Video Gamer Play // Soulcalibur 6 review – a return to form that̵...
Soulcalibur 6 review – a return to form that’s not without its flaws
My fondest memories of Soulcalibur, the long-running 3D fighting game from Bandai Namco, are playing on Sega’s Dreamcast and Nintendo’s GameCube, parrying until I felt like I could parry blindfolded. I’ve always loved Soulcalibur’s parry – a clash of weapons, a spark, a cling! Predict your opponent’s move, time the parry to perfection and counter. Soulcalibur is at its most satisfying when you get in your opponent’s head and expose the chink in their armour. Parry, parry, parry, slice and dice. Done.
Yet in recent years Soulcalibur had lost its spark – a funny thing to say about a series that’s all about sparks flying all over the place. 2012’s Soulcalibur 5 washed over me, and the less said about Soulcalibur: Lost Swords, the free-to-play, single-player-only spin-off released in 2014, the better. Soulcalibur 6, then, which arrives six years after the last mainline game in the series, rediscovers that spark, and it achieves this by taking stock of what made Soulcalibur great and focusing on those fundamentals.
First up, Soulcalibur 6 is super responsive. The characters feel snappy as they dart inside and out of the series’ trademark eight-way run. So much of Soulcalibur is about spacing and punishing whiffed attacks, so it’s fantastic to feel the game respond – at the double – to your commands. Sophitia, for example, has a wonderful forward dash stab move that’s fantastic for punishing missed attacks. It’s blisteringly fast on-screen, a flick of your thumb for the input command and a flash of a button press all it takes for Soulcalibur 6 to spark into life.
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