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Mixed or average reviews- based on 124 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 78 out of 124
  2. Negative: 23 out of 124

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  1. Feb 5, 2012
    The Soul series of fighting games have always been a breed apart - where other fighting game franchises have focused on fast and frenzied action, high-count combos and twitch reactions, Soul was different in the sense that it required elements of patience. You never had to worry about your guard breaking, because you were meant to constantly shift your position or quickly intercept an attack with a well-timed block. You never had to worry about one mistake costing you the match (in most cases) because juggles and combos, while present, took a backseat to a more deliberate style of fighting. It wasn't a scrap, it was a duel, and you had to do less outplaying of opponents than you would OUTHINK them, and this was a refreshing change of pace in an era where the Marvels and Guilty Gears of the world were focused on finding ways to use one more gauge. Soul Edge/Blade brought a new idea, SoulCalibur perfected it, and SoulCalibur II immortalized it. SoulCalibur III was released on the PlayStation 2 without an arcade playtest preceding it (for a Japanese fighting game, that's never a good thing) and as such had massive issues that plagued it, and SoulCalibur IV felt like it had an identity crisis - it didn't know exactly what game it wanted to be, and could never find a comfortable place in between trying to remain relevant to the changing tastes of the genre and maintaining its own unique sense of class.

    With that said, SoulCalibur V is a descent into full-blown manic schizophrenia, and is easily the most unnecessarily contrived attempt at revitalizing the franchise. Somewhere along the line, I imagine someone at Namco Bandai had to have said "I wonder if we'd do the franchise and its fans justice if we only took the system back it its roots," but I'm sure that genius was ignored or fired for speaking not only a great idea, but the truth. Whoever came up with the conceptual gameplay ideas for this title needs psychological evaluation. Probably rehab from whatever rocks they were smoking, too.

    First of all, let's talk gauges. SoulCalibur didn't have a "guard crush" anti-turtle mechanic until SC4, and they connected that to a one-hit-kill system that was almost impossible to initiate because it took forever to whittle down someone's guard. So, they thought up a better idea than half-heartedly stealing a Guilty Gear gameplay trope was to steal a Street Fighter one: enter the new gauge at the side of the health bar, which powers Brave Edge moves (think EX specials), Critical Edge moves (think Ultra Combos in SF4), and Guard Impact. The first two on this list are lame additions to try to add a false sense of complexity, but the last one kills not only me, but I'd be willing to wager 80% of the existing, longstanding fanbase.

    Guard Impact is to SoulCalibur as a series what breathing and blinking is to human life. They decided to change the way it's worked for the past 13 years for some reason, whatever reason that may be, it wasn't good enough. In its place is "Just Guard," where you need to block at the exact frame (or nearabouts) to cause a window of counterattack. This has taken a system that caused tense parry wars and impossibly exciting action between friends and foes alike and successfully reduced it to trying to tap guard at just the right moment of any incoming attack. So, they took yet another great 2D mechanic and plastered it into a game where it really didn't belong (you have Garou: Mark Of The Wolves to thank for Just Defense). Again, they have taken the rich complexity of chess at a hundred moves a minute, and reduced it to Connect Four on a PixyStix sugar rush.

    Every step isn't backwards, however. The music is fantastic, classic tracks and new alike. The visual fidelity is stunning, backgrounds pop and come to life, characters have ornate clothes, lip-sync is very well done for speaking animations. The online netcode is beyond solid and functions like a dream (X360). The character creation mode, a SC staple since SCIII, is easily the greatest part of the whole game. This is what every character creator should be, and Namco Bandai should carry that proudly. It's just a shame that the game that uses all of these sublimely fantastic elements should perform so underwhelmingly, and I'm not going to even go into the abysmal story mode and complete lack of single-player content, again, something the Soul series is not only known for, but carries high praise and accolades for those very features in past games. Let's do the math: major characters missing, balance issues out the wahzoo, a fighting system that doesn't deserve the name SoulCalibur, a complete and utter lack of meaningful single-player anything, fantastic presentation in which everything shines but the gameplay itself, atrocious all equals a five, and it really should be a four, but the rest of it shows such high workmanship that I can't bear to not give credit where it's due.
  2. Feb 7, 2012
    Story: ~1hr to beat. Note: this involves a few fighters. The rest -omitted, you get to fight on a few stages. The few people that do show up have 1 line of dialogue. Almost the entire cast of SC5 is not in the 'story mode'. Wow! Big effort Namco. ~3 cut scenes in story mode. The rest is pencil drawings. Yeah, I prefer pencil drawings on my 60" 1080P HDTV. Thanks Namco for 1996 & chargingfull price for a 'new' game. It's as if Namco scanned the storyboard pencil drawings that should have become CG video or even in-game-engine sequences & decided "Nah, we're 2 cheap. Let's use pencil drawings instead." I almost forgot, you're going to hear a LOT of "I love you brother/sister/mother" in story mode. You get to hear those words & READ them 2. Why? cuz you can unlock the text. cuz that is SO much more fun than unlocking katas (e.g.SC2), different gameplay modes (e.g. SC3) & ending movies (e.g. SC4).

    Arcade: Remember picking a fav fighter, pick their 1P/2P/3P costume, select their diverse weapon set? Play through arcade/story & unlock their 'ending movie'? That was fun & rewarding. Namco removed that part of the game. Yes, no story mode for the remaining people in the game. All fighter endings are gone. No option to view the cutscenes, all 3 of them. That's right, they removed all the endings. Want to know what happened to Astaroth? Raphael? Amy? Taki? or Cervantes? Good luck, cuz all that is missing from this game. What did they replace it with? You get a sad arcade mode (fight 6 times) Yippie! cuz that is *so* much better than full CGI endings (sarcasm). Oh, I forgot they added a 2nd arcade mode. What is different about it? You get to fight 6 times (sound familar?) and... The difficulty is higher. rip-off. Even SF2/MK1 had ending movies We've got HDTVs, 3D games, lossless high-def master audio surround sound & what does Namco give us? pencil drawings & text descriptions of "Loves his sister, can't wait to live with her". WTF?

    Chronicles of the Sword/Tower of Souls: GONE. Replaced with... ??? Nothing. It is just gone. You have arcade (fight 6 times), training (worthless), & VS mode (which doesn't work properly). Oh wait, you can fight online.... except you could already do that in SC4.

    Reduced: Taki, Sophitia, Kilik, etc are gone. But you get 3 ppl that are mimics (copy other styles),add 2 more that have ~identical styles [Sophitia's son & daughter], that seems 2 be an extra 2 fighters, it's more clones, that makes 5 mimic fighters.

    Museum Mode/Gallery mode/photo mode/Kata mode: GONE. Replaced with: Nothing.
    1-player: All standard modes like time attack, team battle, tower of souls, survival, ARCADE, gallery, etc. ARE ALL GONE. Nothing to do in 1-player. This stands out since previous SC games had a strong single player (i.e. SC2). Using your fav. fighter & level them up by playing a variety of matches? How cool it was to have reached level 10 with everyone? This led to further rewards in-game... GONE.
    2-Player: Good luck trying to get this working. It took over 10min+ to get a VS match. Oh, & both players were sitting IN THE SAME ROOM. Remember how you could handicap your fighter compared to your opponent? i.e. in SC4 you could have 1/2 health & your little brother could have X2 health. Help even out matches where someone is less skilled, it was useful & a staple in SC? GONE.
    Training: Games typically give you info on new features & explain how 2 use them? it's good 2 have this info? Namco doesn't provide it. Yet they tout it as 1 of the main features. Contrast that with SC4 which provided it. Namco couldn't be bothered to copy some text into the game to help out players. Oh wait! They do have text... yes they provide lots of text about love....(More later). Training mode is reduced compared to SC3/4. Gone.
    Unlockables: Oh how we used to collect artwork, concept art, music, weapons, movies, opening CGI sequences (complete with inserting your CaC into those sequences), BGM, kata (demonstration) mode & all sorts of other fun stuff? Well That is all gone too. But you CAN unlock things like these wonderful TEXT descriptions. E.g. I just unlocked "Loves his sister." Wow, that is great Namco. A... piece of text? What can I do with it? I can have it appear when I play online. Wow.... that is supposed to be better than having Taki or Sophitia in the game? RIP OFF!!!
    Options: No 3D support (Arkham City/Assassin's creed). Remember changing time limits/round? You could select 'infinite' time/round, have a fight 2 the finish? GONE. Namco decided to force a max limit [60 sec]. Thanks for giving me LESS options than before.
    I've been with SC series from the start & SC5 is a joke. I even explained to Namco (via Twitter) what was wrong with SC4. In fact, 1000's of fans explained exactly what they did/didn't want. Yet Namco gave us this? Reduced, reused & recycled over-priced POS.
  3. Jan 31, 2012
    I am a big Soul Calibur fan. Always has been. That said, I have to say that this game is just not doing it for me. Most of the characters are dumb down and the roster itself is unfortunate. It almost feels like the series went backwards. The graphics are nice and it's still fun to play, but ends as a big disappointment. I really dislike the critical edge moves. The game did NOT need it. Also, the single player portion of the game is probably the worst in the series as well. I'm still going to play it, hoping that it will grow on me, but man... it could have been so much better. Oh and if you're going to advance the story 17 years and get rid of some of the series regulars... you have to make sure that the story is worth it. It's not. I really hope this game grows on me. See you guys on-line!! Expand
  4. Feb 1, 2012
    If you have never, ever played a Soul Calibur game before, don't bother. If you have, and loved SC4, you'll love this one. This game isn't even worth the label on the blu-ray. Absolute stripped down bare-bones single-player modes combined with a terrible story mode that focus' on two unlikeable characters does much to put another nail in this series coffin. It has hope, but any semblance of the series returning to the high of SC3 is long, long gone. Expand
  5. Feb 4, 2012
    Soulcalibur V is nothing short of excellent and takes its crown of one of the most systematically marvellous fighters of this gen. While there is a depth to other fighters, the Soul Calibur series has commonly been seen as the scape goat for methods to implement in the Tekken series. Soul Calibur V not only completely obliterates this theory it proves itself to be a game to be marvelled at and is not just leaps and bounds above Soul Calibur IV, it is also leaps and bounds above any 3D fighter currently on the market. However thats not to say there aren't problems with the game. The single player modes are too far and few between and it feels like the single player experience has been cut dramatically from SCIV, the biggest hinderance on the single player time is the reduction of a Story Mode for each character. Instead the game has switched to a single story path which mainly follows new characters Patrakolos and Pyrrah. While this story line is extremely weak it is good enough to plug the holes between each fight and adding a bit of substance, however the narrative as a whole falls flat on its face. Again this is a step by Namco Bandai in one of their leading fighting game franchises which should not have been made. A similar fate beheld Tekken 6 which attempted to change the story structure and again fell more than flat on its face, this is one of the reasons why Tekken 6 was a dissapointment to many. Moving away from the single player experience in story mode, there are also the 'Legend of Souls' mode, which is a bit like a challenge mode, an arcade mode which is standard and a quick battle mode which again is standard. But where this game excells is not in its modes but in the fighting system they have created for Soul Calibur V. The system really excells in every way taking a cue from the Street Fighter series and adding special moves resembling those found in the earlier mentioned series. The system is fast and fluid and takes into consideration the high, low and mid attacks and makes them a main function of surviving in a battle. We also have the critical guard system and many other systems to engage even the most hardcore Soul Calibur fans. Now the roster. The roster features around 27 characters (I believe) and between this set of warriors the variety is fantastic with those characters which are more technical to those which are simply slow, but power houses. They've added new characters which mostly stick to the same fighting styles as characters of old however some like viola introduce new fighting styles to the series. All in all the roster is not bad but is not the best roster in fighting games either, it feels just about good enough but is still very befitting for players with enough variety to keep players wanting to learn the tricks of each style. As usual creation is back, however it is not the best creation mode we've ever seen in the Soul Calibur series. It lacks some finesse that other creation modes as in 3 (Particuarly) and 4 had. However again it is fitting and gives many different styles of creating your character from that cool ninja outfit to that not so cool Viking helmet. There are other modes such as an online mode and the usual multiplayer modes to explore as well which again as with many fighting games is where the game truly excells, giving all players a chance. Gameplay: 9.5
    Graphics: 8.5
    Presentation: 8.5
    Lasting Appeal: 8
  6. Feb 4, 2012
    By setting the game 17 years after part IV, Project Soul managed to keep this fighting franchise fresh. New characters are introduced and while some are different versions of previous fighters, they feel fresh and above all, fun to play. Graphics are also the highlights, running at 60fps! The only gripe is the story mode, that is presented through storyboards!! Weird considering that 'lesser' games such as Dead or Alive Dimensions in 3DS, used the in game graphics engine for that. Otherwise, a solid fighter! Expand
  7. Feb 1, 2012
    Easily the worst of the series, this one manages to eliminate time honored characters, throw out game balance and supply the least amount of single player play to date. I found myself turning the game off after and an hour of game play simply because there so little to do. The game actually made me crack open SC IV because I wanted to play Soul Calibur, not one laden down with 10 hit combos and pure cheese attacks. Let's hope they some of the DLC for the game can greatly improve what's missing. Expand
  8. Feb 4, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. It's better than Soul Calibur 4 in gameplay, but is worse than 3 in game modes. The Creation and Online modes are excellent, and the new characters like ZWEI and Viola were very creative. And finally the story mode started walking again, but I would like to see the end of the other characters too. I recommend this game for all the fighting game fans, specially the SC fans. Expand
  9. Dec 29, 2012
    The story for this game is a joke, ranging from laughably easy fights to aggravatingly difficult fights, it only includes about half of the total characters, if that. No depth, predictable and borderline kindergarden grade story. I have been a huge Soul Calibur fan since the Sega DC, have every game and beaten every one to almost perfection. "Soul Calibur V" is NOT a Soul Calibur game, its a pathetic attempt to cash in on an established and proven franchise. If I could choose one word to represent this game it would be disrespectful; to the name of Soul Calibur and the entire video-game industry. I've rated this game a three because it IS rather gorgeous and there are interesting concepts with the new characters, but it seems unfortunate the entire budget and creativity went into enhanced graphics and unnecessary re-creations of many beloved characters. Expand
  10. Feb 29, 2012
    SoulCalibur V is a beautiful game. The gameplay has been completely re-worked, the graphics are very refined and the scenarios are consistent with the whole. The new characters are extremely charismatic and varying styles of gameplay proposes great challenges. But no challenge is better than online mode. Create your own character and venture into the strange universe of real players is still trumps. The title is good, it is worth, but it is far from perfect. Expand
  11. Feb 2, 2012
    I do not like this version... is the same in XB360, I do not understand because they give favoritism to this, at least to me, the control here is terrible.
  12. Feb 15, 2012
    Great characters customization, great fighting game, great characters, bad story mode, average online mode, not that many features other then that less characters then previous games and many new ones are just the same old ones with different names and 2 moves changed.
  13. Jun 19, 2012
    The games have always been great in this franchise, but this a disappointment for me. While the gameplay is improved with good changes and it's still masterpiece, the game seriously lacks in content compared to previous games.

    Remember Soul Calibur 2? Remember its ridicolous amounts of game modes? Remember the amount of weapons you could unlock and actually were more than just looks?
    Yeah, it's all gone. Weapon Master still doesn't do a comeback. Instead, we got Story mode, which takes only 1-2 hours to beat. The story is boring and while it's nice to see drawn pictures, it doesn't look so good, that I would like it. You can only use specific characters too, which is stupid (Even though there is very good reasons to why play as them). There are no team battles. No survival. No special modes where your selected weapon would affect the gameplay. Nothing except for tutorial and arcade mode. And a new game mode called Quick Battle, but in there you just select an AI to fight againts. Nothing else.

    The new characters feel like just younger versions of previous characters. There also is too many characters, who use weapons of random characters. That's just boring and waste of character space.

    The online multiplayer still doesn't work the best way. Host still gets quite a large advange.

    Is there anything improved? I'm so so with the character creation. While it does have some nice improvements (The clothes don't change your stats), the game forces you to level up in order to unlock new gear, which is stupid.

    In overrall, the game is worse than previous games in content. If you can play the game split-screen with your friends, grab Soul Calibur 2 instead. It also has a lot more content instead.
  14. Feb 28, 2012
    This is an easy 9 but the AI brings it 1 full point down. I'm playing a enemy who i destroy for 2 rounds but then some impossible god ai come forth and makes even a hit impossible while my health bar is destroyed in 2.45 seconds. And don't tell me to just play online like everyone else. If you look at others online cards you'll see that single player is played 90% of the time. Single Player is EXTREMELY important. And this game is lucky I only detracted 1 point. Other than that it's a great fighter. Expand
  15. Apr 7, 2012
    For competitive players my verdict is 10!
    For Casual players my verdict is 6.5

    I myself am what i would call a successful competitive gamer and do allot of research into game mechanics and what makes a great fighting game. Soulcalibur V team has done some remarkable job with the game and has acknowledged the issues with the game by chancing game mechanical aspects to suit competitive
    gaming better (ie. removing Quick step guard & Fuzzy guard) The games characters are well toned and most characters are suitable for tournament play (excluding some very bad characters, which every game has to have at least a few)
    This game will definitely be in the tournament cycle for at least few years. The problem with the game is, that it was not made for casuals at all. the game was made possible with a big effort from the fan base and the still active soulvalibur IV scene. and thus the major focus was to make the game a good tournament fighter above all else. This is why some of the new characters were just bland anime stereotypes (Xiba anyone? or how about the EMO skunk hair Z.W.E.I?) and the story mode was a big letdown. the story mode can be summarised by one sentence "Seen that, done that"

    The multiplayer options are interesting and offer somewhat of a good basis for onlinewarriors. the connections were fine wen the game launched but now for some reason the games online environment has gone aloof, allot of random de-synch and other problems make it hard to play against some people you had no problem playing earlier.

    Also i have to note that a majority of players online seem to be full of "s#it" and cant handle a loss. dont get me wrong every game has these, but soulcalibur has always had a very salty player base online. If you are a casual gamer who likes to sit down with friends and have a few rounds, this game is great. but dont go looking for a big bundle of Singleplayer content because its next to nothing. Competitive gamers ahoy, go buy this game and give it a go. it will definitely suit your needs.
  16. Mar 9, 2012
    Pros - Beautiful graphics, fun game mechanics, and fun character creation.

    Cons - Story mode is terrible, the new characters feel super weak, and compared to every other soul caliber this game is the weakest when it comes down to features.
  17. Feb 8, 2012
    Soul Calibur 5 is a spectacular game of its genre. From Soul Calibur 4, they have improved the game mechanics to become more sleek and fun, making it much more easy for people to jump in, and learn. Though, like any fighting game, the game now offers a feeling of much depth, a system to be mastered that was impressive when it is, unlike Soulcalibur 4, that seems to lack that sort of reward. SoulCalibur 5 also brings back character customization, with a more sensible customizer and much more reasonable loading times. The graphics look as though they were taken straight from SoulCalibur 4, which is a good thing, and improved upon to the point things move quicker, and manage to look more impressive. While the story is a bit short, I found it to be a very good one, and something most should enjoy if they don't mind a narrative within their fighting games. If not, a classic arcade mode, a quick battle where you compete for titles, and a legendary battle mode are all offered to add more depth to the lonely SoulCalibur man. Now, for all the lonely online SoulCalibur players, online makes a return with improvements all around. The only place where I'm disappointed, is in fighting styles. After a while, you start getting characters that are blatant clones of past ones, offering nothing new except slightly different controls, and even then, some of them don't play different AT ALL. Despite these choices in characters, the game is still very good. I would quickly recommend it to just about any fan of fighting games that feel a bit more brutal, swords slashing against shields, that type of combat. Now, let us meet on the holy ground, where the phoenix rises! Ready? Fight! Expand
  18. Mar 21, 2012
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. SoulCalibur V is an awesome game with stunning visuals, good customization, and great variety of characters. Down side is that most mode from previous SC series haven't return. So there's a lack of mode for offline play, but quick battle and legendary mode makes up for it. The story contains at least 20 chapters. It took me a day to finish the story. If your fan of SC or sword fighting games you should defiantly buy. Expand
  19. Feb 4, 2012
    Soul Calibur V does nothing new for the series or for the genre of fighting games. The graphics are look good, but the story does fall short. While the online capabilities work well, you'll be playing characters that are near overpowered in order to keep up because the characters are not balanced. Ezio makes a nice addition to the series, but the roster is slightly disappointing. If this is your first Soul Calibur, have a great time. But if you're a veteran to the series, just keep playing IV until V goes on sale. Expand
  20. Feb 22, 2012
    this game is terrible on all levels e& should be avoided by fighting game fans & especially fans of soul calibu4r 1-4!! unlocking artwork? GONE!! unlocking demonstrations? GONE!! taki,zasalamel,Kilik & other favorite characters? GONE? why is probably your question but you think story mode has the answers right....WRONG this is probably the worst aspect of this shadow of a great fighting game series as it only focuses on two characters who are totally useless in drawing you into their struggles especially his sister who is just a a neurotic mess & ends up with soul edge!? this game takes a step back in every aspect except graphics which has always been a high point in this series but the worst part for me is that you need to fill a bar just 2 parry is just beyond me & inexcusable as this ability seperated button smashers from skilled players yet this bar is also needed to perform your special/ultimate I'm stuck fighting button smashers without truly punishing them & hoping they up their skills!!! this game should have stayed in development as it GREATLY LACKS what made previous SC games enjoyable!!! Expand
  21. Mar 29, 2012
    Soul calibur v turned out to be a great dissapointment great graphics great character models good online play mainly lag free. But thats about it no real campaign there is one but its very poor. no cgi story cut-scenes just sketches in black and white. all the old modes have gone no survival mode no gallery no edge-master learning levels that were fun . its as if they've stripped every good bit of this game out. and really all that remains is the online mode. customisation is great but with so little content i cant recommend soul calibur at all. As a long time fan of the series i traded it in 2 days after purchase . After completing around 20 matches, of story mode? and playing online a bit. this edition of SC- 5 is the worst yet. another annoying feature is that the fighters seem to end up facing backwards to the opponent quite a bit ive never seen this in a fighting game, And it feels looks like a bad bug glitch?. If its a new mechanic its still annoying and looks wrong. Expand
  22. Aug 30, 2012
    Soulcalibur V is a brilliant fighting game and possibly the greatest game of its series. It's truly awesome! The fighting mechanics have been pretty much tweaked to perfection, which they already did Soulcalibur II, but for some reason it didn't stick, who knows why? Not me. While playing incredibly well with brilliant new and old characters, for some reason, the folks at Namco Bandai decided to get rid of team battles, single character story lines, team arcade, a really long and deep story mode and special battles, and added legendary souls and quick battles, these two modes are really great, but it doesn't quite make up for the other modes being gone. The story mode, however, while not being that long and not including all of the characters, it is very gripping and well done. There are a fair amount of things missing, but hey, the gameplay is pretty much perfect, all the characters are awesome, the story mode is gripping, the animation and graphics are brilliant and the new modes are great, this game totally deserves a nine out of ten, really. REALLY! Expand
  23. Mar 11, 2012
    I've been a Soul Calibur fan for years, ever since the first game on Dreamcast (I never got a chance to play Soul Edge/Soul Blade on Playstation). It was a game series that would make me buy consoles (Dreamcast for SC1, Playstation 2 for SC3). In the past (up to Soul Calibur 3), you always had a lot of single player content, with special "quest" modes and things like that. In Soul Calibur 4, they added an online mode and kinda forgot about single player modes (except for a tower mode that wasn't very interesting). All Soul Calibur fans were waiting for this 5th episode, hoping that the mistake would be corrected... Well, it wasn't.

    Let's make things clear immediately : there's no single player content. You have a story mode that lasts less than 2 hours, and a Quick Battle mode which just makes you fight 240 characters controlled by an Artificial Intelligence at different levels. Namco once again focused on the online mode for this new episode, causing the rage of millions of Soul Calibur players all over the world.

    That being said, Soul Calibur 5 is still a Soul Calibur, and not a bad one. The old SC gameplay is still here, and it still works very well. They removed a few things and added a new special gauge. It goes up when you attack or take damage, and it allows you to perform special actions, such as Critical Edges (a kind of "fury"), Brave Edges (improved versions of other attacks) or Guard Impacts. I'm not a big fan of that system (I especially dislike the Critical Edge thing) but it's all right.

    So, you won't be lost with the gameplay if you played a SC game before. However, you may not recognize the characters... That's because they got rid of most of the old regular characters and replaced them with new guys, with similar move sets. No more Taki, here comes Natsu. No more Kilik (kinda), here comes the ridiculous Xiba, etc. Some old guys are still here (Mitsurugi, Maxi, Ivy or Cervantes) but many are gone, including my favorite character (Sophitia). There are also 2 "new faces" (with new fighting styles). Viola, a magician girl fighting with a floating ball, and ZWEI a guy with a kind of wolf fighting with him, appearing out of thin air. Oh, and I almost forgot the guest star, Ezio Auditore from Assassins Creed!
    You can also create your own characters in the Creation mode, with many different outfits, but you'll be limited to the existing fighting styles (+Devil Jin's style from Tekken). No special fighting styles that don't belong to a regular character like in Soul Calibur 3.

    Technically speaking, the game looks very good and the animations are smooth. I'm not sure the improvements since SC4 are big, though.

    I said earlier that Namco focused on the online mode for this game, and didn't bother adding any worthwhile solo content. So let's talk about the online modes! You can play in ranked matches, player matches (no ranking), or join the Global Colosseum to chat with people, defy them or enter a tournament. Nothing really original there, just normal stuff. However, I didn't have much fun online because it takes too damn long to find an opponent most of the times. In a 1 vs 1 game, finding an opponent should not take more than 10 seconds, more than that and it becomes really annoying. It's the case here, it always took too long for me to find an opponent to play against, which ruined my online experience.

    As you probably have guess by now, I've been very disappointed by this 5th episode of the Soul Calibur series (6th if you count Soul Edge). It had the potential to be a great game, the game system is as pleasant as before, but the shameful lack of single player content and the poor online experience ruined everything. That's too bad...

    Oh, last thing, for trophy collectors... This game has one really dumb trophy. It requires you to walk 87.6 km. After getting all the other trophies, I had walked about 16 kilometers... Great, only 70km to go!
  24. Mar 23, 2012
    Ever since the original Soul Blade on PS, this franchise has been sliding into mediocrity. Sadly the latest offering is worse than it's predecessors.
    I remember the game having the coolest and the most versatile characters of any video game in it's genre and how excited I was after seeing the next one. They were different in their body shapes and fighting styles and graphics were different
    and interesting. To me, all the characters now look bland and story mode was just horrible. I also remember the intro movie in the original Soul blade blowing my mind at the time. This one looks like they slapped it together as cheap as they could with silly dialogue and using mediocre, cheap sketches to tell the story. Special moves do not feel nowhere near as exciting as they did before. I wish they put more effort as it was a great franchise. Expand
  25. Apr 3, 2012
    It was great to see a new SoulCalibur get released this year. Based off of 'special guests' I was concerned who would be added to the mix. Etzio fit into the genre and setting but it didn't work out as much as I wanted it to. The story was awesome but was able to beat very quickly. If you love IV then V is the same thing with a few variations on characters.
  26. Apr 11, 2012
    First off, I love the SC series, since SE/SB it has had a great system to discourage button mashing and turtling, and this is no exception. You still have to be very aware of how your style strikes, and how to counter your opponent; you actually have to be patient to win. It also retains the same fluid feel to movement and attacking fans of the series are familiar with. I, unlike others,welcome the soul gage combo. My major gripe is that it is too easy to pull off, since every character has the same button sequence to pull it off. I 'get' it, this makes it more acessable to new players, but being able to pull off a nearly unstoppable combo that takes off 25%-45% of the opponents energy bar with a simple controller motion and basically one button is just too easy. This game would have got a 9 had they made this more complex and unique to each character. However, like SCIV, the customization system is back... it gives an insentive to do the challenges, but not as much as SVIV, since the different weapon attributes are gone (a huge mistake). In this regard SCIV is actually better. It seems like they dumbed it down to attract new fans, as opposed to building on what made SCIV so great. That knocks it down a point as well. Also, make sure your TV is compatible with the output, as if you have an older HDTV that only does 1080 and not 720, you will be playing it in standard def. This is kind of a ridiculous glitch that really should be fixed, but I will not dock them another point, just give you the warning to check your TVs compatability, since there is no upscaling option. All in all a solid and fun fighter with lots of unlockables, but dumbed down that may dissapoint you in a few key areas if you have followed the series for years. Where SCIV was a 9 or 9.5, this is more a 7.5 or 8 Expand
  27. Feb 14, 2013
    It's not that Soulcalibur V is a bad game. In fact, it's not a bad game at all. It's actually relatively fun for the first hour or so it's on. The graphics in the game are beautifully detailed and crisp, making even the simplest character and stage designs visually compelling. The sound is typical SC, which means you'll hear a lot of HD sound quality swords clashing over a melodramatic symphonic soundtrack. The gameplay, for the most part, is interesting as well; "Critical Edge" is overall a massive improvement over the MK knock-off "Critical Finishers". However, SCV's weakest points are some of its most significant: single player mode is beyond limited, offering no innovative new features gameplay wise and having little to none when it comes to modes other than story and arcade. That's another cons, its story mode and new characters are bogus. Story mode can be beaten within an hour and the cast of characters you're forced to learn about are underwritten and particularly uninteresting. The most enjoyable aspect of SCV is its online mode, which in comparison with popular multiplayer franchises such as Mortal Kombat, Street Fighter, and Marvel vs Capcom, remains uninteresting. SCV wasn't worth its $60 price tag and should have been retailed under $40 at least. For longtime players of this franchise, SCV will be a disappointment. But now that it's price tag is finally in budget, maybe players can feel a little less heartbroken (unless, of course, you bought the damn game at full price). For newcomers, the game should be at least moderately entertaining, because as I've said before, the game isn't bad at all. For the first few hours, it's actually quite fun. It has a ton of potential and maybe the creators will absorb that whenever SCVI comes around. Expand
  28. Mar 19, 2013
    A very solid fighter with a rich cast of diverse characters. But here is the catch- no story. Let me repeat myself- there is little to no story in this installment which is very disappointing. Project Soul has also taken the liberty of "killing" off more than 3 characters and replacing them with clones that supposedly come out of nowhere, and the story more doesn't explain it. I am very disappointed that the story was almost non existent, because you have this world where swords don't kill in one hit, (supposedly blunt swords? What?) and characters that have a very rich history with themselves and each other character in the game. It's almost like a Lord of the Rings gold mine. But alas, they fail to capitalize on it- giving us a lackluster and unlikable main character, and a cheesy story line with what could possibly be an incest ending (Sorry Project Soul.)

    Now the multiplayer. It is very solid and up to date like the previous mechanics, save for a little more tweaks and differences from the previous iterations. The inclusion of a "meter" made famous by popular 2D fighters, allows you to pull of various moves called Brave Edges or a super attack. It is well executed, however is not completely balanced for all characters. Some characters have good Brave Edges, while most don't. Soul Calibur 5 is great in that it is not too complicated to learn, but also very technical when it comes to pro-gaming. The netcode is a definite step-up than the previous Soul Calibur, allowing for more smooth matches. Overall, the package is solid, but there are many areas it lacks in. Global Colosseum is fresh and so is CaS, but the lack of sotrymode can be a turnoff for some. If your an Offline gamer, stay away. This game is all about the multiplayer and customization it seems.
  29. Apr 16, 2013
    Enhanced character creation..... Can use Jin(from tekken) fighting style with your character. Can have the AI fight eachother like from SC3. But the flaws are alot of the characters from the other Soul Calibur were taken out and some replaced. Crap of a story mode. Not enough game modes. Took out a favorite mask that was in SC3 and 4. But its a pretty good game
  30. Aug 24, 2012
    This is the king of 3D fighters as far as I'm concerned. I cannot compare it to the previous iterations as I am not a veteran of the series but I can say that a lot of work and attention went into this title. This is a fighting game that rewards patience and focuses on mind games instead of pure input skills. The online mode is solid with very little noticeable lag and the training mode is very helpful for newcomers in the series. The story mode is not that great but I don't see this as an important aspect of a fighting game. The creation mode is an awesome feature as it allows players to customize an existing character or create a new one from scratch with a wide variety of costumes and items that can be used to make a really unique fighter you can use online. The graphics are great and the music is really nice. There is a leveling system that is not punishing to beginners and there are lots of modes where you can fight against AI that actually feels intelligent compared to other fighting games. If you love 3D fighting games, SoulCalibur V is a must! Expand
  31. Jun 11, 2012
    soul calibur v is a very hard game to review. on the one hand is it beautiful and filled with grace. yes. on the other hand did i see all of this in soul calibur 4. yes. if you liked kilik think of xiba as his goofy little brother. so on and so forth with many characters having only been replaced by a different look and name but same move set. after i realized this i customized my controller on scv to the way it had been set on sc IV and with a little tweaking there i was all over again. stella got his groove back. i put upwards on 200 hrs on the entire sc series since the original and about all i can say is if you played sc IV think of sc V as sc IV with trophy support. but minus the cool spooky voice overs, minus the originality of weapon hunting, minus the extras, minus the great orchestra music. it does have all of these things but its no longer original. so yeah its sc IV: the lame version. plus trophies Expand
  32. Jun 4, 2013
    Just wanted to say, don't believe the hate, SC V is just as good if not better than SC 2. (SC 1 is my personal favorite) The game looks and runs like art in motion, its truly amazing 60 FPS. The level art and design is superb, its really art in gaming. People are butthurt why im not sure. They added some features that arent gamebreaking, while still sticking to the roots. Great Game, MUST HAVE for any fighter collection Expand
  33. Mar 19, 2012
    I was very happy to hear them do a one story line route as I have enjoyed balzblue recent take on this foray, little did I know it was just gonna feature 3 characters and rushed job presentation. One minute you are enjoying one of the best CGI/ingame cutscenes ever and then next minute you are watching still pictures that are basically black and white screenplay type quality. Ok so atleast there is arcade mode. what? no character intro and endings there either. So basically you get story on 3 new characters and that is it. Also no gallery mode so you can't even read up on any of the other new characters. Then the other modes are basically arcade hard and offline online sim which is a bit fun due to you fighting random generated characters which can be hilarious. And vs mode. That's all there is in the offline portion. If you are an offline gamer and love the lure and story and characters of soul calibur I can see why it has such negative fan rating. So I complained a lot and still gave it an 8. Why you ask. Because the games main bread and butter to me if the actual vs competition whether offline or online, ie against real players. In this regard SoulV shines above a lot of fighters. The online netcode is amazing. It's smooth as butter. Capcom should copy this game as their games are great but have piss poor online play like SSFIVAE, UMvC3, and the new SFxT. Also what's unique is that create a soul is amazing so lots of people can make their own characters and ultimately represent your individuality. In this regard the game is amazing. Also the lobby system is one of the best. This game is up there with arcana hearts 3 and blazblue in the god tier netcode. I'll definitely be playing online for years to come. If you are Single player type player you might want to give this a rent but if you love competition you have one of the the smoothest and best robust online fighters there is so if it's competition you want this games delivers in spades. Expand
  34. May 14, 2012
    As a fan from the very first "Soul Calibur" game (which was Soul Blade on the ps1), I always followed this series and bought each game at day 1, and played everything out of them (except versus...pals liked tekken instead). This was the only game of the series which I waited for a discount, and I can't say I'm sad about it. First things first: this game is a "SMALL" improvement over the previous game: the single player mode has a BIT more stuff to do, like quick battle (very weak, if I have to say.), a (badly told) story mode with 20 chapters, which is a good time killing but it gets nowhere near to SC3 story mode (which was at least fun to play, even if it wasn't flawless), and a (extremely) poor Arcade mode with absolutely no background on it, which is probably the worst idea in this case because, and not sure if luckily or unfortunely, they added new characters (which are basically "reskins" of some previous characters due to the time passed between the games). So, in other words, these new characters are totally unknown, we don't know who they are, and there's no way to know either. Too bad, I'd love to know who they are in detail. Instead, the character creator is a HUGE upgrade and the possibilities to customize your characters are amplied (can even color your weapons: neet!). And yes... the omnipresent online feature is back (I'm sorry, I'm against online gaming on beat'em ups: it's more fun to beat the hell out of your friends). Anyway, the online feature got improved, a lot, and I'm mostly talking about the colosseum mode: this is actually a great idea, and it's basically a lobby system and you can talk AND fight anyone. Not bad, I wish the same effort was put into the single player too though, but still I can't deny the improvements on this part...but It's not enough, at all, and this game remains still a lot below soulcalibur 3, which was and still remain a master piece in both content and gameplay.'s an ok game, can check it out if you find it on discount or for less, or otherwise you can easily look elsewhere. Expand
  35. Nov 4, 2012
    the worst soul calibur to date. Just worth it if you are desperate for a dose of online combat. Single player is a trainwreck, the is a general storymode that follows the protagonists pyrra and patroklos, both of wich are annoying and stereotyped,.....and you can't choose any other character. You like arcade mode in wich you can see all the posible endings of the characters? look somewhere else. Your favorite char was sazalamel, yun seung, seong mina, talim or setsuka? then go back to SC IV, both their playstyles and skins are gone in this one. You liked tower of lost souls and the other sidegames of previos instalments? gone too. Unlockable characters are baaad, 3 mimics, algol (who has nothing to do with the current plot) and upgraded versions of patroklos and pyrra. Design has dropped a few steps too, siegfried has the most boring and generic clothe designs, cervantes looks like a gay pirate, voldo looks taken straight from mardi gras, and astharot's second outfit is a stupid mecanical terminator like skin. The only redeeming qualities: the new characters, ZWEI, Viola and Ezio make fantastic additions and for once the guest character doesn't feel out of place with the whole game. Customization seems a little more robust at first glance. And online gameplay is more stable, and fights are as good as they've always been, it's a soul calibur afterall. Overall this is a lacklustre package, and certainly one not worth the wait Expand
  36. Feb 16, 2012
    Tikeio is a poor **** who cant afford new games, this game sucks just like him! Tikeio is a poor **** who cant afford new games, this game sucks just like him! Tikeio is a poor **** who cant afford new games, this game sucks just like him! Tikeio is a poor **** who cant afford new games, this game sucks just like him!
  37. Feb 19, 2012
    As a series, Soul Calibur has seen better days. The best games in the series have been Soul Calibur, Soul Calibur II, and arguably Soul Calibur IV (and, to be fair, I only ding Soul Calibur IV because of its mind-boggling inclusion of the Star Wars universe - a cross-over that never worked well). Soul Calibur V was Project Soul's earnest attempt at updating the seminal series to compete with the modern fighting game, and it starts off fairly well but stumbles clumsily with the modification of the parrying mechanic that worked so well in previous games. The cost-benefit of parrying in previous titles was, unfortunately, inadvertent since the split-second timing required to pull off a parry could rarely be achieved in online matches. In Soul Calibur V, this has been fixed (amazingly!) but then broken again by associating a cost in just ATTEMPTING to parry by the use of a meter that fills up and depletes. This one small change, sadly, breaks the game and will have you reaching for Super Street Fighter IV or Mortal Kombat. It's a very unfortunate design miscalculation. The rest of the game takes some bold steps with the inclusion of some new characters as well as the omission of some classic ones, bold graphics and excellent sound and score. Too bad it does not stand up well, overall, compared with other fighters. If you buy it, you will quickly forget it. If you must have Soul Calibur V for your collection, wait until September and pick it up for 15 dollars on Ebay - not worth full price. Avoid. Expand
  38. Mar 5, 2012
    I am not a strong fighting game fan by any means but I went ahead and purchased SoulCalibur V in its limted edition box based on my fond memories of SoulCalibur II and general interest of the fighting genre. I wish that i could keep my found memories but alas SCV is just a bit of a lazy effort that actually, isn't as good as its 8 year old counterpart. First things first, story, not a staple in fighting games yes but thats NO excuse, its absolutely disgraceful, an hour long (2 at best) and flicking between two boring uninspired characters in a drol story thats an absolute cake walk, oh and most of the cutscenes are done in sketches that make a reciept look like a work of art. Also why did that advance it 15 years? just to cut out all the good characters, wheres Talim etc? and that could've been fine if it wernt for the tedious new charcters that arn't worth the pixels that form there name, the developers reasoning also not exactly favourable, they axed a female charcter 'cause she was too old to fight, what mid 30's... when you have elderly guys, somethings tells me she just wouldn't have been "pretty" enough for the odd pervert they were trying to cater to. Then theres an ever bigger issue, content, seriously Namco, where is it? In SCII we got an art gallery, could have matches without time constraints, could move the hud display and resize it to our liking, chance the display area, read character bios, have substantial single player content and purchase weapons of our choosing, none of which is avaliable in SCV. So what does SCV have, well its has great music, a decent customisation system, a solid fighting engine and some pretty graphics. Well actually much of that is subjective, yes the game looks pretty but there are A LOT of graphical blemishes, mostly through clipping of clothing and hair, bland enviroments and just generally a weak art style, some arenas notably are prettier than others too. the customisation is good, in that you can create a cool character easily however I find although theres plenty of clothing to choose from, theres a lack of different faces, hair styles, body shapes and sizes to choose from so you'll find most of you're characters looking quite similar. you also can't create you're own fighting style and have to pick a hieght based on fighting style, so if you like Lexia's style (a lot like Talim from SCII) you're big hulking brute will have to be converted to a fat stubby bloke just to go into fights without the dissadvantage. Speaking of dissadvantages, the fighting engine is somewhat inblanced at best, I recall far too many people selecting siegfried online aswell as nightmare to an extent as they are way overpowered or advantaged. In all fairness though the fighting is fun despite a lack of single player content to really get used to it, although those new attacks, whatever there called, have proven more redundant both online and off than an Atari Jaguar, needless to say you won't see players (who are trying to win) pull them off very often. The online conection, at least here in Scotland with my terrible broadband, is actually very good, I didn't notice any slowdown or lag whatsoever in my 110 online matches, however to play non-competitavely you have to spend 90% of the time waiting for other players to finish fighting, which I know is a staple in many fighting games, but seriously thats no excuse, I payed for this game and I expect to actually be able to, you know, play it. This game does have a few saving graces other than online and customisation though, theres a lot of statistics kept for you to compete with you're friends from the major contests (total wins, win ratio) to the utterly useless (total distance traveled)... but its allways good to be able to beat them at something right? The arcade mode has numerous paths and difficulty settings and is fairly enjoyable, theres a mock online mode with is decent but ultimately the AI is VERY exploitable and theres a real sense of comunity online, regardless of how little Namco may have actually contributed to that. So yes its a decent game, just one that lacks that level of polish you would expect this generation, indeed when i have my SoulCalibur itch, just know I'll be popping SCII into my Gamecube rather than delving into this fighter again. Expand
  39. Feb 22, 2012
    I clearly remember how I was enthusiastic when I first saw sc1that I still have a positive prejudice about the series. I've played scV a while online and I can tell it's probably the best part of the game. story mode is the cheapest, these new characters are awful, their wicked version will make you sad. not everything is bad though, I've noticed some characters have grown better, hilde,the lizardman and especially tira.
    you also get the wonderful chara-editor, most of the people use this editor as a cosplay-editor making great characters as morrigan or xena, I've spotted many others but can't remember. anyway a nice game, flawed in some way. playability is getting worse on every sc. that's the main issue.
  40. Feb 22, 2013
    Namco has watered the Soul Calibur franchise down to almost nothing with Soul Calibur 5. Seems a thing or two rubbed off on Namco from working with Capcom, including a near non existent offline mode. Don``t bother trying to b eat the game as there are literally NO, yes you read that right, NO character endings. Story mode can be beaten in 2-4 hours and is appallingly bad and boring. The only redeeming characteristic of the game is the create a character and online play. Namco sells out hard with this one and Capcom winks at them and gives the ole thumbs up! Expand
  41. Mar 17, 2013
    Soulcalibur V is one of the best in the series in terms of combat. However, the story is really, really short. Like there is no character development. And, many of old characters like Talim, Taki, etc. is forgotten. I'm rather disappointed with this game but the battle and online battle was awesome.
  42. Apr 8, 2013
    Yet another "sequel" with almost nothing new and less "everything" than it's prequel. I'd rather play SoulCalibur 2 again than this trash. You can almost hear Namco reaching for your twenty dollars through a "bargain bin" at WalMart.
  43. Apr 19, 2014
    If it weren't for its overall dull single player experience and removal of many, many majorly popular characters, Soulcalibur V had the opportunity to become one of the most highlighted games in the franchise, choosing refinement over "fixing what ain't broken". Any personal qualms with V should derive from the aforementioned and shouldn't be held against an overall potential fighter.

    Pros? Refined gameplay; excellent controls; excellent HD visuals and sound; excellent online experience and options; beautiful graphics; excellent detail in character and stage designs; less one-dimensional dialogue, "less"; the greatest Create a Soul options you'll ever see in another Soul game or in a fighting game in general; Critical Edges are a major improvement over IV's Critical Finishers in terms of, well, actually implementing them; Ezio Auditore has overall well-balanced controls and has to be one of the most functional in a Soul game.

    Cons? Limited single player modes; limited character backgrounds; shallow story mode; shallow main "protagonist"; cheap AI; replacing many, many fan favorite characters wasn't the refreshment the Soul series needed; not enough actual refreshing content to hold onto players for more than a few days.
  44. Feb 26, 2014
    I would say anyone who hates this game and calls it a Street Fighter rip off needs to take off their nostalgia glasses. Story is bad, really bad. However, the game play saves it. Solid, fluid, and beautiful.
    Pick this up seriously
  45. Nov 21, 2013
    Fans of the "Soul" series have enjoyed many of the aspects that make the series what it is, including a well constructed story plot, and unique game play. This game throws it out the window. It takes place 17 years after the events of the previous title, and tells the player nothing about the events that transpired through that time. There are many returning characters as well as new one. Though the games doesn't tell you what has happened in their life, who are they related to, or anything at all. All they give you is an odd "story" mode, that takes you through a boring uninteresting story plot, with bland and uninteresting characters. It features the son and daughter of Sophitia, though the story never directly tells you this. In order to find this out you have to recognize the being that is taking Sophitia's form or go back to the Soul Calibur IV character bios. This mode only features less than half the characters and makes no attempt to tell you about the characters in the story. The son is the daughter is annoying and is always crying, that's all we learn about this mode besides some small unimportant things. The character roster itself is okay. Featuring characters new and old, giving the game contrast between the generations. But there are indeed three "Charade" characters. Soul Calibur 2 fans may remember the character Charade. He was a being that knew all the fighting styles of the other fighters, and used a different one each round. These three characters are Kilik (yes Kilik), Edge Master, and Elysium. Kilik uses all male styles whilst Elysium uses all female styles. This game could've been great, but it's obvious the developers spent more time on the inclusion of "Critical Edges" than anything. It seems rushed, and they leave us hanging with story content. In past Soul Caliburs they featured character bios, that let the player know the characters purpose, and reason for fighting. Now you have to look up character bios for this game, and those can be inaccurate. I hope the developers learn from their mistakes if they realized them and create a better sequel. Expand
  46. Dec 14, 2013
    The soul caliber series is amazing I have loved it since the first time playing. It has always had a special feel that no other fighting game could bring. I loved SC2 the most, right now we are talking about SC5.
    First things first, the all new fighting system. I love the new fast pace, I believe that the fast speed makes the game look good. One thing I don’t like about the new system
    is critical strike. I have long hated the moves that required little skill and dealt massive amounts of damage. I know I know, it is supposed to help the beginners do flashy and powerful moves, yet the people I noticed using it were the very good players that could easily defeat nations without it. i believe that it could possibly stay in the system but needs to be much less powerful. Overall I love the new system.
    I like the fact that they were trying to add an immersive story. The story was a little odd and very repetitive. I personally hated the fact that you were only allowed to play three people. Also I didn’t gradually increase in difficulty, you started by destroying everybody you went against to having to repeat the level many times before you were defeated. The story was also obnoxiously short and overacted. You could finish the campaign in well easily an hour. The characters especially Patrokolos, were extremely over acted. I n summary the story was okay needed much more freedom, longer game play, and less cheesy actors.
    I love the fresh new character roster. A lot of characters were getting very old an example is Taki. The developers did well with creating the new roster, and the character who replaced older characters were very well done. For example my personal favorite is Natsu. She is wonderful new girl to take Taki’s place. She seems so similar to taki yet she manages to take on new roles and task that taki couldn’t.
    So to sum everything up, we had a very cool new combat system that has very nostalgic feel. We had the story which was short and cheesy. Finally we talked about the characters and how they do well at enhancing the game. Overall he game is great I love it but I did notice many thing that needed improving and/or being taken out completely

Generally favorable reviews - based on 53 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 47 out of 53
  2. Negative: 0 out of 53
  1. 70
    A good genre piece brings fans hundreds of hours of entertainment. Japanese poetics with schoolgirls wearing katanas and thin knights with iron swords are worth seeing. [March 2012]
  2. Feb 19, 2012
    The combat mechanics are easy to pick up, but the advanced techniques ought to be more than enough to keep things interesting. Regardless of its shortcomings, Soulcalibur V is still a fun and engaging game. That's all what really matters.
  3. Feb 15, 2012
    A gorgeous and playable fighter that offers a strong alternative to Street Fighter and Tekken. [March 2012, p.86]