Excerpt: Soul Calibur III is, like nearly every fighting game sequel, a refinement of a working engine rather than a full-blown overhaul. Things players loved about past games in the series return and are joined by a few new modes that attempt to make the third game even more console (and replay) friendly than Soul Calibur II . And, in large part, Namco was successful, though the success is not without snags.
Conclusion: As always, the Soul Calibur series’ audio continues to impress, largely thanks to Soul Calibur III again going with a sweeping orchestral score. On top of this, the sound effects have a whole lot of punch, especially for those with a decent surround sound system since this game supports THX. Combat itself is quite similar to that in previous Soul Calibur games.
Excerpt: Under the hood, what Namco did was take Soul Calibur II and sharpen up the characters' fighting styles. "Backup" characters have their own move sets now and characters that previously had moves that put them an unfair advantage or disadvantage have been tweaked so as to not be so unbalanced. If you loved mopping people up with Kilik or Ivy in SC2, you may not appreciate that their cheesier moves have been removed or toned down in Soul Calibur III.
Conclusion: It's Soul Calibur. Even with the words mushed together and a few tag-along modes that probably should never have been included, it's still the best two-player fighting experience on consoles, and it continues to be refined.
Excerpt: Good and evil. Who or what are they? Is the gallant knight in shining armor the epitome of all righteous idealism, or is it merely someone with unconquerable courage and willpower? Is there such a thing as a sanctimonious killer? Does stealing a loaf bread make a poor person bad? Is there such a thing as absolute good or evil, and if there were, would you know for certain?
Conclusion: As we broach the next generation of consoles, it's interesting to see how far we've come with the current generation. To be fair, the first batch of PS2 games were pretty crappy looking, and there's been an awful of games in between that have also looked ropey. Tekken Tag was the first fighter available on the PS2, which looked pretty decent when you put it up against Tekken 3, but fast forward to Soulcalibur (when did it become one word?
Pros: As good a fighter as you’ll find out there., Exceedingly beautiful., Decent AI., Creating your own fighters.
Cons: Poor single player modes., No way of showing off your created fighters.