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The Soul Edge is a sword of sheer power, one that has ended many lives. Many believe it is cursed — when an attempt is made to wield the sword, that person usually dies or ultimately fails. The fearsome pirate Cervantes de Leon found this out first hand; he disappeared with the sword and hasn't been seen since. Now, you and ten other warriors lust for the sword and engage in a fierce tournament — the winner will be given a chance to possess the powerful blade.
This is the premise behind Soul Blade — an Arcade conversion of Soul Edge. It is arena based (complete with ring outs) 3D fighter that features eleven diverse characters with one goal in mind — retrieve the deadly sword. Each character has their own unique collection of weapons that range from swords, axes, spears, katana blades and more. In addition to weaponry, they have been given a wide variety of special maneuvers, combinations, air juggles, reversals, and throws.
Like all fighting games, there is a plethora of different gameplay modes — Arcade, Vs. Battle, Team Battle, Survival, Time Attack and Edge-Master. The Arcade mode is the actual game in which you compete against computer-controlled opponents on your quest for the sword. On the other hand, the Edge-Master aspect is a unique one. It gives each character a personal storyline complete with battles and a map screen. This option allows you to obtain multiple weapons for each character that can be used in the Arcade or other modes. Though it awards weapons for progression of the story, it also serves as good practice for new players — it tests you in the areas of throwing and more.
The Survival option tests your stamina and endurance by putting you up against an endless barrage of computer opponents. Each battle is one round in length and as you defeat the various characters, you are rewarded with a little health. When your health meter has been depleted 100 percent, the game is over. Team battle allows you to play against the computer or an actual real-life opponent. Each person (or the computer) chooses a side of characters that will face each other. When a character is defeated, they are eliminated from the battle.
Soul Blade supports the standard PlayStation controller as well as Namco's joystick (the latter is not included in the package). You can also save your weapons and story progress (from the Edge-Master mode) to a memory card. ~ Matthew House, All Game Guide