Soulcalibur has always been one of those games that was an underdog to its peers such as Tekken and Mortal Kombat. But maybe SoulCalibur V has changed that? Find out here in the Official SoulCalibur V Review. The legend of the soul swords has been one going on now for 16 years since the release of Soul Edge for the Arcades back in 1996. Since then we have seen a series grow and expand, a story like no other currently in a arcade fighting genre game. Always managing to include our favourite heroes and sometimes villains from other media to make the experience even more enjoyable. But there has always been challenges with SoulCalibur, coming from the same Developers as Tekken it has been seen as the underdog game and people just picking it up because they want a game like Tekken. But with SoulCalibur V that is about to change.
When you start the game you are given a multiple of options from online play, arcade, story and the option to make your own character, which is a good feature to bring back especially as they have added to it to make it even more customisable with being able to edit current players or just completely start from scratch. The story is set many years after SoulCalibur IV with the protagonist being Patroklos (who is the son of the previous games protagonist Sophitia) and his journey against nightmare. From the epic open sequence you are wanting to see this story right through to the end!
The arcade mode offers you a six stage opponent structure, as with all fighting games the first three opponents are of ease then as you hit the fourth opponent you can tell things have been turned up a notch. But this is where I would like to mention the combos, combining a use of weapons with the attacks comes in very handy throughout these stages. *Personal tip, Ezio (assassins creed) has a range attack with a gun, very useful* Within the arcade and story mode a lot has changed to give the player more of a challenge, armour can still be destroyed but you will not know when without an indicator this time. But it has been replaced with a new metre that charges for “Brave Edge” and “Critical Edge” attacks which is a more powerful attack really leaving the opponent helpless with little health or none.
Just Guard is a new feature added to the mix which is an adaption of Guard Impact we have seen in the previous games of the series. Its judged on how well you use your guard on attacks, if you guard yourself the minute the opponent attacks this will get you a “perfect guard” which will result in you being able to retaliate faster giving you an advantage. But if you miss the guard or react slowly, it will slow down your reaction time and could put the round in the favour of the opponent. Ring outs are always a good technique by bashing the player to the edge and hoping they will fall, but now the developers have made it so certain stages you can both fall out when one opponent is knocked out of the ring. The online play is a lot of fun; the game maintains its amazing structure and spectacular game play through battles with friends. Ranked matches are always good to get your name up there (if you’re good enough). Global Coliseum is something I really like, the ability to have extended lobbies that gives you access to around 50 players is amazing across all the different regions of the world, you could just spend your whole time fighting on there and not get bored. As with most games your gamer card can be modified with effects and badges to have it stylised the way you want it. With this you can place your gamer card into the random match mode which will give you Soul Link is a new feature which is quite different to other games; you are able to pick a few players to monitor through their time online playing and will give you all their stats information, kind of like a log system.
SoulCalibur V really pushed the graphics forward for fighting games and truely utilizes the power the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 have. It just flows, from massive combos to the amazing back grounds of the arenas the graphics constantly impress. The arenas are also amazingly created places, such detail and care has gone into making these very impressive fighting areas to destroy your opponents in. The in game effects and music matches perfectly with the stage and situation you are in adding that drama element to the game play. Before each fight they have this words of wisdom which is to spur the player on for the fight he/she is about to undergo. I haven’t played fighting games for a while and this was the perfect game to welcome me back to the genre. BandaiNamco have done such an amazing job with this instalment of the SoulCalibur series, it is never easy to keep a title running for sixteen plus years but they have managed it. Always adding new ideas and characters to the mix they have created an amazing series of games. This game proves it is one of the great fighting games and WILL give any other same genre game a run for its money this year. With a use of cutting edge game play, stunning graphics and a online system that is like no other fighting game out there, SoulCalibur V is the game for you!
Rival Tide Score (8/10) “in the running for fighting game of the year”
Reviewed on Playstation 3
Thank you to all at NAMCOBANDAI
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