Some of the 88's had cam chain issues but most didn't. It depended a lot on the way the bike was driven and any mods that the engines had done. I've seen some 88's with 50 K miles with still a lot of wear left on the cam tensioner.
With gear driven cams you are going to get the wine, listen to a gear driven VFR. As the engine wears the cam chain is much more forgiving if there is any cam/crank variance.
In all engines with a cam chain it has to be considered a wear item at some point in time. With air cooled motorcycle engines they are subject to more variance in their heat/cool cycle throughout their life so I wouldn't find it odd that a cam chain tensioner had to be replaced at some point in time. On many of the older Japanese bikes with adjustable tensioners when you got to the end of the adjustment you had to change the chain/adjuster.
I think modern oils, speaking with synthetics, help to control this wear to an extent but everything wears out, you and me included.
1971 R50/5 Cafe Project
2013 DL650 Adv