If you have been a fan of console fighting games genre (Street Fighter is the first thing that comes to my mind), then you might have seen Soul Calibur, too. This fighting game genre offers new to the scene – swords and other sharp (and blunt) weaponry. Although it is a big flaw that the fighters do not die immediately after being stabbed a few times, it is still a bloody good fun.
While almost all arcade fighting games that were ported to the touch devices are flawed control-wise, Soul Calibur ($14.99 via iTunes) proves that this is still possible through its customizable virtual buttons.
There are 19 characters in all, each specializing on their own weapon-fighting style, like Maxi’s swift moving blows or Astaroth’s ultra powerful bludgeon, there is always a fighter for your mood.
The visuals are extremely gorgeous — the moves and fights flow well and look extra vivid on the retina display, but does not slow down when special effects (like Rock’s charge) are in play.
Catfight with swords.
One of the major disappointments in the game is the lack of multiplayer options. As a fighting gamer who goes to the arcades to play competitively myself, mashing your HUMAN opponents with your newly learned combo is the main motivation for memorizing move sets, and pounding on the AI over and over again does not give that same adrenaline rush.
I don’t know if the Survival and Extra Survival modes are meant to substitute multiplayer once players get tired of the Arcade mode, but it is not competitive and fun enough to let that mistake pass.
Another thing that adds insult to the injury is not in the game itself but in the price — fourteen bucks is still fourteen bucks, no matter how quality the game is, especially if you are accustomed to the $1.99 iPad games. Namco recently made a daring statement that high quality games cannot be cheap, but for me, it is just plain hard to recommend.
In a nutshell, Soul Calibur for iPad and iPhone is an awesome game, but lack of mutiplayer support make this feel like a dime short of a dollar, and an extremely expensive one, at that.