Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Soul Calibur V: The Preview

Today in The Cube:

So, Soul Calibur V is coming out early next year – and, as a fan of the fighting genre, I've pre-ordered it. Here's the trailer:

Of course, as a longtime fan, I was surprised I hadn't heard about the game's impending arrival sooner. Certainly, Soul Calibur - a continuation of the arcade game Soul Edge, is probably the premier weapon fighter out there, just like the Street Fighter series is the gold standard in hand-to-hand fighting.

If you're not familiar, here's the rundown - In the 17th century, an fabled evil sword is holding sway. Some seek it for power, some seek it in hopes of fame or even of doing ultimate good. Others seek to destroy it. A motley international crew of fighters with varying weapons comes and does battle across the world in order to take possession of the sword for their own ends. Naturally, as this is a fighting game, these battles take the form of mano-a-mano bouts.

For this game, the cast has changed significantly - it takes 17 years in the future, and so there's a roster shake-up. For instance, Taki, the demon-quelling mistress of ninjutsu, now has an auburn-haired apprentice, Natsu; there's more discussed about it at VG24/7. Ivy, of course, the iconic whip-sword wielding dominatrix of the franchise, hasn't aged a day.

There are a lot of popular characters to come out of the franchise, probably none more iconic than Ivy, for reasons I won't get into here (*cough* Fan service! *cough*). I would, however, say that the game boasts some of the greatest character design this side of the Final Fantasy games.

I've been a fan of fighters ever since I got a Super Nintendo back in the day and the first game I got was Street Fighter II Turbo. I've played just about all of the major fighters - favorites? Besides the Soul Calibur series, definitely Samurai Shodown I & II. And Killer Instinct: Gold for the N64.

While Soul Calibur IV was a bit of a disappointment - fewer interesting modes than I would have liked (what happened to the mini-RPG mode that was in III!?!) - I'm sanguin that V will nevertheless live up to the name.

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