SoulCalibur as a series has been struggling for a long time. SoulCalibur II on the PlayStation 2 set a high bar, and the property was never able to recapture that magic. SoulCalibur III, IV, and V were all decent games in their own right, but they were either hampered by very specific issues or they just never quite caught on like the now legendary SoulCalibur II did back in the day.
It comes as no real surprise, then, to hear that Bandai Namco wasn't hugely interested in another SoulCalibur title. According to SoulCalibur VI producer Motohiro Okubo -- speaking to DualShockers -- the publisher took a lot of convincing in order to make the project happen.
"The first thing is that the IP itself of the SoulCalibur franchise had low expectations from the company. It was actually facing a crisis of maybe disappearing. It took time for me to convince the company," Okubo states.
Unfortunately for the series, this also means that if SoulCalibur VI doesn't do well, it might never return. When asked if this is the case, Okubo gives a blunt reply: "Yeah, that's right." However, Okubo wants to make it clear that he's not giving fans an ultimatum. "We don’t want to blackmail the users by saying that it could be the last one, but as it is, yes."
It's going to be interesting seeing how successful SoulCalibur VI ends up being. Off the back of Bandai Namco's significant success with Tekken 7 and Dragon Ball FighterZ, it's safe to say that the publisher knows what it's doing. What's more, early impressions of the game from those who have played it at various events have been positive -- let's just hope that Okubo and the team can pull it off with the finished release in October.