The Soul Still Burns

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The Soul Still Burns

Long, long ago, Susan Arendt was a badass lizard.

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I think everyone has that one game that just clicks for them and they become neigh unbeatable, unfortunately mine was WinBack on the N64.

Actually, after many, many hours of Soul Caliber 4 with my friends and getting to the point where one coworker and I would literally just make people stop wanting to play, I can safely say you should use whatever character works for you. Some characters really are on a lower tier, yes, but that doesn't by necessity make them unplayable. Lizardman in particular seems to have gone through some changes into a more awesome level, since he actually has a stance that leaves him prone and he can maul people from below with it.

I happen to favor Mitsurugi and Yeung Seung. Mitsurugi is and always will be one of the best characters, but a lot of people downplay Yeung Seung's strengths. Played properly, he can beat an Astaroth that can kill him in three hits, but is still fast enough to beat some of the more broken things people can do on the internet.
And there's nothing like triple-psychics-defying-flying kicks landing on someone when they thought they were just going to kill you.

I used to be pretty good with Worms World Party, way back when. Could look out across the screen, measure out wind velocity and direction, and put a grenade right between your teeth with the mathematical formula to make you cry like a little girl in a stereotypical scottish accent voiced by a worm. Bazooka? You bet. Advanced Ninja Roping over to you, dropping a bomb, and swinging away like some maniacal cross between spider-man and the mad bomber. I knew the intricacies of the jet pack, how to use thrust and arc geometry to drop a sheep right into a crater while I get to safety, turn it into a Super Sheep, let it collect a whole bunch of crates to supply my units, then plow its exploding self right up your nostril.

These days, I spend time scaling buildings in sandboxes, enjoying the welcoming openness. Do I miss the days of the exploding teeth of old women, or demolishing enemy bases with banana bombs and Mad Cows? Every now and again. But it's better to have lived the life once, and know its glory, then to live forever whining and moaning that you no longer have the skills you once had.

Ah, a feeling I know all too well. I can utterly trounce every cup on master in f-zero Gx, but if I play call of duty or something I'll be near the bottom most of the time. Sucks to get really good at something and not be able to kick your friends' asses either. :(

Outright Villainy:
Ah, a feeling I know all too well. I can utterly trounce every cup on master in f-zero Gx, but if I play call of duty or something I'll be near the bottom most of the time. Sucks to get really good at something and not be able to kick your friends' asses either. :(

Yeah.

I used to be a real wiz on the old Soul caliber games myself...I would kick some major ass and take some names to town.

But, some games these days. Its just so hard at times with all the online play and what not. I know its not so much changed the game as much as it has changed the rules and times...

Don't worry, I don't judge you, that whale scene is why I got Sonic Adventure as well. And damnit I had fun with that game...

OT: I remember back when Soul Caliber was still Soul Edge on the Playstation 1. Man those were good times, and I loved the fact that in that game, the more you block your weapon eventually breaks and you have to use your fists. It was fun.

And I always used... Hwang I think it was? He was my best character. I could destroy with him.

Tekken, Soul Caliber/Edge, and Dead or Alive 2. Those were the 3 fighting games I played all the time back in the day.

Did you try Blazblue and Tatsunoko...

Anyway, I fell in love with Seung Mina. In 1, and 4. Never played anything but the Xbox release of 1, followed by 4.

Woooo Lizardman! He was one of my main chars as well, he was do damn cool.

I sometimes go all nostalgic and re-install Need for Speed: Road Challenge (the best NFS there is) - I still pwn at it, me and a mate can both beat expert difficulty without practice even now.

Ahhh good times *reminisces*

Wow. Did anyone else get turned on by reading this? I think women who play video games are SO HOT! Susan Arendt, besides being the women of my dreams, I really respect the passion that you have for the game. Its very obvious, by your writing, that you have an immense love for games, especially Soul Caliber.

Oh the times...
Back then there was 1 games shop in a 100km radius which sold import consoles and games. They had decided to host a Soul Calibur tournament to promote the game as well as the DC (long before both officially arrived in shops over here). The price for the winner was a real badass two-hand sword with the original Soul Calubur logo engraved on the blade. It was so awesome i had to take part!
Of course, i didn't win. I never made it above mediocre with this game (like any other fighter) but damn i wanted this sword so badly...oh the memories.

For me, this was the Killer Instinct series. I'd played plenty of other fighting games, before and since, but if there's one thing I love about fighting games, it's combos. And Killer Instinct had more, and crazier, combos than anyone. I had about nineteen distinct combos for Orchid, and several for almost every other character. Moreover, I developed the skill of counting combos as a way to both show off and impress others in the arcades. When KI2 came out, the combos had been toned down a bit, but there were actual rewards to varying them up, which made me a happy fighter.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have to write another letter to Ken Lobb begging him to make KI3 happen.

I completely relate to this, though on different games. Tekken 3 as Jin I was completely unstoppable (not least because he was head and shoulders above most other characters - I now think that that game was totally broken) was my first taste of that kind of immortality. There I had a friend who played Heihachi who was up to the same sort of standard, and all our other friends hated playing us. The only other game I've got that good on was SSBMelee, and I never even owned a gamecube! Again, I had a friend (we both played Falco) who was for most of the time better than me and we pushed each other far beyond the abilities of our other friends (to the point where 1 of us would beat three of them quite comfortably) and really learned the game. I mean wave-dashing, shield reflecting all that kind of thing. By the end, we weren't dodging or moving because we saw something happen but because we heard the other's wavebird making a specific type of move. Those were the best days of my gaming life...

Ah Lizardman. I remember that character.

I guess Susan Arendt's point is that back in the old days, people were unstoppable competitors but time passes and some of our skills gets dull.

After reading some of the Escapist articles, I dust off my old copy of Soul Caliber II for Gamecube and my skills did dull since I stopped playing fighting games. Heck, even such simple fighting games like Super Smash Bros is amusing but people can KO using 2-3 moves.

Ahh, maybe one day, the game I'm really, really good at will be made. The rate it's going at, I'll have to make it myself, but I can dream, right?

Also, I've been a Talim guy since Soul Calibur 2 on the XBox, which was especially odd, seeing as the XBox had Spawn, for God's sake!

So how did you fare against the ex? I figure you 2 had to have a bout at least once after your training.

Sonic Adventure was AMAZING! Don't let anyone ever tell you different! It's clones are a different story...

Good at games? Now there is something I hear often. Expert? No.

I am good at most games, but I will never be an expert at any of them. I just can't seem to find a game which suits me. But I'm fine being able to go toe to toe with most average players.

I don't need to be #1 when I'm happy at #3456. To me, that ain't half bad.

I'm still stuck in Sonic Adventure, there's that one point where you drop down into a sewer to get an upgrade which allows you to boost along rings, and theres a series of rings which you are supposed to use to get out of there, but I can't manage to pull it off :/

squid5580:
So how did you fare against the ex? I figure you 2 had to have a bout at least once after your training.

Regularly kicked the crap out of him. Only in SC, though. In everything else, he won virtually all of the time.

I always go Taki, I mean playing as a ninja's cool but it's normally my best.

I do love lizard man, although friends and I have gotten rather good with the scaly swordsman there is a level of shame (and gloating from the victor) whenever you loose to him. To us he duckling with a machine gun and a grudge; you understand why you loose but other will still make fun of you

That makes me wish I was good at a competitive game. I never had been and maybe never will. Maybe the one game I'm good at came out before I started playing games or is just an idea in the back of some designer's head. Until I find a game I'm good at, QQ. At least I can still enjoy feeling like I can contribute in TF2 even if I'm not good. Yeah for teleporters!

Ah it is good to hear these stories of people as into Soul Calibur (or Soul Edge) as I was. I & II were serious sites of devotion.

Still play IV a great deal. Currently getting down Seung Mina's distance combat and Cassandra's shield-bashing mastery.

I always tended towards Sophitia, mainly because I always tend to play females on fighting games as they're usually more agile, which suits my style.

BUT...for sheer power and class, Lizardman is hard to beat, especially as I'm one of the few that always favoured Reptile in Mortal Kombat.
Yeah...Reptile is slow, annoying and really can't face off versus Scorpion or Sub-Zero, but he's just so damn cool.

And then...his ending.

More than Gen-An's ending on Samurai Showdown, I was pissed about this one. He DIES? He FECKING DIES? WHAT THE HELL KIND OF GAME ENDING IS THAT? HE BEAT THE MIGHTIEST GUY AND THEN...

Yeah, I get far more into games than is healthy at times, but it's one of my great angers, when characters get the rotten end of the stick just because.

At least I'll always have Lizardman. Or Blanka at a push.

Ah, that brought back memories. That little move where lizardman drops to the ground and does a circular kick into the opponents legs. Utterly priceless.
Siegfried was my all time favourite. Simply being able to smash your opponent all over the ring with his sword was great fun. Both in VS mode and against the computer. But for some reason I always seemed to lose to Taki and Sophitia. Bloody sneaky close range fighters.

I've changed up my Soul Cal characters a lot. I think as of the last two versions Zasalamel was my best, lots of tricksy fast moves with good reach and power, but I've always been pretty good with Sophitia and Cassandra as well.

I learned Ivy in SC2, because most people can't play as her at all because of the mode switches breaking their heads, so being able to actually use her is psychologically intimidating.

I've always been better with Talim than any other character in the Soul Calibur series. I'm just better with faster yet weaker characters.

Slycne:
I think everyone has that one game that just clicks for them and they become neigh unbeatable, unfortunately mine was WinBack on the N64.

Mine were NHL '99 and 2000. No one could beat me in my prime and boy did they try.

AvsJoe:
I've always been better with Talim than any other character in the Soul Calibur series. I'm just better with faster yet weaker characters.

Slycne:
I think everyone has that one game that just clicks for them and they become neigh unbeatable, unfortunately mine was WinBack on the N64.

Mine were NHL '99 and 2000. No one could beat me in my prime and boy did they try.

yeah! talim was beast. but i loved soul caliber on the dreamcast. i had that and sonic adventure 2. what great games. btw susan, very nice article. it really reminded me why i love the escapist so much.

PHOENIXRIDER57:
Wow. Did anyone else get turned on by reading this? I think women who play video games are SO HOT! Susan Arendt, besides being the women of my dreams, I really respect the passion that you have for the game. Its very obvious, by your writing, that you have an immense love for games, especially Soul Caliber.

yeah, i feel you... dont worry susan i wont stalk you too much ;-)

I remember soul caliber for the dc, I ended up punching a hole in the wall from one of the mission things in it, I think you were poisoned with only a lil life

I was pretty badass for Soul Calibur II for the gamecube. Nightmare, Link, and Kilik were almost unstoppable for me. Yeah, Ivy is damn hard to get great with.

I'd say the game that clicked most for me is Sonic Adventure 2. The only time I ever lost to anyone was during that night I had a friend over and he kept me up all night trying to beat me time and again... I was so fucking tired that I eventually lost because I could barely keep my eyes open.

L4D2 seems to be getting to that level. Other day, I just beat Expert Level The Parish campaign with only a few retries and having most of the bots in the green at the end of the chapters (yeah, played with bots... that's something).

I've got a friend who's completely obsessed with Lizardman, even when we play DnD he plays as a Lizardfolk Barbarian. I'm pretty sure if he got the chance he'd marry the guy.

Meanwhile I play with a Gay Male version of Seong Mi-Na in a fabulous purple cape and garter belt.

Ever since I picked up SF2 for the SNES and started putting time into it, I've always been pretty good at most fighters so I can't say I share that exact story.. and I hate Lizardman in every single SC game. My Soul character has always been Mina, though I hate the way they dumbed down her move set (and pretty much everyone's for that matter) after SC2.

If I had to pick one game that I dominated it, however, it would probably be Super Bomberman for the SNES. I wouldn't say I was ever that amazingly good at it, but it just clicked with me and I eventually got to the point where I wouldn't even play against any of my friends anymore because it was boring. Me winning was a foregone conclusion.

Susan Arendt as a giant sword wielding lizard thing?

Am I the only one that thinks that would be both terrifying and kind of awesome?

The really interesting thing, mentioning how poorly fighting game skill transfers to other games, Soul Calibur itself doesn't translate that well into other Soul Calibur games. Entire combo strings are lost and rearranged between the different games... If you were pro at Soul Calibur 2, you need to almost entirely relearn Soul Calibur 4, even with your favorite characters.

Haha... Sadly my game was Mario Kart 64. Between me, my bro, and a couple of people I knew back then, I was the true master of the game in deathmatch. Sadly the best gametime was when I was one away from my 100th win but a friend's cat got trapped behind the tv.

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