Zero Punctuation: Soul Calibur IV

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the issue i have always had with fighting games is that to enter combos on a controller bares very little resemblance to any feeling of combat, the exact mechanics of the game could be played out with two rubicks cubes on screen and who ever enter the right combination of purely random buttons wins...the "characters" on screen at the end of the day are window dressing for what i believe is a game completely detached from the gameplay and the silly lighting up and dancing models on the screen.

here is a simple formula for it

SCIV:
Punch Button + Forward Button + Forward Button + Kick Button + Kick Button = flying in to the air and glowing for five seconds and then eventually doing something god awful to your opponent that results in absolutely no physical mark left on your opponent

Proper Games:
Punch Button = A punch.

direct feedback anything less fails as a game for me.

Odjin:
Long time since I've seen more crap posted. Fighting Games are the most annoying and lame games in existence. So let's bust some myths here.

- They are about skill
A nice myth sticking around like stench to a toilet. They are not about skills especially if any twat just button-mashes his way to victory. I've played numerous fighting games and it is always the same. Some or less prone to trashing others more. In the end memorizing move sets is not a "skill" at all. Timing? Yeah my ass... Huffing down a combo chain by pressing buttons in a sequence in the right timing gives you kudos for having too much time at your hands to learn finger twist but shows your lack of any "combat" skills or gaming skills in general. So forget the one with the skills, it's just a nice myth

Again, doing combos isn't skill, it's the ability to read and predict your opponent's actions and have appropriate counters.

And "memorization" isn't how people come up with their own blockstrings and mixup. Playing off memory is how you get destroyed in high level play, where you need to change your style on the fly not to get predicted.

- Fun playing against buddies
Skill games are fun if played with buddies ( or party games if you are drunken like hell ). Luck and memory games are boring together since after a short time you know all the combos. Finding holes in his defense? There isn't much looking or finding in a game type which ends after 5 seconds if you just mash the buttons. The main problem with fighting games is that they are boring very quick since they lack anything new or different. After 5 minutes you've seen all the game has to offer. And don't come me with "goodies". If you think a game is good because it has goodies go bury yourself since you are a nerd with no life... and no taste :D

Sigh. Again, combos aren't the big point except in stuff like Tekken which has ridiculously long juggles. If people button mash, then they can easily be punished by any good counter setup, like using an attack with strong priority, shield/parrying/etc, or using superflash moves to hit them when they should have been blocking.

- Characters are good
Really? You should know it better nerd. You are playing this only because of the nearly naked girls with bigger boobs than they have swords. Granted not all fighting games are like this ( try to find a booby wielding girl in a godzilla beat'm up ;) ) but the ones with the big fellowship are. If I want naked women I can go get myself some pr0n... much cheaper and lasts longer ;)

Eh. SC character designs are garbage yeah, but I do quite like the designs in games like Guilty Gear.

There are other things but in general the main problem in this games is that they are exhausted after very short time. And comparing a fighting game to chess should get you arrested on the spot. Comparing a pure skill and tactic game with a button mashing memory game is like comparing a cake to a bag of poo ( to stick with the analogy given by Yathzee ).

Sigh. No. Again and again, button mashing and combo memorization is not the point of a good fighting game.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_hxhwM8gOI

Tell me if you think the guys here are "button mashing", the mixup and pressure in these games are intense. Not to mention nearly all of Nero's combos require you to actually change the jump timing and cancels depending on practically anything from the range to the character.

JakobLogan:

Irysa:

JakobLogan:

Irysa:

JakobLogan:

Shinkada:
I like Soul Calibur/er but I can't defend it.

I can defend the general fighting genre, though.

They're only just behind FPS games when it comes to a pure match of skill, so those who like actual competition are the ones most drawn to it.

Are you kidding me? Fighting games are pretty far away from games of pure matches of skill

You clearly have never played a proper fighting game.

You're right, on second thought there are a few that come to mind, i was just thinking mainly of the Soul Calibur Series. I still wont give in to the point that they are "Just behind FPS when it comes to a pure match of skill"

And why would that be? Both effectively rely on what I exemplified on earlier, ability to read and understand an opponent's strategy and have effective reactions to be able to counter them.

Besides, I think he was reffering to videogames specifically. Not all competitive forms of sport of what have you.

Ever play an RTS?

O.k yeah. That's true. I'll submit on that.

Anyone who plays a fighting game because of the story is a fool.

I liked the last thing he said in the credits. He didn't beleive that people took the top 5 seriously

Well anyway, I wonder when we will see the 10 reviews in these forums that says exactly what Yahtzee just said.
(If you haven't noticed, it actually happens alot).

SC was the only fighting game I've ever liked which was on the Dreamcast but since the it feels like they're just putting in aload of gimmicks I don't want and the SC series feels really cheap now. I'd rather them work on the quality of the game and the characters rather than have a customization mode which all the characters end up look crap. I understand why they put Star Wars in a SC game but the one thing I want to do which is Vader vs yoda I can't do, I'd rather Lucas Arts just team up with the SC crew and create a seperate Star Wars fighting game. Also I hate the over the top boobs, the Japs are really perverted and I just hate all their character designs, all too emo for me.

SC made in the west would be the best.

that video achieved nothing apart from boring me for the 2mins i could be bothered to watch it.

All I'm willing to say to this "fighting games aren't about skill" claim is that I'm believing it when someone enters a tournament like Evolution and button mashes their way to victory in a game like Street Fighter. There are bad fighting games that don't require skill, but there are also bad RTS games that don't require that much skill either. But that's normal with all games.

Also, Irysa, Melty Blood is pretty much the Tekken of 2D games. Just so you know, that's a BAD THING. Ridiculously long air combos with 20+ inputs is exactly what turns me off from it and Tekken.

laikenf:
Anyone who plays a fighting game because of the story is a fool.

I would extend that to the FPS as well. Very few FPS games have a good story, but for those that do, it's a nice bonus (like Bioshock and...um...are there any others?).

Nice review. One point I don't agree with, though, is the 'random button mashing FTW' aspect being extended from SC4 to all fighting games. I've played my fair share of fighting games and the SC series is the only set of games in which random button mashing can give you a respectable chance of winning against most people. Usually, the problems dug up by Yahtzee are offset by multiplayer replayability value (as some previous posters have mentioned), but the nature of the series means that there is no real point to improving when you can still be beaten by anyone, hence there isn't really much point to it at all.

Also, what will it take to make Yahtzee review an RTS? So far it's the one genre I can think of that he hasn't touched.

Also, Irysa, Melty Blood is pretty much the Tekken of 2D games. Just so you know, that's a BAD THING. Ridiculously long air combos with 20+ inputs is exactly what turns me off from it and Tekken.

Hahaha, you cannot be serious. The longest combo in melty blood borders on about 15 inputs (most are about 10 or less) If you're talking about the hits Nero gets in the air, his JC attack does 4 hits, and he has low damage output, hence why he has to prioritize the amount he gets (since he can only get a total of 3 wallslams)

And proration DESTROYS any super long juggle combos because the damage output is severely reduced the more hits you get. The point of the combos is to find the SHORTEST POSSIBLE ONES that do the most damage, so it's the complete opposite.

As hes stated several times before he reviews by popular demand, ei. he dosint choose them.

great review yahtzee, and about you top 5 games ever.......i think everyone knew that was a joke rofl.

Irysa:

Also, Irysa, Melty Blood is pretty much the Tekken of 2D games. Just so you know, that's a BAD THING. Ridiculously long air combos with 20+ inputs is exactly what turns me off from it and Tekken.

Hahaha, you cannot be serious. The longest combo in melty blood borders on about 15 inputs. If you're talking about the hits Nero gets in the air, his JC attack does 4 hits, and he has low damage output, hence why he has to prioritize the amount he gets (since he can only get a total of 3 wallslams)

And proration DESTROYS any super long juggle combos because the damage output is severely reduced the more hits you get. The point of the combos is to find the SHORTEST POSSIBLE ONES that do the most damage, so it's the complete opposite.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRF2tZPdnec

I see at least one 19 input combo there and the rest seem to average around 15 inputs. And I remember that characters like Akiha had even longer combos, but I haven't touched the game for a long ass time (since MBAC ver. A, actually), so I can't be completely sure.

The point made about Darth Vader pumping lots of sales is more than valid.

The SC2 version I hated the most was the Gamecube one, because it came with a ridiculous controller that doesn't connect with best-of-3-rounds fighters. Yet it sold the most because it had Link in it, and that's what did it for a lot of gamers: spastically mash some buttons to watch their favourite adventure character go round in a somehow lethal loop of the same moves. Smacks of fanservice, lacks true gameplay.

But now SC4 is only playable on controllers with practical distribution of buttons, and you can start working into the mechanics of the game and perhaps work out some effective and nifty looking combos (but in doing so, you will of course become THAT GUY).

Also, if you don't like the idea someone nigh-on-naked being able to withstand 20 smacks with a hand-guillotine, you could just set the health really low. Makes swordfighting seem life threatening again.

Earthbound mention <3

Woe Is You:

Irysa:

Also, Irysa, Melty Blood is pretty much the Tekken of 2D games. Just so you know, that's a BAD THING. Ridiculously long air combos with 20+ inputs is exactly what turns me off from it and Tekken.

Hahaha, you cannot be serious. The longest combo in melty blood borders on about 15 inputs. If you're talking about the hits Nero gets in the air, his JC attack does 4 hits, and he has low damage output, hence why he has to prioritize the amount he gets (since he can only get a total of 3 wallslams)

And proration DESTROYS any super long juggle combos because the damage output is severely reduced the more hits you get. The point of the combos is to find the SHORTEST POSSIBLE ONES that do the most damage, so it's the complete opposite.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRF2tZPdnec

I see at least one 19 input combo there and the rest seem to average around 15 inputs. And I remember that characters like Akiha had even longer combos, but I haven't touched the game for a long ass time (since MBAC ver. A, actually), so I can't be completely sure.

VerB is much more balanced.

And the Hisui dust look is shit for damage considering how much meter you have to waste on it. Most good Hisui players prefer using EX dust for strings and not damage, since it's seriously not worth it. Not to mention it's ridiculously basic anyway, and the it's basically the only plausible one I can think of that goes that high anyway. The game is in no way centered around such combos.

I really enjoyed this game, but the review was still lots of fun and with some very valid points. I mean, Soul Calibur has never been known for its exceptional story, but this effort was truly awful. I got more pleasure out of re-watching the endings with the characters in stupid outfits then I did out of the endings themselves.

Good review for a bad game.

Azhrarn-101:

KiiWii:
5pm GMT. ^^
Great as always, and i never really did understand fighting games.. it seems that people will eat up any old crap if theres some character they know in it..

Keep it up!

Actually 4PM GMT, since you're probably from the UK and you are currently on GMT+1 (also known as BST, Brittish Summer Time). The rest of Western Europe is on GMT+2 during the summer. GMT does not have summer time.

Either way, it was a fun review, and I admit sharing some of Yahtzee's sentiments, I don't get those types of games either, but as long as they make developers money it's fine with me, that means there's more money for other games.

oh yeah, didn't think of that.
gotcha.

no point in reviewing this shit
fighting games are totally mEH

Good point about SC4's create a character. MK: Armageddon is superior where it comes to that department.

Boy can I ever relate to not "getting" fighting games. Some people will gawk at me when I say I got sick of fighting games with Tekken and absolutely nothing has changed about them since Street Fighter.

To whoever said Soul Calibur 4 was the "complete fighting experience", of course it was. It was two people, standing facing each other, with little life bars over their heads and then they kick each other until one of them dies. That's all there's ever been to it.

And I'll admit I only owned Soul Calibur 2 on my Gamecube because Link was in it. And I needed more games for my Gamecube.

Very funny, but I think he missed the real POINT of playing fighting games...you're supposed to play against actual people in an arcade or at least in a dorm room while drinking a beer everytime you lose, watching as everyone's reflexes turn to &%^$* over the next couple of hours;)

All the stupid single player modes developers keep squishing into these things is what I don't get. Has playing against the AI ever been fun, really? I hope Yatzee at least had the pleasure of playing Street Fighter or Virtua Fighter back in the 90s. If he did, there wouldn't be anything to "get". You'd just know why some fighting game are awesome. I agree that the Soul Calibuuuuuur series was always a button mashing fest. A six yr old could do quite well. But stick him on VF3 and watch him squirm=)

UninspiringlyNamed:
Also, what will it take to make Yahtzee review an RTS? So far it's the one genre I can think of that he hasn't touched.

Twinkies. Lots and lots of Twinkies.

AyaReiko:
Good point about SC4's create a character. MK: Armageddon is superior where it comes to that department.

That's pretty much like saying that Blacksite: Area 51 has a superior HUD compared to Daikatana... or that the default font in Final Fantasy XII is better than the one in The Witcher.

It's equally inconsequential.

Since when has a story in a fighting game ever been important?

Does Street Fighter even have one for example?

I never got fighting games either, there's always the asswhipes that know all the moves and shit, causing you to inevitably lose against them.

Ah, THAC0. Bane of many a gamer trying in vain to understand just why having a *lower* Armour Class is better.

Maybe the game is for playing with other people? I know people are annoying but you can't blame a multilayer game for having a shit story or single player because no one really cares.

Yahtzee misses the point; fighting games are about playing against your friends first and foremost. They always have been, and allways will be party games. If your looking for a coherant story in any fighting game I seriously question your perceptive ability. Everybody knows the script for these franchises is little more then context or flavour. It's like food colouring in iceing; sure the story doesn't add any flavour but it gives the "cake" a finished appearance.

I laughed a little here and there, particularly the part regarding "which franchise was more pathetic"...ehem STAR WARS. That may just be my biased shining through. I loath George Lucus and the steaming dog turds he passes off as top quality cinama. Honesty if the original star wars was released today (instead of the 70's) people would have concidered it good, not great, and ultimately forgetable. If the any of the new material was released without the benifit a fanbase built by the initial trilogy, George Lucus would've been bankrupted. His movies have been utter garbage for the past fifteen years!

I like it.

Good funny, me like.

Meh...

The review was by far not his best. Sure I can agree with him on everything he's said about it. Disjointed gameplay, shallow story, big swords and bigger tits and Sith lords thrown into a blender, sure, but everything he's pointed out was either the painfully obvious or the staple in fighting games. Sure he said and repeated a few times that he doesn't enjoy fighting games, but it sounded like he was trying to cover his ass more so than explain his standpoint.

Yes, SoulCalibur IV can't be fun for the "normal" person, but it can be argued that A. Most fighting games aren't for the casual gamer anyway, and B. Well "normal" people as a classification doesn't exist.

Message number 18 misunderstands me. I did not say it was arrogant to hate this sort of thing I claimed it was arrogant to say that because Yahtzee did not enjoy the game it would be universally hated and enjoyed by no one when there are many a ge...ner.... person who has enjoyed SCIV

Actually, my friends and I played some Soul Calibur 2 yesterday (we're Wii owners, so no SC4 for us) and I found that I consistently lost every battle after the first one. I mistimed all my guard impacts and could not get any decent damage in before my opponent retaliated. Of course, neither of us had played the game in years, but my friend is much more familiar with fighting games in general than I am, so I know that skill definitely plays a role.

Except, you know, when you forget what every button does and just button mash. Sadly, this strategy worked better for me than calculating every attack, but it was not satisfying and was not as much fun. Of course, losing every round was not much fun either.

Personally I find the Super Smash Bros. series to be more fun and less reliant on button mashing than other fighting games, and we played more Brawl yesterday than SC2, but SC2 was still fun to play in short bursts. Most fighting games were initially designed to be arcade games, and so they are not meant to be played for long periods of time.

Stop sucking then, it's that simple.

Besides we're assholes not ass-wipes. Assholes shit on ass-wipes. Ass-wipes just take our shit weather they like it or not. I just shat on your comment, so what does that make you ;)

Sorry couldn't resist.

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