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Next Soul Calibur to Be a More Casual Fighter?

A sequence of Twitter posts from Soul Calibur director Daishi Odashima suggest a possible new direction for the series. The hope is to make an announcement about the next game in mid-May, but Odashima already dropped a few details about development.

“This time we plan on reducing commands like A+K so moves are easier to pull off on pad,” said Odashima, referring to the set of moves that requires players to hit both X and B on a 360 controller, or square and circle on a PS3 controller. The combination has always been awkward on controllers, with many players mapping the combo to the triggers or shoulder buttons.

The change speaks to a different philosophy going forward, which Odashima all but confirmed in a following tweet: “Difficult commands only limits the moves players can use but changing them suddenly may make things feel strange. The balance is hard.”

Surely, screwing with the formula can be a death wish in an avid fighting game community, but recent titles like Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Super Street Fighter 4 for 3DS, and Mortal Kombat prove that helping casual players can make a huge difference.

For Soul Calibur, that assistance will most likely mean the removal of frame-specific attacks that were added to the series over time. The strictly-timed attacks were thrown in for the hardcore crowd, but ultimately have no business in a game trying to reach a wider audience.

We'll hopefully find out just how much the series will change when the alleged announcement hits next month.

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Joe Donato Video games became an amazing, artful, interactive story-driven medium for me right around when I played Panzer Dragoon Saga on Sega Saturn. Ever since then, I've wanted to be a part of this industry. Somewhere along the line I, possibly foolishly, decided I'd rather write about them than actually make them. So here I am.
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