Tekken 8 is releasing next year and it’s doing so with a weighty collectors edition. This edition features a statue of Devil Gene-possessed Jin Kazama along with some collectible cards and stickers, and a replica of Leroy Smith’s ring. For a long-time fan of the series, it sounds like a dream, especially given Tekken’s history of being pretty tight with its merchandise. But, while it offers an expansive haul, a hefty price tag has upset my willingness to preorder.
This is a problem for me for two reasons: I love Tekken, and I love video game tat. Compared to the wheelbarrows full of merch for fighting game siblings Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat, Tekken is often quite thin on the ground, which means these top-tier, expensive editions often represent your best bet at getting some lesser-seen collectibles.
Still, this isn’t an easy purchase even if you’re the world’s number-one Tekken fan. There’s no easy way to say it, but the Tekken 8 premium collector’s edition is the same price as a standard Nintendo Switch console, and even my trinket-loving heart is struggling to accept just how much money that is.
For $299.99 / £259.99, you can invest in the newest installment to the Tekken series on PS5, Xbox Series X|S, or PC, alongside a handful of various pieces of merchandise which, yeah, are pretty cool to look at, but you probably won’t display as much as you’d hope - or at least not as much as you’d be likely to display (or actually use) a Nintendo Switch.
What’s on the cards?
With any collector’s edition, you really expect to be wowed by its content, and, over the years, more pressure has been put on these box sets to present something to justify their evergrowing price tags. Taking the Diablo 4 collector’s edition for example, which contained items such as an art book, a candle of creation, and a cloth map of Sanctuary, you can almost - but not quite - overlook the fact it doesn’t even contain a physical copy of the game because of its limited edition contents.
The premium collector's edition of Tekken 8 offers you a burning chain metal plate, an exclusive steel book, some stickers, a couple of collectible cards of fighters, Leroy Smith’s ring, an arcade token, and a 25cm statue of Devil Jin which lights up. On paper that sounds like a bountiful haul, especially given how challenging finding decent Tekken merchandise can be. But, when you really break it down, it’s just not worth the same amount of money as an entire console.
Fighting is all about style.It's time to show off with the #TEKKEN8 Collector's edition 🔥Available NOW for pre-order 🤜 https://t.co/YYmfFW0P4p pic.twitter.com/x2TvB4U0OeAugust 23, 2023
Outside of physical items, numerous in-game cosmetics and four playable characters are on offer, but, once again, I just struggle to believe it's enough to justify its price. Obviously, the game itself is $69.99 / £64.99, which goes into the total of the box, but that still means you’re forking out a wad of cash for the rest of its contents. These offerings just don’t feel as premium as an art book or the Chronomark watch from Starfield’s collector's edition - a box that costs the same amount yet immediately feels like it has far more value.
But instead of a smartwatch, the main appeal of the Tekken 8 collector's edition is the figure of Jin Kazama. Don’t get me wrong - it is a cool statue and would be a great talking point. But we also had a statue as part of the Tekken 7 collector’s edition when that launched back in 2015, and that box didn’t cost nearly as much. In my opinion, this statue is the core selling point of the entire box and, from Bandai Namco’s perspective, you could probably knock off the rest of the contents and still charge a reasonable amount - an amount that wouldn’t equate to the same price as an entire console.
Tekken for a ride
I don’t want to dive into how I think including in-game content like this is a bit of a cop-out for a premium collector’s edition, especially since they are designed to physically promote a game. However, in this scenario, these cosmetics definitely feel like a pre-order bonus rather than a collector's item. It’s slightly different with the four additional playable characters since they’ll undoubtedly be released as a paid expansion once Tekken 8 is released early next year, but still. It’s not exactly collection-worthy.
Maybe I’m projecting. Maybe my over-cluttered shelves and, in turn, my bank account aren’t prepared to make space for yet another set of collectible items that will probably live in their box due to my fear of causing any damage. Maybe that’s why I feel as though the Tekken 8 premium collector’s edition’s price tag is overkill given its content. Frankly, I’m disappointed in what it has to offer when my money could be spent elsewhere.
Will that stop my hand from hovering over the pre-order button each time we see something new about the game? Absolutely not. Sure, there are probably more worthwhile things to spend my money on, like, as I keep referencing, a Nintendo Switch. But, the thing is: I already own a Switch. So, I guess I just have to be the proud owner of the Tekken 8 premium collector’s edition too.