“A tale of souls and swords, eternally retold” is getting another go-round, thanks to an updated iPhone, iPad and iPod version from Namco. Soul Calibur hit the App Store today for all current iOS models, and it seems to have kept its smooth and gorgeous 3D fighting engine intact. The classic brawler has been reformatted for the mobile platform with touch controls, but otherwise keeps the original’s charm. The only downside is a relatively high entry fee: $11.99, including a 20% launch discount.
Soul Calibur hit arcades way back in 1998, but it wasn’t until it hit the Sega Dreamcast as a must-have launch title that it gained serious recognition. The updated graphics, smooth animation and varied weapon-based fighting system made it an instant classic, and despite the eventual demise of Sega’s little white console that couldn’t, it helped spawn a series that’s now working on its fifth entry. (Soul Calibur is itself a sequel to a Soul Edge/Soul Blade, from 1996.) The game was re-released on the Xbox Live Arcade back in 2008 to general applause.
The iOS version includes all the original fighters and stages, though at the moment multi-player is a no show. Namco-Bandai claims that the graphics have been updated to support the iPhone’s Retina display, but true Sega fans know that the original supported the Dreamcast VGA adapter, outputting to computer monitors at as much as 1600 x 1200 resolution. That being the case, we can expect a version for Android’s 720p phones and tablets any day now, right, Namco? Right, Namco?