How to fix Soul Calibur IV Part 2/2: Lessons from SCIII
Sorry if my last post was a bit inflammatory folks. I'm not a prude, but my last post was basically warning Namco to avoid going down the path of depending on sex appeal to sell a mediocre fighting game. Soul Calibur IV has the potential to become a kick ass title, but they need to learn from their mistakes and really make the game spotless:
Exclusive Characters: The way Namco is handling Yoda and Vader is terrible, and obviously many people on Destructoid agree. The fact is, lots of people like Star Wars in general, so forcing us to choose between Yoda and Vader is cruel. Why not go with what works, and do what you did with Soul Calibur II? That one came out on the Xbox, PS2, and Gamecube and featured a different exclusive character, FROM DIFFERENT FRANCHISES. Nintendo fanboys loved the addition of Link, but it probably wasn't as huge a deal for Xbox or PS2 owners. Spawn definitely had a more American feel for the XBox fanboys, and PS2 fans were instantly familiar with Tekken's Heihachi. Everyone went home happy. My advice? Put Vader and Yoda in both versions, and then put Marcus Fenix or Master Chief as the 360 exclusive, and either Solid Snake, Nariko, Kratos, or Ryu (Ninja Gaiden) as the PS3 exclusive.
Voices: Granted, many games have terrible voice acting, but if you're putting the effort to make these characters beautifully detailed, why not make them SOUND beautifully detailed? Write better taunts and lines for the announcer. Put some more effort into facial animations. Having them open and close their mouth, and then have nothing else change on their face, makes me feel like I'm dealing with someone about as human as G-man. Characters showing emotion would go GREAT with the sexier characters because it makes them feel like more than dolls.
AI: The AI in Soul Calibur III was frustrating. It started out easy, but it quickly ramped up to fighting lightning quick speed demons who could run circles around you, comboing you to death giving you no chance to recover. Add to that the fact that you can't adjust the difficulty level, and the single player quickly becomes an exercise in frustration. I expect to have to redo some fights a couple of times before I win, but I want to win on skill and strategy, not luck. In short, work on your difficulty curve.
Some other quick complaints:
- Organize the store better. I literally had to load between sections of the store, and it was hit and miss whether some costume accessories would work with my character.
- Let me customize existing characters, not just generic dolls. Tekken and Virtua fighter do it.
- Cut down the loading times.
- When making custom characters, allow us to do more than play dress up and change hair and eyes. Let us change height, weight, age, breast size for women (bigger OR smaller), and muscle bulk. Make it so we're not just playing with dolls, we're making our own character. Allowing us to choose taunts and moves would be even better.
- Play with some more multiplayer options, like perhaps tag team or a Bushido Blade realism mode.
Good job though on getting rid of that awful Chronicles of the Sword mode. Just remember that its replacement should be actually FUN and shouldn't drag on. Soul Calibur II's Weapons Master mode wasn't too bad. If you can fix these problems, Soul Calibur IV could turn out to be an awesome fighting game. It would prove that you aren't relying on just sex to make a solid game. read