- At the Tokyo Game Show 2023, Bandai Namco announced that Panda will return as a playable character in Tekken 8.
- Panda, a staple since Tekken 3, will join a roster of 32 characters at launch, available on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series, and PC via Steam.
- Tekken 8 is scheduled to come out on January 26, 2024.
Fighting game fans around the world were treated to a wonderful surprise when Bandai Namco, which was present at Tokyo Game Show 2023, confirmed that Panda will be available in Tekken 8.
Panda has been a mainstay of the series ever since her debut in Tekken 3. She has also made appearances in a few spin-off games, such as Tekken Tag Tournament and Tekken: Blood Vengeance.
The PlayStation 5, Xbox Series, and PC via Steam will all be able to play Tekken 8, when it launches on January 26, 2024. It’s a wonderful addition to the venerable fighting game franchise, which now boasts a healthy 32 characters overall. In addition to Panda, beloved characters like Paul Phoenix, Hwoarang, Jin Kazama, and Nina Williams are also planned for inclusion. The news increased the excitement that closed-network testing for the PlayStation 5 on July 21 and the Xbox Series S/X and PC on July 28 had already created. During this testing phase, Bandai Namco was able to ensure seamless gaming by improving the online network and rewind netcode, while also facilitating cross-play.
It’s interesting that Bandai Namco chose a fresh strategy for Panda’s debut. The business decided to display a character statue of Panda at their Tokyo Game Show booth, first hidden behind a red curtain, in place of the traditional character trailer. Following this amazing announcement, Tekken 8’s official account tweeted out screenshots from the game showing off the lovable bear in action for its fans.
With a few obvious exceptions, such as switching from a red cap to what looks to be an ear warmer, Panda’s character design in Tekken 8 mostly stays true to her prior appearance in Tekken 7. All of her recognizable jewelry, including her red anklet, bracelets, and scarf, has remained, nevertheless. Although Bandai Namco did not reveal much specifics regarding Panda’s gameplay, the screenshots that were made public did reveal a few of her attacks, such as a powerful claw swipe that is enhanced by a pink visual element.
The unveiling of Panda by Bandai Namco follows closely upon the recent release of Feng Wei.
Remarkably, neither of these characters appeared at all in the extensive Tekken 8 roster leak that occurred earlier this year. Could it be that by refuting the leaks, Katsuhiro Harada is attempting to undermine expectations?
In any event, the event involved malevolent actors effectively breaching a closed network test. This allowed for playtime after the allotted testing window and made file analyses easier, which revealed a lot of previously unreleased characters. While such leaks increase fan interest, they surely provide difficulties for a developer that wants to keep such details confidential until an official reveal.
Given the game’s history and Bandai Namco’s regular, entertaining updates, Tekken 8 is without a doubt one of the most anticipated games of 2024. For both Tekken veterans and beginners, the game offers a sense of nostalgia and newfound excitement with the return of well-loved characters and the inclusion of fresh faces.
The final big-name fighting game being released this fiscal year is Tekken 8. It all began with the highly regarded Street Fighter 6 game, which was soon followed by the favorable reviews of Mortal Kombat 1, which was well accepted on platforms other than the Nintendo Switch. After all this time, it’s still unclear how much Tekken 8 will appeal to fans. If it’s any comfort, Denuvo DRM won’t be present.