In ancient times, a powerful weapon known as the Soul Edge existed, and tales of it’s power lured many. But Soul Edge was an evil weapon, and when Siegfried claimed it, he was turned into a creature named Nightmare. As time passed, Nightmare rampaged across Europe leaving a path of destruction, despite the efforts of other fighters. One day, a mysterious man carrying a scythe confronts Nightmare and splits Siegfried from his cursed form. He then resurrects the Azure Armor to carry on as the “Nightmare” creature. At the same time, a young girl Tira pledges herself to Soul Edge’s dark power, and a woman named Setsuka swears to avenge her master. All the while new rumors of the Soul Edge spread across the world, causing many who had searched for it before to once more venture out…
Soulcalibur III is a 3D fighting game featuring a variety of characters, each carrying a distinctive weapon and unique fighting style. The basics of the combat is a derived, in different stances, from a combination of Horizontal Attacks, Vertical Attacks, Throws, Kicks and a Soul Charge. Characters engage one another in 1vs1 fights that end when the energy of one side is lost, removed from the ring or run out of time.
There are two major modes of gameplay. The first is Tales of Souls, which allows the player to select any one of 24 characters and travel through their individual story to search for the Soul Edge. Most of this mode is standard fighting, however there are choices to be made on the world map and actions to be performed during cutscenes.
The second is Chronicles of the Sword, where a custom character is created and brought to serve in a war between three nations. Strategy must be used to direct units and defend important strongholds. Certain positions of the battlefield include “effects” such as increasing gravity or speeding players up or fighting in the dark. Most battlefield missions end with the capture of the enemy stronghold or a key officer. Gold is obtained which can be used to purchase a variety of content, such as new weapons and clothing.
Finally there are minor modes of gameplay. One of which is Versus mode, which is a standard 1vs1 in which 2 players can participate. There are also Soul Arena and Survival modes to overcome specific challenges. On many of these settings, custom characters can be used, having been created from a vast selection of body parts and clothing. Bonus weapons, clothing, characters or content can be unlocked through meeting hidden objectives in either of the main gameplay modes or by collecting gold and spending it at the shop.