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Tekken was originally planned to have a very different name

Namco couldn't acquire the trademark for it, however

Posted by Dakota 'DarkHorse' Hills • April 1, 2021 at 2:54 p.m. PDT • Comments: 15

Tekken's grown over the past 27 years to become one of the biggest fighting game franchises around with over 50 million copies sold to date, but there was a time when it went by a very different name.

Katsuhiro Harada recently released the third episode in his new Harada's Bar video series where he brought in the father of PlayStation, Ken Kutaragi, alongside DNG|Itabashi Zangief, commentator Genya and eSports photographer Akira Ohsu to discuss the early days of Tekken development — including an original working title that is different from the one you may have heard of before.

Shortly into the talks over drinks, Kutaragi reminisces about the time the Tekken project was first revealed at a Japanese trade show under the name of Kamui, which translates to something like 'Power of God.'

Some players from the early '90s may remember the EGM issue where Tekken was titled as Rave War, but that was likely a western-specific name that was dropped to keep it cohesive around the world.

Kutaragi laments that they couldn't secure the trademark for Kamui, but it probably turned out for the best because of how easy Tekken is to pronounce in most languages.

They also delve deeper into the process a bit more where Harada states that the original Tekken was actually the first game to release using PlayStation hardware considering it ran on Namco's System 11 board based on Sony's then upcoming console.

The latter half of the video focuses on the Japanese game development culture at the time where both industry veterans talk about essentially living in their offices, including one Tekken programmer who had a curtain under his desk to sleep where he'd occasionally crack open a beer.

Despite the way it may sound to a modern working landscape, Harada says they were not forced to stay and work, but instead they willingly chose to for a number of reasons.

One example was that the offices had high-speed internet, which Harada says would have cost around $1,000 USD a month to have at home at the time, along with access to giant monitors and high-end PCs to play games on.

Harada equates it to only having Netflix and Wi-Fi at the office and asks the younger generation if they'd stay at work to enjoy some of the amenities.

This isn't the first time the series director has talked about the early days of Tekken recently, as Harada also spoke about the time he was voluntarily knocked out by a pro wrestler when recording the motion capture footage for King in Tekken 3.

You can check out the full episode of Harada's Bar below, and I'm sure Itazan and the others will have more to talk about on the competitive side of fighting games in upcoming entries.

Image source: The Ting Tings - That's Not My Name.

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