Soul Calibur V Game Review
Soul Calibur is a weapon based series of fighting games. The game, Soul Blade, made its first appearance in arcades in 1995 and came out on the Playstation 1 in 1996. The game was a hit, so Namco hit us with that stuff the fans couldn't get enough of and gave is a new name and fighting system called 8-way run that allows you to move your character around your opponent in 8 different directions. So, instead of you as the player just being limited to going forward and backwards, it is a more realistic and enjoyable experience for the player. The soul series added a flavor and excitement to the fighting game industry with its impeccable story line and amazing graphics. Soul Calibur V, completely murdered the game's reputation.
Where to start; well let us start with what made the game famous: the story. In this game the story is a little out of control; it was set 17 years ahead. This is a bit of a leap considering that the last three installments had no time in between them. With that in mind, you would think that the game still included some type of character profile or stage profile. Nope, instead you get a couple of paragraphs that lack detail, imagination, and creativity in a deluxe edition art book. You only know two of the characters stories to a slight effect by playing the story mode. The only reason you know their story is because you can't even pick your own character. If you are going to be unnecessarily ridiculous and set the story 17 years ahead, can we the fans have an adequate information source? Let's not forget that the development team decided to remove over half of the original character roster. The character roster is the playable and selectable characters of the game.
It's one thing to remove the character, but when you remove the fighting style as well, it becomes a problem. It becomes an even bigger problem when you don't have a story of any sort to explain that character's absence. I have never been confused as to what was going on in any of the series' games except this one. What makes it even more confusing is that the dialogue that the character's exchange relates to each character's situation, P.S. you have no idea of any of the character's situations.
I think you understand that the story is lacking and is in need of extreme help. Something else that needs extreme help is the gameplay. In this game, you have four modes where you can select your own character to play. The story which ironically tells the story of the characters can only be played with 3 pre-selected characters. The story mode was somewhat like a bad Role playing game. You can play arcade mode, but you don't learn the story of the character that you are playing with. All you can do is assume. The verses mode is the same. You can still select to play against the CPU which is a positive feature. There is the quick battle mode where you select an opponent that is either an original character or something that the development team made up. That mode gets boring after about 30 minutes because of the high difficulty level. Then there is the legendary souls mode that is so extremely difficult that you can't even beat the first stage. If I wanted a challenge, I would go to the options and set the difficulty to a higher level. Oh, that's right; I can't. Every mode is set at a particular difficulty. You as the player cannot adjust it to your preference or according to your skill level.
In Soul Calibur III, the project soul development team decided to add the character creation making Soul Calibur the first fighting game ever to have a mode where you can create a character from scratch and give him/her their own unique fighting style. The character customization in Soul caliber V was just horrible. There were a few positives to the mode, like you could add patterns and tattoos to your character and their garments. This is problematic though because the clothes that they have available for the characters are ugly, bulky, boring, and definitely not set in the right time period. I don't recall jeans being a part of any attire in the 17th century. The voices were corny; there were graphic issues during gameplay (i.e floating clothing, clothing that was too large for the character and cut-through with clothing and weapons). They were so lazy with the clothes, that the male and female characters have the same selectable clothing items.
Finally, my favorite part of any video game: The graphics. I remember gravitating towards this game because of the outstanding graphics. Then I started to play it, and fell in love with all of the other perks it had. This game the graphics were a big no no. The only graphics that looked any type of decent were the stages. Other than that, the graphics get a B- at max. The characters clothes are awful. They lack dimension and detail. The character's illustration doesn't even match up with the 3-D renders. It's just bad. If you look at the graphics on Soul Calibur IV and then play the Soul Calibur V, then you will understand what I mean. There is cut-through and pixilation as far as the eye can see.
Soul Calibur V was a big…HUGE mistake by project soul. With the replacement of the original game director Jin Okubo, the game has truly gone downhill. Playing Soul Calibur V is like playing a shell of what the game used to be. Project Soul needs to familiarize themselves with the saying "Dance with the ones who got you there." That includes game staff as well as character roster. Add characters, don't take away. In this case, less is not more. That must have been their motto for this game. We got less playable modes, less information given to the players, and a lesser quality game. Just because you add a set of extremely difficult combos called the "critical edge" and "brave edge", does not mean that the game is any better. Overall I give this game a 2.5 out of 5 stars. The new characters are too young to technically be fighting, there are too many young fighters, they got rid of a lot of iconic characters such as Seong Mi-Na, Talim, and Taki and the story is completely unacceptable. To top it off, the game doesn't have a very diverse roster in the first place, so the removal of the only black character in the game doesn't seem to appealing to your fans either.