You would think that with Soulcalibur VI launching last week, along with our review, I’d be done writing articles about the game, which just so happens to be one of the best fighting games of this generation. Certainly, our esteemed leader wishes that was the case, but here we are. Turns out there’s always more content to create.
The Soulcalibur series has always been one of the more accessible fighting games in the genre, with a simple control system allowing you to easily get acquainted with the diverse roster of characters. Still, it can be a bit daunting for new players to find where to jump in, so with that in mind, we’ve put together a handy guide of 6 tips that’ll get your tale of souls and swords off to a great start.
1. Libra of Soul Is Essential
If you’ve never played a Soulcalibur game before, or if it’s been a hot minute since the last one you’ve played (Soulcalibur V came out in 2012, after all), Libra of Soul mode is the perfect place to start, allowing you to ease yourself into the game and its mechanics as a whole while taking on plenty of fights. You’ll be able to get more comfortable with your favourite moveset while learning how to deal with the different matchups.
After creating your own character, which will be an abomination if certain reddit posts are anything to go by, and completing the intro, you can visit a dojo to get acclimated with the basic mechanics of the game. Among the most useful tutorials is the intricacies of the brand spanking new Reversal Edge system, which is a useful tool for novice players to turn defense into offense by blocking an opponent’s strike and launching one of your own.
2. Soul Chronicle Is Also Essential
While Libra of Soul is great to learn the general mechanics of the game, you’ve also got to find a character you like, and Soul Chronicle is perfect for that. Soul Chronicle is the all encompassing Story Mode of Soulcalibur VI, with a main timeline following the journey of Kilik as he seeks to destroy Soul Edge and control his own inner darkness along with individual stories per character.
If you’ve not found your main yet, this mode is the perfect place to explore that, as the difficulty is relatively low and you can play as pretty much every character (Zasalamel’s story is just text and speech, for some reason). Once you’ve found your character, you can hit the training modes to learn combos or head back to Libra of Soul with that character style to get more in-fight practice in a relatively stress free environment.
3. The Drawbacks of Reversal Edge
As much as Reversal Edge has its uses, it’s not a foolproof system and advanced players can punish excessive usage with relative ease. For starters, continuing to use Reversal Edge will build your guard gauge, making you more susceptible to a guard crush when blocking enemy attacks.
During a successful Reversal Edge, you’re given a brief window to choose your next move, whether that be to attack, block or evade. The rock paper scissors mechanic at play (kick beats vertical, horizontal beats kick and vertical beats horizontal) makes for some interesting mind games, so make sure to keep your opponent guessing. If you’re going to play like a braindead Astaroth and mash vertical every time, you’re going to be punished for it.
4. Take A Trip To The Museum
A staple of all Soulcalibur games is the Museum, a ceremonial shrine dedicated to the world of Soulcalibur, including multiple videos, concept art, promotional screens and lore dumps, and the same is true of this iteration too. That said, Soulcalibur VI’s Museum has improved in one key aspect, because it now includes a full section dedicated to general combat advice along with tips and tricks for every character.
Though it’s all in written form, making it less involved than the tutorials found in the likes of an Arc System Works game, the Combat Lessons part of the Museum goes into more details about the game’s more advanced mechanics, such as lethal hits, just effects, definite counterattacks (using an opponent’s recovery against them) and more, which is perfect for when you want to know how to effectively take your game to the next level.
You can also view each individual character to get an idea of their gameplan, which moves are good in what situation and how to “master” each character. As tempting as it might be to just investigate your main character before heading off, make sure to check each character out. Again, it’s about learning matchups. The more you know about your opponent’s move-set and gimmicks, the better you’ll do.
5. Research Your Soul Charge
The Soul Charge has been a feature in the Soulcalibur games for a while now, but it’s often been one that’s overlooked and underutilised. Not so this time, as Soul Charges now offer incredible buffs to your attack strength, along with causing chip damage on blocking opponents and, in the case of characters like Kilik and Groh, turning you into a weird demon boi, which is nice I guess.
But the most useful change that comes with Soul Charge is the amount of new techniques you unlock during its usage. It’s worth researching what new tools you have access to during Soul Charge, as most characters unlock new combos and moves that can really open up your opponent’s defense. Also, not to sound patronising, but maybe learn everyone else’s moves too. Matchups are everything, after all.
6. Size Matters
A small tip just the finish things off (stop laughing at the back there), but when creating a character, size matters. I said stop laughing! When making your character, you can manipulate their height which will in turn affect their range, and in turn that has an effect on how strong your character is.
Basically, there’s a balance in place to stop you from doing insane Nightmare damage with an even bigger sword. The more reach you have, the less damage you can do, so bear that in mind if you think you can cheat the system by creating a ginormous freak with a massive Kilik staff. You just won’t have the damage to make it worth the effort.
And there’s a few of our tips. Do you have any of your own? Sound off in the comments below, and drop us a link to some of your favourite creations.