Tekken Advance - GBA

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Viewed: 3D Third-person, floating camera Genre:
Beat 'Em Up
Arcade origin:No
Developer: Namco Soft. Co.: Namco
Publishers: Namco (US)
Infogrames (GB)
Released: 2002 (US)
29 Mar 2002 (GB)
Ratings: 11+, ESRB Teen 13+ (T)
Connectivity: Link Cable


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The king of iron fist, enter the Tekken. Namco’s acclaimed 3D fighter series makes the transition to Nintendo’s Game Boy Advance. Forget about a 2D conversion, the Advance is powerful enough to render, in real-time, a full 3D version of Tekken. And yes, it plays like a dream and looks fantastic. Portable gaming has finally come into its own.

The original Tekken used it’s polygon engine to render only the characters, leaving the backgrounds and floors as two dimensional bitmaps. This early approach has been copied and is perfect for portable technology. The floor utilises a SNES Mode 7 graphical feature to rotate and stretch itself. This allows your characters to duck into the screen to avoid incoming attacks, and perform side and back throws.

Tekken Advance is also more than a conversion of Tekken 1. It is more similar to a cut-down version of Tekken 3, but with a 3-on-3 tag system included. Unfortunately, this affects the button configuration. One of Tekken’s most natural features, using one button for each of the four body limbs is no more. This makes it naturally more difficult to execute the moves and combos that you have become accustomed to. The shoulder buttons are used for throw and tag commands. With a little practice and familiarisation this small problem is soon overcome.

The single-player game is ideal for practicing your moves and countering techniques, but any Tekken player has to prove themselves on the battlefield. Tekken Advance features a two-player link-up mode for this very reason. Two cartridges and a link-up cable are required, naturally.

Tekken Advance is a highly playable, brilliantly executed portable beat-em-up. If fighting games turn you on, pick up this beauty as early as possible.