • Colonel Custard

        And that turned out so well… admittedly there was nice stuff just poor implementation.

  • leingod

    A little derivative, but the weirdest thing about Tekken Revolution is they “bishoujo’d” Asuka, Lili and (now) Alisa. I’m not complaining at all, it’s just curious.

  • Ronldbx6

    I was watching a Tekken Revolution stream the other day. People with very high stat power boost. Sadly it’s broken.

    • ShawnOtakuSomething

      isnt that the truth…

    • I beat up people with high stats with skill alone (although, it is nerve-wrecking sometimes). In Tekken Revolution, Stats are just a handicap, with the “Critical/Special Arts” acting as crutches. Anyone will tell you that many of the players you will find online will always spam them, along with the flashy hidden ones (like Kazuya’s Devil Form). In many cases, it will always be Kazuyas, Lars, Lilis and Jins (maybe Laws and Tigers, but who’s counting!) who are very frequently your opponents. Asuka and Steves are very rare, and Jack-6 is pretty non-existent, outside of entry-level players.

      I guess what I am trying to say is, fighting with a handicap is more of a self-imposed challenge. You can choose to use them, or not. The “Critical/Special Arts”, however, aren’t. They where the moves used for doing bounds and Aerial Combos, and they can be easily seen 1.5 seconds before they hit you, which became more readable and easier to counter. The feature can be seen as either a blessing or a curse. But we have to deal with it. (Vigor makes these moves stronger).

      • Tee Niitris

        Almost every Law (and Kaz) player I’ve encountered spams C&S moves… sad really (and so easy to punish too). Makes me want to practice Law and show how to really play. Haven’t encountered an Asuka player spamming C&S Arts (it would never work anyway since I main Asuka).

      • xbabyycheeksx

        All of those characters can be spammers. As long as you know how to pull off their critical moves. I use Lili because that’s always been my girl but I don’t spam with her. It’s easy to avoid Kazuya spammers with side step and booking it while they’re in the air and you just wait for the landing and grab them. But like King? OMG that low kick is their favorite. Just now someone spam the the daylights out of me using Law… constant critical moves and knocking me off my feet, smh.

    • Tee Niitris

      The stat boosts are annoying but they can be defeated with proper discipline.

    • CptPokerface

      It’s funny, I was just playing Revolution. Fought against a Kazuya, over 150 wins, all his stat points thrown in strength.

      In those cases, you do have to be extra careful about getting hit, but he just kept throwing out moves. So I just sidestepped and got in a combo whenever I could and he was history. I was even using Asuka, when my main Is Bryan.

      One thing I do really like about this game is that you really can tell who’s just spamming for wins and who has legit skills.

  • Tee Niitris

    RPG-like eh?

    I actually like that idea. I feel that online play needs to have more variety in some way or another. BlazBlue had a similar mode where characters could be powered up and I thought that it would have been good to have it as a online mode as well.

    I disliked the fact that TR didn’t have a standard “no power-ups” match option, but they fixed that with the patch. :)

  • ndjn3979

    Great interview

  • Neppygear

    That DoA shade. Oh, Harada.

  • fairysun

    “If you’re on the fence about purchasing it or not often you’ll put the game down, because of the price tag.” Harada gets it.
    Why do publishers keep releasing game with premium price? I get it if it is AAA games. But for niche games, they can sell them at reduced price.

    • Armane

      Niche games are, by definition, selling to a limited audience. So while lowering the price might encourage extra sales, it probably wouldn’t be significant enough to offset any reduction in the price.

  • Göran Isacson

    Ooooh snap Harada, throwing that gauntlet right at the DoA team. This can only be resolved through battle! Cross-over battle!

    Not sure what to think about the stat-boosts, since it seems like they’re no threat to players with actual skill- more like an edge for button mashers against button mashers. Might help, might not… it’ll be interesting to see how players react, especially newbies: if they think it actually helps them get into the game, or if they think it’s a waste of time when they lose out to players who are skilled enough that their jacked up stats don’t matter.

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