Evil Avatar writes: "Considering its place as one of the most popular and successful fighting franchises, the "Soul" series is still a bit of an odd bird at times. The series is quirky without being too self-referential; deep, but not obtuse. Steeped in real weapon styles, but not bound to historical accuracy. Suffice to say, Soul Calibur IV continues the series' tradition, but the most important question would be is it any good?
On the most important front - the gameplay - Soul Calibur IV doesn't disappoint. Part of the draw of this series for me has always been in its flexibility. It has a complexity beyond that of Street Fighter or Mortal Kombat, while eschewing the herculean learning curves of Tekken and Virtua Fighter. It's not quite a Gran Turismo-esque simulation, but it's also not as free wheeling as a Mario Kart."
* An engrossing, flexible, deep and most of all fun, fighting system
* Captivating create-a-character mode provides hours of fun all by itself
* Tons of characters and items to unlock across several modes
* Very smooth, mostly lag-free online play
* The soap operatic story makes little sense and adds nothing to the overall experience
* The voice acting is terribly uneven and repetitive
* Arcade mode is a little light on options
* Having to fight the cheap-ass Apprentice in the next-to-last battle every time in arcade mode