Soul Calibur 6 Is Heading In The Right Direction
Bandai Namco made some questionable decisions regarding 2012’s Soul Calibur 5. A story that primarily focused on two characters, no arcade endings, series favorites missing or replaced, and the handling of the guard break/ 8-way run mechanics.
And worst of all making Kilik an edge master…
A reboot is not only a great idea but a necessity. The franchise has been playing catch-up to series highpoint Soul Calibur 2 for years and with entry five that gap became impossible to close. This series relaunch puts Soul Calibur on track to leave the shadow of what is one of the greatest fighting games, by reviving that which made the series great.
Six will reexamine the franchise and choose which remnants are best to reincorporate into the new generation. As early Soul Calibur featured the best Project Soul had to offer, this new genesis will propel that lost tale of souls and swords into the modern era.
It takes guts to kill off popular characters or to brush aside favorites. Nevertheless, series like Tekken, Street Fighter, and Mortal Kombat have done this to remarkable success.
Soul Calibur was not one of these franchises.
Five alienated most of the fan base with its do or die take on character and story that unfortunately resulted in the latter. The story was easily forgettable and there was no love lost for the new characters. Any fighting game aficionado can tell you that characters are everything and if you’re going to bring in replacements they had better be damn good. I applaud Project Soul for taking things in a new direction but revisiting the last entry shows that clearly the developers were at their wits end. Not surprisingly, Soul Calibur 5’s director has gone on record saying only one fourth of the planned story actually made it into the game so perhaps there was some behind the scenes problems we will never know about.
Rewinding the clock keeps fan favorites alive and young again. The staple characters are the best so why not push them to the forefront? In the same vein, rumors go that Soul Calibur 6 will have a deeper focus on story, an aspect of Soul Calibur that has always needed a bit of work. I love the mainstays, but each has always come across as a bit empty, filled with backstory, but unrelatable. Which harkens to the greater point, Soul Calibur is a series that has always been short of its full potential.
Strengths Soul Calibur 6 is sure to include are a unique presentation with the current character artwork and arenas looking amazing, a refined combat system that is shaping to look great, and the deepest character creator of any fighting series. Entries in the franchise have always featured shards of a greater whole yet to be realized. Always an incomplete Soul Edge/Calibur, but come later this year Bandai Namco has in store what may potentially be the perfect reboot.
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