Tag Archive: Soul Calibur


Fuck me.

Why was it decided that Lost Swords would be singleplayer only?

The reason that we went singleplayer…well, originally, we were thinking about having a multiplayer option, but because we’re going with a pay-to-win model, we were worried that by having online multiplayer, for all the new users that would be coming in experiencing the game for the first time, they might be immediately deterred by fighting against opponents who had superior equipment and gear—and we didn’t want to have that kind of negative impact on new players.

In the singleplayer experience, having a pay-to-win structure won’t impede the player’s experience with the game.

What’s sad is that they’re blatantly calling it a Pay-To-Win model. And are aware that no one likes this business model. Yet they’re going along with it anyway, confident that it will succeed.

A fighting game necessitates multiplayer. It is the purest form of competitive multiplayer. Removing the multiplayer, more or less, removes the main reason people play fighting games.

The problem of Soul Calibur since Soul Blade was that the games treated themselves more like RPGs than actual fighting games. Players would find themselves customizing their characters/weapons/what not more so than actually fighting. Soul Calibur 4 became more about stats and equipment rather than skill and execution, mainly because the fighting in Soul Calibur isn’t really good. Even then, it’s still fun to bash your opponents in brutal ways.

Namco’s proposition to exclude multiplayer from a fighting game is insane for a multitude of reasons, but their stated proposal is to not alienate anyone from their desired business model. Pay-to-Win is unpopular for good reason. Having to purchase digital items with real money to gain a statistical advantage in a video game causes divides and balance issues. Cutting out the multiplayer only masks the problem. That you are banking on the players to be addicted enough to pay money to get further and further into the game. But who wants to play a single player fighting game? One that you have to “Pay to Win” against an AI opponent? Fighting the AI is simply not fun. Artificial opponents are, no matter what the programming, prone to one-dimensional patterns where they perform the same moves over and over and might lose or win too much depending on the programming. Essentially, this would admit that Namco’s AI programming is terrible and that Soul Calibur can’t be a game measured by it’s fighting mechanics, but more so it’s RPG elements.

This is beyond the threshold of insanity. But what is most concerning is how comfortable they are with calling it what it is. As though they don’t fear losing money off of Lost Swords. It really shows just how confident Japanese developers are in digital considering almost all of the big J devs profits are coming from digital releases. After all, Tekken Revolution was clearly getting more users than Tag 2 was.

With SoulCalibur: Lost Swords, who are you trying to target? Traditional SoulCalibur fans or brand new players?

It might be a little bit of a cop-out answer, but we are trying to target everyone—old fans and new players alike. We definitely value our player base and we want to maintain the quality of the SoulCalibur franchise, but at the same time, this game is definitely catered towards an audience who will experience the franchise for the first time.

He says this while acknowledging the existence of an installment that killed the series and removed fan favorites and changed move inputs for no good reason, rushing production so that the game would not have to compete with Tekken Tag Tournament 2, and just being more animu than it needed to be.

No need to elaborate on how hollow his words are. But it’s worth noting that Namco wishes for audience substitution, much like many Japanese developers today. It seems to be incredibly widespread across the country. Yeah sure, it’s been a good 20 years, but geez.

Can you talk about the difference between western and eastern free-to-play or mobile markets?

In regards to moving to free-to-play, in regards to the user base, the Japanese audience is very cooperative, and we’re very happy about that. The reason for going free-to-play wasn’t so much about the business model itself, but the idea that we wanted to expand the market to the more casual user, and we thought that the free-to-play mold would fit that model better.

This is a telling statement that really shows Namco’s contempt for people who do not agree to their way, and seems to paint a nasty picture of Japanese developers in general, namely Sega. But what’s more is that if Japanese audiences are easily lapping it up, that doesn’t bode well for the rest of world. We don’t like everything the Japanese is accepting of, but if Japanese developers are gonna keep assuming that w/e works in Japan will work everywhere else, they’re going to be globally irrelevant as the years go on. They might be already considering all the games they desire to produce now is exclusively appealing to the Japanese. There’s nothing coming out of Japan that has global appeal anymore.

*sigh*, it’s like reading news about mad men who came up with a new scheme to get money that no one likes, but they’re so sure of it because 5 year olds fall for it. I guess I’ll put Soul Calibur in the “dead franchise” category. It’s been butchered for the last 3 entires thanks to the Tekken whores and the unnecessary changes have ruined the games for the worst. And now this!?

I think I just threw up a little bit in my mouth. F2P and the causualization of games is ruining my hobby.

This is F2P done horribly wrong. An online model like League of Legends would have been much better, where you are just buying characters and skins. I’m sure this game forces you to grind for “gold” to buy necessary items if you don’t pay money.

This makes free players bored/mad because they have to grind, and it makes paying players mad because they are being nickeled and dimed so they can match the artificially increasing difficult ramp.

Fantastic. I hope they come out with a new Samurai Shodown. Probably not.

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That doesn’t even look sensible to play. I wish developers would stop trying to cram every game into the mobile market like this. If the device uses a touch screen, what the hell makes you think a fighting game would work? This game uses card battle BS in which moves are “randomly generated”.

This is sad. The only thing interesting is that different characters can use different fighting styles, but this would’ve been so much better in a proper Soul Calibur title. This is a stupid ass game. And it focuses on Cassandra, no less. Eww.

I play black dude. Die like BITCHES!

Despite my furious anger at Gearbox, I still had an inkling of interest in the Borderlands series and wanted to check out the first game, so going by their greatest fears, I had found a GOTY version in the used games section of a Gamestop. Despite all the hype surrounding the whole “first game better than last” syndrome of the fandom, I stood my ground that I was going to hate this game with extreme fervor. As an FPS developed by these scoundrels, it is impossible for-…….holy nutballs, this game is FUN!

It was almost inconceivable. I couldn’t believe how easy it was to find so many legendaries in such a short amount of time. It was also amazing how the weapons were actually USEFUL! In BL2, I was constantly bombarded by living bullet sponges who could absorb everything that wasn’t a perfect critical shot. The game was utterly ridiculous with it’s enemies pumped full of a wretched amount of health and defense. If you weren’t playing a sniping based Zero, your odds of survival were dramatically decreased. And obnoxiously enough, the game had the nerve to toss in enemies with virtually no weakpoints (Big Game Hunt especially) so you were destined to fight a losing battle.

BL1? There’s no pressure at all to find weakpoints. Enemies seem to go down pretty quickly given your accuracy remains stable enough. Certainly, the enemies can still whoop yo ass without much effort (I’m dumbfounded by how ducking behind a rock still can’t protect me from getting nicked), but at the same time, they have very little health to fight with in the first place. Amazingly enough, I’m using some low level weapon I found early on… in the final boss fight! In BL2, you had to immediately ditch w/e weapon you found for another as soon as you go up a few levels in order to  remain competitive against your foes. But in BL1, anything goes. Just use w/e you have at your disposal and not worry so much about stats and more so about strategy! Some of it gets real abusable too.

I LOVE THIS DAMN THING!

The packed in DLC levels didn’t hurt either. Though most of them are quite disappointing, they re hilarious. General Knoxx getting pissed that he took orders from a 5 year old and kept bitching about it while sounding like an elderly Brock Samson from the Venture Brothers was gold. That doesn’t even begin to explain the better menu screens. Barely any lag in coop? Non-disorientating skill tree menu? Easier to find mission log? HELL YEAH!

What a FUCKING relief!

Then there’s the little things such as equipping character skills with different elements. If I wanted the turret or Bloodwing to be on fire or acid, VOILA and thats the fucking end of it! But noooooo, in number 2, the siren gets those perks! The only thing I could piss and moan about was the lack of corner maps to help find out where to go next, the lack of tangible story and how every environment is exactly the same damn barren wasteland/cave/junkyard, and how incredibly short it is, but if that’s the price for a more entertaining and fun ass game, so be it.

BL2 is, at this point, wasted potential. With all it’s bells and whistles, it’s ultimately buried under a pile of bullshit. Lame jokes trying to force memes on the internet (Catch a RIIIIIIIIIIIIIDE!), horrid drop rates for any decent weapon in a game where legendary gear is damn near a necessity for most cases, where you’re swamped with “Super Badass Loaders” at every occasion, the game is a complete chore to play in comparison to BL1. It feels like what Capcom did to RE6 and tried WAAAAAAAAAAY to damn hard to make it all “epic” and shit while making it such a drag that it comes crashing down on it’s own self-congratulatory vapid banal ego-driven content. BL1 is nowhere near as obnoxious as it’s sequel. Handsome Jack is still one of the best damn villains in gaming, though. Not to mention it’s actually what I wanted. A kind of Mad Max setting where you’re tearing through assholes trying to look for treasure, not some lame ass “resistance against the big bad corporate dictator” story that always seems to end up the same way in every plotline people come up with.

Unknown jackoff knows of corporation, doesn’t give a shit.
Corporation tries to kill said jackoff for non-specific reasons
Jackoff finds resistance and joins in because justice and… shit.
Jackoff and resistance does well for now.
Jackoff unintentionally leads corporation to the resistance hideout
Resistance is crushed and the leader’s (or significant person) life is now in danger. Jackoff initiates plan to rescue said leader
Jackoff defeats corporation in the process and saves the world.

Yeah, maybe not exactly the way it happened, but most of those details are damned accurate. At this point, it begs to be asked just how widespread this issue is cause I can’t be the only mother fucker in the known universe that sees the unmitigated shitstorm problem of why sequels are not living up to the expectations set by the first installments of their franchises. It is insane just how much disappointment I see in fanbases all across the board. Even the COD fanboys are just about tired of Activision’s bullshit. And damn sho, I’m tired of being disappointed by sequel after sequel where I’ve come to find that the devs or publishers schemed to completely fuck up some of the best franchises of all time, not just fucking them up, but destroying legacies by the dozen.

The utter banality that is the continuation of any franchise that started sometime in the 90s is literally impossible to escape, and it even seems that younger series that got their start in the 7th generation have already  gotten devs and pubs scheming to destroy their products with utter greed. We’re talking about an FPS/RPG hybrid that was completely fine in the first installment, but then some hippie asshole comes up and says that “our happiness is not profitable“! Afterall, in the religion of capitalism, keeping people in a state of anxiety and despair equates to creating demand for rampant DLC practices! So lets completely fuck up the damage scaling and make damn near every weapon you receive completely useless so that you’d be desperate enough to buy some Hunter upgrade pack just to be able to get through…. yet another unbalanced difficulty mode! And what would the reward be? Well, a collection of more useless fucking weapons! Well done!

Businesses that sell you things you actually need could get away with nickel and diming you for shit services because in your mind, you will actually need these services to go about your daily life. Junk entertainment is nothing you need at all. The crazy fucks in the industry, however, think they can get away with the same practices. Which is unfortunately working at the moment, seeing that most of the gaming public is now too terrified to leave their houses and buy things in a physical medium so that they have a semblance of ownership over their purchased products. So instead, everything is digital, even access to half the shit already on the CDs! Why is it that I can’t gain access to fighting game characters that are already on the game Netherrealm, Crapcom, Sony, etc? Afterall, 2 of these asshole factories had the nuts to release special editions with access to all the characters on the damn discs anyway.

Apparently, the game industry has gone MIA from the sanity department and jumped straight in a water filled with Great Whites as they ceaselessly destroy sequel after sequel in either an attempt to cheat you out of your money or to share a new “creative vision” that is in complete opposition to the wishes of the audience for no other reason than to attempt what could be considered selling teabags to customers who asked for Starbucks quality coffee! In no other entertainment industry have I ever seen a bunch of artistic douchbags imitate the insurance industries by fucking their customers over and over again while still expecting them to pony up for the impromptu involuntary ass fuckings.

None of this speaks louder than Nintendo’s desire to shove in as many assist trophies into Super Smash Bros. 4 in some vain attempt to apologize for not doing the logical thing and making some of those awesome assist trophies playable fucking characters! Have you seen most of the announcements for new characters come from the alternatively named pokeball characters are people who we’d actually prefer to be in this game over the Wii-fit assholes and the Village Idiot? Who’s that chick from Kid Icarus? I mean the last thing we need is a character worthy of being playable! No, lets shove that unholy bitch into statue format, and the audience had damn well better appreciate the fact that she’s at least given some “recognition” because…. in the depths of our own psyhosis, that’s all the nerds really care about! We saw it on GoNintendo.com, it must be true!

Start the water works!

Here’s a idea for you Sakurai, if the overwhelming amount of assist trophies are much cooler than the current roster you have for Super Smash Bros. then you have a problem and need to take your bitch ass back to the drawing board. Words cannot describe how utterly pissed I was when Lyn was announced as a goddamn trophy! Afterall, I needed more than just 2 piddly reasons (Ike and Sonic) to make up for the loss of my Mewtwo and the severely massive nerfs to some of the best characters (IE my Fox, Ganon and Mario) if only out of some misguided attempt to keep the game out of the hands of tourneyfags because you simply don’t adhere to their philosophy of playing to win. I don’t care what the reasons are. The assist trophies are a stupid addition to the series and only serves as an excuse for Nintendo to not do extra work on making more playable characters. Balance, you say? There’s no such thing in the world of fighting games! Either make them playable or keep them in the trophy menu.

Of course, I should expect no less from Japanese developers. These assholes would prefer nothing more than removing all semblance of player choice in video games altogether if it meant you playing the game the way they envisioned with no regard for your entertainment whatsoever. The Pokemon games could vouch for that with the amount of ways to obtain one pokemon vastly reduced to a limited and tedious process like Honey Trees or by trading with other people who may or may not have the Pokemon you desire. Or how about Resident Evil 6 with no regard for your desire to retrace your steps back to previous rooms in a game and have the mother fucking gall to place invisible walls in an auditorium so the only thing you can do is jump over a guard rail to initiate a fight against a mother fucking zombie T-Rex. Really crapcom? No wonder the gaming public ripped you a new asshole over the set piece ridden world of Resident Reposeful.

And the Jake and Sherry Campaign was the WORST fucking part of the whole title!

 

If it’s not the games that radically change all the elements of a game to fit their business or creative desires, it’s the sequels that change nothing but exemplify the WORST aspects of their prequels! What was the point of paying for Rayman Legends or NSMBU other than to have a graphically super version of the vanilla editions? This is laziness of the umpteenth degree! Not only does Rayman Legends not improve on anything Origins did, it also adds in little obnoxious bullshit gimmicks like Murfy so that you can solve puzzles while running away from a 1-hit kill firewall in a scripted running segment. I’ve never seen such disorientatingly horrific game design like this since Mega Man Network Transmission. There’s just some shit you cannot do in 2D platformers to rival 3D platformers in any way, what would you need to do so for? 2D Platformers are automatically superior by way of not needing to fiddle with the fucking camera, but you expect me to treat it like a 3D platformer by handing me 20 trillion smurf looking fuckers to find just to unlock, are you ready for this?…….. character skins. Not even cool ones, just a bunch of random shitty skins like “Lol character swapped color palettes”. That’s the best you can give me for a bloated fetch quest!? How about one of those hot bitches you took out from the last game being playable characters!? That’s motivation enough! Then again, I can’t imagine why I would bother unlocking them anyway, the main game is done and over with and as anti-climatic as that final boss was, it wouldn’t be worth the sex appeal anyway.

Holly Luya indeed.

Amma knows I was just about sick of Namco’s ass fuckings when concerning the state of the Soul Calibur franchise bursting it’s bubble of prosperity almost immediately after SC2 gave Zelda fans an actual Link that was so badass, he could rival the entirety of the SC cast just by having the strongest set of lungs in the world. Hey, here’s a grnd idea! Lets remove fan favorites like Kilik, Sophitia, Taki, Talim and hell lets toss the token nigga in the mix… and replace them with some bitch with a crystal ball and claws! It’s such a genius idea to invoke so many animu tropes in a game that was nearly void of any of that bullshit simply because, like every other japanese developer in the world, and focus on those goddamned otaku shit stains that aren’t even considered worthy of the air breathe! I can’t have Kilik because a monkey with a tapeworm is just that much more Kawaii to you asswipes? If I had to hear one more deathcry from him yelling “FOOOOOOOOOOOOD” for no other reason than to exaggerate his non-comical eating disorder, I will shit chain saws.

Lets not forget the idiocy of making Guard Impacts completely special move based and as complicated to remember because “we at Namco don’t value the absolute necessity for seasoned fans to get into a sequel because we want every game to be “unique” or some retarded shit” and then have the nerve to make guard impacts completely dependent on 2D fighting game logic of needing a goddamned fighting guage to activate the techniques. If SF3 Turd Strike necessitated super gauges just to pull off a single parry, the assholes at SRK would never ride the game’s nuts as much as they do. Soul Calibur is already far too lenient on button mashers in which the window for pulling off GI’s are too small now for some reason, now you remove their importance entirely for the sake of what fucking reason!? To make it “accessible” to newer players that DIDN’T buy the game anyway? Sure, we could take the bullshit about the game being rushed, but there was absolutely NO good reason to change the commands for character moves a SECOND/THIRD time in a row, or remove characters, turning Kilik and Sophitia both into mimics while also putting in Weapon Master making a totaly  of 3 different mimics, or making GI’s absolutely worthless and non-existent.

Soul Calibur 5 wasn’t rushed, it was made by some asshole on the Tekken team that wanted to literally kill the franchise if only so that he wouldn’t have to work on 2 different fighting games at one time. Nothing says this more than the inclusion of a “Devil Jin” soul in the CAS mode. Shameless promotion? Oh fuck no, this is Japanese passive aggression at it’s finest!

Even recent series that I start to get into immediately get fucked up, for whatever reason Ratchet and Clank Into The Nexus is such a bad game that I can’t bring myself to shut the hell up about it. If the inability to change the control presets and wretchedly short game length were no problem, then certainly it’s just how UN-Ratchet the game feels. There’s literally no comedy which was probably one of the major elements of the Ratchet and Clank series, turning the game into a more mild version of Sonic 06. Yes, I’m aware that Dead Space was a pretty popular survival horror game at some point, but Ratchet and Clank is not Dead Space! Putting “dark” areas in the game with eerie music and more fucked up looking villains that seem reminiscent of the Borg from Star Trek the Next Generation does not count as a Dead Space game! Especially considering that halfway through the game, the devs decided to ditch the “horror” element, w/e horror there was, and go back to a poor imitation of previous Ratchet and Clank titles without the funny or interesting environments.

By then, the game felt more obnoxious than cool, and the developers had the nerve to put in a museum of their past characters such as Drek or that guy from Deadlocked. And for some reason, the creator of the series feels the need to stamp his ass into the game in some vain attempt to gain creator god status amongst internet nerds so that he may be worshipped in the same way as Shigeru Miyamoto. Having a game that pisses me off with it’s wannabe AAA production values, buggy ass gameplay, shitty gimmicked Clank levels that you can’t skip and aren’t even remotely as fun as the clank modes in UYA or TOD, is not gonna warrant my lips stapled to your ass! The sheer self-congratulatory sequence of the museum right before the tedious “city under invasion” sequence reeks of “trying to hard to be epic” with what is one of the most anti-climatic final showdowns in the series yet. The final game in the Future series has no actual closure to the story of Ratchet’s separation anxiety from other Lombaxes in the series and could be mistaken for a mild spinoff. The only redeeming quality would’ve been the female villain that could actually be treated as a threat since Chairman Drek… up until the bitch gets captured and the game goes into the whole “what have I done” shtick of amateur writing that has pervaded the entertainment industry for quit some time now.

And I’m STILL seeing this fuckin movie, even though Ratchet looks retarded.

For once in this or last generation, I would like for a sequel that actually exceeds expectations instead of sending them shattering through the pits of the underworld where Ausar anxiously awaits to feed the souls of these horrid abominations to the jaws of Ammut. Ironically, the only sequel that manages to be decent came directly from Platinum Games. Yeah. Anarchy Reigns not only plays better than it’s Wiitarded cousin Madworld, but also has the decency to put itself in color so you wouldn’t get lost in the sprawling overworld mazes because every landmark you could find blends in too fucking well with the Sin City nut riding aesthetics. Add to it the lack of QTE styled death blows that got a little too repetitive for my tastes, and it’s an alright beat em up game that only suffers due to having only 4 stages and the same banality of needing to complete missions in order to gain a high score just to progress, making the game slower paced than Sonic’s Lost Mind! My one true hope, and I’m serious, is that if Guilty Gear Xrd comes stateside, it won’t be some ass fucked sequel as most other fighting games have become.

……..If this game does not kick ass…….

 

I loves me some Soul Calibur. Really, I do. Unless you count that piece of shit Wii offering.

Fuck you Namco. Could’ve just ported SC3 for all we cared.

I bought SC4 recently, and despite it’s flashy loveliness and Sophitia totally asking for it, I should’ve taken notice of all the complaints surrounding the game. But alas, I wanted a new Soul Calibur game, dammit! So imagine my dismay when I popped this bitch in, pick up Raphael despite all irony of choices, and discovered that Project Soul completely fucked him up. And I’m not just saying that. They fucked him up so badly, you would mistake him for a joke character.

The…. chronic!

I mean he’s so damn slow in comparison to what I used back in SC2! Not to mention his best moves are now more awkward to use than before. You have to go into preparation mode just to use his 3 quick slashes (which used to be Forward+B,B,B). What balls PS has in destroying this character just to “balance the game”. But the even BIGGER crime!? They fucked up Talim too! They even removed moves that were pointless or flashy and replaced them with pure shit. Not to mention her stupid cat outfit is a fucking disgrace. And is it just me or did they make her into a total wuss? Her dialogue is softer and wimpier than in SC2. Yes, even in that game, she sounded hardcore compared to whatever the hell kind of rag she’s on in this game. She even taunts the opponent. “Payback!” “You want more!?”.

COME AT ME BRO!

In this game, she’s the equivalent to that bitch Cream the Rabbit from Sonic Advance 2!

And to top it all off, the game just felt empty and barren. The amount of stages in the game seems tiny, there’s no weapon master mode and is instead replaced with a blood boiling Tower of Lost Souls, you can’t even customize the main characters beyond their outfits and weapons (I don’t recall Raphael being a steroid freak like the rest of the cast. Would want to change that for consistency but naw). And then you have these weird ass animu shit stain characters like Angol Fear who makes me fear for the baby she breast feeds. Star Wars is out of place, Algol is a chump compared to even Inferno, DLC music is a retarded idea, and who the fuck is Tira and why does she remind me of Harely Quinn from Batman?

Overall, it feels like a very disappointing game. Especially with Talim being ass deep in nerfage. But to pour salt on an open wound, the bitch ain’t even in SC5!!! Infact, most of my characters aren’t even in the game! Kilik, Taki, Talim, Sophitia, Zasalamel, and hearing Raph got nerfed up the arse again, you might as well count him too! I don’t care how fabulous he looks with his Gun Grave cosplay. And just how the hell is Cervantes human again? Maybe that will be explained in the story.

Oh wait. From what I hear, there is none for anyone except Sophitia and Cassandra’s expies, Patrick (can’t spell his real name for the life of me) and Pyrra. Apparently, the excuse being used by fans (and maybe the devs) is that the game takes place 17 years after 4, so the characters would be too old to fit into the future. Plus, Japan has some stupid law that forbids developers from putting females in fighters if they are above the age of 27 (Power Instinct being the exception, I guess). But, they could’ve just put the characters in with no aging and have them as bonus characters with no story. Hell, NO ONE has a story in this game so there should be no excuse.

That’s one of the main reasons I feel repulsed by SC5. Yes it looks gorgous, but because I’ve been FUCKED out of my own character choices, all I got is Mitsurugi and expies.I have no incentive to buy it beyond another character creator. But most of all, everyone is simply saying the game is great due to gameplay reasons alone. And better online support. There goes my enthusiasm!

I’m sorry, did anyone buy Soul Calibur for it’s busted ass fighting system that justifies all complaints about “button mashing” (LOL GUARD IMPACT YOU SCRUB!)!? Oh wait, that’s not a choice either because you need a fucking METER to do it!? It’s the worthless Alpha Counters from SFA3 all over again! Sorry, people bought Soul Calibur because a blond elf with the greatest set of lungs since Liu Kang was featured as a guest character. Assasins Creed is overrated. But guest characters sold Soul Calibur. It was obscure and completely irrelevant to everyone’s lives. Almost everyone’s first memory of the series started at 2. That was the kind of content that drew people into Soul Calibur. As a fighting game series, despite how good it’s content is, it’s not a popular draw for any enthusiast of fighting games. Fighting games set in ancient times have never been popular until now.

The majority of popular fighters exist in the modern times, drawing inspiration from modern/80s/90s martial arts flicks, along with having modern music with the likes of techno, rock, and even rap music. Weapon based fighters were never a big hit until a Zelda character was featured as a guest. Weapon based fighters just have no flow. They don’t feel natural, and neither does Soul Calibur. Sure, it has weapon demonstrations, and robust story about several historical piece fighters looking for a weapon to fix their situations until realizing the sword is evil and will do more harm than good, and the quest modes are always filled with more enticing side stories than any other quest mode in a fighter. It’s like what an RPG would be like if they were any good. But as a fighting game itself, the fights always look silly and contrived. Just like Tekken, it looks stupid from afar, just some random people swing around sometimes oversized weapons and knocking the characters around the stage like something out of a cartoon. But hey, it’s stupid fun. Can be frustrating, but stupid fun none the less. I could give no fucks about how improved the fighting system is because that is honestly not the reason I play these games. It’s that sense of being in a universe filled with interesting characters and that feeling of being on some grand adventure, fighting and defeating wicked warriors and demonic entities. Soul Calibur is just different from other fighting games. Hearing about what others deemed the “capcoming” of this game completely ruins whatever enthusiasm I might’ve had with SC5. I despise capcom fighters because of that micro-management bullshit and lack of interesting characters outside of Dark Stalkers. That and most of my peeps are removed or nerfed for the worst! Oh sure, lets take out an interesting character like Zasalamel or even Necrid, and Amy even, but we keep that crazy bitch Tira and miss boring honor bound Hilde. For what!? I have no idea. The little story that is present in SC5 is all about Sophitia’s stupid offspring fighting some random war against possessed people. There’s no sense of adventure or a quest, it’s just some “fight the battle within” or “are you willing to kill for justice” morality bullshit that I can find in Metal Gear Rising. (and don’t get me wrong, this game is the bomb!)

Then again, SC5 doesn’t seem to be for any fan of Soul Calibur. It feels more like some anime cock-fight than Soul Calibur. I usually play this series to get away from the anime-cock fighting. Well, this and currently MK9 which, despite my incredible skepticism, rips all kinds of ass. But look at SC5’s newest additions and you’ll find more manga influences than anything else. Most of all ZWEI who essentially has a stand from Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure where he calls upon some spirit wolf for certain attacks. And.. just look at his design!

This is a damn anime character!

Must be a fan of SNK’s “loner asshole” series of characters ranging from Iori Yagami to Genjuro from Samurai Shodown, Gato from Garou, K-Dash, etc.

The series is getting too anime for my own good! Look at some of the critical finishes these characters have. It’s the most Japanese shit you could see.

Poor Maxi is so completely animu now.

Rising Dragon of the Zodiac!? What the fu… this is NOT Maxi! Listen to his fucking voice! But that’s nothing compared to this bullshit.

Too…. much…. anime… influence…

I mean, honestly, after going through the emptiness of 4, and hearing 5 is a rushed product that’s even MORE empty than 4, who’s only redeeming factor is “improved gameplay” that rewards button mashers more than ever before (what improvement is that!?), I feel completely discouraged from wanting the game. The most i’d want are those awesome looking levels, but who plays fighting games for a bunch of levels you have no real interaction with!?

Oh well. I guess like with 3, this will be one I skip. This time, however, it will be purposeful.

RIP, real Talim.

Seeing as “gameplay is everything” these days, I wasn’t surprised at the folks who figured my analysis of Virtua Fighter’s lacking appeal was half-hearted and ill-informed. Granted, I don’t buy anything to have my views validated, I’ve been meaning to try at least one of the entries to get away from the dull and lifeless Ringling Brothers Circus known as Tekken. And… I couldn’t find a copy of DOA5 anywhere so I had this option.

By the balls of Ra, it was worse than I imagined.

The hype of “deep and technical” wasn’t bullshit, apparently as every move and maneuver in this game requires precise timing to get down pat. Now, the more complex moves, the general rule of fighters is to never use moves that are more complicated than need be. But that doesn’t appear to be an option for these games. Every move feels more complicated than need be due to the timing necessary. And I’ve been through Namco’s fighters where timing is everything, it’s almost a completely different ball game here.

One of the worst things about this game is that nearly every move in the roster’s arsenal are indistinguishable from one another, killing any desire to practice with a particular character. And combined with the turtle-fest nature of the game and the sheer speed of the actual fighting, what motivation would one have to practice the moves when basic normals will suffice?

It feels as though the game is more about the basics of fighting. You know, attacking, blocking, occasional grabs, etc. With that, the game’s stiff ass controls rival those of pre-2011 Mortal Kombat. Unless you’re hot shit and can get the timing down pat for the game, your ass is out of luck.

But there’s a flaw in that design. Basic equals predictable. If you try to stick with the basics, you will be mauled. Advanced techniques are usually put into the game to defeat basic tactics. And assuming everyone that plays VF isn’t a newb, basic shit won’t get you anywhere. And therein lies the problem. The game demands you become a master of the system before you can start enjoying it.
And we all know by now that this kind of bullshit doesn’t fly these days. How many successful games are there that require you to become a master before you have fun? The game has to be fun the moment you begin round 1. And that can only be achieved by making the player feel like an arrogant bastard.

Yes. In order to garner a larger fanbase, you need to give your audience a taste of power. Make them crave glory. Ensure that power is an intoxicating drug that compels them to stay. Compels them to disobey their better judgment. Corrupt them with the tiny ounce you offer. Once they’ve sampled the forbidden fruit, they are spellbound, and they are yours forever.

Street Fighter offered the forbidden fruit. As did Mortal Kombat. Tekken. Soul Calibur. And all kinds of DOA.

Yes, all fighters need a little practice. But little is the key word here. Characters in the game should be easy to translate to, one to another. Why? Well, if you picked a certain character but aren’t too keen on your choice, you can go to another, practice a little, and see how that one works out for you. What lunacy is it that you will have trouble learning one character, let alone 2 in a single fighter?

Also, Let the players, not the game, dictate how much practice you need. People are motivated by other people, not the system itself. I’ve never seen one person look at a game and go “man, I want to become a grand master at this fighting system!”. It’s more so “DAMMIT! That bastard cheated me!” Then someone tells him “no, you just suck”. And then an argument pursues, but in the end, the player in question just has a trigger mechanism that compels him/her to play more and get better. When I play Mortal Kombat 9, I haven’t had much practice with it, but I feel just as haughty as anyone else. The game allows me to feel powerful. But the moment someone counters my cheap bullshit, I rage. I’m so arrogant and full of myself that I proclaim “yo ass ain’t gonna look pretty in the next round, bitch face!”. I get mauled again, then my mind goes “shit! Ok, lemme slow down and see what I can do to turn this around. Ok, my opponent button mashes and does random shit.”. Then, tactics are changed. Instead of going for the most powerful/cheap shit I can do, I switch to a defensive tactic. Back stepping, going back in, blocking more often, etc.

But that’s just basic shit. Basic shit isn’t too easy to counter in most fighting games, and a good majority of the time, that’s all you need. Virtua Fighter allows no such freedom. You MUST become adept to the system before you can enjoy the game. And that is by being an advanced player. Mastery of fighting games should only be reserved for the perfectionist, not all audiences. It’s far more demanding than a standard fighting game affair. Though hardcore gamers may love the element of a skill so damn wide that it’s rare for anyone to cross it. The irony of this whole thing is that everyone despises accessibility (if NSMBW is any indication), but no one likes Virtua Fighter besides the freaks. Amazing. A fighting game that is the definition of niche. Not even King of Fighters steals that medal.

In order for Virtua Fighter to become more broad, it’s systems desperately need to change. The problem is the same as with every Sega produced game. Sega is faaar too rigid and stubborn to change anything for the better (unless it’s Sonic because that makes them money). If a game doesn’t make them money, instead of improving on it, they let it stagnate for years upon years until the end of time. People don’t play fighting game for a few improvements to an old fighting system. They never have, and never will. They only come back for gimmicks. Street Fighter’s endless remakes have gimmicks that keep people coming back. New characters and stages are always an incentive no matter how scammish the package is. Improved fighting systems are a mere bonus.  Sega has only recently started doing this, but wasted their opportunities with overseas markets. They gives no fucks in regards to popularity and/or health. I guess they assume Japan’s freaks are enough to satisfy. Instead of growing the potential for the series and broaden their audience, they literally settle for less.

There are those that claim that the game isn’t as difficult as people make it out to be. Of course not. As long as you know how to switch from both offensive to defensive styles of fighting, you shouldn’t have any problem on the basic level. But if you’ve played fighting games for a long time and already know the basics of every fighting game out there, you have no wiggle room to move beyond that basic level and learn parries, proper evades, etc. The game ties you down into re-learning the basics because it’s system is so intricate and advanced. So even competent fighting game players have their hands cuffed and are not treated to the forbidden fruit. And believe me, that is a major drag. The reasoning for this is due to the game moving blindingly fucking fast. The character’s attacks and grabs are almost invisible to the untrained eye. It’s like greased lightening! So, you’d have to get re-acquainted with the basics and pay even more attention to the fighting than usual. Most moves don’t have visible start up cues for you to know when to defend. If you aren’t familiar with VF, you’ll find your self mashing down on the guard button like a DBZ character.

It all comes down to “realism”. Realism is the worst thing you could put into a fighter. Entertainment is not realistic. Entertainment gives pleasure or delight to the senses. It can hold someone’s attention. Virtua Fighter is not entertainment. Or it isn’t anymore. Virtua Fighter’s selling point was that it was the first 3D fighter to have realistic moves and such. But what good is the series now? Again, like Sonic, Virtua Fighter was about showing off hardware and graphics. There’s nothing more to it than an old broken heirloom.

So how’s that? Virtua Fighter has no appeal, content, or accessible gameplay! A triple negative and a good reason to avoid the series altogether. Unless you’re a soulless, sociopathic freak who gets off to being the best like no one ever was.