At the end of the King of Iron Fist 2016 global finals, Bandai Namco made three announcements pertaining to Tekken 7: they revealed new Line stickers for the mobile messaging application; a collaboration with New Japan Pro Wrestling that will give King a nifty new costume; and the return of Kuma and Panda.
To say that many people were disappointed by the reveals is sort of an understatement. I suspect that many were already dismayed by MarkMan’s tweet earlier in the evening saying that there would be no announcement of a Tekken 7 home release, and as such they were expecting a much bigger character to be revealed. When it turned out to be the bears (a character which, admittedly, has always been something of a joke addition in most games in the series) people got angry.
I understand that there are long-standing character archetypes missing from Tekken 7 as it currently stands. Both capos and a member of the Chang family are missing, and Lei players are wondering if there will be anything for them in the new title. That being said, Kuma has been a part of the Tekken series since the original game and there are bear players who were excited—myself included—about the announcement.
It’s a bit like Guilty Gear Xrd when it first released. Many players like myself were without characters in the first iteration of Xrd, and many of us moved to other characters (even if only temporarily). But as the cast had expanded and more characters return to the fold, I’ve been glad to see fellow players get their main choice back. While there is definitely a tipping point as to when a game has too many characters—Tag 2 might have found it—more often than not more options is a good thing.
And that’s what makes it disheartening to see this negative reaction. I felt the same way when the fake Baiken leak hit the GG community and plenty of people were talking about how they never want her back in Gear. Maybe a reveal isn’t what you wanted or hoped for, and maybe a matchup is annoying. But in most cases, a new character is a good thing for a game and is likely giving someone at least a little bit of happiness.
Maybe just let them have it, you know?