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BG Falcon Media

The BG News
BG24 Newscast
November 30, 2023

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Video Game Review: Soul Calibur II

Some call it one of the greatest fighting games ever made, while others find it a disappointing sequel. Soul Calibur II, the weapons-based fighter released for all three major consoles in late August, has a lot to offer on all fronts.

Namco, the game’s developer, did an amazing job with the graphics — an attribute that has only improved since the first Soul Calibur. Textures are rich and detailed, from the stages one can fight in to the clothes of the fighters themselves. Speaking of whom, the character models move fluidly and realistically.

Individual muscles bulge, clothes flutter furiously in the wind, and bodies flail to the ground with realistic physics when attacked. It’s a treat just to watch someone else play this game.

The gameplay has not changed much since its predecessor, but that’s okay — the Soul Calibur series has always been both fun and challenging. Pulling off a flashy special move or a debilitating combo can be satisfying, but if you don’t know how to use all of your attacks properly, the Weapon Master mode’s difficulty will quickly catch up with you. Weapon Master is the game’s single-player mode where new weapons, characters, stages, costumes, and play modes can be unlocked. It has a somewhat interesting and descriptive storyline to accompany its several dozen missions, though story setups for missions can get long winded at times.

Multiplayer is where the game shines brightest. There are two basic modes: normal VS mode, during which both players choose a character and fight each other; and Team VS mode, which lets each players choose up to 8 characters and fight through each other’s chosen teams, one by one. Both have their merits but it seems the most fun to get a group of friends together and play normal VS, passing the controllers around after each match. For some reason, Soul Calibur II can get spectators of a multiplayer match worked up as if it were a Falcons football game; just because only two can play at a time doesn’t mean more than two people can enjoy it.

Soul Calibur II did not make a large leap from Soul Calibur. Its predecessor revolutionized the fighting genre with its use of weapons instead of fists, amazing graphics and depth of gameplay. While this sequel did not make any reforms in its genre, it is still a solid fighting game that is available on every major console and worth at least a rental, if not a purchase, even if you are not a fan of the fighting genre.

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