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Tekken 8: Everything You Need to Know About The Lore

Femi Famutimi
17 min

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Tekken 8: Everything You Need to Know About The Lore
Here's all you need to know about the lore of one of the best fighting games ever made

Tekken 8 is here! 

One of the most iconic fighting games ever made returns with a vengeance and while there is a lot of tech, avatar creations, and beach ball fun to be had, there is also a lore to continue with. 

See, Tekken has a Guiness World Record for the longest-running video game storyline as it tells of the Mishima clan and all the misfortune that follows them. Tekken’s story is long and deep with a lot going on. 

With Tekken 8 now here, this seems like a good time to go over everything that has happened so far. So think of this as some sort of recap which catches you up on where we are in the story. 

Tekken’s story is wild, and the serious graphics belie a storyline that is sometimes wacky. 

In this article, we’ll go over the major plot points of each game, weaving the story together as best as we can. This is not a complete retrospective, as that might not work for the average reader, so don’t expect a deep dive into how Mokujon got a well-endowed wife, or why the kangaroo, Roger, is a deadbeat dad. 

Good? Great! Let’s get into it. 


The story of Tekken centers on the Mishima clan and its patriarch, Heihachi Mishima. He is an ambitious man who wants to control the world and be acknowledged as the strongest. His son, Kazuya Mishima is sparring with him as he is taught to be the strongest he can be. 

Heihachi, however, had some nefarious intentions towards his son, and so, when he won the fight, he picked up his son’s limp body and threw it over a cliff.

Years pass and Heihachi, dissatisfied with life despite running one of the biggest conglomerates in the world, the Mishima Zaibatsu, decides to run a tournament which puts together the world’s strongest fighters to see if anyone could best him. Many answer the call including the American fighter, Paul Phoenix, Marshall Law, a robot called Jack, the deadly sisters, Anna and Nina Williams and many others. But, the most notable entrant into the tournament was none other than Kazuya Mishima, the son Heihachi had tried to kill. 

Apparently, he had survived and was back for revenge, but not only that, he wanted to take over his father’s empire and become the ruler of the world. His intentions were by no means noble, but he had strong motivations. 

The Mishimas are not good people. 

Kazuya fights his way through several fighters including a tough semi-final win over Paul Phoenix who proved to be more than a match for Kazuya, to finally face his father.

Father and son exchange fists, but it would be Kazuya who wins the battle and so, the first King of Iron Fist tournament was won by Kazuya Mishima. 

In an ironic twist, Kazuya proceeds to pick up his father’s body and throw him over a cliff just as he had endured from him all those years ago. 

As the camera zoomed in to Kazuya’s face, the lad cracked a smile, cementing himself as one of video gaming’s most deranged villains. 

Tekken 2

From the beginning of Tekken 2 we learn that Heihachi is not dead and the old man survived the fall and is also on a quest to take back his empire from his evil son. 

As the head of the Mishima Zaibatsu, Kazuya turns the organization into a powerful force that amasses power to aim towards world domination. He creates several initiatives including one where he has a kangaroo and a velociraptor turned into fighting beings. 

It was this experiment that would bring Kazuya to cross paths with Jun Kazama, the woman he would eventually father a child with. Kazuya organizes the second King of Iron Fist tournament as he figured this was a reasonable way to dispose of his enemies and entrench himself as the most powerful man in the world. 

Heihachi enters the tournament and fights his way to the finals. He would have fought Paul Phoenix in the semis if not for the latter’s tardiness to the fight. So, Heihachi and his son Kazuya cross fists once again, but while Kazuya was busy running the Mishima Zaibatsu, Heihachi had been training like crazy, hellbent on retaking his honor which his son had taken from him. 

He wins the fight even after Kazuya reveals the devil residing inside him. With his victory, Heihachi seeks to finish what he couldn’t do all those years ago and while you might have suggested a knife through the heart, or snapping his neck, Heihachi decided to throw Kazuya again… into an active volcano!

Heihachi leaves, but Kazuya’s legacy remains because somehow during the events to the second Tekken tournament, Kazuya and Jun become intimate and the result of that coming together was their son, Jin. 

Tekken 3

The Tekken 3 story takes place 18 years after the events of the second game. Therefore, Heihachi is now a much older man with grey hair. But, this in no way diminishes his menace as he is even stronger than before. Interestingly, Heihachi is not the major villain of this story as that honor goes to an ancient monster known as Ogre. This hulk of a thing is on the prowl for fighters’ chi and he goes around the world obtaining it. 

Ogre also crosses paths with Jin when he comes to shatter the happy home life Jin has had with Jun so far. Ogre knocks out Jin and when he comes to, Ogre and his mother are gone. Jin seeks out his grandfather Heihachi, who trains him in the Mishima styles and seeks to use him as a means to lure out Ogre. Heihachi hopes he will be able to capture the creature and see if there is a way to utilize its power for himself. 

The Third King of Iron Fist tournament is announced and all the warriors gather once again, both the old and the new. Some of the new characters that came into the series include Ling Xiaoyu, a school mate of Jin, and some sort of ward for Heihachi. He even gifts her a fighting panda as a bodyguard. Incidentally, Panda, who is female, catches the eye of Kuma, a bear who is Heihachi’s bodyguard. 

So, quickly about Kuma, he is a bear that Heihachi found in the wild, trained in the Mishima arts, taught to understand Japanese , and treated like a son. In truth, Heihachi was nicer to Kuma than to any of his biological children, which is saying something. 

That said, the Kuma that appears in Tekken 3 is actually Kuma II, the son of the first bear. 

All that said, the competition kicks off, and making it to the finals is none other than Paul Phoenix. He wasn’t late this time and he got to take on Ogre— and won! Yes, you read that right, Paul actually won the third King of Iron Fist tournament. A shame that he started celebrating too early as it turned out that Ogre had two forms. 

Stunned from his defeat, Ogre turns into True Ogre, a larger, more grotesque version of his normal self and the only person there to take him on is Jin who gets the upper hand and wins the fight, avenging his mother. 

His happiness was short lived though as he is assaulted by members of the military arm of the Mishima Zaibatsu, the Tekken force. Heihachi shoots down his grandson, again displaying his total apathy towards family members. 

However, Jin is Kazuya’s son, so there was some devil in him and this entity arose inside Jin turning him into a devil. He got up, knocked his grandfather down and flew away. Now on the run from both his grandfather and father (he’s alive, but we’ll get to that in a bit), Jin must find a way to survive. 

Tekken 4

If you know anything about Tekken, you know that the Mishimas never stay dead. They have a level of durability that is foreign to the rest of us regular humans. So, when I say that somehow, Kazuya was brought back to life by the G Corporation, an organization that will rival the Mishima Zaibatsu in size and menace. 

With Kazuya back, his only mission was to take his father down and take over the Mishima Zaibatsu. But Heihachi, arrogant man that he is, decided to host another King of Iron Fist tournament with the winner gaining control of Mishima Zaibatsu. 

Jin, now with a legitimate reason to come up against his father and grandfather, also enters the tournament. 

Tekken 4 was a lot more serious in its themes than the other games and it introduced a new character, Steve Fox, a boxer from the United Kingdom. He has a mysterious past that he can’t remember, and a large scar on his arm that he has no idea where it came from. He is successful as a boxer, but things go South when he is asked to throw a fight against an opponent by a shady organization known as the Syndicate, but as someone who really values integrity, he refuses to do so, and attracts the ire of this dangerous organization. 

On the run, Steve decides to join the King of Iron Fist Tournament. The Syndicate gets wind of this and send an assassin to kill Steve. The assassin— Nina Williams. 

So, about the Williams sisters, after the events of Tekken 2, Nina is put in cryo sleep by Kazuya, and Anna, who hates her sister, also finds that she can’t live without her sister, and asks to be put in cryo sleep too. 

Now revived, and not affected by the 18-year gap between the tournaments, Nina has lost her memory, but is still willing to work as a killer-for-hire. 

It is also in this game that it is discovered that Nina is Steve’s mother as she was inseminated while in Cryo sleep and she gave birth. 

Back to the Mishimas, Kazuya fights his way to the final to face his father once more. Jin, was supposed to have a match against Kazuya, but was jumped and captured by the Tekken Force. In the finals, Heihachi wins again, and takes the loser, Kazuya, into the Mishima compound to reveal Jin’s fate. 

Jin is tied up and was to be used for his grandfather’s nefarious purposes, but the young lad isn’t having it and breaks free to fight his father who had managed to gain control of the devil inside him. Jin wins the fight and proceeds to fight Heihachi. By sheer force of will, Jin is able to defeat Heihachi and can now end the menace that is the Mishima bloodline. However, Jin sees his mother in some sort of vision and remembers how she instilled in him a respect for life including that of those he doesn’t like (he would throw all this out the window in no time) and so, Jin spares his grandfather and flies off into the night. 

Tekken 5

Tekken 5 was a very interesting one. It started off where the 4th game left off, with Kazuya and Heihachi laying defeated after their fight with Jin, but they are ambushed by members of the G Corporation who have betrayed Kazuya and want to get rid of him. Kazuya and Heihachi fight together, but during the scuffle, Kazuya betrays Heihachi, using him to make his escape. The complex is blown up and it is believed that Heihachi is dead. Seeing as he did not show up in the game’s story, you’d think they got rid of him for good this time…nope! He is still alive and kicking, but is not the antagonist for this story.

The antagonist for Tekken 5 is Jinpachi Mishima, the great-grandfather of Jin. His story was pretty tragic as he was a good man who believed in integrity and honor. But, Heihachi takes the company and keeps him locked up beneath the Mishima house. Alone and burdened, Jinpachi is supposed to have died. Unfortunately, a malevolent force takes over him and he becomes a villain. 

He calls for the King of Iron Fist tournament with the condition being he is defeated, and the alternative being world destruction. Jin is tasked with the mission to defeat Jinpachi and after a hard-fought battle, Jin wins and is able to help his great-grandfather rest in peace. This also means that Jin is the leader of the Mishima Zaibatsu. 

The series’ protagonist is now the head of the most powerful organization in the world. 

Tekken 6

With Jin now the head of Mishima Zaibatsu, you would think the organization would become legit and turn a new leaf (those who know the lore are laughing hard right now), but it turns out that Jin is acting just as terribly as Kazuya and Heihachi. Jin plunges the world into chaos and causes misery everywhere he goes.

In the irony of ironies, Kazuya is now seen as a good guy who is fighting for the world against Mishima Zaibatsu. Tekken 6 is also the first game in which the King of Iron Fist tournament was not concluded. 

Jin indeed called for the tournament, but disappeared soon after and the tourney was canceled. It was here we discovered why Jin had been acting so weird in the first place. Apparently, there was an ancient being called Azazel who had been communicating with Jin and had told him that he will return to destroy the world when human pain and suffering had reached a certain threshold. 

Azazel also revealed that he was the creator of the devil gene and on his return, only a bearer of that gene would be able to defeat him. 

Jin, worried that this time might not come until he and Kazuya, the only holders of the devil gene, were long dead, decided to hasten Azazel’s return. How? Well, kill loads and loads of people and send the world spiraling into anarchy. 

Sure enough, this did bring Azazel back and Jin went about dispatching the monster, but he also fell with Azazel into a deep hole. 

Tekken 7

This is the most recent title of the series and is the last bit of story we have. The war between G Corporation and Mishima Zaibatsu rages on and Heihachi steps in to take over the organization. 

The biggest surprise of the game was the appearance of Akuma, a character from Street Fighter in the world of Tekken. Even more incredible is the fact that Akuma is canon and integral to the story. As it turns out, Akuma was a friend of Heihachi’s wife, Kazumi. Before her death, Kazumi had asked Akuma to kill both Kazuya and Heihachi to stop them from destroying the world. Akuma accepts, but since he’s Akuma (you could check out our retrospective on Street Fighter to know more about Akuma) he waited for Heihachi and Kazuya to become stronger before coming to defeat them. 

Akuma is able to best Heihachi, but the Mishima patriarch survives but doesn’t announce this to the world. For this reason, the King of Iron Fist tournament is canceled for yet another year. 

Meanwhile, Heihachi waits for Akuma to fight Kazuya with the plan being to use the battle as a way to expose Kazuya to the world as a ‘devilman.’ The plot succeeds and the world is treated to images of their ‘savior’ being a demon. This sways the world towards the Mishima Zaibatsu, but the public opinion is once again turned when Kazuya fires a beam into space and destroys a Mishima owned satellite which plummets to the earth and destroys part of a major city. 

With the Mishima reputation going down the drain, Heihachi decides to challenge Kazuya to one final fight. The two fight again and like the very first Tekken, Kazuya defeats Heihachi, but not only that, he actually kills Heihachi by dropping him into a volcano. For all intents and purposes, Heihachi is dead. 

It was also in Tekken 7 that we found out the real reason Heihachi dropped Kazuya off a cliff all those years ago. See, his wife, Kazumi, was actually sent to kill Heihachi. She was the one with the devil gene who passed it to Kazuya. Heihachi was able to defeat Kazumi in her demon form and kill her, stating that she was not the wife he knew. He then threw Kazuya off the cliff to end the demon’s menace. 

So, Heihachi is dead, Kazuya, known as the devil around the world, is now the greatest enemy to humanity, and only one remains to defeat him, Jin.

That’s Tekken so far. From what we have seen from the trailers, we know that Jin has to fight Kazuya who has threatened to destroy the world. There’s also the latest Mishima child— Reina Mishima. 

Tekken has deep lore and we can’t wait to see the deep secrets to be revealed in the latest installment of the game. 

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