Review by Firestorm ZERO

"Total annihilation."

Introduction:
Soul Calibur II is the highly anticipated sequel of Soul Calibur which in turn was the sequel to Soul Blade. Soul Calibur was a Dreamcast Exclusive and Soul Blade was a Playstation exclusive but Soul Calibur II goes multi format with games appearing on Playstation 2, Gamecube and Xbox, each version has its own unique character, Heihachi for Playstation 2, Link for Gamecube and Spawn for Xbox. The game is made by Namco, makers Of the Tekken and Ridge Racer series, they have also made several arcade games and a few other notable games. Finally to finish the intro, this is a fighting game. So does Soul Calibur II knock out all opponents or is it knocked out by Tekken 4.

Storyline:
In Weapon Master mode there is a story, whatever character you are it is the same. You start as a nobody fighter until you meet your rival and chase a bloke called VERAL across the globe, you also must defeat your rival, all whilst you're being observed by EDGAR and TRISTY, that's about it.

Graphics:
I've got two words to say about the graphics absolutely amazing, but if you want it more in depth here it is. Firstly the characters, they move realistically and show great emotion, the detail on them is phenomenal with everything from buttons on their coats to skin textures and jewelry, weapons also look amazing with great variation on each one. Next up is the detailed environments, they are simply stunning like most things in this game, you can see everything from the textures on the water to the flames of the fire emerging from the ground. Finally menu screens are welcoming by being bold. Overall graphics are great.

Sound:
Well, well, well. You don't expect much sound in a fighting game but would you believe it? this game has good sound with positives such as the characters and effects. Sound always leads to negatives though, here they are. Firstly the music on the world map is tedious and after about ten minutes will start to tick you off. The second and final negative is the dungeons, the same sound for thirty fights in the row, no its in there and its annoying, thank God for personal stereos. Now onto the almighty positives. The characters are first up and the good thing with them is their varied sounds, each one has about eighty on average. Next the special effects, water splashing? yes, crowd noises? yes this game has everything you could wish for. Overall sound is the games sleeping hit.

Gameplay:
Above average, one glitch that people might not have annoyed me greatly. But some positives, multi player is great and weapon master is extremely varied leaving boredom far away, if you get bored of one thing you can switch to another. The controls are also decent and simple meaning you can still win by button bashing, I wish Namco would eradicate that. Overall I'd have to say that gameplay is very good.

Game Time:
Well I'd say a fortnight to unlock everything and pushing that up to six months to master everything and break all the records, by that I mean to learn all the moves of every character off by heart, break all of the records set by the computer, multi player adds up the score leaving you a good amount of time well spent.

Extras:
Loads of weapons to get, and loads of stuff to unlock by doing various stuff.

Final Recommendation:
Silence violence?, no Soul Calibur II is amazing if violent, It is the ultimate fighting game so I say you should buy it, compared to Tekken 4 this is better everywhere but Tekken 4 is a lower price, get both or buy one and rent one.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 11/29/03, Updated 04/12/04


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