How Soul Calibur Captured My Soul

Ahead of the release of Soul Calibur V tomorrow,  Electronic Theatre decided this period of calm it would be a nice time to reflect. A chance to look back at just what it is that defines the franchise, what makes it so appealing and just […]
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Ahead of the release of Soul Calibur V tomorrow,  Electronic Theatre decided this period of calm it would be a nice time to reflect. A chance to look back at just what it is that defines the franchise, what makes it so appealing and just how it’s managed to make it through five instalments in a genre so tightly packed with competitors and wannabes. However, instead of simply having the team address their favourites,  Electronic Theatre decided to take this one to the people who matter most: the gamers.

Running through the history of the series,  Electronic Theatre has asked a member of our audience to talk about their favourite title and the reasons why it was such a landmark in gaming. From the very beginning right up until the final swing, below you will find the best that Soul Calibur has to offer.

 

Soul Blade – Tom Jameson

Although Soul Blade (aka Soul Edge) isn’t technically a Soul Calibur game it is of course the basis for the series. Having made its home console debut on the original PlayStation console back in 1997, Soul Blade was critically acclaimed thanks to the inclusion of it’s Edge Master Mode, which is arguably the inspiration for alternative modes such as Mortal Kombat: Deception’s Konquest mode and Soul Calibur II’s Weapon Master Mode. In Soul Calibur V, this is essentially the Story Mode, which is now the core experience of the single-player game.

 

 

Soul Calibur – Jeffrey Nodby

At the time of its release there was no technically superior fighting game available. Despite SEGA leading the charge with Virtua Fighter 3 it was Soul Calibur that set the pace for Dreamcast fighting games at a time when the genre was still presented as a showcase for visual clout. Additionally, Soul Calibur was the pioneer of the eight-way run mechanic; prior to this innovation, 3D fighting games were limited to sidesteps and rolls on the third axis. Surely there’s no better argument for a fundamental change in direction for the genre than Soul Calibur.

 

 

Soul Calibur II – Violet Hick

Soul Calibur II was the first in the series to feature guest characters and as online networks weren’t as prevalent as they are now, the special character in whichever version you bought was the only special character you’d get. As a massive The Legend of Zelda fan, I loved having Link in my game especially as he fitted so well with the rest of the cast. Project Soul couldn’t of done a better job and I don’t think any of the special characters since have been up to the same level of quality.

 

 

Soul Calibur IIICheryl Rowell

            My favourite Soul Calibur game in the series would no doubt be the PlayStation 2 exclusive Soul Calibur III as it’s where I spent a little too much of my teen years creating some bizarre looking monstrosities with the game’s character creator. Looking back, I’m not too sure if there’s a solid reason why gamers do it either, male or female. We just simply get urges to create these things, push limits so to speak, and it may have a tendency showing up in your younger, more unsightly days of teenage gaming. You could choose from multiple fighting styles and weapons and then take that character out into the Soul Calibur world, almost like creating your own personalised pawn for that stage of victory.

 

 

Soul Calibur IV – Matt Patterson

Many fans of the series complained about Soul Calibur IV for many different reasons, but there’s one thing it did that no others could: online play. For me, the ultimate goal of any beat-‘em-up is to fight against your peers, and Electronic Theatre Imagewin. Soul Calibur IV was the first game we could do that it in when our friends weren’t around. As we mature as gamers we move house, have relationships and children, and going round to a friend’s house to spend the evening beating each other’s virtual avatar to a pulp isn’t as easy as it once was; with Soul Calibur IV, none of that mattered.

 

 

Soul Calibur V is set to launch throughout the UK tomorrow, but do you think it could it possibly compete with these classics? What’s your favourite Soul Calibur game? You can read Electronic Theatre’s in-depth review of Soul Calibur V right here, and let us know what you think of the series on the comments below.

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