Video game screen adaptations have a long and strange history, mostly filled with grim failures. While the past few years have produced some solid standouts, there’s still a lot more bad than good. However, a standout feature has always been the anime adaptations of popular fighting games. And here comes a new challenger.
Street Fighter, Blazblue, Virtua Fighter, King of Fighters, Darkstalkers, Samurai Showdown, Fatal Fury, and many other classic fighting game series have been adapted into anime movies or series. Most of them were quickly forgotten, some were downright awful, but a few big names have stood the test of time.
After four terrible adjustments, the beloved Tekken franchise has made it back to the small screen in the form of a six-episode anime series. Tekken bloodlines is without question the best adaptation of the franchise, but that’s a very low bar. It’s a fairly accurate version of the story, with a unique art style and lots of well-handled fight scenes. The last anime version of the franchise was over 20 years ago, during the heyday of this film style in the late ’90s. Anime adaptations of fighting games are far less common in modern times, while anime-based fighting games have become fairly ubiquitous. pedigree is the latest adaptation to enter the once immensely prolific subgenre, and it’s one of the medium’s strongest entries.
The pinnacle of the fighting game anime trend is undoubtedly Gisaburō Sugii’s 1994 Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie. Fatal Fury: The Movie Technically it came first, but it was Capcom’s classic that inspired many other adaptations of classic fighting games. There were several other takes street fighteras well as several other Capcom properties in the medium, however SFII has long been the undisputed champion. It is by far the best looking fighting game anime of its era. It is also the best encapsulation of the source material. Many other works of the genre including the above fatal rage Movie, couldn’t find what fans liked about the naked narrative in fighting games. Sugii’s film found a lot of moments that fans would have longed to see beautifully animated and brought to the big screen. Far from transcendent, the film is about as good as an anime Street Fighter II could be.
When comparing these anime adaptations, the question doesn’t arise as to whether one anime is a holistically better product than another. It is whether pedigree can do for Tekken What The animated film did for street fighter. Unfortunately, the answer is “kinda”. pedigree certainly pulls out a ton of great recognizable details to keep fans happy. Those who look closely will discover a shocking amount of faithfully recreated visual and sound effects in battle scenes. There are a few moves from the games that hardcore fans will only narrowly call a Dragon Ball Z Attack. The narration is a reasonably faithful adaptation of the plot of Tekken 3, a fan-favorite entry in the franchise. Most of the characters’ personalities are translated fairly well, including some newer faces from the more recent entries. It’s a perfect translation of this game’s narrative and offers something of a master class in terms of the way it goes right and wrong.
There were many problems with the flood of fighting game animes in the 90’s. The stories were often chaotic, the characters often empty shells, and the animation was almost always awkward to watch. They were of no interest to anyone who wasn’t a hardcore fan, and for the most part left those fans disappointed. Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie took advantage of the limited narrative made available primarily in instruction manuals and arcade cabinets to provide big moments. Nowhere else can you see Chun-Li kicking Vega to her death through her drywall or lifting up Ken Eliza, which matches Alice in Chains. The film also featured the perfect recreation of Ryu, who gave Sagat his signature scar. The film captured beloved moments from the games, but also found time to insert unique, rampant material that fans would fall in love with.
That’s what Tekken bloodline is missing. It’s a great respite from Tekken 3, but fans already have the perfect version of this story in-game. It’s awesome Tekken Anime that lacks the unique flourishes that a full series might allow. With no gameplay and no weird choices, it’s just a simple story about a fighting tournament. Most of Jin’s story has already been told in countless other anime series, often with better budgets and greater depth. Tekken bloodline is a good anime overall, but a fighting game anime needs more than just basic skills. It is without question one of the best entries in the medium, but the medium still has room to grow.
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https://gamerant.com/tekken-bloodlines-best-fighting-game-anime-adaptation/ Is Tekken Bloodlines the best fighting game anime?