DRAGON BALL FIGHTERZ : THE KOTAKU REVIEW, DRAGON BALL FIGHTERZ

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Mind you there’s nothing simple about Dragon Ball FighterZ’s visuals. Built using a process Arc System Works pioneered for Guilty Gear Xrd, each character is a 3D Model painstakingly textured lớn look lượt thích a 2D sprite. The method gives the characters a gorgeous hvà drawn look while allowing for dramatic camera movement that gives special moves cinematic flair. It’s a whole lot of work, but I can’t argue with the results.

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The time-consuming modeling, texturing và animation process likely played a part in the game’s limited fighter roster. Long-time fans of the Dragon Ball series và its various video clip game incarnations may be disappointed by the absence of some of their favorite heroes & villains. As someone who hasn’t watched much Dragon Ball, I find the small selection refreshing.


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Played

Completed story mode in 10 hours. Participated in many ranked, casual & aremãng cầu matches online. Dabbled in arcade và local versus mode.


Did I say I’ve sầu not watched much Dragon Ball? Let me clarify. Prior to the release of Dragon Ball FighterZ, I’d not watched a single full episode of Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, Dragon Ball GT or Super. I’ve caught snippets here & there—my nephew was trying to get my sons into lớn the DBZ, which lasted until they started hitting each other—but otherwise I’m a Dragon Ball anime virgin.


My Dragon Ball knowledge comes from video games. Between the Budokai, Budokai Tenkaichi, Burst Limit & Xenoverse series, I’ve bounced back và forth from the Saiyan Saga to lớn Kid Buu countless times. I know the characters. I know who fights whom & when. I’m invested in the story khổng lồ an extent, but that’s never been enough to lớn get me to lớn watch the show. I’m now on episode four of Dragon Ball Kai. I blame Dragon Ball FighterZ. For making me watch the show, not Goku’s death. That was Raditz. Well, Piccolo through Raditz (literally).


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Dragon Ball FighterZ made me want lớn learn more about the series. That’s partly due khổng lồ the game’s small stable of fighters. It’s much easier for me khổng lồ pay attention khổng lồ and care about 24 characters (technically 21, since Vegeta, Goku và Gohan show up twice) than the massive sầu rosters found in older Dragon Ball games.


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The scripted interactions between characters found peppered throughout the game’s various modes have also played a big part in my cartoon-watcher conversion. Intriguing exchanges between certain combinations of characters prior lớn the beginning of battles left me eager lớn find out what they were all about. Cutscenes triggered during the game’s surprisingly good story mode showcase layered character relationships I didn’t know existed. And here I thought it was all shouting and fighting.


It’s that simple. Just don’t try spamming this against a more seasoned player, as they will eat your lunch.
That said, Dragon Ball FighterZ’s fighting and shouting game is quite strong, yet wonderfully accessible. There are light, medium và heavy attaông xã buttons, each of which can be tapped in quiông chồng succession (or mashed) khổng lồ automatically string together a full bộ of moves. The special attack button generally fires projectiles while pressed. Left trigger handles swapping characters in & out of battle và assists. The right button & trigger takes care of Dragon Rushes (block-breaking throws), homing Super Dashes and tide-turning Sparking Blasts, which recover health and increase damage for a brief period.

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Toss in some quarter circle front and baông chồng movement to lớn activate super attacks & some special moves, and that’s all a new player needs to know in order khổng lồ be able to put up an okay fight. An okay fight is probably not going to lớn be enough, especially with pro players lượt thích SonicFox already plumbing the depths of the fighting system for advanced techniques. But it’s a happy place from which to start building up a respectable win-loss ratio and transition inkhổng lồ more advanced techniques.


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PC setup essentials: Fight stichồng for those quarter-circles (still rocking that shiny new Hori Fighting Edge), men’s vitamins (bởi not use if female, you will die), platkhung o delicately raise monitor & keyboard, owl scented wax burner to lớn set the mood, Olay Silky Berry toàn thân lotion khổng lồ make it hard for opponents lớn land grabs và flash of “juice” in case of repeated losses.
No matter who is playing, the battles in Dragon Ball FighterZ are always a brilliant spectacle (even with the PC settings turned way down low). It’s lượt thích watching a regular fighting game with heightened senses—everything is brighter, louder & more impactful. Arc System Works’ signature distorted electric guitar riffs get the blood pumping, and then the hits keep coming.


The blazing-fast battles don’t slow down for the mạng internet, either. Dragon Ball FighterZ’s netcode is super-tight. Once you’re connected to another player và the match starts, it’s usually smooth sailing. It’s the getting connected lớn another player that’s the tricky part.


Dragon Ball FighterZ’s biggest strength is its simplithành phố. When it tries lớn get complex, like its onerous online multiplayer lobby system, it stumbles.

Rather than a traditional thực đơn system, the game requires players lớn connect to virtual lobbies in order to lớn play online. It’s a xinh tươi little system, a virtual menu/social space filled with players decked out in chibi Dragon Ball character costumes, but it’s been plagued with problems since the game launched. Matchmaking is slow. Connecting with friends requires them to lớn navigate to the same online lobby, most of which were near or at capađô thị during the weekkết thúc following the game’s release. Instead of being able to lớn create a private lobby for friends, players have sầu to lớn create a private “ring” within a public lobby, a feature that’s been broken for many players.

Arc System Works based the lobby system of Dragon Ball FighterZ off the one successfully implemented in their most recent Guilty Gear game (though that game included the ability to create private servers). The problem is what works for a relatively niche fighting game with a small but loyal audience doesn’t work so well for what’s become one of the most popular new fighting games ever—even on PC. Bandẻo Namco has told binhkhipho.vn it’s working with Arc System Works on fixing broken features & improving players’ online experience, so there’s hope, but right now it’s all a bit of a mess.


But hey, if a game is going khổng lồ have sầu a problem, one that stems from rampant popularity isn’t so bad. I was the only one in a Guilty Gear Xrd lobby earlier. It’s about damn time an Arc System Works fighting game got overcrowded. The studio does far too good work to lớn only be seen by a small, dedicated group of fighting game fans. I suppose that small group is getting a lot bigger now.


Arc System Works has created the most approachable Dragon Ball game ever, and one of the most accessible fighting games. Fans of either should be overjoyed to lớn welcome newcomers to lớn their ranks, & those newcomers get lớn experience two of the most accepting and supportive sầu communities in fandom. Everybody wins.

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