New to the King of Iron Fist Tournament? Here are 7 tips to help you overcome the early learning curve of Tekken 7.
It’s a good time to introduce yourself to Tekken, the gonzo fighting series that throws Panda Bears and robotic weirdos into its ever-growing roster of strange people and even stranger creatures. There’s no end to the silliness, but you’ll find a deadly serious community of hardcore fans — and they’ve got plenty of resources to help you get started on your Tekken 7 journey.
Below, we’ve compiled 7 tips for players just getting started. How to get started, what characters to pick, and which settings to change are the first steps. Later, we’ve also included links to incredibly helpful community resources that just might help you master your favorite fighters.
More Tekken 7 guides on The Escapist:
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7 Tips & Resources To Get Started | Beginner’s Guide
Tekken 7 is a pretty complex game. Every fighter has a huge list of combos, and you’ll need to learn which moves to use in any given situation. Before doing anything, learning the basis if your best bet — and that’s available before you’ve even finished installing the game.
#1: Practice, Practice, Practice
Whether you’re a beginner or a Tekken veteran, it’s a good idea to jump straight into the Practice mode, available in the Offline options menu.
Here, you can select a character and run through every button input without going through endless menu options. We recommend starting with this setup:
- Under “Action Settings” -> Select Move List -> Press “Display In-Game”
- Under “Display Settings” -> Select Command History -> Set “Display”
Now you’ll be able to see your command inputs and scroll through the complete list of moves. The Move List menu also allows you to demo your moves.
- To test the new Rage Arts, go to “Other Settings” and and set “Player Rage” to “On”.
Still haven’t decided on a character? Check below for some recommendations!
#2: Some Characters Are Better For Beginners
Not all characters are created equal. Akuma and Devil Jin might look awesome, but they’re hardly friendly for first-timers. I suggest starting with simpler starters — there are plenty to choose from, but here are a few examples.
- Paul Phoenix
There are plenty of other amazing fighters that might just click with your playstyle. You’ll want to give everyone a try — just remember the fighting game maxim: choose the coolest looking character first.
#3: Make Inputs Easier — Change Your Controller Setup
Tekken employs some pretty tricky inputs — especially if you’re stuck with a simple controller. Pressing [LP+RK] or [LK+RP] on a basic gamepad can cause some serious carpal tunnel.
If you’re having problems inputting those button combinations, it’s time to start changing the Controller Setup.
Use the shoulders / triggers or even [R3 / L3] to create a single-input command. That can make life much, much easier if you’re struggling with certain moves.
#4: What Are Rage Arts & Rage Drives?
A new feature exclusive to Tekken 7, Rage Arts are basically “Super Moves” — special attacks that, if they land, will initiate an animation that dishes out a pretty good amount of damage.
Rage Arts (and Rage Drives) can only be initiated when your character flashes red. When you’re infused with rage, you can unleash a Rage Art! By default, Rage Arts are mapped to [R1 / RB] on controllers, but they can also be initiated with a certain button combo, available in the Move List.
After initiating a Rage Art, your character will gain armor. That means they will absorb any attack and won’t flinch. Just be careful, you’ll still take damage. You can still be KO’d while attempting a Rage Art.
#5: Like Customization? Play Treasure Battle
Treasure Battle is an endless offline mode for Tekken 7, pitting you against an infinite succession of CPU fighters. Defeating them will reward you with Fight Money and treasure chests that unlock new customization items for purchase in the Customization menu.
There are tons of locked customization options, but you’ll never have to worry about getting repeats. Once unlocked, an item can be unlocked again. Sometimes, you’ll get other rewards — special battles to get more chests with higher rarity, or fights against mirror opponents. A victory will unlock the CPU fighter’s customization pieces.
Treasure Battle and Arcade Battle are the easiest ways to increase your player ranking too. At certain intervals, you’ll experience “Promotion Battles” — a victory will lead to a promotion, and more player card customization.
#6: Attack & Defense – The Key Info
Fighting in Tekken 7 is quick and brutal, and wildly swinging in with attacks won’t work… unless you’re playing Eddy. No, you’ll want to understand the basics of blocking, attacking, and space control early if you want to win.
There are three types of attacks in Tekken 7. Low, Mid, and High attacks.
- Low Attacks: Hit standing or crouching opponents. Cannot be blocked while standing, but can be blocked while crouching.
- Mid Attacks: Hit standing or crouching opponents. Cannot be blocked while crouching, but can be blocked while standing.
- High Attacks: Hit standing opponents but miss crouching opponents. Can by blocking while standing.
Early, it’s helpful to learn combo strings that change the type of attack, throwing your opponent off-guard. Switching from low attacks to mid attacks, or vice versa, can help get through a blocking opponent’s defenses.
Defense is important too. There are two types of guards: standing guard and crouching guard. Remain in a [Neutral] state to guard and significantly lower the amount of damage you take.
- Standing Guard: Blocks high and mid attacks, but won’t block low attacks.
- Crouching Guard: Blocks low attacks and dodges high attacks, but won’t block mid attacks.
Guards aren’t perfect, either. Throws (at very close range) will break through guard. If you want to win, you’ll need to guard. Guarding will leave opponents open to attack!
Tekken 7 isn’t a 2D fighter. You’ll want to use 3D movement to avoid attacks, side-step around kicks, and launch your own attacks. Check the movelist for sidestep attacks, or simply double-tap [Up] or [Down] to swiftly step left / right of your opponent.
Controlling your distance is important too. Double-tap [Left] or [Right] allows you to quickstep backwards or towards your enemy. Against early CPU, retreating then using a move that allows you to quickstep forward with a kick can make life so much easier.
#7: Want To Dig Deeper? Check Out These Fan Resources
We’re only scratching the surface of Tekken 7, but if you want to really train to become the King of the Iron Fist Tournament, there’s plenty of amazing fan-created resources available online with breakdowns for each character, frame data, and print-friendly lists so you won’t have to keep your phone open when reading through advice.
- Great guide for beginners with simple character strength / weakness breakdowns.
- A comprehensive character information doc covering every character.
- Find frame data for all characters here.
That’s just touching the iceberg of resources and information you’ll need to really master Tekken 7. Every fighter has to start somewhere, right?