Filled with intrigue and drama, the Tekken games are like violent soap operas in which women are the complex stars
A young woman stands at the grave of her recently departed father, her blond hair in a ponytail. After a quiet moment, she places flowers on the ground, then hears the crunch of gravel behind her. She whips around, pulls out her gun and finds a brunette woman of roughly her own age. The brunette smiles faintly and reassures the blonde that shes not here to fight. She, too, is here to pay her respects. They walk past one another, visibly tense in blocky 1996 animation, and decide to let the feud rest. For today.
This is one of the more conservative story endings for Nina Williams, a much-beloved combatant in the Tekken series of fighting games. In conversations around classic female video games characters, she often gets overlooked. Street Fighters Chun-Li is the first lady of the fighting genre (the Princess Leia buns, the thighs that launched a thousand crushed to death fetishes) and, although Peach wins the popular vote, no one has ever come close to stealing Lara Crofts crown when it comes to overall iconic omnipresence. But growing up, Nina Williams was by far my favourite character, which naturally made Tekken my favourite two-player title. It wasnt just that she was Irish although I remember gasping the moment I read that in the Tekken 2 booklet, it being the first time I had anything in common with a woman from a video game it was that I felt as if I knew things about her.