Battle Arena Toshinden (PlayStation)

ESRB Rating
Critic Score
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
User Score
5 point score based on user ratings.

User Reviews

Could have been a contender Alex L (211) 2.8 Stars2.8 Stars2.8 Stars2.8 Stars2.8 Stars

Our Users Say

Category Description User Score
AI How smart (or dumb) you perceive the game's artificial intelligence to be 3.3
Gameplay How well the game mechanics work (player controls, game action, interface, etc.) 3.6
Graphics The quality of the art, or the quality/speed of the drawing routines 3.5
Personal Slant How much you personally like the game, regardless of other attributes 3.7
Sound / Music The quality of the sound effects and/or music composition 3.7
Overall User Score (14 votes) 3.6

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
Game Players
If you buy only one title for your Playstation, make sure it's this one. It's the kind of game that not only 'wows' your friends, but it'll also hold up over time.
וואוו! טושינדן מהווה מכת פתיחה רצינית ביותר לפלייסטיישן. זה משחק שמאפשר לטעום את הביצועים המדהימים שהמכשיר הזה מציע! שימו עליו עין!
GamePro (US)
All in all, Toh Shin Den is a great fighting game. The texture-mapped polygon look is amazing, and the sidestepping feature brings something new to defense. With a little tweaking of the controls and fighting angles, this fighter could have been a perfect contender.
Video Games & Computer Entertainment
Battle Arena Toshinden will forever change the way you look at fighting games (at least until you see Tekken in a few months). It's exciting to see where the next level of gaming platforms is taking us. Just think, this game is being released in the early months of Playstation's existence. What will be seeing two years from now?
Video Games
Unbelievable! Takara ist mit seinem Playstation-Debüt ein echtes Meisterwerk gelungen. Die Spielbarkeit von Toh Shin Den ist in jenen traumhaften Regionen des Beat‘em Up-Genres anzusiedeln, in die im klassischen 2D-Bereich nur solche Meilensteine wie Street Fighter oder die besten SNK-Fighter vorstoßen konnten.
GameFan Magazine
The Japanese version of Toshinden is one of my favorite fighting games ever and is quite obviously on the the most groundbreaking home games of all time. This is still true of the American version, but the "minor" changes inflicted on a near-perfect game by SCEA caused TSD to slip slightly on the Nick Rox Joy Chart. Although still a fantastic game, the new voices and broke L and R buttons caused me much heartbreak.
Game Revolution
Although Battle Arena Toshinden doesn't have anything that we haven't seen before in a polygonal fighting game, is a very good example of the genre. If you are a fan of VS fighting games, or if you have a few friends you've been dying to beat up, this game should keep all of you entertained for a long time.
Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM)
Toshinden is the most visually impressive fighting game I have ever seen. The game plays well and the characters are all pretty cool. Unfortunately, once you've seen all it has to offer, it loses it's appeal. Don't get me wrong. I enjoy Toshinden, but it gets tiresome. The American version as changed voices and music. Most of you won't really care, but if you've played the import game, it is rather annoying. Toshinden is cool. Show it off to your friends.
CD Player
Atemberaubend, was Takaras Grafikspezialisten aus der Playstation kitzeln. Jede «Tohshinden«-Arena ist ein Augenschmaus: Ob schimmernde Wolken, Lichtkegel oder glühende Höhlen — überall möchte man stundenlang den Hintergrund genießen. Doch dafür bleibt keine Zeit, denn die Gegner verlangen Ihr ganzes Können: Um Peitschenhieben, Lanzenstichen und schweren Betonklötzen zu entgehen, ziehen Sie alle Register dieses spielerisch durchdachten Beat‘em-Ups. Statt wie bei «Tekken« viel Wert auf Kombos zu legen, zählen clevere Angriffe und der rechtzeitige Einsatz der vielfältigen Special-Moves. Die Tekken-Helden beherrschen mehr verschiedene Schläge, dafür ist Tohshinden nicht so hektisch, sieht eindrucksvoller aus und macht Prügel-Anfängern deutlich mehr Spaß, endlich in drei Dimensionen zu kämpfen
GamePro (US)
With it's stunning visuals, Battle Arena Toshinden is as fun to watch as it is to play. Had there been more technique involved, this arena could have been a real contender. It's a formidable effort, but fighting buffs may pick this game clean too quickly.
Coming Soon Magazine
Toh Shin Den by Takara is the ultimate fight of the underground world. This fight, which has not been held for a long time, is called the Techo-Rage and has brought together eight of the world's best travelling fighters. Some of them have come for personal glory while others have come for their loved ones. They are prepared to do their utmost to gain victory. Will you be strong enough to help bring one of them to glory?

The graphics are also equally impressive. In fact, one might even say they were gorgeous. The backgrounds are nice, and the detail in the characters' faces is exceptional. The game also makes good use of light shading. Not as impressive as, say, Tekken 2, but then again, BAT was part of the PlayStation's initial launch group. The game makes good use of the basic fighter preset - kick, punch, etc.- and throws in a few cool projectiles to boot. Unfortunately, Toshinden does tend to respond a little slowly. And in fighters, that can mean everything.
MAXIMUM Magazine
Battle Arena Toshinden looks good (although the animation on the fighters is not a patch on similar games in the genre) and plays entertainingly enough - however, Namco's Tekken title (out officially in November) is faster, smoother, has more moves and far more characters to master. Our advice would be to leave this on the shelves and wait for the Namco title - it's a whole generation beyond this release.
Thunderbolt Games
Despite its gameplay flaws, I still view Toshinden as somewhat of a breakthrough game on the PlayStation. It introduced the wonders of 3D fighting to the console gaming world and that in itself is something I look back fondly on. But, as a fighting game compared to the many great brawlers available today it just doesn’t have the gameplay depth to compete. Go out and pick up a used copy of Battle Arena Toshinden if you want to experience a little piece of videogaming history, but don’t expect much more than that or you’re bound to be disappointed.
The Video Game Critic
The characters are a bit blocky with visible polygon seams, and the stages do a lousy job of blending photo-realistic backgrounds with chunky polygon foregrounds. While not as deep as Tekken, Toshinden is still a respectable game, and unlike many other fighters, its matches don't run very long. Its age is clearly showing, but Toshinden is an interesting game to look back on.
Ultimately, Battle Arena Toshinden is a forgettable fighting game overshadowed by its brothers. Genre titles released well before Battle Arena arrived on the scene manage to outperform it in terms of speed and all around entertainment. That alone set the game up for obscurity, and with the eventual release of games like Tekken and Soul Blade, Battle Arena became an even less desirable choice. From there, the game had nowhere to go but the cold limbo of obsolescence, where it joined myriad WWF/E video games and a handful of forgotten launch titles. There you can still find it, and possibly you’ll even enjoy it… if you're willing to forget all of the advancements showcased in modern fighting games.