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5 Best Tekken Games, Ranked




It might've been a while since Bandai Namco infused any form of life into Tekken, but that doesn't mean the franchise has dwindled into the shadows without a beating heart to boot. In fact, if you take a good look at the countless eSports events that devote their efforts to reviving the fighting scene — you'll come to realise that Tekken is, unsurprisingly, an enormous part of it, with the series acting as one of the many flagships that bolster the genre.

It's been six years since Tekken rolled out its seventh major chapter. Since then, Bandai has gone on to develop various spin-offs to help keep the series tumbling along. But mobile ports and crossovers shoved aside, there is still plenty to explore across the original timeline — with a boatload of fresh content brimming at the cracks for each instalment. However, we do have to give credit where it's due, and, in this case, we do have to stack the chapters based on popularity. And so, with that said — here are the five best Tekken games ever published.


5. Tekken 7

TEKKEN 7 - Extended Trailer

It's fair to say that Namco took things down a notch when passing over the new millennium, and that, rather than publish a new addition to the series each year — they would instead devote more time to conjure bigger and better chapters for the fan base. Tekken 7, although eight years apart from its predecessor, is a perfect example of what that extra time at the drawing board can deliver. Okay, so story-wise, Tekken 7 isn't the most phenomenal work of art, nor is it rammed with twists and turns to keep you hooked. But it is, however, visually stunning, and the batch of crossover characters that it shovels in makes the overall experience a lot more versatile and memorable.


4. Tekken Tag Tournament

Tekken Tag Tournament - Trailer 1 - PS2

Way back when PlayStation 2 launched, fighting games weren't really that exclusive, nor were they a delicacy among gamers. The truth is, for decades prior, the likes of Street Fighter and other celebrated hits would often be the staple of the community — both in arcades and at home. However, when Tekken Tag Tournament introduced itself to the next-level console, fans were blown away by not only the visual enhancements — but also the powerful gameplay mechanics that went above and beyond since its previous instalment. Bandai Namco had taken the best-selling formula from their previous titles and ramped it up a dew degrees, with a few curveballs to keep the fans hooked for the long run. And it worked. Rather beautifully, to be fair.


3. Tekken 2

After Namco shared the global success of their debut chapter with their entire workforce, the team delved straight back into the studio to begin construction on the second chapter, which would go on to release in 1996. However, rather than simply tweak a few muscle groups and polish a few edges, Tekken 2 instead went on to bolster fascinating new environments that actually felt lifelike and original. And then, of course, the characters would ultimately learn to execute bigger and bolder moves with a more fluid approach to each attack. Okay, so Tekken 2 didn't exactly reinvent the wheel — but it was definitely a step in the right direction for Namco, and a step that would forever be remembered by gamers all over the globe.


2. Tekken 5

Tekken 5 - Opening - PS2

By the time Tekken 4 rolled out onto the pixel carpet, Namco reached a point where they would either call it a day and quit while they were ahead — or take the plunge into the unknown and continue to milk the cash cow dry. Of course, already being an incredibly successful franchise by 2001, the latter seemed to be the only reasonable option for the developer, and one that would effectively keep the legacy from collapsing altogether. And so, Tekken 5 went under the hammer — and boy, they practically nailed it. From the immersive storytelling to the rich backstories that each character built to share with us — Tekken 5 had it all, and we loved every piece of it.


1. Tekken 3

Tekken 3 Ultimate Trailer

Ask any Tekken fan which game outranks the rest and they'll probably tell you the third, without any thought to back it. Strangely enough, Tekken 3 has garnered quite the cult following since its launch back in 1997 — and nobody is really sure how or why that even came about. I mean, perhaps it all comes down to the fact that by the time the game launched, players were comparing it to the likes of Street Fighter and Soulcalibur, in which Tekken practically outperformed both. Whatever it was that caused the influx of followers, Bandai Namco never really stopped to ask any questions about it. The only problem is, funnily enough — is that they haven't been able to recapture the essence that made Tekken 3 a masterpiece in the first place. Whatever that essence was, of course.


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Jord is acting Team Leader at If he isn't blabbering on in his daily listicles, then he's probably out writing fantasy novels or scraping Game Pass of all its slept on indies.