Bandai Namco announced Tekken 8 earlier this week, and we recently got a chance to sit down with lead producer Katsuhiro Harada to talk about the anticipated sequel in a wide-ranging interview. Here’s five things we learned while talking to Harada.
Yes, Tekken 8 Will Use Unreal Engine 5
After some questions from fans, Harada confirmed that Tekken 8 is indeed be developed in Unreal Engine 5. The shift brings with it a host of benefits, such as the ability to have sweat and rain actually roll down a character’s face during a fight. Indeed, it’s being rebuilt from the ground up to take advantage of the new technology.
“We’ve been working closely with Epic to figure out how to optimize some of those processes for input. So we’re just starting and it’s going to continue from now on,” Harada says.
Last year, Tekken’s Kazuya Mishima made his way to Super Smash Bros. courtesy of Sakurai and Harada. The experience was “quite a shock,” Harada says.
“He had already had his own thoughts about what makes ‘Tekken Tekken.’ So it was surprising but also refreshing to see that he came in and didn’t ask questions, but said, ‘I’ve played a lot of Tekken and studied it, and this is what I feel is important for the game,’ right off the bat,” Harada says.
It left him feeling that Sakurai might be the only who can “properly make” a game like Super Smash Bros.
No, the Tekken 8 Team Isn’t Ready to Talk About Rollback Netcode
Rollback Netcode is a popular topic within the fighting game community, as it has the potential to greatly impact a game’s multiplayer. Will Tekken 8 have it? It’s still early to say one way or another, according to Tekken 8’s development team, meaning fans will have to wait.
Announcing First on Console is “Quite Notable”
Tekken is one of the biggest arcade holdouts, with Namco Bandai consistently pushing standup versions of the fighting series before releasing enhanced versions on console later. Harada isn’t ready to talk about an arcade release, but he does categorize it being announced first on console as “quite notable.”
“What we can say is that this is the first time in the history of the series that we’ve announced a console version first. So that in itself is quite notable. And that’s all we can say at this point,” Harada says.
Guest characters were a notable part of Tekken 7, with Noctis, Geese Howard, Akuma, and The Walking Dead’s Negan. It was a departure for the series, but one that Harada ultimately considers to be a positive.
“I brought up that working with [Yasuyuki Oda] from SNK and how we had him on our panel at Comic-Con one year and that building those relationships is also a really cool part of working with other companies. It’s obviously something that we enjoy doing, and if the fans enjoy it, it’s something that we would consider again. That’s as far as we can go,” Harada says.
He also talked about what it was like to have Oda introduce himself to Bandai Namco’s president and start pointing out characters like Akuma, which you can read about in the final article. Beyond that, Harada talks about a host of topics, delving into topics such as the Rage system, slow-motion, and the overall arc of the story.
Tekken 8 is in development for Xbox Series X|S, PC, and PS5. It does not yet have a release date.
Kat Bailey is a Senior News Editor at IGN as well as co-host of Nintendo Voice Chat. Have a tip? Send her a DM at @the_katbot.