Tekken 8 Wishlist 2: Electric Boogaloo

13 min

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Tekken 8 Wishlist 2: Electric Boogaloo
This is getting out of hand, now there are two of them!

Not long ago, we made a video going over the top features we want to see in a future Tekken game. Today, we want to expand on that list and add some things that didn’t make it to the previous video.

Slimmed Down Movesets

With every new game, Tekken generally did nothing but expand on its characters, constantly adding new moves, giving old moves new properties, or creating new follow-ups. Even back in 1996, Tekken 3 boasted some of the biggest movelists in all of the fighting games. 

Fast-forward to Tekken 7, and we call Claudio’s moveset small because it “only” has 64 moves. For an average character, this number usually floats at around 80 to 100, and then there are extreme cases like Eddy, Yoshimitsu, King, and Lei, who all have over 160.

Even learning your own character in Tekken is a difficult task, but then you combine it with having to learn the moves and frame data of over 40 other characters, and it’s easy to see how overwhelming it is.

Some people might justifiably point out that this type of complexity gives the game a unique kind of appeal and has become a part of Tekken’s personality. However, I think we all could name at least a few moves or strings that our mains could lose without it having any negative impact.

Cutting down on some of the excess and consolidating the movesets could have a very positive impact overall. Learning dozens of matchups is suddenly way more manageable, picking up a new character is not as frustrating, and the number of knowledge checks would inevitably decrease.

Stronger Movement

The intricate movement system had always been one of Tekken’s distinct features. While it might look simple on paper, weaving proper movement into your gameplay and recognizing which option to use at any given moment requires an immense level of mastery. And then there’s also the infamous Korean Backdash, a powerful technique that demands quite a lot of practice to execute properly.

Once you understand how much skill goes into movement alone, you begin to truly appreciate the highest level of Tekken, where players smoothly navigate the stage and dance around their opponent to evade attacks or create openings.

While this is still mostly true for Tekken 7, the movement in this game is still noticeably weaker than in prior titles. Backdash and sidestep cover less distance overall, making it significantly more challenging to avoid your opponent’s offense. 

However, it would be incorrect to say that the problem only lies with the speed and distance of your movement options. A big reason for why movement is worse in Tekken 7 is the highly inconsistent approach to tracking properties. 

Even though full tracking is usually a privilege of homing moves, there are lots of attacks in Tekken that have extreme tracking to either left or right side. This leads to many unfortunate situations where you might have made the right choice on paper and still got punished for it, thanks to extreme tracking on a random string or poke.

Here’s hoping that both of these issues are addressed in the next Tekken title, making the series return to the glory days of the immaculate movement.

Visual Feedback

Purely from the standpoint of presentation, Tekken 7 is quite a nice-looking game. The characters and stages are detailed, the animations are smooth, the textures are sharp, and there are lots of great effects to convey the force behind every hit.

But when it comes to information that you get from visuals, Tekken is rather minimalist. Outside of practice mode, you will not see any indication of landing a clean hit, counter hit, or a punish. 

The game will also not tell you the level of attacks that are coming your way. While you could guess by looking at the visuals and be right most of the time, it’s just not consistent enough to be reliable.

When you add the evasion and crush systems into the mix, things get even more confusing. Sometimes your attacks will whiff cause they got crushed; other times, they might simply get evaded, like with Paul’s janky df2 that can go under jabs. The game is in no rush to tell you what exactly happened, so back to the lab you go.

However, it doesn’t have to be this way. For example, Virtua Fighter gives the player a sound cue for when an attack is successfully evaded by sidestepping. Tekken could do the same, with additional cues for crushing and evasion.

Moves that are punishable on block could be presented more clearly as well. For example, any experienced player would know that Paul’s deathfist is punishable, but it really doesn’t seem that way when you first look at it. A subtle visual cue like Paul stumbling a bit would communicate clearly to the player that it’s unsafe and make learning the game a more organic experience overall.

And when it comes to attack levels, even a few splashes of color, like the familiar blue/yellow/pink, could make things a lot more readable. With these few changes, Tekken would become just a bit more accessible without losing any of its depth.

Better Customization

SoulCalibur and Tekken have been some of the first fighting games to give players not just alternative outfits but full-on character customization. SoulCalibur especially is well-known for giving you nearly unlimited freedom to create anything you can imagine, but few remember that Tekken used to be not that far behind.

Despite appearing “late” into the series with Tekken 5, customization arguably peaked immediately after it, in Tekken 6. That game and the subsequent Tekken Tag Tournament 2 offered a surprising amount of freedom to those who wanted to express their creativity or personalize their favorite character.

It’s hard to say the same for Tekken 7, which drastically cut down on the customization options, and what little is there leaves a lot to be desired. Outside of items designed specifically for the character, you’re mostly left with a bunch of t-shirts and a few dozen garish items that barely fit the models.

Not the most crucial feature by any means, but it’s one that fans have greatly enjoyed in the past titles, and it gives fighting game players a rare opportunity to express their inner fashionista bit. 

Also, for people who’d rather keep the characters looking their iconic selves, perhaps leave an option for your opponent’s customs not to show up at all in online matches.


Competitive gamers are always in pursuit of the best performance and lowest possible latency. Fighting game players are no exception. On that front, Tekken 7 faced some notable issues.

When it comes to consoles, they always had to put up with higher input latency than PC, even if Bandai Namco eventually brought it down to a more acceptable level. And even on PC, where the latency is lower than it ever has been in Tekken, fans have created a mod that increases the framerate to 120 and makes the game a lot more responsive. This does, of course, take up a lot of processing power, but it would be nice to see this being offered as an option within the game itself.

The fan-made mods also did their best to decrease the loading times, a bane that annoyed Tekken 7 players for years. If you’ve played something like Guilty Gear Strive with its instant rematches, it hurts to go back to Tekken, where you have a long wait between every match.

And then there are a few other problems, like the occasional freezes that can affect players with even the beefiest hardware; or the alt-tab bug, which can cause the game to either freeze or crash completely.

Some of these issues might be related to developers switching to a new engine after Tag 2, and with the experience they gathered through Tekken 7, let’s hope it’s not an issue in the next game.

Quality of Life Features

Have you ever joined a full Tekken lobby and thought, “I wish I could play with other people in the lobby instead of waiting my turn”? You’re not alone there. Waiting for multiple matches to end before you get to play again can take up quite a bit of time.

Despite having their own set of drawbacks, this is something that ArcSys fighters figured out a long time ago by allowing you to either hop in a queue with other players or start a new match with someone else within the same lobby.

How about matchmaking while in practice mode? This is also something that became a standard feature among fighting games. Meanwhile, Tekken 7 has a halfway solution by putting you on an infinite stage where you can practice some combos but nothing else.

Then there’s the problem of not being able to practice against the DLC characters. Admittedly, this is a common problem in fighting games. There’s an obvious incentive behind it, as it could drive people to buy the DLC, but if even Dead or Alive lets you use any character in training mode, it certainly wouldn’t hurt for other games to follow suit.

Going a step further, Tekken could also benefit from the online practice mode. With how much you have to learn, getting actual in-game advice from a more experienced player is extremely valuable. You can currently emulate it through Steam by using remote play, but adding it as a base feature would make it accessible for all players.

Better AI

Any fighting game veteran will usually tell you that playing against an AI is useless at best and harmful at worst, as it could lead you to develop bad habits. It also creates unrealistic expectations in new players who have easily beaten the AI only to get dumpstered in the online modes. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

Back in 2013, the Killer Instinct reboot came out with a revolutionary AI that improved with the player by learning from them. For example, if you beat the bot by spamming projectiles, it would learn to do the same thing, forcing you to come up with a counter strategy that the bot would later copy.

While it wasn’t perfect, it’s still the most impressive implementation of AI in all of fighting games, and that was almost 10 years ago. Meanwhile, the AI in Tekken 7 can’t even do a basic combo, let alone anything more complex.

Making a human-like AI for Tekken would be a great task, no doubt, but it could also become a perfect introduction to such an overwhelming franchise.


Communication is an important aspect of any competitive game. You’ve likely read plenty of patch notes in the past and thought, “why would they do this.” Most of the time, the answer remains a mystery, as fighting game developers rarely convey their intentions to the public.

In the past few years, however, there has been a positive change, with some developers being more open and trying to build a bridge between the players and developers. 

Capcom has been one of the first to include relatively detailed explanations for balance changes in their patch notes. ArcSys created a whole blog series titled Developer Backyard, and despite slowing down over time, it gave us a lot of insight as to what developers wanted to achieve.

For the past 3 years, we’ve also seen the annual Japan Fighting Game Publishers Roundtable. An event where all the industry leaders can gather together to have a very open discussion about their projects and the genre in general.

With the next Tekken, we hope that Bandai Namco also takes a step forward with their communication. Letting players know what to expect from the game going forward and why certain changes had to be made. This would be a great way to open up a more transparent and positive dialogue with the community.

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