Classic minigame Tekken Ball is set for a triumphant return in Tekken 8, delighting fans of the eccentric series’ humorous side. The volleyball-inspired mode has been absent for over a decade, last appearing in 2012’s Tekken Tag Tournament 2 on Wii U.
Tekken Ball’s comeback continues Tekken 8’s admirable balance of innovation and nostalgia. While new systems like the Heat mechanic and Special Arts modernise combat, classic extras like the volleyball mode invoke fond memories for devoted longtime fans.
Of course, the main story showcases darker themes of family betrayal and generational blood feuds. But the series always embraces some lightheartedness too, seen in eccentric fighters like Kuma and Yoshimitsu or extras like Tekken Bowl bowling.
Simple Yet Chaotic Volleyball-Inspired Mini-Game
First introduced in seminal 1998 entry Tekken 3, Tekken Ball is a simple yet chaotic mini-game. Players volleyball a giant beach ball at each other using their fighter’s moveset, attempting to strike their opponent and inflict damage. It captures the fighter’s over-the-top spirit in a quick pick-up-and-play package.
According to an official PlayStation blog, the mini-game returns in the latest entry as part of the new virtual Fight Lounge hub. Here players can challenge AI or real opponents in the mode on a sunny beach backdrop. Sadly it won’t be playable in October’s Closed Beta Test, but its comeback is confirmed.
The Fight Lounge also lets players create customisable avatars, chat via emotes, practice skills in the Tekken Dojo, and arrange online matches. The fighting title additionally introduces a new Arcade Quest mode simulating the feel of battling adaptive AI opponents in an old-school arcade.
Together these new features aim to expand the renowned fighting game franchise beyond its core 1v1 fights, offering varied distractions between bouts. Tekken Ball fits perfectly into this vision, extending traditional combat into a radically different context.
While Bandai Namco pushes boundaries with convention-defying mechanics, resurrecting the feature demonstrates admirable awareness of franchise history. Long-time devotees fondly remember hours spent spiking volleyballs at friends. Tekken Ball’s return promises nostalgic, carefree fun between the main game’s bloody Mishima melodrama.
Sometimes fans simply crave minor diversions featuring familiar faces in unorthodox scenarios. This game mode squeezes fresh life from the vast roster by repurposing their movesets in creative new ways. Seeing Bryan Fury smash his signature punches as he whacks a beach ball encapsulates the title’s inherent silliness.
Just yesterday it was confirmed via a trailer released on YouTube that fan-favourite character Feng Wei will be returning to the roster after a whopping 19 year absence.
With Tekken 8 reinventing core gameplay, the team smartly included some playful simplicity too. The mini-game requires no mastery, just amusing button-mashing madly until someone’s health bar empties. This trip down memory lane will be a sweet reward for dedicated players who’ve supported the fighter over decades.
More Tekken 8 News:
- Latest Trailer Confirms Return of Lili from PS3 Era
- The Return of the Celestial Warrior, Claudio Serafino
- Return of Raven and Newcomer Azucena
When the fighting title launches early next year, Tekken Ball’s comeback will be a small yet significant piece of service for long-time fans. While new mechanics steer gameplay into the future, this blast from the past creates feel-good factor that can’t be matched. It may seem a superfluous extra, but restoring this beloved game mode demonstrates admirable awareness and respect for the series’ roots.
Source – PlayStation Blog
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