Game Review: Soul Calibur IV
Release: July 29, 2008
Available Platforms: Xbox 360, Playstation 3
Players: 1-2, 2 Online
ESRB Rating: T
Soul Calibur IV is actually the sixth game in the Soul series and fifth into the Soul Calibur series. And for those of you that don’t know much about the series, it originated back in 1996 with its first game, Soul Edge or Soul blade for us US, European or Australian gamers, coming out at the Arcade along with on the first Playstation. Now what helps make the Soul franchise as big as it is was the use of weapons in the game, the simplicity of the controls, guest characters in the game and the amazing graphics.
Soul Calibur IV offers many different types of gamemodes which include: story mode, arcade, Tower of Lost Souls, training, and vs mode which can be played either locally or online. Now each one of these modes offers a little bit of a different mix, for instance, by playing through story mode you learn some of the story that involves legend of the Soul Calibur along with earning money and equipment that can be used in the character customization or creation tool. Arcade mode allows you to play through stages while earning points which will unlock more characters. And the other major mode was Tower of Lost Souls which is a very difficult mode where by ascending or descending you have to do certain tasks and by accomplishing them you will then be rewarded with some awesome unlockables.
Nowadays though where online gaming rules the living room, this is where Soul Calibur really will be played. Soul Calibur IV brings 3 different online modes, Special Versus, Standard Versus and Friends Match. Really the only differences between them involve how you play, Special Versus allows you to use any of your created characters while standard does not. And Friends Match will allow you to play only against your friends.
Probably the best thing about the game is the create a character and character customization modes. You can pretty much do anything imaginable as evident in the picture above. And its not just the look of the character you can customize, but fight style, armor, weapons, its pretty open. A couple of my other favorite things include the destructible environments and destructible armor. I loved it when I would slam my opponent to the ground and the area below them would splinter or break up. Other then that your like how simple the controls are to pick up and play and your notice just how amazing the graphics are in the game. Its mind blowing how great the game looks overall.
Now there are a couple areas where improvements could be made, like for instance, the learning curve. If your not a hardcore fight genre type of person you will most likely get crushed when you play online. The guys there know their stuff and it will almost get to the point where it just gets to be too much, luckily, Soul Calibur does offer a training mode so if your skills are lacking you can improve them there. The other issue I had was how the game ramps up its difficulty, for a while the game was extremely simple and I was just crushing the AI by mashing buttons but all of a sudden that didn’t work anymore. Out of nowhere the game just became to challenging for me. I much would have preferred the slow ramp up of difficulty where you adjust as you continually play rather then having to completely change you style all at once.
Steve’s final say: If your a Soul Calibur fan or even a fan of the fighting genre, this is a game for you, your love this game and you won’t be able to put it down. If your not a fan you really should at least rent it and give it a go, its a lot of fun