No game that is such a clear and iconic ambassador of its genre as Tekken. The franchise has consistently been a pillar of the fighting game community for decades now.
Its latest iteration, Tekken 7, which was released for arcades along with multiple home consoles, stands as one of the best competitive fighting games in the industry today.
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Ranking All Fighters In Tekken 7
One of Tekken 7’s main draws for casual and competitive players alike is how simple yet balanced the gameplay and characters are.
This is one fighting game where pro players have no problem saying, “You can play whichever character you want because your skill is what ultimately determines your performance”. This rings true and is a testament to the game’s perfect balance of fighters.
This doesn’t mean that putting together a tier list for this game isn’t possible. On the contrary, we can rank fighters based on their performance in tournaments and data from thousands of matches online.
That’s exactly what we have in store for you in this article, so read on to see our latest tier list for Tekken 7.
|Akuma||As far as burst damage goes, Akuma is one of the best to dish it out. His damage can be overwhelming whether you’re in the lead or falling behind. He’s one of the riskier fighters to use because of his high skill cap though.|
|Fahkumram||Fahkumram is the definition of a complete package. He has strong attacks and good combos – which extend to several mix-up choices, by the way. He can net several wins with minimal effort on the player’s part.|
|Geese||Moonslicer carries Geese to the top of the rankings this time. It’s just that good of a move to set up and bridge combos. This allows Geese to move in on the opponent without worrying too much about the punishment.|
|Julia||Julia has made her mark in the top tier with her fantastic neutral game and dizzying mix-ups. That said, Julia’s play has one of the hardest skill caps in the game so make sure to put in all those hours in the lab if you want to make her shine.|
|Leroy||Leroy’s still dominant on the Tekken 7 stage. His hits are hard, accurate, and safe – making him a regular in competitive matches and a good choice for players of varying experience.|
|Steve||Steve can be a tricky fighter to learn but once you do, the rewards will show themselves. He has an unorthodox style of fighting – opting for fast punches and mesmerizing bob & weaves in place of kicks. He’s speedy, has decent combos (both ground and air), and is an overall beast on the offensive end.|
|Marduk||Marduk exemplifies the rushdown fighter archetype well. Instead of a flurry of moves and combos, however, Marduk rushes in with his tackles. You can use them offensively to pressure opponents or as effective counters that reset the fight. The opponent will have a tough time nonetheless.|
|Jin||Jin has every tool needed to succeed but he becomes a challenge to master, especially against good competition.|
|Dragunov||Dragunov works best when he’s rushing down opponents. His moves hit hard, and his combos are oppressive. He has some grappling ability as well. Overall, Dragunov has been solid, but a lot of the fighters have caught up with him.|
|Bryan||Bryan has strong but short attacks. His viability increases as he gets closer to his opponent, especially when the opponent is near a wall.|
|Kazumi||Unsurprisingly, Kazumi plays a lot like Kazuya. Committal moves that work best in close quarters. What sets her apart is that she has tools to help her approach the enemy. She doesn’t have the damage output from combos that Kazuya has though.|
|Jack 7||Jack fits the slow but strong mold of fighters. He can decimate an opponent quickly, but that depends on how good the player is at creating mix-ups and unpredictable combos.|
|Claudio||Claudio is one of the few true mid-rangers in the game. His offense relies on baiting opponents with his approaches then punishing them when they whiff their attacks. His Starburst is more than a gimmick and can be useful in a variety of situations.|
|King||As expected from the foremost grappler in the franchise, King’s unique playstyle is viable for experts but has plenty of holes in it. There are better options out there, but his style makes him unique enough to make you choose him.|
|Ganryu||Despite the initial learning curve, Ganryu’s pretty good. He has slow, heavy-hitting attacks that are balanced with his surprisingly agile mobility. Oddly enough, his strikes are superior to his grabs, so he’s best utilized as a mid-poking fighter.|
|Paul||It’s easy to see why Paul is one of the most popular fighters in Tekken 7. He has devastating offensive options that only increase in viability as the player masters the side sway-evade into one of his punches. He’s supposedly a slow character, but it doesn’t feel that way due to his fluid combos and good frame data.|
|Miguel||Miguel has devastating attacks and decent mix-ups but his slow movement can be a disadvantage in competitive play.|
|Devil Jin||With solid offensive and defensive options, Devil Jin sees his way onto the top tier. He can also buff himself with electric attacks, so that’s a plus.|
|Eliza||Eliza benefits when having a skilled player control her. She has all the tools needed to win: projectiles, speed, power. The problem is the lack of variety in her attacks. Her lows and highs are subpar compared to others’ – making her a bit one-dimensional for competitive play.|
|Heihachi||Heihachi can have overwhelming offense under the right player. His lows are quick, and his launchers hit hard. The problem is that a lot of his moves are telegraphed, which can place him at a disadvantage with counter fighters like Claudio.|
|Josie||Josie is a hard-hitting fighter who is surprisingly quick on her feet. She’s easy to use, but all that simplicity makes her ceiling too low in competitive matches.|
|Kazuya||Kazuya is a fighter for players who are sure of their skills. His moves are very committal – often leaving him vulnerable if you whiff some combos. If you can properly execute them, however, the damage will be there.|
|Kunimitsu||We haven’t seen much of Kunimitsu’s potential on the big stages yet. She’s a mix-up and poke fighter, but there are better options out there.|
|Lee||While not as fast as other fighters, Lee pokes opponents with unpredictable moves that sometimes look delayable in the heat of battle.|
|Lidia Sobieska||Lidia is mostly used for pressuring the enemy and putting them in weird situations. She is pretty linear, but in good hands, Lidia is a force to be reckoned with.|
|Feng Wei||There’s nothing bad about Feng’s move set at all. That said, he’s on this tier because none of his moves are stellar as well.|
|Lili||Lili’s calling card is her movement and decent range on her attacks. She’s friendly for beginners has a difficult time once the competition ramps up.|
|Law||Law seems beginner-friendly – and he is to some extent. His moves aren’t that complicated. However, the best Law players go beyond his arsenal of kicks, flips, and somersaults and make him a more planted player. With this style, he’s less likely to take punishment – filling those holes in his defense.|
|Shaheen||Shaheen has decent tools to keep up with any matchup, but not enough to dominate in them. He’s a good poker and counter fighter but the lack of effective low attacks holds back his versatility.|
|Alisa||Alisa has poking tools that go along with her movement and mix-ups that she can use to her advantage. She leaves you a bit wanting in the damage department, but everything else about her is great.|
|Master Raven||Master Raven is a safe fighter to use due to the range of her attacks, safe teleports, and quick movement. She lacks a bit on the damage department though.|
|Negan||Negan’s utility is bolstered by the range of some of his moves. He’s a Claudio-like fighter who prefers to punish whiffs rather than back his opponent into a corner.|
|Eddy||Eddy’s flashy capoeira style of fighting is perfect if you want to have fun and dance your way to victory after a long day. Do note that victory will not come easy as he simply does not have good offensive and defensive tools to put pressure on the opponent.|
|Xiaoyu||Xiaoyu is a technical fighter who can throw opponents off with her stances and quick strikes. She has good movement and evasion options as well.|
|Asuka||Asuka is best utilized as a defensive punisher. She’s easy to use, but her ceiling is lower than other fighters’.|
|Bob||Bob is an all-around fast fighter who is also quite easy to pick up and play. His quick attacks allow him decent poking as well as good punishes.|
|Zafina||Zafina was built for players with quickness in mind. She has great mobility. This gives her all the defensive tools she needs. On the offensive end, she benefits from good moves that transition well into combos.|
|Leo||Leo is a fast and flashy fighter who specializes in long combos with multiple hits. The problem is that his openers are predictable, so he has a tough time with punisher fighters or those who evade well.|
|Nina||Nina’s speedy attacks and long combos can get annoying when you’re on the receiving end of them. Luckily for the opponent, they don’t do as much damage. Nina also has a high skill cap, and her juggles require precise execution.|
|Lars||While Lars’ combos being the best in the game can be argued, it can’t be denied that he has the flashiest ones. Good Lars players can execute these, especially the wall juggles with ease. He’s not easy to use because of his lack of defensive options.|
|Hwoarang||Hwoarang is a solid fighter albeit a difficult one to use. There’s a skill barrier with him and his varying stances and vast move list. His kicks are best utilized after his poking punches as they’re not as quick as other fighters’ moves.|
|Katarina||Katarina is a simple fighter to play. Her move set is straightforward, which is probably why nothing about it is excellent.|
|Yoshimitsu||Yoshimitsu just introduces chaos in a match. Whether the controlling player is affected by that as well depends on their skill. His move set is weird and erratic – and that has certain advantages to it, but the lack of clear direction on his playstyle is ultimately his downfall.|
|Anna||Anna doesn’t require a precise setup as Nina does. On the flip side, she’s much less oppressive because of her predictable moves and launchers.|
|Lei||He’s very unforgiving for beginners because of his varied stances and playstyle that rewards players who perfectly punish their opponent. Is the risk worth it? Probably when you’ve had over a hundred hours of Lei practice under your belt.|
|Armored King||Unlike the grappling god that is King, Armor King opts for pressure-heavy strikes that are initiated by his gap closers. For this to work, the player needs to be very mindful of technical stuff like spacing, positioning, and timing on the punish.|
|Noctis||Noctis’ style has translated into Tekken well. He’s a simple fighter who emphasizes defense and good reads. His game is unique, but not enough to throw the opponents off-guard.|
|Gigas||Gigas excels at rushing down opponents. That’s it. He’s best used with offensive blinders on – pressuring your opponent towards the wall at all times. When this doesn’t work, that’s when Gigas’ horrendous defense is highlighted. He’s good when he pressures opponents but not the other way around.|
|Lucky Chloe||Against beginners, Lucky Chloe is a nightmare because of her gimmicky moves. Once you get more experience, however, you’ll soon find out that she has several flaws in her game.|
|Kuma/Panda||Unless you’re Rangchu, you have no business using these creatures in high-level competitions. Their hitboxes are a major disadvantage. Their offensive game is tough to master yet yields only serviceable rewards.|
How To Win More Games In Tekken 7
As mentioned earlier, the fighters’ rankings don’t matter as much as the skill and familiarity of the players using them. Tekken is a well-balanced and technical fighting game that lets you make any character shine if you have enough practice.
For this reason, we’ve made this list of popular terms with their meanings in Tekken (and in the fighting game genre). In the last section of this guide, you can also find some tips to help you get started in mastering the competitive aspect of Tekken 7.
Popular Terms In Tekken
- Frames – A unit of time used to measure how fast certain moves are executed by the fighter. There are a few cases in tournaments where a character wins a match because they used a move with fewer frames (the move will connect faster).
- Juggle – A term often used in the fighting game community. It refers to the action of hitting your opponent while they are suspended in midair (making blocks impossible).
- Launch – Refers to the act of striking your opponent so that they get up in the air in preparation for a juggle.
- Punish – Taking advantage of an opponent’s mistakes (usually a missed strike or grab, or poor positioning). The best players can instantly capitalize on other players’ missteps.
- Poke – Poking is like jabbing in boxing. It’s used as a quick, low-damage move that can gauge the opponent’s position or disrupt a combo. You can also use it to set up a combo of your own.
- Pushback – The distance a fighter moves back after a successful block. If you’re on the offensive, using moves that have great pushback can prevent the opponent from punishing you.
- Tech – “Teching” is a popular skill in fighting games wherein you cancel some frames by hitting punch or kick at the right time. The best example of this is teching before hitting the ground to get up faster, avoiding the enemy.
- Wall splat/walling – Refers to a situation wherein a fighter is pinned to the edge of the arena, therefore making them more vulnerable to chain combos and juggles.
Tips To Get Better In Tekken 7
1. Master Proper Movement And Positioning
In Tekken, the stationary fighter is at a disadvantage. It’s easy for the opponent to overwhelm you with combos if you’re not moving out of the way. It’s important to practice proper distancing relative to the fighter. This is a basic skill with compound benefits in the long run because it’s useful to avoid damage and set up combos.
2. Choose Whoever You Want, But Make Sure To Practice
Before pro players were dominating tournaments, they spent long hours in Tekken 7’s Practice Mode. If you’re a beginner, this mode will help you get comfortable with your main fighter’s move set. As you gain experience, you’ll find yourself practicing more technical concepts to see how they would fit in a real match.
3. Take Advantage Of The Rage System
Tekken 7’s Rage system ensures that no fighter is ever out of the match, no matter how low their health is.
Once your fighter’s health dips below 20%, they’ll enter Rage mode. In this mode, you can either do a Rage Art or a Rage Drive.
The former is a special move that does a lot of damage (provided your opponent hasn’t blocked them), while the latter are complex moves used as combo starters, or defensive bolsters to whittle away your opponent’s health.
4. Don’t Be Afraid To Challenge Other People
After all, what’s the worst that could happen? You’ll lose – that’s it. With each loss, you’re learning something new that you can apply in practice or other matches.
The bottom line is that it’s extremely difficult to ascend to the top tier of players by just beating the computer AI over and over again.
Many people would say that Tekken has a high skill cap and that is true, but it doesn’t mean that it’s not accessible to beginners as well.
If you look at the tier list and the tips in this guide as a primary reference, you’ll be ready to start your journey to the top of the Tekken 7 leaderboards.