Saturday, August 16, 2008

Soul Calibur IV Online Play - Join in the fun!


I only recently discovered the awesomeness that is Soul Calibur IV's Multiplayer Mode on Xbox Live....sorry I couldn't be more creative with my description, but that's exactly how I feel about SC4 online. It's incredibly, insanely fun, especially with friends who are living in the same vicinity or on the same ISP as you. I got to play some matches where my connection was just superb (5 blue bars on your connection rating means you've got a good connection going). If you're in the Philippines and want to experience how much fun Soul Calibur IV is with online play, check out Pinoyxbox's Soul Calibur IV thread and link up with players that are on the same ISP as you. Being on the same ISP guarantees you'll have an incredibly fun time.

For some reason, in the Philippines, different ISPs (even if they're all based in the Philippines) don't exactly connect well together. Let's say you're on PLDT and another player is on Globe. If you try to connect with the Globe player and play SCIV with him, your connection will be worse than if you played with someone based in Japan or the United States. I hear the case is the same for most other multiplayer games; for some reason local ISPs don't want to interconnect with their rival companies even if they're all based in the same country. Bah, crab mentality among Philippine internet service providers....:(

So the best way to experience SCIV's online in the Philippines is to look for friends who have the same ISP as you, add them to your friends list, and play online matches with them. Try all the when other players are playing (thanks to spectator mode!); basically savor the entire experience. I'll gladly say that this game has far better net-code than Virtua Fighter 5, which didn't have a spectator mode to speak of, and didn't offer an online mode that is as feature filled (of course, that isn't saying that VF5 is a bad game---actually it's also a great game; it just has a few flaws with online mode that make it far from perfect)

SCIV is just such a fun game. I like it that I don't have to stick to just one character; I can actually play several characters and just do a few moves and already enjoy playing the game. I also love the beautifully-rendered graphics and extremely smooth animations which never seem to experience any kind of slowdown. It's a fighting game that reinvites all gamers to the fighting game genre, without being too dumbed-down or without lowering its standards too much. With gameplay options like guard-breaks, unblockable attacks and many others, the game isn't a simple mash-fest although that's the impression you'll get the first time you do play it. Namco Bandai deserves a lot of kudos for their accomplishments in Soul Calibur IV---it's also a good indication of the future of their own fighting games for console platforms. I'm sure the winning formula for online play in Soul Calibur IV will be in their next big release --- Tekken 6.

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