Namco's first 3D fighting game, Tekken follows eight martial artists in the mysterious King of the Iron Fist Tournament. While it follows the gameplay of traditional one-on-one fighting games (such as Virtua Fighter), Tekken is known for its unique four-button control scheme, where each button correlates to attacks from each of the fighter's limbs (left arm, right arm, left leg, and right leg). It received numerous sequels and spin-offs, along with an animated film adaptation.
As the game's hardware is based on the Sony PlayStation (the first game to do so), the game quickly received an accurate console port for that system, with a release on March 1995 (in Japan) and November 1995 (worldwide). This version is known for making all boss characters unlockable and for its video cutscenes, and was later digitally re-released for supporting PSOne Classics consoles in May-July 2011. This version was also included in the Japanese PlayStation 2 compilation namCollection.
Heihachi Mishima is the ruthless owner of the multi-national Mishima Zaibatsu company. He announces to the world the beginning of the first King of Iron Fist Tournament, with a prize reward of one billion dollars. 8 of the finest competitors in the world arrive to take part in the tournament. One of them, Heihachi's own son Kazuya, is not drawn towards the enormous cash reward but is fueled by revenge.
When Kazuya was five years old Heihachi cast him from the top of a cliff, as he wanted to judge the power and determination of his son. Kazuya indeed survived the fall but it left a deep scar on his chest. Kazuya's blood loss would have proven fatal had the Devil not shown up to offer him the chance to seek revenge on his father in exchange for his soul. 21 years later and Kazuya is an undefeated fighting champion, he hears about the existence of his father's tournament and considers this his opportunity to seek revenge.
Tekken immediately sets itself apart from most other fighting games with its button scheme. Whereas most fighting game control schemes have different buttons corresponding to the power of the attacks (such as strong kick or light punch), in Tekken, each button corresponds with a limb (square for left punch, circle for right kick, ect.). Like most fighting games, there is a default setting of two rounds per match, and Tekken consists of the usual 1 on 1 combat found in fighting games, where you win after you deplete your opponents health bar. The player can get a "perfect" if they win a round without suffering any damage, a "great" if they win a round with a health bar that had less then about 5% health left and double K.O.'s can also occur. If the time limit expires (usually 60 seconds), the player with the least health loses.
The game includes 17 characters, only eight of which are playable in the arcade version. Each character follows a standard arcade ladder: the rest of the main roster, followed by that character's rival (as the sub-boss), followed by final boss Heihachi.
Each character also has an alternate costume.
- Kazuya Mishima (has a unique unlockable "Devil" form in the PS1 version that serves as the final boss for Heihachi)
- Paul Phoenix
- Marshall Law
- Nina Williams
- Michelle Chang
All boss characters cannot be selected in the arcade version, but are unlockable for play in the console version.
- Lee Chaolan (sub-boss for Kazuya)
- Kuma (sub-boss for Paul)
- Wang Jinrei (sub-boss for Law)
- Prototype Jack (sub-boss for Jack)
- Anna Williams (sub-boss for Nina)
- Armor King (sub-boss for King)
- Ganryu (sub-boss for Yoshimitsu)
- Kunimitsu (sub-boss for Michelle)
- Heihachi Mishima (final boss, his arcade ladder is unique as it's only sub-bosses)
Unlike most other fighting games at the time, stages and stage themes are independent from each character. All stages are based on real locations and monuments.