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Official U.S. PlayStation Magazine (OPM)
Few names carry the weight that Soul Calibur does. Since the arrival of Soul Edge in arcades and its console counterpart, Soul Blade, fans of the genre have looked to Namco's weapon-based fighting game as a beacon, something against which all other fighting games are judged. Indeed, with each successive game in the series, Namco seemingly does the impossible by improving what is, for the most part, a finely tuned fighting system that needs little in the way of substantial adjustments or drastic changes.
If you're anything like me, then all this single-player stuff is fluff anyway. The Soul Calibur fighting system is back, and it's the best it's ever been. The new characters are interesting and they seem like solid contenders. If have ready access to real-live humans to compete against -- hopefully, ones that will approach this game with as much fervor as you -- then you can do no wrong by going down this path. A word of warning, however: you will come to hate your best opponents while playing Soul Calibur III. Be prepared to resent the characters they use, their "cheap" strategies, and ultimately, the sound of their voice. But it will all be worth it, in the end.
A ma connaissance, Soul Calibur demeure la seule série de jeux de combats à faire l'unanimité auprès des joueurs. Techniquement grandiose, le soft contentera autant les néophytes pour ses combats spectaculaires et accessibles, que les amateurs de technicité pour les subtilités que renferme son gameplay lorsqu'on essaie de le maîtriser sur le long terme. A défaut de pouvoir s'enfermer pendant 15 ans dans un dojo pour y suivre l'enseignement d'un vieux maître, Soul Calibur 3 constitue une solide alternative.
Eerything about the core gameplay and fighting engine has been tweaked and refined and taken to the next level. Soul Calibur III is the definitive fighting game on the PS2 mixing up martial arts, weapons, and more levels, characters, and game modes than you can shake a giant sword at.
There's no denying that Soul Calibur III is the most refined, most feature-rich, and most artistically pleasing fighting game ever released for a home video game console. Once again, Namco has managed to concoct a game that's deep enough for diehards and approachable enough for casual players. Series faithful should rent the game first in order to figure out whether or not they like the subtle changes that Namco has made. Everyone else should just head on over to their local game retailer right now and buy it. It's that worthy.
The Video Game Critic
The real surprise is the new "Chronicles of the Sword" mode, which incorporates one-on-one battles into an RTS (real time strategy) game. While it took every last ounce of my patience to learn and appreciate this complex new mode, it did eventually grow on me, although the excessive loading puts a damper on the action. I like how all of these modes allow you to unlock new features and earn gold toward new items and weapons. And that lady running the item shop is busting out all over - wow! Soul Calibur III may not be a huge step up for the series, but its solid fighting engine is hard to beat, and this edition offers enough new wrinkles to keep old fans entertained.
Game Informer Magazine
Even as a long-standing Soul Calibur fanatic, I was a bit leery of this title after its lackluster showing at E3. Given that my platform of choice for Soul Cal II was the GameCube, I was disappointed at Soul Calibur III’s PS2 exclusivity, and it looked an awful lot like just a little more Soul Calibur II. Happily, the game has made huge strides since then, and honestly turns out a good bit better than I thought it would. Despite being on the PS2, this entry looks significantly better than even the ‘Cube and Xbox versions of its predecessor (and the load times between matches are what I’d expect on those more powerful machines, thankfully). And, more importantly, the combat is just as fast and smooth as we fanboys demand.
Electronic Gaming Monthly (EGM)
While it's a shame that the console with the weakest version of Soul Calibur II now plays host to the only iteration of Soul Calibur III, even the most uppity fighting-game fans should give it a chance. Don't expect a reinvented franchise, though. Two years of progress haven't changed the fundamental gameplay much at all: Everyone moves a bit faster, some moves require different input, and everyone has a new maneuver or three. And the visuals haven't progressed terribly much, either: SC3's characters, colorful stages, and occasional slowdown seem fully interchangeable with those in the previous game. This might all sound somewhat disheartening, but Calibur is still the finest fighting game of the year, no question.
Anyone who's ever been religious about Soul Calibur will tell you that it's the game's deep, lightning-fast, fighting system that gets under their skin and keeps them slaves to its magic. It's a fact -- since the series' "reinvention" in arcades and on the Dreamcast six years ago, there still isn't a versus game today that really does justice to the weapons-based fighting that's at the heart and soul of the Calibur experience. The series also has the distinction of being both impossibly deep, and extremely novice-friendly. While Soul Calibur undoubtedly has its legion of joystick junkies who systematically rage against the ignorance of those less-skilled, the series recognizes mashing-away-at-buttons as a raw, primitive technique, making it popular, as well, amongst the great unwashed.
Die bereits hervorragende Kampfmechanik der Vorgänger wurde verfeinert und verbessert, so dass mittlerweile keine Wünsche mehr offen bleiben: Anfänger kommen schnell zu ersten Erfolgserlebnissen, Fortgeschrittene und Profis feilen an ihren Kombos und Kontern, die inzwischen noch leichter von der Hand gehen. Und damit nehmen ausufernde Mehrspieler-Duelle kein Ende. Angeheizt durch die fulminante Optik jagt ein Match das andere, bis schließlich die halbe Nacht vorbei ist. Für Einzelspieler gibt es gemessen am üblichen Namco-Standard eine kleine Enttäuschung: Der Weapon Master-Modus ist weggefallen und die Ersatzmodi schaffen es nur ansatzweise, eine ähnliche Motivation aufzubauen, da sie alle an kleineren oder größeren Mankos leiden – obwohl es haufenweise Gimmicks und Goodies freizuspielen gibt. So ist es nur dem Multiplayer-Modus zu verdanken, der leider ohne Online-Spiel auskommen muss, dass Soul Calibur 3 überhaupt einen Award bekommt.
Once again, Soul Calibur III is more of a refinement than anything else. If you find yourself bored with the series, the third game might not be that "something different" you've been looking for, even with the new characters and other additions. However, if you're in the market for a good, fun fighting game, you really can't do any better.
Game Informer Magazine
Yes, it is a bit of a bummer that it lacks online and is now console-exclusive, but fighting fans still shouldn't hesitate to pick this up.
Doté de graphismes superbes et pourvu de nombreux modes de jeu, Soul Calibur 3 s’impose sans difficulté comme le meilleur épisode de la série. Namco a su faire évoluer la série sans la dénaturer, en mélangeant des ingrédients classiques à quelques nouveautés sympathiques. Ce ne sera peut-être pas du goût de tout le monde, mais ceux que la nouveauté effraie pourront toujours se rabattre sur les modes les plus classiques. Pour les autres, foncez, on tient là le jeu de combats le plus complet de la console.
Soulcalibur is great because it's Soulcalibur and yet... Had Namco focused more on developing a better storyline and adding additional characters and environments -- highlights of the Soul series -- while focusing less on the new unrefined modes, we'd have a fighter worthy of worship instead of praise. For Soulcalibur III, that is the difference between pure excellence and simple greatness...at least according to our scale, anyway.
I once went head to head against Gary Coleman in a Soul Calibur event at E3. I was doing well, too, until his seven-foot tall bodyguard got me in a headlock and unplugged my controller. Even though I could counter Coleman until the cows came home, there was no move in my list for use against a three-hundred pound gorilla. I tried a couple outlandish maneuvers like reverse psychology - "Now I've got you where I want you!" - and lying - "Ugh! You just ruptured my glavin!" - but none of them worked.
Ten years ago, Namco released an arcade fighting game called Soul Edge, which was kind of like its extremely popular Tekken series, except all the characters fought with various weapons. But only when a visually stunning version of the sequel came home to the Sega Dreamcast in 1999 did Soul Calibur became possibly the best-known name in competitive fighting games. It's been more than a couple of years since the last Soul Calibur sequel, but all this history still hasn't caused the series to take any particularly dramatic turns since its Dreamcast heyday. Expert players will quickly notice all the characters' new moves and other gameplay tweaks in the latest installment, but for the most part, Soul Calibur III still plays very much like Soul Calibur, while a lot of the new modes and stuff outside the core one-on-one fighting isn't all that noteworthy this time around. To be clear, Soul Calibur III is one of the best fighting games around.
Soul Calibur 3, while the best entry in the series to date is not a massive leap forward over Soul Calibur 2. As is almost mandatory for a beat-em-up sequel they have of course added new characters and moves but the way how the game looks and plays almost exactly like its predecessors takes away from its punch a bit, if you loved Soul Calibur before you will still love it now, if you disliked it before you probably still will. The overall logic behind SC3s release seems to me to have been “If it ain't broke, don’t fix it” as I mentioned earlier. The revamped RPG section in the form of Chronicles of the Sword is better than it was before as you can make your own fighter but if you’ve played other titles where you can really go to town on customising your player you may find SC3s setup a little restrictive.
If you're looking for a new Soul Calibur you are not really in luck. Soul Calibur III just updates the visuals and some of the finer points of the game play. The new modes are not the best, but you will spend plenty of time unlocking the extra characters. After this you will undoubtedly go back to the versus matches you know and love. So on that note it is difficult to see what would attract anyone to buy if you already own Soul Calibur II. If you don't own any Soul Calibur game you should you should own this one, essentially the same as the II with the same technical and fast fighting action and prettier graphics. It's still an amazing game in its own right.
"Soul Calibur III" mantém a qualidade da série, com o habitual sistema complexo, porém bem ajustado. Os novos modos de jogo foram uma tentativa de dar mais variedade para quem joga sozinho, mas nenhum consegue empolgar; um deles chega a ser quase desastroso. O melhor do game são mesmo os combates, que poderiam ser mais bem aproveitados se houvesse uma modalidade online.
Weiter so, nach den letzten beiden Teilen, wurde die Serie wieder um ein Meisterstück erweitert. Neben Missionen wie Münzenprügeln und Wandspicker, geben sich noch Story und Taktik Eroberungen die Hand. Grosse Erweiterungen gibt es nicht, altbackene Fans werden sich gleich zu Recht finden. Störend sind die kleinen Fehler, die bereits genannt wurden, aber auch Kantenflimmern, welches ausgerechnet nur in Kämpfen vorkommt. Die Computersequenz ist, wie von Namco gewohnt, ober erste Sahne, hat aber mit den einzelnen Stories in keinster Weise zu tun. Viele Extras, Waffen und Gegenstände wecken den Sammeltrieb in euch. Doch zu lang an einem Stück gespielt, wird euch die Routine schneller als euch lieb ist einholen.
Fans können sich diesen Titel auf jeden Fall kaufen, alle anderen kann ich das Spiel zwar ohne weiteres empfehlen, doch wenn Ihr die Möglichkeit habt, spielt es zuerst mal auf Probe.
Video Game Talk
The third (well…technically fourth) addition to the Soul franchise provides all of the action that fans have grown accustomed to. The only problems really come from some lackluster modes and the fact that the game is starting to feel a little long in tooth. It could just be me considering that I've burned countless hours on the series over the years, but I found myself bored after only a short while. The stuff to buy and characters to create help alleviate some of the tedium though so long time fans will appreciate those additions. I am still keeping my fingers crossed for a 360 version that is compatible with Live, but who knows what the future holds.
Soulcalibur III is a solid sequel, but it bites off a bit more than it can chew. We didn't think Namco could possibly make Tekken interesting again, but we were dead wrong--against all odds, Tekken 5 was the most thrilling Tekken game yet. Sadly, the same spirit of revitalization does not infuse Soulcalibur III, an enjoyable yet unremarkable revamp of the classic sword-and-sorcery brawler.
For many of us, the SoulCalibur series represents the pinnacle of beat-'em-ups. Residing in a satisfying niche between depth and accessibility, it's one of the few examples in the often wilfully hardcore genre that doesn't require a daunting level of expertise to enjoy. Namco seems to go further with every incarnation to reward the fans with a bewildering amount of extra content, new characters and modes, yet still delivers a game that even newcomers to the scene can get straight into. In almost every sense, version three of this fantastic series continues this fine tradition.
Video Game Generation
But there's a lot that's wrong here, too: recycled sound and music, a limited character creation mode, a branching arcade mode that is only barely scratched in terms of potential, and an utterly craptacular RPG mode all serve to put blemishes on the game's surface and would've crippled a lesser game. Let me reiterate that: for what it is, Soulcalibur III kicks almost immeasurable amounts of butt. But some parts of it feel half-finished, while others should never have been included at all, and that isn't something that anyone who plays it can ignore. Recommended, but by God it could have been utterly spectacular.
As much as I like the Soul Calibur series, I really think it needs a break after having played Soul Calibur 3. Namco’s pretty much tapped out of ideas, and I think the series needs an update if it’s going to remain interesting. Hardcore fans will like this game, and new fans will enjoy all the different modes, but the single player aspects are mostly overly challenging novelty acts, and there’s not nearly enough multi-player options to satisfy the casual audience.