the ultimate tournament held once a year by the mysterious organization
Himitsu Kessha. It is here that the greatest fighters in the world gather
year after year to pit their abilities against one another. This tournament
is no mere competition. To the winner goes unimaginable rewards, and to
the losers...death. It is here that these fighters will decide their own
futures, in the Battle Arena Toshinden.
Epically plain selection
Arena Toshinden was the first ever 3D weapon based fighting game, and also
one of the first fighting games to incorporate the "side-step," which
became a key element in future 3D fighting games. Upon its arrival on PS1, Battle Arena Toshinden turned heads with a
quality of graphics that hadn't yet been seen on a home console fighting game.
As a bold new "3D" fighting game, Toshinden
certainly had a lot to prove. Compared to the crispy clean 2D fighting games
out there, Toshinden's visuals certainly weren't flawless. To be more
blunt, the blocky, disproportional character models, poor texture quality, and
blurry backgrounds definitely hindered the game's visuals.
Them floor textures are
epic as well! ^o^ lol.
characters each have their own unique set of moves, projectiles, and a desperation attack
(which can only be used when a player has low energy). Most characters' special and super
moves are fairly original and lood cool for the most part. The super
moves in particular are pretty flashy, and even have the all important
"ouch factor" that many of us look for in our fighting games.
Characters in Toshinden have a decent variety of movement options. They
can run, jump, and even move in 3D (AKA sidestep)
using the L/R shoulder buttons, allowing them to dodge projectile attacks.
Fighters can also use a Dodge Roll technique, which enables them to be temporality
immune to an opponent's attack (even against a super move). Ring outs can also
occur during gameplay, as characters can fall off the edges of each stage
(which usually ends up looking pretty hilarious).
Some gamers might not be fans of "ring outs" in general, but I think
the ring outs in Toshinden make the game more fun. Toshinden's controls
aren't too bad but do have some clunky areas when compared to other fighters of
For real though... those
graphics were "next gen" for a console in 1995. The PS1 era
really was epic. I miss those days.
designs are a mixed bag in Toshinden... no doubt a few of the designs are
original and have their cool moments. On the flipside, a few of the other
designs come off as a bit generic and uninspiring (although, they did develop
later on). The blocky in-game character models didn't do much for the designs, but the characters
of Toshinden really speak more
with their special moves and abilities. Lastly, Toshinden on PS1 didn't have
much going on in the presentation department. The intro was basically
"text" and nothing else. The early artwork for the game was also
lackluster (another area that was greatly improved upon in the sequels).
Toshinden most definitely is a classic PS1 fighter, a solid launch game for the original Playstation, and
"decent" console fighting game for the time. If you gave
the game a chance and didn't judge it by the subpar box art or blocky graphics,
it was actually a decently fun game. (And no doubt, this game packs a ton of
nostalgia value if you go back to it 15+ years later). Toshinden had humble beginnings, but
the first installment was successful enough to be followed by three sequels.
Three sequels with "mixed success," but three sequels nonetheless.