With the recent announcement/reveal of Soul Calibur VI having properly sunk in now, I think it’s fair to start theorising about a potential roster. Well, I say theorising but that process is a potentially depressing affair since – if done logically – it involves putting together a hypothetical roster based on what the marketing men think will sell the game. I’d rather lay out a top five countdown of the characters from that I want to see return to the Stage of History. I have put together my dream shortlist with three things in mind:
- The game’s story is supposed to be further back in the SC timeline (around the time of the original Soul Calibur) so I’d like to think that some of the older characters that were dumped for the later games might be able to return in all their glory.
- No guest characters. That is a separate list for another time (possibly). These are all original SC characters that have been in the games before.
- These are simply characters that I like!
With those loose “rules” established, I shall waste no more time and jump right in!
Amongst all of the clones and ‘mimic’ fighting styles that were in Soul Calibur III, Zasalamel’s scythe-based style was refreshingly individual and certainly interesting to learn as well as fight against. I also really liked his visual appearance despite the obvious Assassin’s Creed similarities that his original outfit (pictured) was guilty of displaying. Better yet, SCIII‘s plot saw Zasalamel morph into the demonic final boss, Abyss who shares a lot of Zasalamel’s basic fighting style. Abyss is one of the coolest and most bad-ass bosses in a fighting game and while I highly doubt that we will ever see him again, I would at least like Zasalamel to return from his post-Soul Calibur IV exile.
We’ve already seen Sophitia revealed as one of the first two characters in the game and while Sophie will always be my #1 character in the series, I have to say that I missed her spunky, more aggressive younger sister in SCV. Yes, people will say that we don’t need any more Alexandra family members (they’re everywhere!) and others will argue that more females with big boobs are unnecessary but as far as I’m concerned, Cassandra has been a staple since her debut in SCII and her omission in SCV was one of the most disappointing in my opinion. She actually has a very different fighting style to Sophitia and while nobody can argue that the way she battles is overly unique or interesting, I’ve always enjoyed her character and she is in many way (whisper it) more endearing than her sister. Yes I feel treacherous for even typing that…sorry Sophitia!
A true classic who debuted in the original Soul Blade (or Soul Edge in other territories) for arcade/Playstation but was ditched by the time of Soul Calibur II for the younger and (I suppose) cooler Yun-Seong. Hwang made one more appearance as a non-fleshed out bonus character in Soul Calibur III and was properly re-instated for the rare arcade edition of SCIII but hasn’t been seen since which is a pretty rubbish way to treat one of the founding characters of the series if you ask me. Even Yun-Seong didn’t make it to SCV, meaning that the most recent installment in the series had no Korean characters and no Falchion wielders. I really enjoyed playing as Hwang in Soul Blade and I also think he looks pretty cool so I’d like to see him again for those reasons but also because he simply SHOULD be in an SC game again.
Another founding cast member of the series, Li Long was treated even worse than Hwang. The original nunchaku wielder didn’t even make it off the Playstation to the original Soul Calibur since Namco had already elected to introduce the new, cooler character of Maxi who became the default (and only) representative of the nunchaku style from there on. Like Hwang, Li Long was given a bonus character slot in SCIII and also re-instated properly for the arcade update. Interestingly, he was armed with a new double nunchaku style that actually set him apart from Maxi. I would love to see Li Long return with a more fleshed-out version of this style in Soul Calibur VI. Like Hwang, I just think that he should be included for historical reasons.
Up until this point, my list has been fairly safe, predictable even. We can’t have that though can we? So to finish off my top five, I’ve decided to put the case forward for the true boss of Soul Calibur III. If you thought Abyss was monstrous enough…well, you hadn’t seen anything yet. Night Terror is a beastly version of Nightmare, the result of Soul Edge’s vengeful will fusing with Nightmare and nobody enjoyed fighting this creature. Massively over-powered, boasting insane priority and immune to ring-outs (he flies back up to the stage!), Night Terror was everything a cheap boss should be. I lost count of the amount of times I heard “versus, Night Terror!” as I kept hammering the option to try the fight again. For all his cheesiness however, I absolutely loved the idea of a souped-up Nightmare that had been overcome by raw power and transformed into a truly imposing boss. Like Abyss, I highly doubt that Namco would ever bring this guy back but I would certainly take him over Algol or Elysium any day.
Because five is never enough is it? Not when there have been so many characters both major and minor in Soul Calibur over the years. Seong-Mina should definitely grace an SC game again for the same legacy reasons as Hwang/Li Long but also because she has always been a fan favourite who certainly didn’t deserve to be left out of SCV. Valeria from SCIII was a second-tier bonus character but did at least have a cool fighting style based around kicks and bladed footwear. Did I forget to mention that she was a pink-haired shopkeeper/maid design with eye-poppingly big boobs? Funny that… Another classic that I hope returns is Rock because honestly, I don’t like Astaroth that much when it comes to the large “power” characters and Rock already had to swap his original axe style for a mace so that he had a “reason” to return for SCIII & IV.
If you read my post on femme fatales then you will already know that really like the nutty Tira but will she fit into a pre-SCIII plot point? I’m not sure but I think Namco would be mad to leave out such a unique fighting style. Setsuka is another dangerous lady with a fairly individual style that I’d like to see again, not least because I used her a lot in SCIII and found her to be utterly lethal with some crazy combos. Lastly, would actually like to see Edge Master come over from Soul Calibur V since the “bad-ass old guy” archtype needs some representation and I don’t mind there being at least ONE mimic character. Just please, Namco, don’t waste 3-4 slots with them like you did before? Ta.
So those are my choices. What do you think? I’m cautiously optimistic for a few of these but I also fear that Namco might see some of the older or more obscure characters as less marketable and won’t include them. I’ll reserve any form of judgment until we know more however. Let’s see who they’ve chosen…