Soul Calibur II

Format: Nintendo Gamecube
Age Restrictions: 16+

Four years have passed since the spirit sword, Soul Calibur, defeated the evil Soul Edge. At the end of that fateful battle, the shards of the shattered Soul Edge were scattered across the world and Soul Calibur was lost to the void. Now, the evil that still resides in the scattered shards of Soul Edge threatens again to engulf the world in darkness...

Soul Calibur finally makes it's way on to the Gamecube in this follow-up game to 1999's Dreamcast original - which was one of the most addictive beat'em up games for some years.

As the first game was so well received Namco have, very wisely, not altered the gameplay in any real sense - except to add better blocks and counter attacks - In fact, it is very similar in many respects to the original. The game is again set in the 16th century and still consists of men and women slapping each other around with swords, axes, fighting sticks and other such weapons.

And, like all games in this genre, it is relatively simple to beat your opponent by just diving on the controller and whacking every button at the same time - which is what most people in our office seem to think is called "tactics"!

It's still, effectively Tekken with pointy sticks, but the in-game graphics and introduction sequences have that little extra edge. Also Gamecube owners get an addition bonus to the game as Link, from The Legend of Zelda, makes a guest appearance.

The one "must own" beat'em up game for the Gamecube.

Pete Boomer

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