Flashback: The Best Games of 1997

With Sony and Nintendo riding high as Sega faltered, this one year defined genres and built franchises like almost no other

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Tekken 3
Bandai Namco12/13

Tekken 3

Tekken 3 hit arcades in 1997, and the PlayStation version that followed a year later managed to sell an incredible 8.5 million copies. Back then the arcade still felt like the real home of fighting games, and Tekken 3 quickly became the star of every badly-ventilated building full of teenagers, supplanting Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat for a brief while. Tekken 3 was a game both button-mashers and masters of obscure techniques learned from magazines could enjoy, with characters like the jaguar-masked King able to launch claw combos by hammering the punch buttons, while mastery of Nina's multi-step limb-breaking moves could make players the stuff of legend. Also, it had Panda on the roster – yes, a literal panda bear.

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